Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Jeremiah 38:25

But if the officials hear that I have talked with you and come to you and say to you, ‘Tell us now what you said to the king and what the king said to you; do not hide it from us and we will not put you to death,'
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - King;   Prisoners;   Zedekiah;  
Dictionaries:
Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Zedekiah;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - King;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Prophecy, Prophets;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Greek Versions of Ot;   Zedekiah,;  

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

But if the princes hear that I have talked to thee,.... Which the king suspected they would; and could hardly think but somebody or other would see him and the prophet talking together; who would be officious enough to go and acquaint the princes with it, though he had endeavoured to be as private as possible; however, to provide against the worst, he instructs Jeremiah what to say to them, should they hear of their being together:

and they come unto thee: as he did not doubt but they would, as soon as ever they had notice of it:

and say unto thee, declare unto us now what thou hast said unto the king; hide it not from us, and we will not put thee to death; also what the king said unto thee: the king knew how inquisitive they would be, and sift the prophet to the bottom, to know both what the prophet said to the king, about the state of affairs respecting the Chaldeans, and the surrender of the city to them, which they supposed to be the subject of the discourse; and what were the king's thoughts about it, and his determinations concerning it; and in order to make the prophet easy, and more free and open to tell the whole matter, he suggests they would promise him his life should not be taken away.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 38:25". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/jeremiah-38.html. 1999.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

Kings are often such only in title; they are really under the power of their subjects.

Copyright Statement
These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Jeremiah 38:25". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/jeremiah-38.html. 1871-8.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Jeremiah 38:25 But if the princes hear that I have talked with thee, and they come unto thee, and say unto thee, Declare unto us now what thou hast said unto the king, hide it not from us, and we will not put thee to death; also what the king said unto thee:

Ver. 25. But if the princes hear.] In such fear stood he of his princes, and might truly say, as the Assyrian once did, Are not my princes altogether kings? [Isaiah 10:8] or as the Emperor of Germany did, I am king of kings, meaning that the princes of his empire would do what they wished for all him. Zedekiah was only an image of a king.

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These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 38:25". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/jeremiah-38.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

It could hardly be imagined that Zedekiah should have this private discourse with Jeremiah, but some or other of his courtiers would take notice of it; but yet it argues that this poor prince was in a miserable subjection to them, that he could discourse with nobody but they must come and inquire what he said.

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These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Jeremiah 38:25". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/jeremiah-38.html. 1685.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

But if the princes hear that I have talked with thee, and they come unto thee, and say unto thee, Declare unto us now what thou hast said unto the king, hide it not from us, and we will not put thee to death; also what the king said unto thee:

If the princes hear that I have talked with thee ... and say unto thee ... Kings are often such only in title; they are really under the power of their subjects.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Jeremiah 38:25". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/jeremiah-38.html. 1871-8.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

But if the princes hear that I have talked with thee, and they come unto thee, and say unto thee, Declare unto us now what thou hast said unto the king, hide it not from us, and we will not put thee to death; also what the king said unto thee:
4-6,27
Reciprocal: 2 Samuel 14:18 - Hide not

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These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Jeremiah 38:25". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/jeremiah-38.html.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

Here again Zedekiah shews his anxiety, lest Jeremiah should be apprehended, were the princes unexpectedly to assail him; for he might in this respect have stumbled, though admonished. Then the king intimated to him what to answer, in case the counselors came to him and made inquiry respecting their intercourse. He then advised him simply to say, that he entreated him not to send him back to the filthy pit, where he almost perished. The miserable servitude of the king appears now still evident; for he feared his own counselors, lest they should revolt from him. he might easily have made a spontaneous surrender of himself, but he dared not, lest he should be killed by them in a tumult; and yet, on the other hand, he feared lest the princes should despise him, and so redeem themselves by the sacrifice of his life.

We see in what straits he was, but God rendered to him a just recompense for his obstinacy. It was indeed a miserable thing to hear that the king’ was thus oppressed on every side, but the cause of all this ought ever to be borne in mind; which was, that he had despised God and his Prophet. He then deserved to be in this state of anxiety, to fear death on every side, and not to be able to extricate himself from those cares and perplexities which tormented him.

Let us then learn to cast all our cares on God, so that our life may be safe, and that we may have calm and tranquil minds: otherwise what is written in the Law must necessarily happen to us,

“Our life will hang on a thread, so that we shall say in the morning, Who will give us to see the evening? and in the evening, How can we live to the morning?” (Deuteronomy 28:66)

Lest then the same thing happen to us as to this miserable king, let us learn to re-cumb on God, for this is the only way to obtain peace.

For though Zedekiah set before Jeremiah the danger which he might bring on himself, if he confessed what took place between them, he yet had a regard no doubt to his own safety, for his care for the Prophet was not very great. If, then, he says, the princes will hear that I have spoken to him, etc. We see here, that as kings very curiously inquire into the sayings and actions of all, so they in their turn are exposed to innumerable spies, who observe all their secret proceedings. Zedekiah, as we have already seen, left his palace, sought some secret place, and at the third entrance called to him Jeremiah. This place might be deemed in some measure secret, yet he knew that he was observed even by his own servants.

Thus kings, while they seek immoderate splendor, renounce the main good, which ought to be preferred to all other things. For it is commonly said that liberty is an invaluable gift, and it is very true: but were we to seek for liberty among mankind, we should by no means find it in courts; for all there are slaves, and slavery begins with the most elevated. Kings, then, while they thus seek from their height to look down on all mankind, are placed, as it were, in a theater, and the eyes of all turn to them, so that no liberty remains for them; and they who hang on their favor are also in constant fear. This, then, ought to be noticed by us; for there is no one who does not seek splendor; but yet we know how anxious is the life of princes. Their external appearance is indeed very flattering; but we do not see what inward torments harass them. When, therefore, it is said of Zedekiah, that he could not have a secret conference, it hence appears that kings are by no means free.

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These files are public domain.
Bibliographical Information
Calvin, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 38:25". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/jeremiah-38.html. 1840-57.