Jeremiah 23:29
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
"Is not my word like fire," declares the LORD, "and like a hammer that breaks a rock in pieces?

New Living Translation
Does not my word burn like fire?" says the LORD. "Is it not like a mighty hammer that smashes a rock to pieces?

English Standard Version
Is not my word like fire, declares the LORD, and like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?

New American Standard Bible
"Is not My word like fire?" declares the LORD, "and like a hammer which shatters a rock?

King James Bible
Is not my word like as a fire? saith the LORD; and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces?

Holman Christian Standard Bible
"Is not My word like fire"--this is the LORD's declaration--"and like a hammer that pulverizes rock?

International Standard Version
"My message is like fire or like a hammer that shatters rock, is it not?" declares the LORD.

NET Bible
My message is like a fire that purges dross! It is like a hammer that breaks a rock in pieces! I, the LORD, so affirm it!

New Heart English Bible
'Isn't my word like fire?' says the LORD; 'and like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?

GOD'S WORD® Translation
"Isn't my word like fire or like a hammer that shatters a rock?" asks the LORD.

JPS Tanakh 1917
Is not My word like as fire? Saith the LORD; And like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces?

New American Standard 1977
“Is not My word like fire?” declares the LORD, “and like a hammer which shatters a rock?

Jubilee Bible 2000
Is not my word like as a fire? saith the LORD; and like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?

King James 2000 Bible
Is not my word like a fire? says the LORD; and like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?

American King James Version
Is not my word like as a fire? said the LORD; and like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?

American Standard Version
Is not my word like fire? saith Jehovah; and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces?

Douay-Rheims Bible
Are not my words as a fire, saith the Lord: and as a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces?

Darby Bible Translation
Is not my word like a fire, saith Jehovah; and like a hammer [that] breaketh the rock in pieces?

English Revised Version
Is not my word like as fire? saith the LORD; and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces?

Webster's Bible Translation
Is not my word like a fire? saith the LORD? and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces?

World English Bible
Isn't my word like fire? says Yahweh; and like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?

Young's Literal Translation
Is it not thus? My word is as a fire, An affirmation of Jehovah. And as a hammer -- it breaketh in pieces a rock.
Study Bible
Lying Prophets
28"The prophet who has a dream may relate his dream, but let him who has My word speak My word in truth. What does straw have in common with grain?" declares the LORD. 29"Is not My word like fire?" declares the LORD, "and like a hammer which shatters a rock? 30"Therefore behold, I am against the prophets," declares the LORD, "who steal My words from each other.…
Cross References
2 Corinthians 10:4
The weapons of our warfare are not the weapons of the world. Instead, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.

2 Corinthians 10:5
We tear down arguments, and every presumption set up against the knowledge of God; and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.

Hebrews 4:12
For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it pierces even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow. It is able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

Jeremiah 5:14
Therefore, thus says the LORD, the God of hosts, "Because you have spoken this word, Behold, I am making My words in your mouth fire And this people wood, and it will consume them.

Jeremiah 20:9
But if I say, "I will not remember Him Or speak anymore in His name," Then in my heart it becomes like a burning fire Shut up in my bones; And I am weary of holding it in, And I cannot endure it.

Hosea 6:5
Therefore I have hewn them in pieces by the prophets; I have slain them by the words of My mouth; And the judgments on you are like the light that goes forth.
Treasury of Scripture

Is not my word like as a fire? said the LORD; and like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?

like as.

Jeremiah 5:14 Why thus said the LORD God of hosts, Because you speak this word, …

Jeremiah 20:9 Then I said, I will not make mention of him, nor speak any more in his name…

Luke 24:32 And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while …

John 6:63 It is the spirit that vivifies; the flesh profits nothing: the words …

Acts 2:3,37 And there appeared to them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it …

2 Corinthians 2:16 To the one we are the smell of death to death; and to the other the …

2 Corinthians 10:4,5 (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through …

Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any …

Revelation 11:5 And if any man will hurt them, fire proceeds out of their mouth, …

(29) Is not my word like as a fire? . . .--The prophet speaks out of the depths of his own experience. The true prophetic word burns in the heart of a man, and will not be restrained (Jeremiah 5:14; Jeremiah 20:9; Psalm 39:3), and when uttered it consumes the evil, and purifies the good. It will burn up the chaff of the utterances of the false prophets. (Comp. 1Corinthians 3:12-13.) As the hammer breaks the rock, so it shatters the pride and stubbornness of man, is mighty to the pulling down of strongholds (2Corinthians 10:4), and the heart of him who hears it as it should be heard is broken and contrite. What these words paint in the language of poetry, St. Paul describes without imagery in 1Corinthians 14:24-25. (Comp. also Hebrews 4:12.)

Verse 29. - Is not my word like as a fire? As in vers. 19, 20, so here, the prophet contrasts the message of the false prophets with that of the true. The former flatter their hearers with promises of peace; the latter speak a stern but potent word, which burns like a fire, and crushes like a hammer. Observe, the prophet does not define the activity of the fire as he does that of the hammer; for the fire has a twofold effect - protection to God's friends and destruction to his enemies. On the figure of the hammer, comp. Jeremiah 1:23; 51:20. Is not my word like as a fire? saith the Lord,.... The legal part of it is as fire; it is called a "fiery law", Deuteronomy 33:2; like fire, it is quick and piercing, and penetrating into the hearts and consciences of men; and works wrath there, and raises a fearful expectation of fiery indignation; it threatens with everlasting fire; it sentences men to the fire of hell; and the righteous Judge, in the execution of it, will be a consuming fire to wicked men. The Gospel part of the word is like fire, on account of the light the entrance of it gives to sinners; by which they see their own impurity, impotence, and the insufficiency of their own righteousness, and the way of life and salvation by Christ; and by the light of this fire saints are directed in their walk and conversation; and by it immoralities, errors, and superstition, are detected: also on account of the heat of it; it is the means of a vital heat to sinners, the savour of life to them; and is warming and comforting to saints, and causes their hearts to burn within them; it inflames them with love to God, Christ, and one another, and with zeal for truth and the interest of a Redeemer; though it has a scorching and tormenting heat to wicked men, and fills them with burning malice and envy, Revelation 11:5; and, through the corruption of human nature, is the occasion of contention and discord, for which reason Christ calls it fire, Luke 12:49; and indeed it has different effects on different objects, as fire, which hardens some things and softens others; see 2 Corinthians 2:16; moreover, it may be compared to fire for its purifying, separating, and trying nature: as fire purifies gold and silver, and separates the dross, and tries the metal, and shows it what it is; so the Gospel tries men's principles, and discovers what they are, and separates one from another: and also for its consuming nature; it opposes, weakens, and burns up the worst in man, his lusts and corruptions, which it teaches him to deny; and the best in man, all his holiness and righteousness he depended upon; and it burns up the chaff of false doctrine and human inventions before mentioned.

and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces? to which the heart of man may be compared, being hardened by sin, confirmed in it; destitute of spiritual life; stupid and senseless; stubborn and inflexible; on which no impressions are made, and is impenitent and inflexible; see Zechariah 7:12; now the word of the Lord, in the hand of the Spirit, is a means of breaking such hard hearts, and taking away the Obduracy and hardness of them; there is a legal contrition of it, through the law part of the word, by which there is a knowledge of sin, and the soul is wounded with a sense of it, and sore broken, but without any view of pardon, righteousness, and salvation by Christ; and there is an evangelical contrition or brokenness of heart, through the Gospel part of the word, by means of which the stony heart is not only broken, but melted and dissolved into true evangelical repentance for sin, through the discoveries of a Saviour bruised and broken for its sin, and through a view of free and full pardon by his blood, and justification by his righteousness. Now the word is only an instrument; it is not the efficient cause of all this; as a hammer is but an instrument, and a passive one, can do nothing of itself; it must be taken up and used by a powerful hand, or it can do no execution; what is a hammer without a hand? so the Gospel is only an instrument in the hand of, he Lord; but when he takes it into his own hand, and strikes with it, it will break the hardest heart in pieces, and make a stony heart a heart of flesh, Ezekiel 36:26. 29. As the "fire" consumes the "chaff," [Jer 23:28], so "My word" will consume the false prophets (Mt 3:12; Heb 4:12). "My word" which is "wheat" [Jer 23:28], that is, food to the true prophet and his hearers, is a consuming "fire," and a crushing "hammer" (Mt 21:44) to false prophets and their followers (2Co 2:16). The Word of the false prophets may be known by its promising men peace in sin. "My word," on the contrary, burns and breaks the hard-hearted (Jer 20:9). The "hammer" symbolizes destructive power (Jer 50:23; Na 2:1, Margin).23:23-32 Men cannot be hidden from God's all-seeing eye. Will they never see what judgments they prepare for themselves? Let them consider what a vast difference there is between these prophecies and those delivered by the true prophets of the Lord. Let them not call their foolish dreams Divine oracles. The promises of peace these prophets make are no more to be compared to God's promises than chaff to wheat. The unhumbled heart of man is like a rock; if not melted by the word of God as a fire, it will be broken to pieces by it as a hammer. How can they be long safe, or at all easy, who have a God of almighty power against them? The word of God is no smooth, lulling, deceitful message. And by its faithfulness it may certainly be distinguished from false doctrines.
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