|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
26:16-24 When secure sinners are threatened with taking away the Spirit of God, and the kingdom of God, it is what is warranted from the word of God. Hezekiah who protected Micah, prospered. Did Jehoiakim, who slew Urijah, prosper? The examples of bad men, and the bad consequences of their sins, should deter from what is evil. Urijah was faithful in delivering his message, but faulty in leaving his work. And the Lord was pleased to permit him to lose his life, while Jeremiah was protected in danger. Those are safest who most simply trust in the Lord, whatever their outward circumstances may be; and that He has all men's hearts in his hands, encourages us to trust him in the way of duty. He will honour and recompense those who show kindness to such as are persecuted for his sake.
Verse 24. - Nevertheless the hand of Ahi-kant, etc.; i.e. in spite of the prepossession against prophets like Jeremiah which this incident reveals, Ahikam threw all his influence into the scale of toleration.' The same Ahikam is mentioned in circumstances which reflect credit on his religion in 2 Kings 22:12-14. One of his sons, Gemariah, lent Baruch his official room for the reading of the prophecies of Jeremiah (Jeremiah 36:10); another was the well-known Gedaliah, who became governor of Judah after the fall of Jerusalem, and who was himself friendly to Jeremiah (Jeremiah 39:14; Jeremiah 40:5).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Nevertheless, the hand of Ahikam the son of Shaphan was with Jeremiah,.... Though this instance was urged as a precedent to go by, being lately done; or though the king's cruelty had been so lately exercised in such a manner; yet this man, who had been one of Josiah's courtiers and counsellors, 2 Kings 22:12; stood by Jeremiah, and used all his power, authority, and influence, in his favour:
that they should not give him into the hand of the people, to put him to death; that the sanhedrim should not; who, by the last precedent mentioned, might seem inclined to it; but this great man, having several brothers, as well as other friends, that paid a regard to his arguments and solicitations; he prevailed upon them not to give leave to the people to put him to death, who appear to have been very fickle and mutable; at first they joined with the priests and false prophets against Jeremiah, to accuse him; but upon the judgment and vote of the princes, on hearing the cause, they changed their sentiments, and were for the prophet against the priests; and now, very probably, upon the instance of Urijah being given as a precedent, they altered their minds again, and were for putting him to death, could they have obtained leave of the court; and which only Ahikam's interest prevented.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
24. Ahikam—son of Shaphan the scribe, or royal secretary. He was one of those whom King Josiah, when struck by the words of the book of the law, sent to inquire of the Lord (2Ki 22:12, 14). Hence his interference here in behalf of Jeremiah is what we should expect from his past association with that good king. His son, Gedaliah, followed in his father's steps, so that he was chosen by the Babylonians as the one to whom they committed Jeremiah for safety after taking Jerusalem, and on whose loyalty they could depend in setting him over the remnant of the people in Judea (Jer 39:14; 2Ki 25:22).
people to put him to death—Princes often, when they want to destroy a good man, prefer it to be done by a popular tumult rather than by their own order, so as to reap the fruit of the crime without odium to themselves (Mt 27:20).
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