Jeremiah 3:14
Parallel Verses
New International Version
"Return, faithless people," declares the LORD, "for I am your husband. I will choose you--one from a town and two from a clan--and bring you to Zion.

New Living Translation
"Return home, you wayward children," says the LORD, "for I am your master. I will bring you back to the land of Israel--one from this town and two from that family--from wherever you are scattered.

English Standard Version
Return, O faithless children, declares the LORD; for I am your master; I will take you, one from a city and two from a family, and I will bring you to Zion.

New American Standard Bible
'Return, O faithless sons,' declares the LORD; 'For I am a master to you, And I will take you one from a city and two from a family, And I will bring you to Zion.'

King James Bible
Turn, O backsliding children, saith the LORD; for I am married unto you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion:

Holman Christian Standard Bible
"Return, you faithless children"--this is the LORD's declaration--"for I am your master, and I will take you, one from a city and two from a family, and I will bring you to Zion.

International Standard Version
"Return, unfaithful people," declares the LORD, "for I am your husband. I'll take you, one from a city and two from a family, and I'll bring you to Zion.

NET Bible
"Come back to me, my wayward sons," says the LORD, "for I am your true master. If you do, I will take one of you from each town and two of you from each family group, and I will bring you back to Zion.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
"Come back, you rebellious people," declares the LORD. "I'm your husband. I will take you, one from every city and two from every family, and bring you to Zion.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Turn, O rebellious sons, said the LORD; for I am your Lord, and I will take you one of a city and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion:

King James 2000 Bible
Turn, O backsliding children, says the LORD; for I am married unto you: and I will take you one from a city, and two from a family, and I will bring you to Zion:

American King James Version
Turn, O backsliding children, said the LORD; for I am married to you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion:

American Standard Version
Return, O backsliding children, saith Jehovah; for I am a husband unto you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion:

Douay-Rheims Bible
Return, O ye revolting children, saith the Lord: for I am your husband: and I will take you, one of a city, and two of a kindred, and will bring you into Sion.

Darby Bible Translation
Return, backsliding children, saith Jehovah; for I am a husband unto you, and I will take you, one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion.

English Revised Version
Return, O backsliding children, saith the LORD; for I am a husband unto you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion:

Webster's Bible Translation
Turn, O backsliding children, saith the LORD; for I am married to you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion:

World English Bible
"Return, backsliding children," says Yahweh; "for I am a husband to you. I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion.

Young's Literal Translation
Turn back, O backsliding sons, An affirmation of Jehovah. For I have ruled over you, And taken you one of a city, and two of a family, And have brought you to Zion,
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

3:12-20 See God's readiness to pardon sin, and the blessings reserved for gospel times. These words were proclaimed toward the north; to Israel, the ten tribes, captive in Assyria. They are directed how to return. If we confess our sins, the Lord is faithful and just to forgive them. These promises are fully to come to pass in the bringing back the Jews in after-ages. God will graciously receive those that return to him; and by his grace, he takes them out from among the rest. The ark of the covenant was not found after the captivity. The whole of that dispensation was to be done away, which took place after the multitude of believers had been greatly increased by the conversion of the Gentiles, and of the Israelites scattered among them. A happy state of the church is foretold. He can teach all to call him Father; but without thorough change of heart and life, no man can be a child of God, and we have no security for not departing from Him.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 14. - Turn, O backsliding children. There is a play upon words, or rather upon senses, in the original, "Turn, ye turned away ones" (comp. ver. 12). To whom is this addressed? To the Israelites in the narrower sense, for there is nothing to indicate a transition. Long as they have been removed from the paternal hearth, they are still "sons." For I am married unto you. The same Hebrew phrase occurs in Jeremiah 31:32. Its signification has been a subject of dispute. From the supposed necessities of exegesis in Jeremiah 31:32, some (e.g. Pococke and Gesenins) have translated, "for I have rejected you," but the connection requires not "for" but "though," which, however, is an inadmissible rendering; besides, the Hebrew verb in question nowhere has the sense of "reject" elsewhere (yet the Septuagint already has it, virtually at least, in Jeremiah 31:32, q.v.). The literal meaning is for I have been a lord over you, i.e. a husband. Israel is despondent, and fears to return. Jehovah repeats his invitation, assuring Israel that he does not regard the marriage bond as broken. He is still (in spite of ver. 8) the husband, and Israel the bride (comp. Hosea 2; Isaiah 1:1; Isaiah 54:6, etc.). One of a city, and two of a family. The promises of God are primarily to communities, but this does not prevent him from devoting the most special care to individuals. "One of a city, and two of a family," even though there should be but one faithful Lot in a city, and two such in a family (larger than a city, a single tribe containing only a few mishpa-khoth, or clans), yet I will admit these few to the promised blessings." Calvin's remark is worth noticing: "Hie locus dignus est observatu, quia ostendit Deus non esse, cur alii alios expectent; deinde etiam si corpus ipsum populi putreseat in suis peccatis, tamen si pauci ad ipsum redeant, se illis etiam fore placabilem." The historical facts to which the prophecy corresponds are variously regarded. Theodoret, Grotius, etc., suppose it to have been fulfilled exclusively in the return from Babylon; St. Jerome and others think rather of the Messianic period. Hengstenberg finds a continuous fulfillment, beginning at the time of Cyrus, when many belonging to the ten tribes joined themselves to the returning Judahites. He finds a further continuation in the times of the Maccabees, and in fact a continually growing fulfillment in preparation for that complete one brought in by Christ, when the premised blessings were poured out upon the whole δωδεκάφυλον (Luke 2:36). "Zion and the holy land were at that time the seat of the kingdom of God, so that the return to the latter was inseparable from the return to the former." Dr. Guthe, however, the latest critical commentator on Jeremiah, thinks that the passage can be explained otherwise, viz." from each city one by one, and from each family two by two." This gives a more obvious explanation; but the ordinary rendering is more natural, and the explanation based upon it is in the highest degree worthy of the Divine subject. The doubt, of course, is whether in the Old Testament a special providence is extended elsewhere so distinctly to the individual. But Jeremiah is pre-eminently an individualizing prophet; he feels the depth and reality of individual as opposed to corporate life as no one else among the prophets. (At any rate, one point is clear, that the prophet foresees that the number of the exiles who return will be but small compared with the increase to be divinely vouchsafed to them; see ver. 16.)

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Turn, O backsliding children, saith the Lord,.... All of them were children by national adoption, and some by special grace, and yet "backsliders", O monstrous ingratitude! "backsliders", and yet "children", still the relation continues, O marvellous grace! God's own children may backslide, and often do; either in heart, when love waxes cold, faith declines, zeal wanting; when they get into a carnal sleepy frame of spirit, and have not that quick sense of sin, and of duty, as heretofore: or in practice, when private prayer is restrained; public worship is neglected; get into bad company, and fall into gross sins; all which is owing to the prevalence of indwelling sin, the force of Satan's temptations, and the enticing snares of the world; but God will not leave them, he calls unto them again and again to turn unto him by repentance, and to doing their first works; which calls, at length, through powerful grace, become effectual; see Jeremiah 3:22 and the arguments used to engage to it follow,

for I am married unto you; in a civil sense as a nation, Jeremiah 31:32, and in a spiritual sense to a remnant of them; Christ is the bridegroom, the church is the bride, which he has secretly betrothed to himself in eternity; openly in time, at the conversion of everyone of them; and will more publicly at the last day, when all are gathered in and prepared for him. This relation, as it is a very near one, so it is very astonishing, considering the disparity between the two parties, and it always continues; love, the bond of it, never alters; the covenant, in which this transaction is carried on, is ever sure; and Christ always behaves agreeably to it; wherefore it is base ingratitude to backslide; and reason there is sufficient why his backsliding spouse should return to him. The Septuagint version is, "because I will rule over you." agreeable to which is Jarchi's note,

"because I am your Lord, and it is not for my glory, (or honour) to leave you in the hand of enemies.''

Kimchi's father interprets the word used by "I loath you", or I am weary of you; the reverse of which is the Targum,

"for I am well pleased with you;''

and so the Syriac version, "I delight in you"; which carries in it a much more engaging argument to return, and agrees with what follows:

and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family: or tribe, or country; for sometimes a whole country is called a family, as in Jeremiah 1:15 and here it must design more than a city; for otherwise there are many families in a city; the meaning is, according to Kimchi, that though there may be but one Jew in a city of the Gentiles, or two only in a nation, the Lord would take them from thence; and, according to others, that though one or two, or a few, here and there one of the backsliders, should return to him by true repentance, he would receive them graciously; the smallness of their number would be no objection to him; which is a sense not to be despised: but the phrase seems to denote the distinguishing grace of God to his people; which appears in the choice of them in his Son; the redemption of them by him; and the sanctification of them by his Spirit; and very few are the objects of his grace, as it were one of a city, and two of a tribe; however, they shall none of them be lost, notwithstanding their backslidings, to which they are bent: for it is added,

and I will bring you to Zion; to the church of God here, a Gospel church state, whither to come is the great privilege of the saints, Hebrews 12:22 and to the Zion above, the heavenly state, where all the chosen and ransomed, and sanctified ones, shall come, with songs, and everlasting joy upon their heads, Isaiah 35:10 and all as the fruit of distinguishing and efficacious grace.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

14. I am married—literally, "I am Lord," that is, husband to you (so Jer 31:32; compare Ho 2:19, 20; Isa 54:5). Gesenius, following the Septuagint version of Jer 31:32, and Paul's quotation of it (Heb 8:9), translates, "I have rejected you"; so the corresponding Arabic, and the idea of lordship, may pass into that of looking down upon, and so rejecting. But the Septuagint in this passage translates, "I will be Lord over you." And the "for" has much more force in English Version than in that of Gesenius. The Hebrew hardly admits the rendering though [Hengstenberg].

take you one of a city—Though but one or two Israelites were in a (foreign) city, they shall not be forgotten; all shall be restored (Am 9:9). So, in the spiritual Israel, God gathers one convert here, another there, into His Church; not the least one is lost (Mt 18:14; Ro 11:5; compare Jer 24:5-7).

family—a clan or tribe.

Jeremiah 3:14 Additional Commentaries
Context
Invitation to Repentance
13'Only acknowledge your iniquity, That you have transgressed against the LORD your God And have scattered your favors to the strangers under every green tree, And you have not obeyed My voice,' declares the LORD. 14'Return, O faithless sons,' declares the LORD; 'For I am a master to you, And I will take you one from a city and two from a family, And I will bring you to Zion.' 15"Then I will give you shepherds after My own heart, who will feed you on knowledge and understanding.…
Cross References
Isaiah 31:6
Return, you Israelites, to the One you have so greatly revolted against.

Isaiah 54:5
For your Maker is your husband-- the LORD Almighty is his name-- the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer; he is called the God of all the earth.

Isaiah 57:17
I was enraged by their sinful greed; I punished them, and hid my face in anger, yet they kept on in their willful ways.

Jeremiah 3:12
Go, proclaim this message toward the north: "'Return, faithless Israel,' declares the LORD, 'I will frown on you no longer, for I am faithful,' declares the LORD, 'I will not be angry forever.

Jeremiah 29:14
I will be found by you," declares the LORD, "and will bring you back from captivity. I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you," declares the LORD, "and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile."

Jeremiah 31:6
There will be a day when watchmen cry out on the hills of Ephraim, 'Come, let us go up to Zion, to the LORD our God.'"

Jeremiah 31:12
They will come and shout for joy on the heights of Zion; they will rejoice in the bounty of the LORD-- the grain, the new wine and the olive oil, the young of the flocks and herds. They will be like a well-watered garden, and they will sorrow no more.

Jeremiah 31:32
It will not be like the covenant I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to lead them out of Egypt, because they broke my covenant, though I was a husband to them," declares the LORD.

Hosea 2:19
I will betroth you to me forever; I will betroth you in righteousness and justice, in love and compassion.

Hosea 5:15
Then I will return to my lair until they have borne their guilt and seek my face-- in their misery they will earnestly seek me."
Treasury of Scripture

Turn, O backsliding children, said the LORD; for I am married to you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion:

o backsliding

Jeremiah 2:19 Your own wickedness shall correct you, and your backslidings shall …

for I am married

Jeremiah 3:1,8 They say, If a man put away his wife, and she go from him, and become …

Jeremiah 2:2 Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem, saying, Thus said the LORD; …

Jeremiah 31:32 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the …

Isaiah 54:5 For your Maker is your husband; the LORD of hosts is his name; and …

Hosea 2:19,20 And I will betroth you to me for ever; yes, I will betroth you to …

one of a city

Jeremiah 23:3 And I will gather the remnant of my flock out of all countries where …

Jeremiah 31:8-10 Behold, I will bring them from the north country, and gather them …

Isaiah 1:9 Except the LORD of hosts had left to us a very small remnant, we …

Isaiah 6:13 But yet in it shall be a tenth, and it shall return, and shall be …

Isaiah 10:22 For though your people Israel be as the sand of the sea, yet a remnant …

Isaiah 11:11,12 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his …

Isaiah 17:6 Yet gleaning grapes shall be left in it, as the shaking of an olive …

Isaiah 24:13-15 When thus it shall be in the middle of the land among the people, …

Ezekiel 34:11-14 For thus said the Lord GOD; Behold, I, even I, will both search my …

Zechariah 13:7-9 Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is …

Romans 9:27 Esaias also cries concerning Israel, Though the number of the children …

Romans 11:4-6 But what said the answer of God to him? I have reserved to myself …

Jump to Previous
Affirmation Backsliding Children Choose City Clan Declares Faithless Family Husband Married Master Ruled Turn Turned Zion
Jump to Next
Affirmation Backsliding Children Choose City Clan Declares Faithless Family Husband Married Master Ruled Turn Turned Zion
Links
Jeremiah 3:14 NIV
Jeremiah 3:14 NLT
Jeremiah 3:14 ESV
Jeremiah 3:14 NASB
Jeremiah 3:14 KJV

Jeremiah 3:14 Bible Apps
Jeremiah 3:14 Bible Suite
Jeremiah 3:14 Biblia Paralela
Jeremiah 3:14 Chinese Bible
Jeremiah 3:14 French Bible
Jeremiah 3:14 German Bible

Alphabetical: a am and bring choose city clan declares faithless family for from husband I LORD master O one people Return sons take the to town two will you your Zion Zion'

OT Prophets: Jeremiah 3:14 Return backsliding children says Yahweh (Jer.) Christian Bible Study Resources, Dictionary, Concordance and Search Tools

Bible Hub
Jeremiah 3:13
Top of Page
Top of Page