Jeremiah 4:22
Parallel Verses
New International Version
"My people are fools; they do not know me. They are senseless children; they have no understanding. They are skilled in doing evil; they know not how to do good."

New Living Translation
"My people are foolish and do not know me," says the LORD. "They are stupid children who have no understanding. They are clever enough at doing wrong, but they have no idea how to do right!"

English Standard Version
“For my people are foolish; they know me not; they are stupid children; they have no understanding. They are ‘wise’—in doing evil! But how to do good they know not.”

New American Standard Bible
"For My people are foolish, They know Me not; They are stupid children And have no understanding. They are shrewd to do evil, But to do good they do not know."

King James Bible
For my people is foolish, they have not known me; they are sottish children, and they have none understanding: they are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
"For My people are fools; they do not know Me. They are foolish children, without understanding. They are skilled in doing what is evil, but they do not know how to do what is good."

International Standard Version
"For my people are foolish, they don't know me. They're stupid children, they have no understanding. They're skilled at doing evil, but how to do good, they don't know."

NET Bible
The LORD answered, "This will happen because my people are foolish. They do not know me. They are like children who have no sense. They have no understanding. They are skilled at doing evil. They do not know how to do good."

GOD'S WORD® Translation
"My people are fools. They don't know me. They are stupid people. They don't understand. They are experts in doing wrong, and they don't know how to do good."

Jubilee Bible 2000
For my people are foolish; the ignorant sons with no understanding have not known me; they are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge.

King James 2000 Bible
For my people are foolish, they have not known me; they are stupid children, and they have no understanding: they are wise to do evil, but how to do good they have no knowledge.

American King James Version
For my people is foolish, they have not known me; they are silly children, and they have none understanding: they are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge.

American Standard Version
For my people are foolish, they know me not; they are sottish children, and they have no understanding; they are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge.

Douay-Rheims Bible
For my foolish people have not known me: they are foolish and senseless children: they are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge.

Darby Bible Translation
For my people is foolish, they have not known me; they are sottish children, and they have no intelligence; they are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge.

English Revised Version
For my people is foolish, they know me not; they are sottish children, and they have none understanding: they are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge.

Webster's Bible Translation
For my people are foolish, they have not known me; they are sottish children, and they have no understanding: they are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge.

World English Bible
"For my people are foolish, they don't know me. They are foolish children, and they have no understanding. They are skillful in doing evil, but to do good they have no knowledge."

Young's Literal Translation
For my people are foolish, me they have not known, Foolish sons are they, yea, they are not intelligent, Wise are they to do evil, And to do good they have not known.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

4:19-31 The prophet had no pleasure in delivering messages of wrath. He is shown in a vision the whole land in confusion. Compared with what it was, every thing is out of order; but the ruin of the Jewish nation would not be final. Every end of our comforts is not a full end. Though the Lord may correct his people very severely, yet he will not cast them off. Ornaments and false colouring would be of no avail. No outward privileges or profession, no contrivances would prevent destruction. How wretched the state of those who are like foolish children in the concerns of their souls! Whatever we are ignorant of, may the Lord make of good understanding in the ways of godliness. As sin will find out the sinner, so sorrow will, sooner or later, find out the secure.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 22. - For my people is foolish. The Lord gives no direct answer to the complaining question in ver. 21. He simply states the moral ground for Judah's calamity, and implies that this will last so long as the people continue to be "foolish," i.e. virtual deniers of the true God.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

For my people is foolish,.... This, as Kimchi says, is the answer of the Lord to the prophet; for not the prophet says this, but the Lord to the prophet, giving a reason why this sore destruction came upon the people of the Jews, and so reconciling his mind to the providence; seeing those whom he had chosen to be his people, above all people upon the face of the earth, and who professed themselves to be his people, had acted such a foolish part as they had done, in backsliding from him, revolting from his ways and worship, rebelling against him, and in committing such gross idolatries as they had been guilty of. So a people may be a professing people, and yet a foolish one; there are foolish professors of religion; such who take up a profession foolishly, without an experience of the grace of God; without any true faith in Christ; without having on the wedding garment of his righteousness; without laying it upon a good foundation; and without considering the cost and charge of a profession, and the difficulties and troubles attending it; and such are they who foolishly trust in it, when they have taken it up; and hold it foolishly, very remissly, and in a wavering manner; and who walk not agreeably to it, and at last foolishly drop it:

they have not known me; men may be the people of God by profession, and yet not know him; not know him so as to glorify him; not know him as their God, truly and experimentally; not know him in Christ, and have communion with him through him; not know the Lord Christ himself, the worth, glory, and excellency of him; their need of him; of his blood to cleanse them from sin; of his righteousness to justify them; of his sacrifice to atone for them; and of his fulness to supply their need; nor know the way of life, peace, and salvation by him, or at most only notionally, not experimentally; whereas the only true wisdom is to know Christ, and God in him; this is real and solid knowledge; it is science truly so called; it is delightful and satisfactory; it is useful and profitable, and is what issues in eternal life; and let men know what they will else, if they know not the Lord, they are "sottish children"; they are children indeed in understanding; and though they may be the children of God by profession, they are not the true and genuine children of God, since they know neither the Father nor the Son:

and they have no understanding; though they are not without a natural understanding, or an understanding of things natural and civil, yet they have no spiritual understanding, or an understanding of spiritual things; and at best only in a speculative, and not in an experimental way and manner:

they are wise to do evil; cunning inventors of evil things, crafty schemers that way, may be full of all wicked subtlety, and expert at over reaching and defrauding their brethren; when professors of religion especially ought to be wise unto that which is good, and simple concerning evil, Romans 16:19,

but to do good they have no knowledge; to do good, or to do a good thing well, is to do it according to the revealed will of God, from a principle of love to him, in the exercise of faith upon him, in the name and strength of Christ, and with a view to the glory of God; to do good in this sense, and in such a way and manner, carnal men and carnal professors have no knowledge, no practical knowledge; they have no inclination to it, but the reverse; nor do they, nor can they, perform it: if they had a knowledge how to do it, or a power to perform it, there would have been, in one age or another, some, more or fewer, that would have done it; but there is none of all Adam's descendants that does good, no, not one, Romans 3:9, the grace of God is absolutely necessary to the right doing of a good work, and the knowledge of it.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

22. Jehovah's reply; they cannot be otherwise than miserable, since they persevere in sin. The repetition of clauses gives greater force to the sentiment.

wise … evil … to do good … no knowledge—reversing the rule (Ro 16:19) "wise unto … good, simple concerning evil."

Jeremiah 4:22 Additional Commentaries
Context
Lamentation for Judah
21How long must I see the standard And hear the sound of the trumpet? 22"For My people are foolish, They know Me not; They are stupid children And have no understanding. They are shrewd to do evil, But to do good they do not know." 23I looked on the earth, and behold, it was formless and void; And to the heavens, and they had no light.…
Cross References
Romans 1:22
Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools

Romans 16:19
Everyone has heard about your obedience, so I rejoice because of you; but I want you to be wise about what is good, and innocent about what is evil.

1 Corinthians 14:20
Brothers and sisters, stop thinking like children. In regard to evil be infants, but in your thinking be adults.

Psalm 36:3
The words of their mouths are wicked and deceitful; they fail to act wisely or do good.

Psalm 53:4
Do all these evildoers know nothing? They devour my people as though eating bread; they never call on God.

Psalm 82:5
"The 'gods' know nothing, they understand nothing. They walk about in darkness; all the foundations of the earth are shaken.

Jeremiah 2:8
The priests did not ask, 'Where is the LORD?' Those who deal with the law did not know me; the leaders rebelled against me. The prophets prophesied by Baal, following worthless idols.

Jeremiah 4:21
How long must I see the battle standard and hear the sound of the trumpet?

Jeremiah 5:4
I thought, "These are only the poor; they are foolish, for they do not know the way of the LORD, the requirements of their God.

Jeremiah 5:21
Hear this, you foolish and senseless people, who have eyes but do not see, who have ears but do not hear:

Jeremiah 8:8
"'How can you say, "We are wise, for we have the law of the LORD," when actually the lying pen of the scribes has handled it falsely?

Jeremiah 9:3
"They make ready their tongue like a bow, to shoot lies; it is not by truth that they triumph in the land. They go from one sin to another; they do not acknowledge me," declares the LORD.

Jeremiah 10:8
They are all senseless and foolish; they are taught by worthless wooden idols.

Jeremiah 13:23
Can an Ethiopian change his skin or a leopard its spots? Neither can you do good who are accustomed to doing evil.

Ezekiel 16:30
"'I am filled with fury against you, declares the Sovereign LORD, when you do all these things, acting like a brazen prostitute!

Hosea 4:1
Hear the word of the LORD, you Israelites, because the LORD has a charge to bring against you who live in the land: "There is no faithfulness, no love, no acknowledgment of God in the land.

Amos 3:10
"They do not know how to do right," declares the LORD, "who store up in their fortresses what they have plundered and looted."
Treasury of Scripture

For my people is foolish, they have not known me; they are silly children, and they have none understanding: they are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge.

For my.

Jeremiah 5:4,21 Therefore I said, Surely these are poor; they are foolish: for they …

Jeremiah 8:7-9 Yes, the stork in the heaven knows her appointed times; and the turtle …

Deuteronomy 32:6,28 Do you thus requite the LORD, O foolish people and unwise? is not …

Psalm 14:1-4 The fool has said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, …

Isaiah 1:3 The ox knows his owner, and the donkey his master's crib: but Israel …

Isaiah 6:9,10 And he said, Go, and tell this people, Hear you indeed, but understand …

Isaiah 27:11 When the boughs thereof are withered, they shall be broken off: the …

Psalm 49:10-12 For he sees that wise men die, likewise the fool and the brutish …

Jeremiah 42:19,20 The LORD has said concerning you, O you remnant of Judah; Go you …

Hosea 4:1,6 Hear the word of the LORD, you children of Israel: for the LORD has …

Matthew 23:16-26 Woe to you, you blind guides, which say, Whoever shall swear by the …

Romans 1:22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,

Romans 3:11 There is none that understands, there is none that seeks after God.

they have.

Hosea 5:4 They will not frame their doings to turn to their God: for the spirit …

John 16:3 And these things will they do to you, because they have not known …

Romans 1:28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God …

1 Corinthians 1:20,21 Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of …

they are wise.

2 Samuel 13:3 But Amnon had a friend, whose name was Jonadab, the son of Shimeah …

2 Samuel 16:21-23 And Ahithophel said to Absalom, Go in to your father's concubines, …

Micah 2:1 Woe to them that devise iniquity, and work evil on their beds! when …

Luke 16:8 And the lord commended the unjust steward, because he had done wisely…

Romans 16:19 For your obedience is come abroad to all men. I am glad therefore …

1 Corinthians 14:20 Brothers, be not children in understanding: however, in malice be …

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