Jeremiah 15:21
And I will deliver you out of the hand of the wicked, and I will redeem you out of the hand of the terrible.
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15:15-21 It is matter of comfort that we have a God, to whose knowledge of all things we may appeal. Jeremiah pleads with God for mercy and relief against his enemies, persecutors, and slanderers. It will be a comfort to God's ministers, when men despise them, if they have the testimony of their own consciences. But he complains, that he found little pleasure in his work. Some good people lose much of the pleasantness of religion by the fretfulness and uneasiness of their natural temper, which they indulge. The Lord called the prophet to cease from his distrust, and to return to his work. If he attended thereto, he might be assured the Lord would deliver him from his enemies. Those who are with God, and faithful to him, he will deliver from trouble or carry through it. Many things appear frightful, which do not at all hurt a real believer in Christ.Jeremiah had questioned God's righteousness (see Jeremiah 12:1 note); he is told, "If thou return," if thou repent thee of thy doubts, and think only of thy duty, "then will I bring thee again, then will I cause thee again to stand before Me." To stand before a person means to be his chief officer or vicegerent. It implies therefore the restoration of Jeremiah to the prophetic office.

If thou take forth the precious from the vile - i. e., if thou cause the precious metal to come forth from the dross. Jeremiah was to separate in himself what was divine and holy from the dross of human passion. Let him abandon this mistrust, this sensitiveness, this idea that God did not deal righteously with him, and then "he shall be as God's mouth, i. e., as the organ by which God speaks.

Let them return ... - Rather, "they shall return unto thee, but thou shalt not return unto them." A flattering prophet perishes with the people whom his soft speeches have confirmed in their sin: but the truthful speaking of God's word saves both.

20, 21. The promise of Jer 1:18, 19, in almost the same words, but with the addition, adapted to the present attacks of Jeremiah's formidable enemies, "I will deliver thee out of … wicked … redeem … terrible"; the repetition is in order to assure Jeremiah that God is the same now as when He first made the promise, in opposition to the prophet's irreverent accusation of unfaithfulness (Jer 15:18). I will deliver thee out of the hand of the wicked; the wicked Jews;

and out of the hand of the terrible; and the power of the terrible Chaldeans, into whose hands thou shalt come, but be preserved from any harm by the workings of my providence for thee. And I will deliver thee out of the hand of the wicked,.... The wicked Jews, Zedekiah and his courtiers, who imprisoned him:

and I will redeem thee out of the hand of the terrible; as kings and great men of the earth seem to be; or, "the violent", or "strong" (t), and mighty; that were stronger than he, that would use him with violence, and inject terror into him.

(t) "violentorum", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, Cocceius, Schmidt; "fortium", V. L.

And I will deliver thee out of the hand of the wicked, and I will redeem thee out of the hand of the terrible.
Verse 21. - Out of the hand of the wicked, etc. The "wicked" (literally, evil) and the "terrible" may be the banditti, composed of desperate patriots, who ultimately assassinated Gedaliah (Jeremiah 41:1-3).

Jeremiah continues his complaint. - Jeremiah 15:15. "Thou knowest it, Jahveh; remember me, and visit me, and revenge me on my persecutors! Do not, in Thy long-suffering, take me away; know that for Thy sake I bear reproach. Jeremiah 15:16. Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and Thy words were to me a delight and the joy of my heart: for Thy name was named upon me, Jahveh, God of hosts. Jeremiah 15:17. I sat not in the assembly of the laughers, nor was merry; because of Thy hand I sat solitary; for with indignation Thou hast filled me. Jeremiah 15:18. Why is my pain perpetual, and my wound malignant? will not heal. Wilt Thou really be to me as a deceiving brook, a water that doth not endure?"

The Lord's answer, Jeremiah 15:11-14, has not yet restored tranquillity to the prophet's mind; since in it his vindication by means of the abasement of his adversaries had been kept at an indefinite distance. And so he now, Jeremiah 15:15, prays the Lord to revenge him on his adversaries, and not to let him perish, since for His sake he bears reproach. The object to "Thou knowest, Lord," appears from the context - namely: "the attacks which I endure," or more generally: Thou knowest my case, my distress. At the same time he clearly means the harassment detailed in Jeremiah 15:10, so that "Thou knowest" is, as to its sense, directly connected with Jeremiah 15:10. But it by no means follows from this that Jeremiah 15:11-14 are not original; only that Jeremiah did not feel his anxiety put at rest by the divine answer conveyed in these verses. In the climax: Remember me, visit me, i.e., turn Thy care on me, and revenge me, we have the utterance of the importunity of his prayer, and therein, too, the extremity of his distress. According to Thy long-suffering, i.e., the long-suffering Thou showest towards my persecutors, take me not away, i.e., do not deliver me up to final ruin. This prayer he supports by the reminder, that for the Lord's sake he bears reproach; cf. Psalm 69:8. Further, the imperative: know, recognise, bethink thee of, is the utterance of urgent prayer. In Jeremiah 15:16 he exhibits how he suffers for the Lord's sake. The words of the Lord which came to him he has received with eagerness, as it had been the choicest dainties. "Thy words were found" intimates that he had come into possession of them as something actual, without particularizing how they were revealed. With the figurative expression: I ate them, cf. the symbolical embodiment of the figure, Ezekiel 2:9; Ezekiel 3:3, Apoc. Jer 10:9. The Keri דּבריך is an uncalled for correction, suggested by the preceding יהי, and the Chet. is perfectly correct. Thy words turned out to me a joy and delight, because Thy name was named upon me, i.e., because Thou hast revealed Thyself to me, hast chosen me to be the proclaimer of Thy word.

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