Jeremiah 16:1
The word of the LORD came also to me, saying,
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(1) The word of the Lord came also unto me.—The formula introduces a new and distinct message, extending to Jeremiah 17:18, and it is one even more terrible in its threatenings than any that have preceded it. There is nothing in its contents to fix the date with any certainty, but we may think of it as probably about the close of the reign of Jehoiakim, when that king was trusting in an alliance with Egypt (Jeremiah 17:13), and the people taunted the prophet with the non-fulfilment of his predictions (Jeremiah 17:15).

Jeremiah 16:1-4. The word of the Lord came, &c. — Here begins a new discourse, wherein God forbids Jeremiah to marry, principally with a view to show the miseries of parents, and the confused and ruinous state of things in Judea. “Fruitfulness was promised as a blessing under the law, Deuteronomy 28:4, but ceased to be so in such difficult times as were coming upon the Jewish nation. For parents could not promise to themselves any comfort in their children, who must be exposed to the many miseries that attend a hostile invasion and a conquering army.” — Lowth. They shall die of grievous deaths — Hebrew ממותי תחלאים, mortibus ægritudinum, id est, ægerrimis, Buxtorf. Literally, of deaths of sicknesses, that is, very sorrowful deaths; meaning, Blaney thinks, epidemical disorders, (such as the pestilence,) terminating in death. It, no doubt, however, also includes death by the sword and by famine.16:1-9 The prophet must conduct himself as one who expected to see his country ruined very shortly. In the prospect of sad times, he is to abstain from marriage, mourning for the dead, and pleasure. Those who would convince others of the truths of God, must make it appear by their self-denial, that they believe it themselves. Peace, inward and outward, family and public, is wholly the work of God, and from his loving-kindness and mercy. When He takes his peace from any people, distress must follow. There may be times when it is proper to avoid things otherwise our duty; and we should always sit loose to the pleasures and concerns of this life.In this prophecy Jeremiah 16:1-18, the punishment of the people is set forth in even sterner terms than in the last. The whole land is likened to a desert covered with the bodies of the dead, who lie unbemoaned and uncared for; and the prophet himself is commanded to abstain from the common usages of mankind that his motto of life, as well as his words, may warn the people of the greatness of the approaching calamity. There is, however, to be finally a return from exile, but only after the idolatry of the nation has been severely punished. The prophecy was probably written about the close of Jehoiakim's reign. CHAPTER 16

Jer 16:1-21. Continuation of the Previous Prophecy.The prophet is commanded to abstain from marriage, from mourning, or festival assemblies; hereby representing to them their approaching misery, Jeremiah 16:1-9. Their sins which caused it, Jeremiah 16:10-13. Their strange deliverance from Babylon, Jeremiah 16:14,15. After that their iniquity is recompensed, Jeremiah 16:16-18. The prophet’s comfort in the calling of the Gentiles, Jeremiah 16:19-21.

No text from Poole on this verse.

The word of the Lord came unto me, saying. The Targum is, the word of prophecy from the Lord: whether this is a new prophecy, or the former continued, is not certain; the latter seems probable. This introduction is omitted in the Septuagint and Arabic versions. The word of the LORD came also unto me, saying,
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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