Jeremiah 21:7
And afterward, saith the LORD, I will deliver Zedekiah king of Judah, and his servants, and the people, and such as are left in this city from the pestilence, from the sword, and from the famine, into the hand of Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of their enemies, and into the hand of those that seek their life: and he shall smite them with the edge of the sword; he shall not spare them, neither have pity, nor have mercy.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(7) He shall smite them with the edge of the sword.—The words were bold words for the prophet to utter while the king was still on the throne, and urged on by his princes to defy the power of the Chaldæan king. In Jeremiah 52:10; Jeremiah 52:24-27 we find their literal fulfilment.

21:1-10 When the siege had begun, Zedekiah sent to ask of Jeremiah respecting the event. In times of distress and danger, men often seek those to counsel and pray for them, whom, at other times, they despise and oppose; but they only seek deliverance from punishment. When professors continue in disobedience, presuming upon outward privileges, let them be told that the Lord will prosper his open enemies against them. As the king and his princes would not surrender, the people are exhorted to do so. No sinner on earth is left without a Refuge, who really desires one; but the way of life is humbling, it requires self-denial, and exposes to difficulties.A great pestilence - As the result of the excessive crowding of men and animals in a confined space with all sanitary regulations utterly neglected. 7. the people, and such—rather, explanatory, "the people," namely, "such as are left."

seek their life—content with nothing short of their death; not content with plundering and enslaving them.

smite with … sword—This was the fate of Zedekiah's sons and many of the Jewish nobles. Zedekiah himself, though not put to a violent death, died of grief. Compare as to the accurate fulfilment, Jer 34:4; Eze 12:13; 2Ki 25:6, 7.

Afterward; after that many of the people of this city shall be destroyed, some by the enemy assaulting and skirmishing with them; others by the famine that shall be amongst them through a want of victuals, being all spent with the long siege; others by the pestilence. Zedekiah, who shall escape these three judgments, together with his courtiers, and the residue of the people, shall be delivered into the power of the king of Babylon, and into the power of such as will not be content with the plunder of their houses, but thirst after their blood; and these enemies (set on by Nebuchadnezzar) shall smite them with the sword, without showing them any mercy or pity. This is not to be understood of king Zedekiah himself, for God let him know, Jeremiah 34:4, that he should not die by the sword, but in peace, as he did afterward in Babylon, though in prison; but it was true of his sons and courtiers, and a great part of the people, Jeremiah 49:6,8 52:10. Those who went into captivity were only such as had revolted during the siege, and many of those that were of the poor of the land, for the rest there was little pity had of them, or mercy showed to them, as may be seen, Jeremiah 39, Jer 52 2 Chronicles 36:17.

And afterwards, saith the Lord God,.... After there should be so great a mortality among men and beasts:

I will deliver Zedekiah king of Judah, and his servants; the king himself shall not escape; though he shall not die by the pestilence, or famine, or sword, yet he shall fall into the hands of the Chaldeans, and also "his servants", his courtiers, and counsellors:

and the people, and such as are left in this city from the pestilence,

from the sword, and from the famine; such of the inhabitants of the city, as well as those at court, that died not by the sword, famine, and pestilence: these should be delivered

into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon; who was now with his army without the walls of the city besieging it:

and into the hand of their enemies, and into the hand of those that seek their life; the Chaldeans, who were their implacable enemies, and cruel, and whom nothing would satisfy but their lives:

he shall smite them with the edge of the sword; that is, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, or, however, the army under his command; for what was done by the one is ascribed to the other: this is to be understood of such that fell into their hands upon taking the city, and who endeavoured to make their escape; see Jeremiah 39:4;

he shall not spare them, neither have pity, nor have mercy; they had no regard to rank or figure, to age or sex; the sons of the king were slain before his eyes, and then his eyes were put out; princes were hanged up by the hand; and no compassion shown to old or young, man or maiden; see Jeremiah 52:10. This verse is remarkably long.

And afterward, saith the LORD, I will deliver Zedekiah king of Judah, and his servants, and the people, and such as are left in this city from the pestilence, from the sword, and from the famine, into the hand of Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of their enemies, and into the hand of those that seek their life: and he shall smite them with the edge of the sword; he shall not spare them, neither have pity, nor have mercy.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
7. The Hebrew form of the v. is evidently an expansion. The LXX read “from the famine into the hand of those that seek, etc.,” omitting the intermediate words.

the pestilence] This would be a natural consequence of the overcrowding of the city on account of the siege.

with the edge of the sword] lit. according to the mouth of the sword, i.e. relentlessly, without quarter.

Verse 7. - And such as are; rather, left which are left. (There has been an obvious error in the repetition of "and.") Jeremiah 21:7The Lord will make known His almighty power not for the rescue but for the chastisement of Judah. The words "with outstretched hand and strong arm" are a standing figure for the miraculous manifestation of God's power at the release of Israel from Egypt, Deuteronomy 4:34; Deuteronomy 5:15; Deuteronomy 26:8. This power He will now exercise upon Israel, and execute the punishment threatened against apostasy at the renewal of the covenant by Moses in the land of Moab. The words גּדול...בּאף are from Deuteronomy 29:27. The inhabitants of Jerusalem are to perish during the siege by pestilence and disease, and the remainder, including the king and his servants, to be mercilessly massacred. "Great pestilence" alone is mentioned in Jeremiah 21:6, but in Jeremiah 21:7 there are sword and famine along with it. The ואת before הנּשׁארים seems superfluous and unsuitable, since besides the king, his servants and the people, there could be none others left. The lxx have therefore omitted it, and Hitz., Ew., Graf, and others propose to erase it. But the ו may be taken to be explicative: namely, such as are left, in which case ואת serves to extend the participial clause to all the persons before mentioned, while without the ואת the 'הנּשׁארים וגו could be referred only to העם. "Into the hand of their enemies" is rhetorically amplified by "into the hand of those that seek," etc., as in Jeremiah 19:7, Jeremiah 19:9; Jeremiah 34:20, etc.; לפי חרב, according to the sharpness (or edge) of the sword, i.e., mercilessly (see on Genesis 34:26; in Jer. only here), explained by "not spare them," etc., cf. Jeremiah 13:14.
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