Jeremiah 22:14
That saith, I will build me a wide house and large chambers, and cutteth him out windows; and it is cieled with cedar, and painted with vermilion.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(14) Large chambers.—As before, “upper storeys or chambers.”

Cutteth him out windows.—The verb is the same as that used in Jeremiah 4:30 for dilating the eyes by the use of antimony, and implies accordingly the construction of windows of unusual width. These, after the Eastern fashion, were fitted with lattice-work, or shielded by curtains.

Vermilion.—Probably the red pigment (sulphuret of mercury?) still conspicuous in the buildings of Egypt. The word meets us again in Ezekiel 23:14. The king was probably impelled by a vainglorious desire to imitate the magnificence of the Egyptian king (Pharaoh-nechoh) who had placed him on the throne.

22:10-19 Here is a sentence of death upon two kings, the wicked sons of a very pious father. Josiah was prevented from seeing the evil to come in this world, and removed to see the good to come in the other world; therefore, weep not for him, but for his son Shallum, who is likely to live and die a wretched captive. Dying saints may be justly envied, while living sinners are justly pitied. Here also is the doom of Jehoiakim. No doubt it is lawful for princes and great men to build, beautify, and furnish houses; but those who enlarge their houses, and make them sumptuous, need carefully to watch against the workings of vain-glory. He built his houses by unrighteousness, with money gotten unjustly. And he defrauded his workmen of their wages. God notices the wrong done by the greatest to poor servants and labourers, and will repay those in justice, who will not, in justice, pay those whom they employ. The greatest of men must look upon the meanest as their neighbours, and be just to them accordingly. Jehoiakim was unjust, and made no conscience of shedding innocent blood. Covetousness, which is the root of all evil, was at the bottom of all. The children who despise their parents' old fashions, commonly come short of their real excellences. Jehoiakim knew that his father found the way of duty to be the way of comfort, yet he would not tread in his steps. He shall die unlamented, hateful for oppression and cruelty.Large chambers - spacious upper chambers.

It is cieled - Or, roofing it.

Vermilion - The pigment which gives the deep red color still bright and untarnished on many ancient buildings.

14. wide—literally, "a house of dimensions" ("measures"). Compare Nu 13:32, Margin, "men of statures."

large—rather, as Margin, "airy" from Hebrew root, "to breathe freely." Upper rooms in the East are the principal apartments.

cutteth him out windows—The Hebrew, if a noun, is rather, "my windows"; then the translation ought to be, "and let my windows (Jehoiakim speaking) be cut out for it," that is, in the house; or, "and let (the workman) cut out my windows for it." But the word is rather an adjective; "he cutteth it (the house) out for himself, so as to be full of windows." The following words accord with this construction, "and (he makes it) ceiled with cedar," &c. [Maurer]. Retaining English Version, there must be understood something remarkable about the windows, since they are deemed worthy of notice. Gesenius thinks the word dual, "double windows," the blinds being two-leaved.

vermilion—Hebrew, shashar, called so from a people of India beyond the Ganges, by whom it is exported [Pliny, 6.19]. The old vermilion was composed of sulphur and quicksilver; not of red lead, as our vermilion.

That is, Woe to that man, who suffering oppression in his government, or making it his business himself to oppress, yet buildeth himself great houses and large chambers, ceiling them with cedar, promising himself prosperity and splendour, notwithstanding his wicked courses! for otherwise, it is lawful enough for princes to build themselves stately houses, &c. Yet some think that Jehoiakim’s pride, and luxury, and magnificence is here blamed, which also may be, considering what fate he was trader, for Judah was reprieved only during Josiah’s life, 2 Chronicles 34:24-28. And this prince had seen Shallum or Jehoahaz his brother carried into captivity, and he still walked in the same wicked courses his brother had done; yet in contempt of the word of the Lord by Huldah in his father’s time, he promiseth himself all prosperity and splendour, and accordingly was building himself stately houses, and adorning them; for this the woe is here denounced.

That saith, I will build me a wide house,.... Or, "a house of measures", or, "dimensions" (i); a very large house, whose length and breadth measure much consisting of many spacious rooms, upper as well as lower; as follows:

and large chambers; or, "widened ones"; very spacious and roomy; or "aired", or "airy (k) ones"; through which the wind blows, or into which much air comes; so that they were good summer chambers, for which they might be built:

and cutteth him out windows; to let in light and air, as well as for ornament. Some render it, "and teareth my windows" (l); as if he had taken some of the windows of the temple, and placed them in his palace, and so was guilty of sacrilege; but this is not very likely:

and it is ceiled with cedar; wainscotted with it; or the roof of it was covered with cedar, as Jarchi; or its beams and rafters were made of cedar, as Kimchi; it might be lined throughout with cedar:

and painted with vermilion. The Vulgate Latin version renders it, "sinopis"; so called from Sinope, a city in Pontus, where it is found; of which Pliny says (m) there are three sorts, one red, another reddish, and a third between them both: this is the same with "minium" or vermilion. Strabo (n) says, in Cappadocia the best Sinopic minium or vermilion is produced, and which vies with that of Spain; and he says it is called sinopic, because the merchants used to bring it to that place (Sinope) before the commerce of the Ephesians reached the men of this country, Cappadocia; other versions (o), besides the Vulgate Latin, so render it here. Schindler (p) renders the Hebrew word by this; and also by "cinnabar", which is a red mineral stone, and chiefly found in quicksilver mines; and may be thought to be quicksilver petrified, and fixed by means of sulphur, and a subterraneous heat; for artificial cinnabar is made of a mixture of mercury and sulphur sublimed, and reduced into a kind of fine red glebe; and this is called by the painters vermilion; and is made more beautiful by grinding it with gum water, and a little saffron; which two drugs prevent its growing black: and there are two kinds of vermilion; the one natural, which is found in some silver mines, in form of a ruddy sand, of a bright beautiful red colour; the other is made of artificial cinnabar, ground up with white wine, and afterwards with the whites of eggs. There are two sorts of it that we have; the one of a deep red; the other pale; but are the same; the difference of colour only proceeding from the cinnabar's being more or less ground; when fine ground, the vermilion is pale, and is preferred to the coarser and redder. It is of considerable use among painters in oil and miniature (q); and here it may be rendered, "anointed with minium" or "vermilion" (r); but it is questionable whether this vermilion was known so early. Kimchi here says, it is the same which the Arabians call "zingapher", or cinnabar. The Hebrew word is "shashar", which Junius and Tremellius translate "indico" (s); and observe from Pliny (t), that there is a people in India called Sasuri, from whence it is brought; but this is of a different colour from minium or vermilion; the one is blue, the other red; but, be it which it will, the painting was for ornament; and either colours look beautiful.

(i) "domum mensurarum", Vatablus, Montanus, Calvin, Schmidt. (k) "perflabilia", Piscator; "vento exposita", Vatablus, Montanus. (l) "et lacerat sibi fenestras meas", Junius & Tremellius. (m) Nat. Hist. l. 35. c. 6. (n) Geograph. l. 12. p. 373. (o) Pagninus, Tigurine version, Castalio. (p) Lexic. Pentaglott. col. 1179. So Castel Lex. Polyglott. col. 3664. (q) Chambers's Cyclopaedia, in the words "Cinnabar" and "Vermilion". (r) "ungendo in minio", Montanus; "uncta est minio", Vatablus, Calvin; "ungit minio", Cocceius. (s) So Buxtorf, Gussetius, Stockius. (t) Nat. Hist. l. 6. c. 9.

That saith, I will build me a wide house and large chambers, and cutteth him out windows; and it is cieled with cedar, and painted with vermilion.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
14. There is considerable variance between MT. and LXX in this v., but the general sense is clear.

windows] The Hebrew word is unusual in its form. Michaelis by a different division of words, renders … his windows, cieling it, etc., i.e. covering (it) in, panelling (it), as “cieling” meant when A.V. was made. “Painted” will then become painting.

vermilion] formerly obtained from the kermes insect; hence its name (vermiculus).

Verse 14. - A wide house; literally, a house of extensions. Large chambers. The Hebrew specifies "upper chambers " - the principal rooms in ancient houses. Cutteth him out windows; and it is ceiled with cedar; rather... his windows, roofing it with cedar. (This involves no change of letters, but a very slight rearrangement, and the alteration of one point; grammar gains greatly by the change.) "Cutteth out" is, literally, rend-eth; it is the word used in Jeremiah 4:30 of the apparent enlargement of the eyes by putting powdered antimony upon the eyelids. Windows are, as it were, the eyes of a building (Graf compares Ecclesiastes 12:3). Beams of cedar wood were used for the roof of the palace, as being the most costly and durable (comp. Isaiah 9:10). And painted - rather, and painting it - with vermilion; a taste derived from the Egyptians rather than the Babylonians, who seem to have had a difficulty in procuring red. Jeremiah 22:14The woe uttered upon Jehoiakim. - Jeremiah 22:13. "Woe unto him that buildeth his house with unrighteousness and his upper chambers with wrong, that maketh his fellow labour for nought, and giveth him not his hire; Jeremiah 22:14. That saith: I will build me a wide house and spacious upper chambers, and cutteth him out many windows, and covereth it with cedars, and painteth it with vermilion. Jeremiah 22:15. Art thou a king of thou viest in cedar? Did not thy father eat and drink, and do right and justice? Then it went well with him. Jeremiah 22:16. He did justice to the poor and wretched, then it was well. Is not this to know me? saith Jahveh. Jeremiah 22:17. For on nothing are thine eyes and thy heart set but on gain and on the blood of the innocent, to shed it, and on oppression and violence, to do them. Jeremiah 22:18. Therefore thus saith Jahveh concerning Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah: They shall not mourn for him, saying: Alas, my brother! and alas, sister! they shall not mourn for him: Alas, lord! and alas for his glory! Jeremiah 22:19. An ass's burial shall his burial be, dragged and cast far away from the gates of Jerusalem."

The prediction as to Jehoiakim begins with a woe upon the unjust oppression of the people. The oppression consisted in his building a magnificent palace with the sweat and blood of his subjects, whom he compelled to do forced labour without giving the labourers wages. The people must have felt this burden all the more severely that Jehoiakim, to obtain the throne, had bound himself to pay to Pharaoh a large tribute, the gold and silver for which he raised from the population according to Pharaoh's own valuation, 2 Kings 23:33. With "Woe to him that buildeth," etc., cf. Habakkuk 2:12; Micah 3:10. "That maketh his fellow labour," lit., through his neighbour he works, i.e., he causes the work to be done by his neighbour (fellow-man) for nought, without giving him wages, forces him to unpaid statute-labour. עבד בּ as in Leviticus 25:39, Leviticus 25:46. פּעל, labour, work, gain, then wages, cf. Job 7:2. Jehoiakim sought to increase the splendour of his kingship by palace-building. To this the speech points, put in his mouth at Jeremiah 22:14 : I will build me בּית מדּות, a house of extensions, i.e., a palace in the grand style, with spacious halls, vast chambers. מרוּח from רוח, to find vent, cheer up, 1 Samuel 16:23; not airy, but spacious, for quite a modest house might have airy chambers. וקרע is a continuation of the participle; literally: and he cuts himself out windows, makes huge openings in the walls for windows. This verb is used in Jeremiah 4:30 of opening up the eyes with paint. חלּוני presents some difficulty, seeing that the suffix of the first person makes no sense. It has therefore been held to be a contracted plural form (Gesen. Lehrgeb. S. 523) or for a dual (Ew. 177, a), but without any proof of the existence of such formations, since גּובי, Amos 7:1; Nahum 3:17, is to be otherwise explained (see on Amos 7:1). Following on the back of J. D. Mich., Hitz., Graf, and Bttcher (ausf. Gramm. 414) propose to connect the ו before ספוּן with this word and to read חלּוניו: and tears open for himself his windows; in support of which it is alleged that one cod. so reads. But this one cod. can decide nothing, and the suffix his is superfluous, even unsuitable, seeing that there can be no thought of another person's building; whereas the copula cannot well be omitted before ספוּן. For the rule adduced for this, that the manner of the principal action is frequently explained by appending infinitives absoll. (Ew. 280, a), does not meet the present case; the covering with cedar, etc., does not refer to the windows, and so cannot be an explanation of the cutting out for himself. We therefore hold, with Bttcher (Proben, S. 40), that חלּוני is an adjective formation, with the force of: abundant in windows, since this formation is completely accredited by כּילי and חרי (cf. Ew. 164, c); and the objection alleged against this by Graf, that then no object is specified for "cutteth out," is not of much weight, it being easy to supply the object from the preceding "house:" and he cuts it out for himself abounding in windows. There needs be no change of וספוּן into וספון. For although the infin. absol. would be quite in place as continuation of the verb. fin. (cf. Ew. 351, c), yet it is not necessary. The word is attached in zeugma to וקרע or חלּוני: and he covers with cedar, to: faces or overlays, for this verb does not mean to plank or floor, for which צפּה is the usual word, but hide, cover, and is used 1 Kings 6:9; 1 Kings 7:3, for roofing. The last statement is given in infin. absol.: וּמשׁוח :.los, and besmears it, paints it (the building) with שׁשׁר, red ochre, a brilliant colour (lxx μίλτος, i.e., acc. to Kimchi, red lead; see Gesen. thess s.v.).

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