And say, Hear the word of the LORD, O king of Judah, that sit on the throne of David, you, and your servants, and your people that enter in by these gates:
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)That sittest upon the throne of David.—The words obviously imply that the message was delivered to the king as he sat in the gate in the presence of his people.2 Chronicles 23:20.
upon the throne of David, both minds him of God’s faithfulness, who had promised that David should not want one to sit on his throne; and his duty, to walk in the steps of him upon whose throne he sat; and also of his errors, he not walking in David’s steps, though he sat upon his throne. The word of the Lord concerned not the king alone, but all his instruments in places of magistracy, and also all the people of Jerusalem and Judea.
that sittest upon the throne of David; whom he mentions, to put him in mind of his illustrious ancestor, whose successor he was, that he might be prompted to follow his example:
thou, and thy servants, and that people that enter in by these gates; the king and his courtiers, his nobles and privy counsellors, that were continually waiting upon him, and were frequently passing and repassing the gates of the palace; for not the gates of the court in the temple are meant, as Kimchi suggests; and all other people, that either waited on or came to the king, upon business, with their suits, and to have their causes heard and tried.And say, Hear the word of the LORD, O king of Judah, that sittest upon the throne of David, thou, and thy servants, and thy people that enter in by these gates:
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)2. Cp. Jeremiah 17:20.Verse 2. - And thy people. The Septuagint reads, "And thy house and thy people;" thus the passage will agree with Jeremiah 21:11, 12. Jeremiah 21:8. "And unto the people thou shalt say: Thus hath Jahveh said: Behold, I set before you the way of life and the way of death. Jeremiah 21:9. He that abideth in this city shall die by sword, by famine, and by pestilence; but he that goeth out and falleth to the Chaldeans that besiege you, he shall live, and have his soul for a prey. Jeremiah 21:10. For I have set my face on this city for evil and not for good, saith Jahveh; into the hand of the king of Babylon shall it be given, who shall burn it with fire. Jeremiah 21:11. And to the house of the king of Judah: Hear the word of Jahveh: Jeremiah 21:12. House of David! thus hath Jahveh said: Hold judgment every morning, and save the despoiled out of the hand of the oppressor, lest my fury break forth as fire, and burn unquenchably, because of the evil of your doings." What the prophet is here to say to the people and the royal house is not directly addressed to the king's envoy, but is closely connected with the answer he was to give to the latter, and serves to strengthen the same. We need not be hampered by the assumption that Jeremiah, immediately after that answer, communicated this advice, so that it might be made known to the people and to the royal house. The counsel given in Jeremiah 21:8-12 to the people was during the siege repeatedly given by Jeremiah both to the king and to the people, cf. Jeremiah 38:1., Jeremiah 38:17., and Jeremiah 27:11., and many of the people acted by his advice, cf. Jeremiah 38:19; Jeremiah 39:9; Jeremiah 52:15. But the defenders of the city, the authorities, saw therein treason, or at least a highly dangerous discouragement to those who were fighting, and accused the prophet as a traitor, Jeremiah 38:4., cf. Jeremiah 37:13. Still Jeremiah, holding his duty higher than his life, remained in the city, and gave as his opinion, under conviction attained to only by divine revelation, that all resistance is useless, since God has irrevocably decreed the destruction of Jerusalem as a punishment for their sins. The idea of Jeremiah 21:7 is clothed in words taken from Deuteronomy 30:15, cf. Deuteronomy 11:26. ישׁב , Jeremiah 21:9, as opposed to יצא, does not mean: to dwell, but: to sit still, abide. To fall to the Chaldeans, i.e., to go over to them, cf. Jeremiah 37:14; Jeremiah 39:9; 2 Kings 25:11; על is interchanged with אל, Jeremiah 37:13; Jeremiah 38:19; Jeremiah 52:15. The Chet. יחיה is right, corresponding to ימוּת; the Keri וחיה is wrong. His life shall be to him for a prey, i.e., he shall carry it thence as a prey, i.e., preserve it. Jeremiah 21:10 gives the reason for the advice given. For I have set my face, cf. Jeremiah 44:11, recalls Amos 9:4, only there we have עיני for פּני, as in Jeremiah 24:6. To set the face or eye on one means: to pay special heed to him, in good (cf. Jeremiah 39:12) or in evil sense; hence the addition, "for evil," etc.
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