Jeremiah 22:22
The wind shall eat up all your pastors, and your lovers shall go into captivity: surely then shall you be ashamed and confounded for all your wickedness.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(22) The wind shall eat up all thy pastors.—The word for “eat up” is the root of the noun rendered “pastors,” and the play of sound may be expressed in English by shall feed on them that feed theei.e., thy princes and statesmen. The “lovers” are, as before in Jeremiah 22:20, the king’s chosen allies.

Jeremiah 22:22. The wind shall eat up all thy pastors — Thy kings, princes, priests, and false prophets, who have presided over thy civil and religious affairs, shall be destroyed by my judgments, as plants are blasted by winds. God’s judgments are often compared to a scorching and blasting wind. Thy lovers shall go into captivity — Thy allies shall themselves be made captives by the Chaldeans, and shall not be able to preserve themselves, much less to give any assistance to thee.22:20-30 The Jewish state is described under a threefold character. Very haughty in a day of peace and safety. Very fearful on alarm of trouble. Very much cast down under pressure of trouble. Many never are ashamed of their sins till brought by them to the last extremity. The king shall close his days in bondage. Those that think themselves as signets on God's right hand, must not be secure, but fear lest they should be plucked thence. The Jewish king and his family shall be carried to Babylon. We know where we were born, but where we shall die we know not; it is enough that our God knows. Let it be our care that we die in Christ, then it will be well with us wherever we die, thought it may be in a far country. The Jewish king shall be despised. Time was when he was delighted in; but all those in whom God has no pleasure, some time or other, will be so lowered, that men will have no pleasure in them. Whoever are childless, it is the Lord that writes them so; and those who take no care to do good in their days, cannot expect to prosper. How little is earthly grandeur to be depended upon, or flourishing families to be rejoiced in! But those who hear the voice of Christ, and follow him, have eternal life, and shall never perish, neither shall any enemy pluck them out of his almighty hands.Shall eat up all thy pastors - literally, shall depasture (Jeremiah 2:16 note) thy pastors. Those who used to drive their flocks to consume the herbage shall themselves be the first prey of war. The "pastors" mean not the kings only, but all in authority. 22. wind—the Chaldees, as a parching wind that sweeps over rapidly and withers vegetation (Jer 4:11, 12; Ps 103:16; Isa 40:7).

eat up … pastors—that is, thy kings (Jer 2:8). There is a happy play on words. The pastors, whose office it is to feed the sheep, shall themselves be fed on. They who should drive the flock from place to place for pasture shall be driven into exile by the Chaldees.

Either a vain hope and presumption shall destroy thy rulers and governors who flatter time with promises of prosperity; or a judgment shall seize them, that shall be like a violent wind, which presently scattereth the clouds and the smoke; or they shall be blasted by my judgments, as plants are blasted and eaten up by winds. And those that have been thy friends and allies, Syria and Egypt, in whom thou hast trusted, shall themselves be made captive. Surely when thou seest this, thou wilt be convinced, and ashamed of thy wicked courses. The wind shall eat up all thy pastors,.... King, nobles, counsellors, priests, prophets, and elders of the people; they shall be carried away as chaff before the wind, or perish as trees and fruits are blasted with an east wind; to which Nebuchadnezzar and his army are sometimes compared; see Jeremiah 18:17. The Targum is,

"all thy governors shall be scattered to every wind;''

and thy lovers shall go into captivity: the Assyrians and Egyptians, as before; see Jeremiah 52:31;

surely then thou shalt be ashamed and confounded for all thy wickedness; being disappointed of all protection from their governors at home, and of all help from their allies abroad; and will then, when too late, be convinced of all their wickedness, and ashamed of it.

The wind shall eat up all thy shepherds, {p} and thy lovers shall go into captivity: surely then shalt thou be ashamed and confounded for all thy wickedness.

(p) Both your governors and they that would help you will vanish away as wind.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
22. feed] mg. feed upon, but rather shepherd, so as to preserve the play on words in the Heb.

shepherds] See on Jeremiah 2:8. Thy leaders, in whom thou hast confidence, shall be driven like a flock into exile by the wind of adversity.

thy lovers] perhaps inserted from Jeremiah 22:20, as being here superfluous from the metrical point of view.Verse 22. - Shall eat up all thy pastors. The verb is that connected with the participle rendered "pastors;" strictly, therefore, shall pasture upon all thy pastors. The wind referred to is doubtless the parching east wind, the symbol of calamity, which is actually called a "sharp" wind in Jeremiah 4:11. In Jeremiah 22:15 Jeremiah pursues the subject: kingship and kingcraft do not consist in the erection of splendid palaces, but in the administration of right and justice. The reproachful question התמלך has not the meaning: wilt thou reign long? or wilt thou consolidate thy dominion? but: dost thou suppose thyself to be a king, to show thyself a king, if thy aim and endeavour is solely fixed on the building of a stately palace? "Viest," as in Jeremiah 12:5. בּארז, not: with the cedar, for תחרה is construed with the accus. of that with which one vies, but: in cedar, i.e., in the building of cedar palaces. It was not necessary to say with whom he vied, since the thought of Solomon's edifices would suggest itself. The lxx have changed בארז by a pointless quid pro quo into באחז, ἐν ̓́Αχαζ, for which Cod. Alex. and Arabs have ἐν ̓Αχαάβ. The fact that Ahab had built a palace veneered with ivory (1 Kings 22:39) is not sufficient to approve this reading, which Ew. prefers. Still less cause is there to delete בארז as a gloss (Hitz.) in order to obtain the rendering, justified neither by grammar nor in fact, "if thou contendest with thy father." To confirm what he has said, the prophet sets before the worthless king the example of his godly father Josiah. "Thy father, did not he eat and drink," i.e., enjoy life (cf. Ecclesiastes 2:24; Ecclesiastes 3:13)? yet at the same time he administered right and justice, like his forefather David; 2 Samuel 8:15. Then went it well with him and the kingdom. אז, Jeremiah 22:16, is wider than אז טו: in respect that he did justice to the poor and wretched, things went well, were well managed in the kingdom at large. In so doing consists "the knowing of me." The knowledge of Jahveh is the practical recognition of God which is displayed in the fear of God and a pious life. The infinitive nomin. דּעת has the article because a special emphasis lies on the word (cf. Ew. 277, c), the true knowledge of God required to have stress laid on it. - But Jehoiakim is the reverse of his father. This thought, lying in Jeremiah 22:16, is illustrated in Jeremiah 22:17. For thine eyes are set upon nothing but gain. בּצע, gain with the suggestion of unrighteousness about it, cf. Jeremiah 6:13; Jeremiah 8:10. His whole endeavour was after wealth and splendour. The means of attaining this aim was injustice, since he not only withheld their wages from his workers (Jeremiah 22:13), but caused the innocent to be condemned in the judgment that he might grasp their goods to himself, as e.g., Ahab had done with Naboth. He also put to death the prophets who rebuked his unrighteousness, Jeremiah 26:23, and used every kind of lawless violence. "Oppression" is amplified by המרוּצה (from רצץ, cf. Deuteronomy 28:33; 1 Samuel 12:3), crushing, "what we call flaying people" (Hitz.); cf. on this subject, Micah 3:3.
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