Jeremiah 25:3
From the thirteenth year of Josiah the son of Amon king of Judah, even to this day, that is the three and twentieth year, the word of the LORD has come to me, and I have spoken to you, rising early and speaking; but you have not listened.
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(3) The three and twentieth year (B.C. 603-4).—Thus there had been nineteen years of prophetic work under Josiah, and between three and four under Jehoiakim (Jeremiah 1:2). Of the former period we have but scanty record. The year is noticeable as that which apparently witnessed the first collection of Jeremiah’s prophetic utterances (Jeremiah 36:5-8).

Rising early and speaking.—See Note on Jeremiah 7:13.

25:1-7 The call to turn from evil ways to the worship and service of God, and for sinners to trust in Christ, and partake of his salvation, concerns all men. God keeps an account how long we possess the means of grace; and the longer we have them, the heavier will our account be if we have not improved them. Rising early, points out the earnest desire that this people should turn and live. Personal and particular reformation must be insisted on as necessary to a national deliverance; and every one must turn from his own evil way. Yet all was to no purpose. They would not take the right and only method to turn away the wrath of God.The three and twentieth year - i. e., nineteen under Josiah, and four under Jehoiakim. This prophecy divides itself into three parts,

(1) the judgment of Judah Jeremiah 25:3-11, and Babylon's doom Jeremiah 25:12-14;

(2) the wine-cup of fury Jeremiah 25:15-29;

(3) the judgment of the world Jeremiah 25:30-38.

3. From the thirteenth year of Josiah, in which Jeremiah began to prophesy (Jer 1:1), to the end of Josiah's reign, was nineteen years (2Ki 22:1); the three months 2 Kings 23. 31) of Jehoahaz' reign, with the not quite complete four years of Jehoiakim (Jer 25:1), added to the nineteen years, make up twenty-three years in all. We read, Jeremiah 1:2, that Jeremiah began to prophesy in the thirteenth year of Josiah. Josiah reigned thirty-one years, 2 Kings 22:1; so that taking in the thirteenth year, Jeremiah prophesied nineteen years during the life of Josiah, to which adding the four of Jehoiakim’s reign, it maketh twenty-three. These twenty-three years, saith the prophet, I have been a preacher to you, and I have not been negligent in my work; but like men that get up early in the morning to despatch their business, so have I been in the discharge of my prophetical office. From the thirteenth year of Josiah the son of Amon king of Judah, even unto this day,.... The year in which Jeremiah began to prophesy, Jeremiah 1:2;

(that is, the three and twentieth year); for Josiah reigned one and thirty years; so that Jeremiah prophesied nineteen years in his reign; and now it was the fourth of Jehoiakim's, which make twenty three years; so long the prophet had been prophesying to this people:

the word of the Lord hath come unto me; from time to time, during that space of twenty three years; and which he diligently, constantly, and faithfully delivered unto them; as follows:

and I have spoken unto you, rising early and speaking: as soon as ever he had a word from the Lord, he brought it to them, and took the most proper and seasonable time to inculcate it to them; in the morning, and after, he had had a vision or dream in the night from the Lord;

but ye have not hearkened; they took no notice of it; turned a deaf ear to it; however, did not obey or act as they were directed and exhorted to.

From the thirteenth year of Josiah the son of Amon king of Judah, even to {b} this day, that is the three and twentieth year, the word of the LORD hath come to me, and I have spoken to you, {c} rising early and speaking; but ye have not hearkened.

(b) Which was the fifth year and the ninth month of Jehoiakim's reign.

(c) That is, I have spared no diligence or labour, Jer 7:13.

3. these three and twenty years] Josiah reigned thirty-one years, and it was in the thirteenth year of that king (ch. Jeremiah 1:2) that Jeremiah was called. He therefore prophesied for eighteen or nineteen years in that reign. To this we are to add the reign of Jehoahaz (three months), and more than three years of Jehoiakim.

but ye have not hearkened] Omit with LXX. See next note.Verse 3. - From the thirteenth year; etc.; alluding to the chronological statement in Jeremiah 1:2. The three and twentieth year; counting nineteen years under Josiah and four under Jehoiachin, and including the three months of Jehoahaz. Vers. 4,5. - (Comp. Jeremiah 7:25; Jeremiah 11:7; Jeremiah 35:15.) They said; literally, saying. The prophet mentally resumes the statement of ver. 4. He hath sent his servants the prophets." Turn ye; rather, return ye, conversion being the return of the sinner to his natural home. The interpretation of the symbol. Jeremiah 24:5. Like the good figs, the Lord will look on the captives in Chaldea for good ("for good" belongs to the verb "look on them"). The point of resemblance is: as one looks with pleasure on good figs, takes them and keeps them, so will I bestow my favour on Judah's captives. Looking on them for good is explained, Jeremiah 24:6 : the Lord will set His eye on them, bring them back into their land and build them up again. With "build them," etc., cf. Jeremiah 1:10. The building and planting of the captives is not to consist solely in the restoration of their former civil well-being, but will be a spiritual regeneration of the people. God will give them a heart to know Him as their God, so that they may be in truth His people, and He their God. "For they will return," not: when they return (Ew., Hitz.). The turning to the Lord cannot be regarded as the condition of their receiving favour, because God will give them a heart to know Him; it is the working of the knowledge of the Lord put in their hearts. And this is adduced to certify the idea that they will then be really the Lord's people.
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