Jeremiah 29:2
(After that Jeconiah the king, and the queen, and the eunuchs, the princes of Judah and Jerusalem, and the carpenters, and the smiths, were departed from Jerusalem;)
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(2) The queen.—This was probably the queen-mother, Nehushta, the daughter of Elnathan (2Kings 24:8). The name probably indicates a connection with the Elnathan the son of Achbor, of Jeremiah 26:22, but we cannot assert with any confidence the identity of the one with the other.

The carpenters, and the smiths.—See Note on Jeremiah 24:1. Among the exiles thus referred to as “princes” we have to think of Daniel, and those who are best known to us by their Babylonian names as Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego (Daniel 1:6-7). The conduct, we may well believe, was in accordance with Jeremiah’s teaching.

Jeremiah 29:2-3. After that Jeconiah and the queen, &c. — By the queen is meant Jeconiah’s mother: see 2 Kings 24:12-15, where an account is given of this captivity. And the eunuchs — Or court-officers, as Dr. Waterland renders it; and the princes of Judah and Jerusalem — Men of authority and influence among the people. By the hand of Elasah, &c. — Zedekiah having some occasion to send two messengers to Babylon, Jeremiah, knowing that as there were false prophets at Jerusalem who fed the people with hopes of a speedy return, so there were some with them in Babylon, writes and sends the following prophecy by these two messengers, to quiet the people’s minds, disturbed by these false prophets, and excited to vain hopes, for which there was no ground at all.29:1-7 The written word of God is as truly given by inspiration of God as his spoken word. The zealous servant of the Lord will use every means to profit those who are far off, as well as those who are near him. The art of writing is very profitable for this end; and by the art of printing it is rendered most beneficial for circulating the knowledge of the word of God. God's sending to the captives by this letter would show that he had not forsaken them, though he was displeased, and corrected them. If they live in the fear of God, they may live comfortably in Babylon. In all conditions of life, it is our wisdom and duty not to throw away the comfort of what we may have, because we have not all we would have. They are directed to seek the good of the country where they were captives. While the king of Babylon protected them, they must live quiet and peaceable lives under him, in all godliness and honesty; patiently leaving it to God to work deliverance for them in due time.The queen - The queen-mother. 2. queen—Nehushta, the queen mother, daughter of Elnathan (2Ki 24:8, 15). (Elnathan, her father, is perhaps the same as the one mentioned in Jer 26:22). She reigned jointly with her son.

princes—All the men of authority were taken away lest they should organize a rebellion. Jeremiah wrote his letter while the calamity was still recent, to console the captives under it.

After this captivity. After that Jeconiah the king,.... Of Judah; the same with Jehoiachin, who was carried captive into Babylon when he had reigned but three months:

and the queen; not Jeconiah's wife, for he had none; but his mother, whose name was Nehushta, and who was carried captive with him, 2 Kings 24:8;

and the eunuchs; or "chamberlains" to the queen; the Targum calls them princes; these were of the king's household, his courtiers; and such persons have been everywhere, and in all ages, court favourites:

and the princes of Judah and Jerusalem; the noblemen and grandees of the nation:

and the carpenters, and the smiths, were departed from Jerusalem; whom Nebuchadnezzar took with him, partly for his own use in his own country; and partly that the Jews might be deprived of such artificers, that could assist in fortifying their city, and providing them with military weapons; See Gill on Jeremiah 24:1.

(After Jeconiah the king, and the {b} queen, and the eunuchs, the princes of Judah and Jerusalem, and the craftsmen, and the smiths, had departed from Jerusalem;)

(b) Meaning Jeconiah's mother.

2. The letter appears to have been later than ch. 24, to which it plainly alludes more than once. Cp. Jeremiah 29:17 with Jeremiah 24:2; Jeremiah 24:8, and Jeremiah 29:18 with Jeremiah 24:9.

the queen-mother] Nehushta. See on ch. Jeremiah 13:18.

the princes of Judah and Jerusalem, and the craftsmen, and the smiths] Cp. ch. Jeremiah 24:1, with note on “smiths.”

were departed] not merely, had surrendered, as the same verb in the Heb. means in the parallel passage, 2 Kings 24:12, but, as the amplification “the craftsmen and the smiths” here indicates, had gone into exile.Verse 2. - The queen; rather, the queen, mother (see on Jeremiah 13:18) The eunuchs, the princes of Judah and Jerusalem. A marginal gloss appears to have intruded itself into the text, for there is no other passage in which the "eunuchs," or (as the word may equally well be rendered, with the margin), "chamberlains," are called "princes of Judah." The Lord's testimony against Hananiah. - Apparently not long after Jeremiah had departed, he received from the Lord the commission to go to Hananiah and to say to him: Jeremiah 28:13. "Thus saith Jahveh: Yokes of wood hast thou broken, but hast made in place of them yokes of iron. Jeremiah 28:14. For thus saith Jahveh of hosts, the God of Israel: A yoke of iron I lay upon the neck of all these nations, that they may serve Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and they shall serve him; and the beasts of the field also have I given him." - When the prophet says: Yokes of wood hast thou broken, etc., we are not to understand him as speaking of the breaking of the wooden yoke Jeremiah had been wearing; he gives the deeper meaning of that occurrence. By breaking Jeremiah's wooden yoke, Hananiah has only signified that the yoke Nebuchadnezzar lays on the nations will not be so easily broken as a wooden one, but is of iron, i.e., not to be broken. The plural "yokes" is to be explained by the emblematical import of the words, and is not here to be identified, as it sometimes may be, with the singular, Jeremiah 28:10. Jeremiah 28:14 shows in what sense Hananiah put an iron yoke in the place of the wooden one: Jahveh will lay iron yokes on all nations, that they may serve the king of Babel. Hananiah's breaking the wooden yoke does not alter the divine decree, but is made to contribute to its fuller revelation. With the last clause of Jeremiah 28:14, cf. Jeremiah 27:6. - Hereupon Jeremiah forewarns the false prophets what is to be God's punishment on them for their false and audacious declarations. Jeremiah 28:15. "Hear now, Hananiah: Jahveh hath not sent thee, and thou hast made this people to believe a lie. Jeremiah 28:16. Therefore thus saith Jahveh: Behold, I cast thee from off the face of the earth; this year shalt thou die, for thou hast spoken rebellion against Jahveh." "The year" equals this year, as in Isaiah 37:30. The words "for thou hast spoken," etc., recall Deuteronomy 13:6. They involve an application to Hananiah's case of the command there given to put such a prophet to death, and show how it can with justice be said that the Lord will cast him from off the face of the earth. The verb משׁלּחך is chosen for the sake of the play on לא שׁלחך. God has not sent him as prophet to His people, but will send him away from off the earth, i.e., cause him to die. - In Jeremiah 28:17 it is recorded that this saying was soon fulfilled. Hananiah died in the seventh month of that year, i.e., two months after his controversy with Jeremiah (cf. Jeremiah 28:1).
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