Jeremiah 36:15
And they said to him, Sit down now, and read it in our ears. So Baruch read it in their ears.
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36:9-19 Shows of piety and devotion may be found even among those, who, though they keep up forms of godliness, are strangers and enemies to the power of it. The princes patiently attended the reading of the whole book. They were in great fear. But even those who are convinced to the truth and importance of what they hear, and are disposed to favour those who preach it, often have difficulties and reserves about their safety, interest, or preferment, so that they do not act according to their convictions, and try to get rid of what they find troublesome.Jehudi signifies a Jew and Cushi an Ethiopian, but it seems reasonable to conclude that they are genuine, proper names. 14. Jehudi—of a good family, as appears from his pedigree being given so fully, but in a subordinate position.

come—Instead of requiring Baruch to come to them, they ought to have gone to the temple, and there professed their penitence. But pride forbade it [Calvin].

The courage of Baruch is admirable, he was now before the council, in the king’s house, the substance of the prophecies were threatening both to the king and court, and to all the people. The king, as appears by all history, was of no good temper; we read, Jeremiah 26:23, of his sending for Urijah the prophet out of Egypt; when he had fled thither for fear of the king, and slaying him, and we shall find that at that time the princes advised both Jeremiah and Baruch to hide themselves; yet Baruch is not afraid, but reads the prophecy in their ears. And they said unto him, sit down now,.... Or, "pray sit down" (q); they received him very courteously, and treated him with great humanity, and showed much respect to him, in beseeching him to sit down by them:

and read it in our ears; as he had done in the ears of the people, with an audible voice, clearly and distinctly, that they might be able to hear it, so as to understand it:

so Baruch read it in their ears; without any fear or dread, though in the king's palace, and before an assembly of princes; nor did he excuse himself on account of weariness, having just read it to the people; or upbraid the princes with not being in the temple, where they might have heard it.

(q) "sede quaeso", Vatablus, Schmidt.

And they said unto him, Sit down now, and read it in our ears. So Baruch read it in their ears.
15. Sit down] These words taken with Jeremiah 36:19 shew that the princes were favourably disposed towards Baruch and Jeremiah. The same fact has been marked already in ch. Jeremiah 26:16. Baruch took the position ordinarily assumed by an Eastern teacher. Cp. Luke 4:20.Verse 15. - Sit down now. The princes evidently recognize Baruch as belonging to a family of distinction (see on ver. 4); and from vers. 19, 25 we may infer that they were favourably inclined beth to Baruch and to his master (comp. ch. 26.). The reading of the book in the temple. - Jeremiah 36:9. In the fifth year of Jehoiakim, in the ninth month, "they proclaimed a fast before the Lord - all the people in Jerusalem, and all the people who had come out of the cities of the Judah to Jerusalem." קתא צום, to call, declare, appoint a fast; cf. 1 Kings 21:9, 1 Kings 21:12; 2 Chronicles 20:3. From the tenor of the words, the people who lived in Jerusalem and those who had come thither out of the country might seem to have called the fast. But this is impossible; for the people from the cities of Judah evidently came to Jerusalem only in consequence of the fast being appointed. Hence Graf is of opinion that קתא צום seems here used in a general way of the keeping of such a fast. This view is not confirmed by any parallel instances. The expression is inexact, and the inexactness has arisen from the effort to attain greater conciseness of expression. The meaning is this: a fast was proclaimed, and all the people in Jerusalem and out of the cities of Judah came to worship the Lord in the temple. It remains doubtful with whom the appointment originated, - whether with the king, or with the high priest and the priesthood. The ninth month corresponds to our December, and consequently came round with the cold season; cf. Jeremiah 36:22. The fast-day was a special one; for in the law only the day of atonement, in the seventh month, was prescribed as a fast-day. On the object of this measure, see supra, p. 316f.
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