Jeremiah 36:18
Then Baruch answered them, He pronounced all these words unto me with his mouth, and I wrote them with ink in the book.
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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.He pronounced - He used to say aloud, he dictated. Baruch's office was merely mechanical. He contributed nothing but hand, pen, and ink. 18. his mouth—Baruch replies it was by the oral dictation of the prophet; Jer 36:2 accords with this view, rather than with the notion that Jeremiah repeated his prophecies from manuscripts.

ink—his specification of the "ink" implies: I added nothing save the hand, pen, and ink.

This could not but add to the princes’ fear and amazement. They must needs conceive that the thing was done from God, for without a special influence of God it had been a thing impossible that Jeremiah should have called to mind all that he had spoken at several times in so many years; and proceeding from the God of truth, they must needs fear that they would have their certain and just accomplishment in their season.

Then Baruch answered them,.... At once, without any hesitation, plainly and fully:

he pronounced all these words unto me with his mouth; that is, the Prophet Jeremiah delivered by word of mouth, not the substance only of this roll, but the express words of it, and everyone of them, and that clearly and distinctly, without any hesitation, or premeditation; by which it is plain it was by the Spirit of the Lord he did it; neither matter nor words were Baruch's, but were exactly as they were delivered:

and I wrote them with ink in the book; as they saw with their eyes, and which was the manner of writing with the Jews so early; Baruch had no further concern in this matter than to provide pen, ink, and parchment, and to make use of them as he did, just as the prophet dictated and directed him.

Then Baruch answered them, He pronounced all these words unto me with his mouth, and I wrote them with ink in the book.
Verse 18. - He pronounced, etc.; rather, He kept dictating... while I wrote with ink, etc. The addition of the last clause suggests (and was, perhaps, intended to do so) that Baruch's function was simply mechanical. Jeremiah 36:18Meanwhile, in order to inform themselves more exactly regarding what had happened, they ask Baruch, "Tell us, how hast thou written all these words at his mouth?" Thereupon Baruch replied, "He used to call aloud these words to me," i.e., he used to dictate them to me by word of mouth, "and I wrote them in the book with ink." The imperfect expresses the repeated or continued doing of anything; hence יקרא here means to dictate, which requires considerable time. In the following circumstantial clause is found the participle ואני כתב, while I was writing; and so I myself was doing nothing else all the time than writing down what was dictated. Some commentators have found a stumbling-block in מפּיו in the question of the princes (Jeremiah 36:17); the lxx and Ewald omit this word, inasmuch as Baruch does not explain till afterwards that he had written down the words from the mouth of Jeremiah. Others, like Venema, take מפּיו as a question equals המפּיו. Both explanations are arbitrary and unnecessary. The princes knew quite well that the substance of the book was from the mouth of Jeremiah, i.e., contained his addresses; but Baruch, too, might have composed the book from the oral discourses of the prophet without being commissioned by him, without his knowledge also, and against his will. Accordingly, to attain certainty as to the share of the prophet in this matter, they ask him, and Baruch answers that Jeremiah had dictated it to him.
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