Jeremiah 37:14
Then said Jeremiah, It is false; I fall not away to the Chaldeans. But he hearkened not to him: so Irijah took Jeremiah, and brought him to the princes.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(14) Irijah took Jeremiah, and brought him to the princes.—These were probably, as a body, identical with those named in Jeremiah 36:12, but the party opposed to the prophet were now apparently stronger than they had been. Neither they nor Irijah would listen to the prophet’s denial of the accusation. The fact that the siege had been raised by the Chaldæans may have given fresh strength to the party of resistance. Possibly also many of the prophet’s friends had shared the captivity of Jehoiakim.

37:11-21 There are times when it is the wisdom of good men to retire, to enter into their chambers, and to shut the doors, Isa 26:20. Jeremiah was seized as a deserter, and committed to prison. But it is no new thing for the best friends of the church to be belied, as in the interests of her worst enemies. When thus falsely accused, we may deny the charge, and commit our cause to Him who judges righteously. Jeremiah obtained mercy of the Lord to be faithful, and would not, to obtain mercy of man, be unfaithful to God or to his prince; he tells the king the whole truth. When Jeremiah delivered God's message, he spake with boldness; but when he made his own request, he spake submissively. A lion in God's cause must be a lamb in his own. And God gave Jeremiah favour in the eyes of the king. The Lord God can make even the cells of a prison become pastures to his people, and will raise up friends to provide for them, so that in the days of famine they shall be satisfied.The princes - Not the noblemen trained in the days of Josiah and Jeremiah's friends Jeremiah 26:16, but those described in Jeremiah 24:8. They assumed that the accusation was true; they first scourged and then imprisoned Jeremiah. 13. ward—that is, the "guard," or "watch."

Hananiah—whose death Jeremiah predicted (Jer 28:16). The grandson in revenge takes Jeremiah into custody on the charge of deserting ("thou fallest away," Jer 38:19; 52:15; 1Sa 29:3) to the enemy. His prophecies gave color to the charge (Jer 21:9; 38:4).

Though Jeremiah, as the Lord’s prophet, faithfully revealed the will of God, that the Chaldeans should take the city, to warn the people (if possible) to prevent it by solemn addresses unto God, or at least to prevent what mischief might be prevented by a timely surrender to the king of Babylon, yet he had no design to fly to them; he was so far from delighting in their company, that when the city was taken, and the captain of the guard offered him either to go along with him to Babylon, promising to look well to him, Jeremiah 40:4,5, or to go back to Gedaliah, whom the king of Babylon had left as deputy governor in Judea, he chose rather to go and dwell under Gedaliah’s government in a poor condition, than to mend his commons in an idolatrous country: but the captain would not believe him, but carrieth him before the princes.

Then said Jeremiah, it is false,.... Or a "falsehood" (k); as undoubtedly it was;

I fall not away to the Chaldeans; for the Chaldean army was gone from the city; nor did Jeremiah like so well to be with an idolatrous people; for after the city was taken, when Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard gave him his choice, either to go with him to Babylon, where he promised to take care of him; or to go to Gedaliah, who was made governor of Judah; he chose rather to be with him, and his poor company:

but he hearkened not to him; would not hear his defence, or however would not give any credit to it, being unwilling to let slip this opportunity of doing him ill will:

so Irijah took Jeremiah, and brought him to the princes; the princes of Zedekiah's court, or the princes of the people, the civil magistrates; or it may be the great sanhedrim, who he knew had no good disposition towards the prophet.

(k) "mendacium est", Vatablus; "falsitas, calumnia", Schmidt.

Then said Jeremiah, It is false; I fall not away to the Chaldeans. But he hearkened not to him: so Irijah took Jeremiah, and brought him to the princes.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Jeremiah 37:14Jeremiah replied: "A lie [ equals not true; cf. 2 Kings 9:12]; I am not going over to the Chaldeans. But he gave no heed to him; so Jeriah seized Jeremiah, and brought him to the princes. Jeremiah 37:15. And the princes were angry against Jeremiah, and smote him, and put him in prison, in the house of Jonathan the scribe; for they had made it the prison," - probably because it contained apartments suitable for the purpose. From Jeremiah 37:16 we perceive that they were subterranean prisons and vaults into which the prisoners were thrust; and from v. 28 and Jeremiah 38:26, it is clear that Jeremiah was in a confinement much more severe and dangerous to his life. There he sat many days, i.e., a pretty long time.
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