So Ebedmelech took the men with him, and went into the house of the king under the treasury, and took there old cast clouts and old rotten rags, and let them down by cords into the dungeon to Jeremiah.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Under the treasury . . .—This was obviously what we should call the “lumber-room” of the palace. Nothing could show the acuteness of the prophet’s sufferings more vividly than the precautions which the thoughtful kindness of the Eunuch thus suggested. The pit was so deep that ropes were needed to draw him up, as they had been to let him down, and lest they should cut into the flesh of Jeremiah’s emaciated form, improvised cushions had to be fastened to the ropes, that he might rest his arm-pits on them. He was, however, at last rescued, and re-instated in his former position, as a prisoner under the king’s protection.
“Clout” in old English was used for a patch of cloth as distinct from the “rags,” which were of linen. So Spenser, “His garments nought but many ragged clouts.”
rotten rags—"worn-out garments." God can make the meanest things His instruments of goodness to His people (1Co 1:27-29).
under … armholes—"under the joints of thine hands," that is, where the fingers join the hand, the clothes being in order that the hands should not be cut by the cords [Maurer].
and went unto the house of the king under the treasury; from the gate of Benjamin he went to the king's palace, and to a particular place under the treasury; by which "treasury" may be meant the treasury of garments, or the royal wardrobe, under which was a place, where clothes worn out, or cast off, were put: the Septuagint represent it as underground, a cellar under the wardrobe:
and took thence old cast clouts, and old rotten rags: the Syriac version has it, such as cattle were wiped and cleaned with:
and let them down by cords into the dungeon to Jeremiah; for it was so deep, that men could not reach to put them into the hands of the prophet; and, had they been thrown in, they might have been scattered about and be out of his reach, who stuck in the mire; or they would have been in all likelihood greatly bedaubed with the mire.So Ebedmelech took the men with him, and went into the house of the king under the treasury, and took thence old cast clouts and old rotten rags, and let them down by cords into the dungeon to Jeremiah.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)11. under the treasury] to a room under the treasury, a sort of lumber-room.
old cast clouts and old rotten rags] worn out pieces of torn and ragged garments, to ease the pressure of the ropes.Verse 11. - Under the treasury; rather, to (a room) under the treasury. Old cast clouts, etc.; literally, rags of torn garments and rags of worn-out garments. Jeremiah 38:10)," is not implied in what he says, with which he delivers up the prophet to the spite of his enemies. Though the princes had at once put Jeremiah to death, the king would not even have been able to reproach them. The want of courage vigorously to oppose the demand of the princes did not spring from any kindly feeling towards the prophet, but partly from moral weakness of character, partly from inward repugnance to the word of God proclaimed by Jeremiah. On the construction אין וּיכל instead of the participle from יכול, which does not occur, cf. Ewald, 321, a. אתכם is certainly in form an accusative; but it cannot be such, since דּבר follows as the accusative: it is therefore either to be pointed אתּכם or to be considered as standing for it, just as אותך often occurs for אתּך, "with," i.e., "along with you."
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