Jeremiah 44:1
The word that came to Jeremiah concerning all the Jews which dwell in the land of Egypt, which dwell at Migdol, and at Tahpanhes, and at Noph, and in the country of Pathros, saying,
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(1) At Migdol, and at Tahpanhes . . .—We find from Jeremiah 44:15 that the discourse that follows was delivered at a large gathering of the Jews at Pathros. The number of places named (the three appear in the same combination in Jeremiah 46:14) indicates the extent of the emigration. Migdol (here, as elsewhere, meaning a “tower” or “fortress”) is named in Exodus 14:2 as on the route of the Israelites before they crossed the Red Sea, between Pi-hahiroth and Baal-zephon, and again in Ezekiel 29:10; Ezekiel 30:6. It appears in the Itinerary of Antoninus, under the name Magdolo, as twelve miles south of Pelusium. The latter is thought by Lepsius to be different from the former, and to answer to the Stratopeda or “camp” which Herodotus mentions as having been founded by Psammetichus I. as a settlement for his Ionian or Carian mercenaries (Smith’s Dict. of the Bible, Art. Migdol). Noph was identical with Memphis, and appears in Isaiah 19:13; Jeremiah 2:16; Ezekiel 30:13; Ezekiel 30:16 : and as Moph in the Hebrew of Hosea 9:6. The position of Pathros is less certain, but it may be inferred from the mention of the other cities with it that it was in Lower Egypt, and possibly, from Jeremiah 44:15, that it was the name of the region in which it was situated. So in Isaiah 11:11, it appears in conjunction with Mizraim (= Egypt) and Cush (= Ethiopia), both of which are names of regions and not of cities. By Brugsch (Egypt, I. 242) it has been identified with Upper Egypt, the region of the Thebaid. There is no certain note of the interval between the arrival of the Jews in Egypt and the delivery of the discourse, but it would appear that there had been time for the Jews to disperse and settle in the three or four cities here named, and to adopt the worship of the Egyptians. It is, however, implied throughout that the prophet is speaking to the emigrants themselves, and not to their descendants (Jeremiah 44:17; Jeremiah 44:21).

Jeremiah 44:1. The word which came to Jeremiah — The patience and goodness of God to this remnant of his ancient people are very remarkable; he leaves them not even in their rebellion, but commissions his prophet, whom he had before sent to forbid their going into this idolatrous country, to try if in Egypt they could be brought to repentance and reformation; concerning all the Jews which dwelt at Migdol, and at Tahpanhes, &c. — They were now dispersed into divers parts of the country, and Jeremiah is sent with a message from God to them, which he delivered, either by going about from place to place to them; or when he had many of them together in Pathros, as is mentioned Jeremiah 44:15. We find a place termed Migdol, mentioned Exodus 14:2, as situate near the Red sea. “But I do not take this,” says Blaney, “to be here intended. Migdol properly signifies a tower, and may, in all probability, have been a name given to different cities in Egypt where there was a distinguished object of that kind. The city of Magdolus is mentioned by Herodotus, Hecatæus, and others, and placed by Antoninus at the entrance of Egypt from Palestine, about twelve miles from Pelusium. This was too far distant from the Red sea to be in the route of the Israelites; but its situation in the neighbourhood of Tahpanhes, or Daphnæ, and its distance from Judea, favour the supposition of its being the Migdol here spoken of. For then, as Bochart observes, we shall find the four places mentioned exactly in the order of their respective distances from that country; 1st, Migdol, or Magdolus; 2d, Tahpanhes, or Daphnæ; 3d, Noph, or Memphis; and lastly, the district of Pathros, or Thebais.” Near Memphis stands one of the pyramids which are yet remaining.

44:1-14 God reminds the Jews of the sins that brought desolations upon Judah. It becomes us to warn men of the danger of sin with all seriousness: Oh, do not do it! If you love God, do not, for it is provoking to him; if you love your own souls, do not, for it is destructive to them. Let conscience do this for us in the hour of temptation. The Jews whom God sent into the land of the Chaldeans, were there, by the power of God's grace, weaned from idolatry; but those who went by their own perverse will into the land of the Egyptians, were there more attached than ever to their idolatries. When we thrust ourselves without cause or call into places of temptation, it is just with God to leave us to ourselves. If we walk contrary to God, he will walk contrary to us. The most awful miseries to which men are exposed, are occasioned by the neglect of offered salvation.Migdol - Magdolum, a strong fortress on the northern boundary of Egypt. CHAPTER 44

Jer 44:1-30. Jeremiah Reproves the Jews for Their Idolatry in Egypt, and Denounces God's Judgments on Them and Egypt Alike.

1. Migdol—meaning a "tower." A city east of Egypt, towards the Red Sea (Ex 14:2; Nu 33:7).

Noph—Memphis, now Cairo (Jer 2:16).

Pathros—Upper Egypt (Isa 11:11).Jeremiah representeth to the people in Egypt the former sins and punishment of Judah, Jeremiah 44:1-10. He prophesieth their destruction in Egypt, Jeremiah 44:11-14. Their obstinacy, Jeremiah 44:15-19; threatened, Jeremiah 44:20-28. For a sign, the destruction of Egypt is foretold Jeremiah 44:29,30.

The patience and goodness of God to this remnant of his ancient people is very remarkable; he leaveth them not even in their rebellion, but sendeth Jeremiah, whom he had before sent to prevent their going into this idolatrous country, to try if in Egypt they would be brought to a better mind. It should seem that the generality of the Jews that went into Egypt had planted themselves at these four places. Of Migdol we read Exodus 14:2 Numbers 33:7; from which places we may learn it was a city or town upon the borders of the Red Sea. We shall read of it again Jeremiah 46:14. It was a place which might have minded them better of their obligations and duty to God, for upon their removal from thence God divided the Red Sea for their forefathers. Noph was another city in Egypt, of which we read Isaiah 19:13 Jeremiah 2:16 46:14 Ezekiel 30:13,16. The Greeks and Latins call it Memphis; it is thought to be that city which is now called Cairo.

Pathros was a region or province, some think it derived its name from Pathrusim the son of Mizraim, Genesis 10:14. It is the same (as some think) which is since called Thebais.

The word which came to Jeremiah concerning all the Jews which dwell in the land of Egypt,.... Or, "unto all the Jews" (t); the word came to him, that it might be delivered to them; or, "against all the Jews" (u); they having gone into Egypt contrary to the will of God, and committing idolatry; and the word or sermon is full of threatenings and judgments denounced upon them:

which dwell at Migdol, and at Tahpanhes, and at Noph, and in the country of Pathros: this prophecy was delivered after the Jews were come to Tahpanhes, or Daphne; see Jeremiah 43:7; and had divided themselves, and were settled in different parts of the kingdom: some continued at Tahpanhes, where were the king's court and palace: others went to Migdol, a place near the Red sea, just at the entrance into Egypt, from the land of Canaan, Exodus 14:2; called, by Herodotus, Magdolus (w); and by Adrichomius (x) said to be distant about a mile and a quarter from Pelusium, or Sin, the strength of Egypt, Ezekiel 30:15; others took up their residence at Noph, generally thought to be the city of Memphis. The Targum calls it Mappas; the same which is now called Grand Cairo; or, however, this city is near the place where Memphis stood: others dwelt in the country of Pathros, which perhaps had its name from Pathrusim, a son of Mizraim, Genesis 10:13. It is thought by Bochart and others to be the country of Thebais in Egypt, the same with the Nomos Phanturites, or Phaturites, of Pliny (y); and in this country Jeremiah seems to have been when this word came to him, Jeremiah 44:15; and from hence sent or carried it to the other places: saying; as follows:

(t) "ad omnes Judaeos", V. L. Castalio, Cocceius, Schmidt; "erga omnes", Pagninus, Montanus. (u) "Contra omnes Judaeos", Junius & Tremellius; "de, vel contra", Piscator. (w) Euterpe, sive l. 2. c. 159. (x) Theatrum Terrae Sanct. p. 121. (y) Nat. Hist. l. 5. c. 9.

The word that came to Jeremiah concerning all the Jews who dwell in the land of Egypt, who dwell at Migdol, and at {a} Tahpanhes, and at Noph, and in the country of Pathros, saying,

(a) These were all famous and strange cities in Egypt, where the Jews that fled dwelt for their safety but the prophet declares that there is no hold so strong that can preserve them from God's vengeance.

1. The word that came to Jeremiah] Apparently some little time had elapsed since the arrival of the fugitives, so as to allow for the development of the worship here spoken of. We must remember, however, that there were colonies of Jews in Egypt already. The occasion was probably a gathering of a large number of that nation for a festival in connexion with this particular cult.

at Migdol] on the N.E. border of Egypt, a little to the E. of Tahpanhes.

at Tahpanhes, and at Noph] See on Jeremiah 2:16.

Pathros] Egyptian for “the land of the South,” Upper Egypt. See on Jeremiah 44:15.

Verses 1-14. - Accusation brought against the obstinately idolatrous people. Verse 1. - Which dwell; rather, which dwelt. It appears from this verse that the Jewish fugitives had separated in Egypt, some going to the two northern frontier cities, Migdol (on which see R.S. Poole, 'The Cities of Egypt,' ch. 8.) and Tahpanhes or Daphnae, others further south to Noph, i.e. Memphis, or, less probably, Napata (see on Jeremiah 2:16), and Pathros (i.e. Upper Egypt; comp. Isaiah 11:11). Jeremiah 44:1"The word that came to Jeremiah regarding all the Jews who were living in the land of Egypt, who dwelt in Migdol, in Tahpanhes, in Noph, and in the land of Pathros." From this heading we perceive that those who (according to Jeremiah 43:1-13) had gone to Egypt, had settled there in various parts of the country, and that the following denunciations, which at the same time form his last prophecy, were uttered a long time after that which is given in Jeremiah 43:8-13 as having been delivered at Tahpanhes. The date of it cannot, indeed, be determined exactly. From the threatening that King Hophra shall be delivered over to the power of Nebuchadnezzar (Jeremiah 44:24-30), only this much is clear, that Egypt was not yet occupied by the Chaldeans, which, as we have shown above (p. 353), did not take place before the year 572. But it by no means follows from this that Jeremiah did not utter these words of threatening till shortly before this event. He may have done so even five or ten years before, in the period between 585 and 580, as we have already observed on p. 12. The Jews had settled down, not merely in the two northern frontier towns, Migdol (i.e., Magdolo, Μαγδώλος, according to the Itiner. Anton., twelve Roman miles from Pelusium, Copt. Meschtl, Egypt. Ma'ktr, the most northerly place in Egypt; see on Ezekiel 29:10) and Tahpanhes (i.e., Daphne, see on Jeremiah 43:7), but also in more inland places, in Noph (i.e., Memphis, see on Jeremiah 2:16) and the land of Pathros (lxx Παθούρης, Egypt. Petorees, i.e., Southland, viz., Upper Egypt, the Thebais of the Greeks and Romans; see on Ezekiel 29:14). The word of the Lord runs as follows: -
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