Jeremiah 49:14
I have heard a rumour from the LORD, and an ambassador is sent unto the heathen, saying, Gather ye together, and come against her, and rise up to the battle.
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(14) I have heard a rumour from the Lord . . .—The thought is that of Jehovah, as the great King, sending forth His herald or envoy to call the nations to the attack on Edom. (Comp. Jeremiah 46:3-4.)

Jeremiah 49:14-16. I have heard a rumour — Hebrew, שׁמועה, a report or message, from the Lord, and an ambassador is sent unto the heathen. Obadiah begins his prophecy against Edom in similar words. The prophets, it must be observed, “often represent God as summoning armies, and setting them in array of battle against those people whom he has decreed to destroy. And his stirring up men’s spirits to invade such countries, is described here as if he had sent an ambassador to the Chaldeans and their confederates, to engage them in a war against the Idumeans; according to the methods which earthly princes use to engage their allies.” — Lowth. For lo, I will make thee small, &c. — I will bring thee low and make thee very contemptible. Thy terribleness hath deceived thee — “Thou hast been formerly terrible to all about thee, and looked upon as impregnable; and the confidence thou hast had in this thy strength hath made thee careless and secure, and thereby given thy enemies an advantage against thee.” O thou that dwellest in the clefts, &c. — St. Jerome, who lived in the neighbourhood, tells us, in his commentary upon Obadiah, “that Idumea was a rocky mountainous country, and that the inhabitants dwelt in caves dug out of the rocks and hills.” Though thou shouldest make thy nest as high as the eagle — The greatest height or strength cannot place thee out of the reach of divine vengeance. The eagle is remarkable for its flying high, and making its nest in very high and inaccessible rocks: see note on Job 39:27-28.

49:7-22 The Edomites were old enemies to the Israel of God. But their day is now at hand; it is foretold, not only to warn them, but for the sake of the Israel of God, whose afflictions were aggravated by them. Thus Divine judgments go round from nation to nation; the earth is full of commotion, and nothing can escape the ministers of Divine vengeance. The righteousness of God is to be observed amidst the violence of men.The second strophe, Edom's chastisement.

Jeremiah 49:14

Rumour - Or, "revelation."

Ambassador - Or, messenger, i. e., herald. The business of an ambassador is to negotiate, of a herald to carry a message.

14. (Ob 1-3).

ambassador … unto the heathen—a messenger from God to stir up the Chaldeans against Edom.

I have heard a rumour from the Lord: Obadiah beginneth his prophecy much with such words. God hath revealed his will to me in a vision or a dream.

An ambassador is sent unto the heathen: he speaks after the manner of earthly princes, who use to send their ambassadors to other princes to declare their minds to them.

Saying, Gather ye together, and come against her, and rise up to the battle: the meaning is, God hath made such impressions upon other nations, he hath inclined them, or set them on work, to get together in armies to come against Edom in battle.

I have heard a rumour from the Lord,.... "A hearing" (l); or a report concerning the destruction of Edom, made to him in a dream or vision, by the spirit of God, as a spirit of prophecy:

and an ambassador is sent to the Heathen; or a messenger; Jeremiah the prophet, as some; or an angel, as Kimchi suggests, sent to gather the nations to war against Bozrah; or a divine impulse, as others, with which the Chaldeans were impressed; which was as a voice to them,

saying, gather ye together, and come against her, and rise up to the battle; get your forces together, and come against Bozrah or Edom, to invade and subdue it; attack it in a military way, not doubting of victory; see Obadiah 1:1.

(l) "auditum audivi", V. L. Pagninus, Montanus, Schmidt.

I have heard a rumour from the LORD, and an ambassador is sent to the nations, saying, Gather ye together, and come against {p} her, and rise up to the battle.

(p) That is, Bozrah.

14–18. These vv. are parallel to Obadiah 1:1-4, whence they are borrowed; see introd. note.

Verses 14-18. - Based at first on the older prophecy (see Obadiah 1:1-4); then follow two verses in Jeremiah's peculiar manner. As yet Edom feels himself secure in his rocky home. But a Divine impulse already stirs the nation, through whom Jehovah wills to humble the proud. Edom shall become a second Sodom. Verse 14. - I have heard a rumour. In Obadiah it is "we have heard," i.e. the company of prophets (comp. Isaiah 53:1, "Who hath believed our report?" according to one interpretation). Jeremiah, to justify his adoption of the outward form of his prophecy, declares that he is personally responsible for its substance. "Rumour," or as the word is elsewhere rendered, "report," is a technical term for a prophetic revelation (Obadiah 1:1; Isaiah 28:9, 19; Isaiah 53:1; comp. Isaiah 21:10; Isaiah 28:22); and it is from this Old Testament usage that ἀκοή acquires its special meaning in Romans 10:16, 17. In fact, ἀκοή, or bearing, is a more exact equivalent of the original. A prophet is one who has "listened in the council of God" (Job 15:8, corrected version; comp. Amos 3:7), and "when the Lord Jehovah hath spoken, who can but prophesy?" (Amos 3:8). Prophetic perception of Divine truth is so exceptional a thing that it can only be expressed approximately in terms of everyday life. One while it may be called a "hearing," a "report," another while a "vision" or "intuition." He who makes to hear or see is, of course, Jehovah, through the objective influence of his Spirit. It is important to study the Biblical phraseology, which has a depth of meaning too often overlooked, owing to the blunter edge which time has given to our modern speech. An ambassador; rather, a herald. Unto the heathen; rather, unto the nations. There is no religious idea involved; the word goyim literally means "nations," and there is no reason for deviating from the primary sense. In the next verse it is even more necessary to make this correction. Jeremiah 49:14The nature and occasion of the judgment decreed. - Jeremiah 49:14. "I have heard tidings from Jahveh, and a messenger has been sent among the nations: Gather yourselves together, and go against her, and arise to the battle! Jeremiah 49:15. For, behold, I have made thee small among the nations, despised among men. Jeremiah 49:16. Thy terribleness hath deceived thee, the pride of thy heart, O thou that dwellest in the hiding-places of the rock, that holdest the height of the hill. Though thou makest thy nest high like the eagle, thence will I bring thee down, saith Jahveh. Jeremiah 49:17. And Edom shall become an astonishment; every passer-by shall be astonished at her, and shall hiss at all her plagues. Jeremiah 49:18. As [it was in] the overthrow of Sodom and Gomorrah, saith Jahveh, no man shall dwell there, nor shall a son of man sojourn there."

This judgment will immediately take place. The nations who are to make Edom small and despised have been already summoned by the Lord to the war. Jeremiah has taken this idea from Obadiah 1:1, Obadiah 1:2. The subject in "I have heard" is the prophet, who has heard the information from Jahveh. In Obadiah is found the plural, "we have heard," because the prophet includes himself among the people; this is to show that the news serves as a consolation to Israel, because Edom shall be punished for his crimes committed against Judah. This view was not before the mind of Jeremiah; with him the prevailing representation is, that judgment, from which Edom cannot be excepted, is passed upon all nations. Therefore he has chosen the singular, "I have heard." In the succeeding clause the perf. Pual שׁלּח has been changed into שׁלוּח, as the more usual form. The messenger is to be considered as having been sent by the Lord for the purpose of summoning the nations to war, as he actually does in the second hemistich. The message agrees, in the nature of its contents, with Obadiah 1:1; but Jeremiah has dealt somewhat freely with its form. The statement with regard to the object of the war, Jeremiah 49:15, agrees pretty exactly with Obadiah 1:2. The account, too, which is given of the cause of the judgment, i.e., the guilt of Edom arising from his trusting in the impregnable character of his habitation, is derived from Obadiah 1:3, Obadiah 1:4. Jeremiah has intensified the idea by the additional use of תּפלצתּך, but has also made certain limitations of the expression by omitting some clauses found in Obadiah. The word just named is ἅπ. λεγ., and has been variously explained. The verb פּלץ occurs only in Job 9:6, with the meaning of quaking, trembling; and the noun פּלּצוּת pretty frequently in the sense of fear, shuddering, horror; further, מפלצת is used in 1 Kings 15:13; 2 Chronicles 15:16, of an idol, monster, object of horror. Hence Rabbinical writers have been inclined to understand תּפלצת as meaning idolatry; in this they are followed by J. D. Michaelis, Meier, and Ngelsbach. The last-named writer translates, "Thy monster (idol) led thee astray." But even though this meaning were better established from the use of language than it is, yet the mention of idolatry, or even of an idol, is quite unsuitable in this passage. The lxx render ἡ παιγνία σου i.e., risus or jocus tuus, Chald. טפשׁוּתך, "thy folly," - evidently a mere guess from the context. The best ascertained translation is, "Thy terror," i.e., the terror which thou dost inspire, or the fear of thee, "hath misled thee, the pride of thine heart," so that "the pride," etc., forms an apposition to "thy terror." The combination of the fem. תּפלצתּך with the verb השּׁיא in the masc. is not decisive against this. Following the example of Schleussner (O arrogantiam tuam), Hitzig and Graf would take the word as an exclamation, "Terror to thee! horror on thee!" and thy point for support to הפכּכם, Isaiah 29:16. But an exclamation is out of place here, and incompatible with the derivation of the following words from Obadiah. Since Jeremiah appropriates from Obadiah the thought, "thy pride hath misled thee," תּפלצתּך may possibly be meant as a mere intensification of זדוי לבּך. The pride of Edom increased because the other nations were afraid to make war on him in his rocky dwelling, so difficult of access. On שׂכני בּחגוי הסּלע, see on Obadiah 1:3. The succeeding apposition-clause מרום שׁבתּו, found in Obadiah, is modified by Jeremiah into תּפשׂי מרום גּבעה otni , "thou that seizest, or holdest (as in Jeremiah 40:10), the height of the hill." In the expression חגוי there is perhaps implied an allusion to the rock-city סלע, or Petra, in the Wady Musa (see on 2 Kings 14:7), and in מרום גּבעה ni dn another allusion to Bozrah, which lay on a hill; see on Jeremiah 49:13. On Jeremiah 49:16, cf. Obadiah 1:4. Jeremiah has omitted the hyperbolic addition, "among the stars." In Jeremiah 49:17 and Jeremiah 49:18 the devastation of Edom is further portrayed. On Jeremiah 49:17, cf. Jeremiah 25:11, Jeremiah 25:38; with 17b agrees Jeremiah 19:8, almost word for word. The comparison with Sodom, etc., is a reminiscence from Deuteronomy 29:22, and is repeated in the prophecy concerning Babylon, 50:40; cf. Isaiah 13:19; Amos 4:11. "Her neighbours" are Admah and Zeboim, Deuteronomy 29:22; Hosea 11:8. The comparison with Sodom is not so to be understood as if it indicated that Edom shall be destroyed in the same manner as Sodom; it is merely stated that the land of Edom shall become a desert waste, like the region of the Dead Sea, uninhabited, and with no human beings in it; cf. Jeremiah 49:33 and Jeremiah 50:40.

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