Jeremiah 49:8
Flee ye, turn back, dwell deep, O inhabitants of Dedan; for I will bring the calamity of Esau upon him, the time that I will visit him.
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(8) O inhabitants of Dedan.—See Note on Jeremiah 25:23. In Ezekiel 25:13 Dedan appears, as here, in company with Edom and Teman. In Isaiah 21:13 the “travelling companies of Dedanim” appear as carrying on the traffic of Edom with other countries. The words “dwell deep” are as a warning, bidding them retire as far as possible, so as to escape from the Chaldæan invaders.

Jeremiah 49:8. Flee ye, turn back, dwell deep — “When the Arabs,” says Harmer, “have drawn upon themselves such a general resentment of the more fixed inhabitants of those countries that they think themselves unable to stand against them, they withdraw into the depths of the great wilderness, where none can follow them with hopes of success.” D’Arvieux tells us, “they will be quite ready to decamp upon less than two hours’ warning, and, retiring immediately into the deserts, render it impossible for other nations, even the most powerful, to conquer them, they not daring to venture far into the deserts, where the Arabs alone know how to steer their course, so as to hit upon places of water and forage. Is it not then most probable that the dwelling deep, which Jeremiah here recommends to the Arab tribes, means this plunging far into the deserts, rather than going into deep caves and dens, as Grotius and other commentators suppose?” O inhabitants of Dedan — The Dedanites were Arabians of the posterity of Dedan, a grandson of Abraham, Genesis 25:3. They seem by this place to have been, in latter times, subdued by the Idumeans, and incorporated with them.

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.Dwell deep - Jeremiah 49:30. The Dedanites, who were used to travel through the Edomite territory with their caravans, are advised to retire as far as possible into the Arabian deserts to be out of the way of the invaders.8. turn—namely, your backs in flight.

dwell deep—in deep defiles and caves [Grotius], which abound in Idumea. Others refer it to the Arab custom of retiring into the depth of the desert when avoiding an offended foe (Jer 49:30).

Dedan—a tribe bordering on and made subject by Idumea; descended from Jokshan, son of Abraham and Keturah (Ge 25:1-3).

Esau—The naming of Edom's progenitor, reprobated by God, recalls the remembrance of the old curse on him for his profanity, both his sin and its punishment being perpetuated in his descendants (Heb 12:16, 17).

Dedan was the son of Jokshan, 1 Chronicles 1:32, from which it is probable that the city

Dedan had its name; it is reckoned, Jeremiah 25:23, with Tema and Buz, and is mentioned Ezekiel 27:15,20 38:13. It was a city of Arabia joining on Idumea, Isaiah 21:13. They being neighbours to the Edomites, are called to flee, and to get into caves and holes of the earth, where they might dwell deep in the earth, and be in some security, which they would not be in their own city, so near to the Edomites’ country, for God was resolved to bring misery upon the Edomites, a time of calamity in which he would visit them with his judgments. There are other critical readings of these words, but this seemeth to be the plain sense of them.

Flee ye, turn back, dwell deep, O inhabitants of Dedan,.... Another city in Idumea; though some take it to be a country in Arabia, bordering on Edom, and subdued by the Edomites: the inhabitants of this place are advised to "flee" for their lives, since the enemy was just upon them; and "turn back", lest they should fall into his hands; and hide themselves in some deep caverns of the earth, in holes, and dens of rocks, and such like places. It is a prophecy that they should flee from and turn their backs on their enemies, and betake themselves to some very secret places for safety;

for I will bring the calamity of Esau upon him; which was determined concerning him, threatened to him, and was his just desert; even the utter destruction of the whole land:

the time of his visitation; the time fixed to visit him in a way of wrath and punishment being come,

Flee ye, {k} turn back, dwell deep, O inhabitants of Dedan; for I will bring the calamity of Esau upon him, the time that I will punish him.

(k) The enemies that pretend to flee, will turn back and invade your land, and possess it.

8. dwell deep, O inhabitants of Dedan] See on ch. Jeremiah 25:23. They are bidden to seek an inaccessible hiding-place.

Verse 8. - Turn back. The grammatical form is peculiar (literally, be made to turn back). If the punctuation is not an oversight the object is to suggest the compulsiveness of the change of route of the Dedanites. Dwell deep; i.e. tarry in the deepest recesses ye can find, so as to avoid the calamities of the Edomites. The Dedanites, it will be remembered, were a tribe devoted to commerce (see on Jeremiah 25:23). Isaiah had already, on an earlier occasion, given the same advice as Jeremiah, viz. to leave the beaten track and take refuge in a less exposed part of the desert, where shrubs and thorn bushes ("the forest," or rather, "the thickets") would secure them to some extent from observation (Isaiah 21:13). See, however, ver. 10. Jeremiah 49:8The Dedanites, whose caravans march in peace through Edom (see on Jeremiah 25:23), must flee, and hide themselves in deeply concealed hiding-places, in order to escape the evil befalling Edom. The form הפנוּ, which only occurs besides in Ezekiel 9:2, in the sense of being "turned, directed," is here preferred to the Hiphil (cf. Jeremiah 49:24, Jeremiah 46:21, etc.), in order to indicate the constraint under which they must change their route. העמיקוּ is also an imperative, in spite of the Segol in the first syllable, which is found there, in some forms, instead of a; cf. Ewald, 226, a. העמיקוּ לשׁבת, "make deep to stay," i.e., withdraw yourselves into deep or hidden places, where the enemy does not see and discover you. "For the destruction of Esau," i.e., the destruction determined on Esau, or Edom, "I bring on him;" on this matter, cf. Ezekiel 46:21.
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