Jeremiah 51:47
Therefore, behold, the days come, that I will do judgment on the graven images of Babylon: and her whole land shall be confounded, and all her slain shall fall in the middle of her.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(47) Therefore, behold, the days come . . .—The first word has its full force. The Israelite exiles were to infer from the rumours and disorders of the preceding verse, that the day of vengeance was at hand. The formula, “behold, the days come,” was Jeremiah’s customary manner of announcing a prediction (comp. Jeremiah 7:32; Jeremiah 16:14, et al.). For “slain” some commentators read “wounded” or “smitten,” as the word is rendered in Psalm 69:26; Job 24:12, the words that follow indicating that the wounded shall have no power to escape, but shall fill the city with their corpses.

Jeremiah 51:47-49. Therefore behold, or rather, Then soon, the days come that I will do judgment upon the graven images, &c. — That is, cause the statues of the gods of Babylon to be broken to pieces, or carried away. Then the heaven and the earth, &c., shall sing for Babylon — The angels in heaven, and many nations of the earth, shall rejoice and praise God for the just punishment brought upon Babylon. So at Babylon shall fall, or rather, Through Babylon have fallen, as נפלוshould be rendered, the slain of all the earth — The reason is here assigned why the heavens and the earth, and all that are therein, should rejoice at the fall of Babylon, because not only the people of Israel, but of the whole earth likewise had been greatly annoyed, oppressed, and diminished by the power of that ambitious nation.51:1-58 The particulars of this prophecy are dispersed and interwoven, and the same things left and returned to again. Babylon is abundant in treasures, yet neither her waters nor her wealth shall secure her. Destruction comes when they did not think of it. Wherever we are, in the greatest depths, at the greatest distances, we are to remember the Lord our God; and in the times of the greatest fears and hopes, it is most needful to remember the Lord. The feeling excited by Babylon's fall is the same with the New Testament Babylon, Re 18:9,19. The ruin of all who support idolatry, infidelity, and superstition, is needful for the revival of true godliness; and the threatening prophecies of Scripture yield comfort in this view. The great seat of antichristian tyranny, idolatry, and superstition, the persecutor of true Christians, is as certainly doomed to destruction as ancient Babylon. Then will vast multitudes mourn for sin, and seek the Lord. Then will the lost sheep of the house of Israel be brought back to the fold of the good Shepherd, and stray no more. And the exact fulfilment of these ancient prophecies encourages us to faith in all the promises and prophecies of the sacred Scriptures.Therefore - The exiles were to note these things as signs of the approach of God's visitation.

Confounded - Or, ashamed.

47. Grotius translates, "Because then (namely, on the third year) the time shall have come that," &c.

confounded—at seeing their gods powerless to help them.

her slain—in retribution for "Israel's slain" (Jer 51:49) who fell by her hand. Grotius translates, "her dancers," as in Jud 21:21, 23; 1Sa 18:6, the same Hebrew word is translated, alluding to the dancing revelry of the festival during which Cyrus took Babylon.

I will do, that is, I will execute, judgment upon the idols of Babylon, and the whole land of Chaldea shall be confounded, when they shall see that their idols will do them no more service.

And all her slain shall fall in the midst of her: some, instead of her slain’ would have it read, her dancers, (for the city was taken while Belshazzar and his whole court were revelling,) but the learned author of the English Annotations tells us the word will not bear it. Therefore, behold, the days come that I will do judgment on the graven images of Babylon,.... Because of the connection of these words, some understand Jeremiah 51:46 of the report of the deliverance of the Jews time after time; and yet nothing came of it, which disheartened them; and they were used more cruelly, and with greater violence, by the Chaldeans and their kings, one after another; and "therefore" the following things are said; but the particle may be rendered "moreover" (n), as some observe; or "surely", certainly, of a truth, as in Jeremiah 5:2; the time is hastening on, the above things being done, when judgment shall be executed, not only upon Bel the chief idol, Jeremiah 51:44; but upon all the idols of the Chaldeans; which should be broke to pieces, and stripped of everything about them that was valuable; the Medes and Persians having no regard to images in their worship; though Dr. Prideaux (o) thinks that what is here said, and in Jeremiah 51:44; were fulfilled by Xerxes, when he destroyed and pillaged the Babylonian temples:

and her whole land shall be confounded; the inhabitants of it, when they see their images destroyed, in which they trusted for their safety:

and all her slain shall fall in the midst of her; in the midst of Babylon; where the king and his army were shut up, and dared not move out; and where they were slain when the army of Cyrus entered.

(n) "praeterea"; so Gataker. (o) Connexion, par. 1. B. 2. p. 101. B. 4. p. 242, 243.

Therefore, behold, the days come, that I will do judgment upon the graven images of Babylon: and her whole land shall be confounded, and all her slain shall fall in the midst of her.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
47. The v. is suspicious; for (a) it closely resembles Jeremiah 51:52 in language, (b) “Therefore” is unsuitable here, while it fits Jeremiah 51:52, from which it may be taken. Co. for “graven images,” mentioned elsewhere in the immediate context (Jeremiah 51:52), proposes to read “rulers,” pointing out that the word is used three times in Is. (Jeremiah 14:5, Jeremiah 49:7, Jeremiah 52:5) of the Babylonian oppressors of Israel.

do judgement upon] lit. visit upon, as in Jeremiah 51:52. Cp. Jeremiah 11:22 and elsewhere.

ashamed] See on Jeremiah 2:26.The fearful destruction of Babylon will astonish the world. - Jeremiah 51:41 is an exclamation of astonishment regarding the conquest of the city which was praised throughout the world. As to שׁשׁך, see on Jeremiah 51:1 and Jeremiah 25:26. תּהלּה, "praise," is here used for "a subject of praise and fame;" cf. Jeremiah 49:25.
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