Jeremiah 7:5
For if ye throughly amend your ways and your doings; if ye throughly execute judgment between a man and his neighbour;
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(5) A man and his neighbour.—The Jewish idiom for the English “one man and another.”

Jeremiah 7:5-7. For if ye thoroughly amend your ways, &c. — In these verses the prophet tells them particularly what the amendment was which was necessary that they might escape destruction. It must be a thorough amendment, a universal, continued, persevering reformation; not partial, but entire; not hypocritical, but sincere; not wavering, but constant. They must make the tree good, and so make the fruit good; must amend their hearts and thoughts, and so amend their ways and doings. In particular, 1st, They must be honest and just in all their dealings. They who had power in their hands must thoroughly execute judgment between a man and his neighbour, without partiality. They must not, either in judgment, or in matters of contract, oppress the stranger, the fatherless, or the widow — Nor countenance or protect those that did oppress them, nor refuse to do them right when they sought for it. They must not shed innocent blood — And with it defile the temple, the city, and the land wherein they dwelt. 2d, They must keep close to the worship of the true God only, neither walking after other gods, nor hearkening to those that would draw them into communion with idolaters. Then will I cause you to dwell in this place, &c. — Upon this condition I will establish and fix you in this land for ever and ever — That is, from age to age, and you shall possess it, as your fathers did before you, from the days of Joshua until now.

7:1-16 No observances, professions, or supposed revelations, will profit, if men do not amend their ways and their doings. None can claim an interest in free salvation, who allow themselves in the practice of known sin, or live in the neglect of known duty. They thought that the temple they profaned would be their protection. But all who continue in sin because grace has abounded, or that grace may abound, make Christ the minister of sin; and the cross of Christ, rightly understood, forms the most effectual remedy to such poisonous sentiments. The Son of God gave himself for our transgressions, to show the excellence of the Divine law, and the evil of sin. Never let us think we may do wickedness without suffering for it.A summary of the conditions indispensable on man's part, before he can plead the terms of the covenant in his favor.5. For—"But" [Maurer].

judgment—justice (Jer 22:3).

He tells them, it is not their vain confidence in their privileges, and boasting of the temple, but only their serious and thorough repentance in turning to God, both in point of piety and equity, that can secure them.

Between a man and his neighbour, i.e. impartially among one another, between man and man, without favour or hatred.

For if ye thoroughly amend your ways and your doings,.... Or, "if ye make your ways good, and do your works well", which is what is exhorted to Jeremiah 7:3, and respects the duties of the moral law; which are more acceptable to God than legal sacrifices, when done from right principles, and with right views, from love, in faith, and to the glory of God; which is doing good works well; the particulars of which follow:

if you thoroughly execute judgment between a man and his neighbour; without respect to persons, without favour and affection, without bribery and corruption; passing a righteous sentence, and making an equitable decision of the case between them, according to the law of God, and the rules of justice and equity: this respects judges and civil magistrates.

For if ye throughly amend your ways and your doings; if ye throughly execute judgment between a man and his neighbour;
Verse 5. - If ye thoroughly amend, etc.; a development of the ides of ver. 3. The true palladium of Judah would be the faithful performance of Jehovah's moral laws, especially those referring to the conduct of the rulers. Observe the stress which all the prophets lay on the virtues of civil life. Jeremiah 7:5Over against such sayings Jeremiah puts that which is the indispensable condition of continued sojourn in the land. כּי, Jeremiah 7:5, after a preceding negative clause, means: but on the contrary. This condition is a life morally good, that shall show itself in doing justice, in putting away all unrighteousness, and in giving up idolatry. With אם begins a list of the things that belong to the making of one's ways and doings good. The adjunct to משׁפּט, right, "between the man and his neighbour," shows that the justice meant is that they should help one man to his rights against another. The law attached penalties to the oppression of those who needed protection - strangers, orphans, widows; cf. Exodus 22:21., Deuteronomy 24:17., Jeremiah 27:19; and the prophets often denounce the same; cf. Isaiah 1:17, Isaiah 1:23; Isaiah 10:2; Ezekiel 22:7; Zechariah 7:10; Malachi 3:5; Psalm 94:6, etc. for 'לא־ת is noteworthy, but is not a simple equivalent for it. Like ου ̓ μή, כ̓ב implies a deeper interest on the part of the speaker, and the sense here is: and ye be really determined not to shed innocent blood (cf. Ew. 320, b). Hitz.'s explanation, that אל is equal to אשׁר לא or אם לא, and that it her resumes again the now remote אם, is overturned by the consideration that אל is not at the beginning of the clause; and there is not the slightest probability in Graf's view, that the אל must have come into the text through the copyist, who had in his mind the similar clause in Jeremiah 22:3. Shedding innocent blood refers in part to judicial murders (condemnation of innocent persons), in part to violent attacks made by the kings on prophets and godly men, such as we hear of in Manasseh's case, 2 Kings 21:16. In this place (Jeremiah 7:7), i.e., first and foremost Jerusalem, the metropolis, where moral corruption had its chief seat; in a wider sense, however, it means the whole kingdom of Judah (Jeremiah 7:3 and Jeremiah 7:7). "To your hurt" belongs to all the above-mentioned transgressions of the law; cf. Jeremiah 25:7. "In the land," etc., explains "this place." "From eternity to eternity" is a rhetorically heightened expression for the promise given to the patriarchs, that God would give the land of Canaan to their posterity for an everlasting possession, Genesis 17:8; although here it belongs not to the relative clause, "that I gave," but to the principal clause, "cause you to dwell," as in Exodus 32:13.
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