Jeremiah 4:3
New International Version
This is what the LORD says to the people of Judah and to Jerusalem: "Break up your unplowed ground and do not sow among thorns.

New Living Translation
This is what the LORD says to the people of Judah and Jerusalem: "Plow up the hard ground of your hearts! Do not waste your good seed among thorns.

English Standard Version
For thus says the LORD to the men of Judah and Jerusalem: “Break up your fallow ground, and sow not among thorns.

Berean Study Bible
For this is what the LORD says to the men of Judah and Jerusalem: “Break up your unplowed ground, and do not sow among the thorns.

New American Standard Bible
For thus says the LORD to the men of Judah and to Jerusalem, "Break up your fallow ground, And do not sow among thorns.

King James Bible
For thus saith the LORD to the men of Judah and Jerusalem, Break up your fallow ground, and sow not among thorns.

Christian Standard Bible
For this is what the LORD says to the men of Judah and Jerusalem: Break up the unplowed ground; do not sow among the thorns.

Contemporary English Version
People of Jerusalem and Judah, don't be so stubborn! Your hearts have become hard, like unplowed ground where thornbushes grow.

Good News Translation
The LORD says to the people of Judah and Jerusalem, "Plow up your unplowed fields; do not plant your seeds among thorns.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
For this is what the LORD says to the men of Judah and Jerusalem: Break up the unplowed ground; do not sow among the thorns.

International Standard Version
For this is what the LORD says to the men of Judah and Jerusalem, "Break up your unplowed ground, and don't sow among thorns.

NET Bible
Yes, the LORD has this to say to the people of Judah and Jerusalem: "Like a farmer breaking up hard unplowed ground, you must break your rebellious will and make a new beginning; just as a farmer must clear away thorns lest the seed is wasted, you must get rid of the sin that is ruining your lives.

New Heart English Bible
For thus says the LORD to the men of Judah and to Jerusalem, "Break up your fallow ground, and do not sow among thorns.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
This is what the LORD says to the people of Judah and to Jerusalem: Plow your unplowed fields, and don't plant among thorns.

JPS Tanakh 1917
For thus saith the LORD to the men of Judah and to Jerusalem: Break up for you a fallow ground, And sow not among thorns.

New American Standard 1977
For thus says the LORD to the men of Judah and to Jerusalem, “Break up your fallow ground, And do not sow among thorns.

Jubilee Bible 2000
For thus has the LORD said to every man of Judah and of Jerusalem, Break up your fallow ground, and do not sow among thorns.

King James 2000 Bible
For thus says the LORD to the men of Judah and Jerusalem, Break up your fallow ground, and sow not among thorns.

American King James Version
For thus said the LORD to the men of Judah and Jerusalem, Break up your fallow ground, and sow not among thorns.

American Standard Version
For thus saith Jehovah to the men of Judah and to Jerusalem, Break up your fallow ground, and sow not among thorns.

Brenton Septuagint Translation
For thus saith the Lord to the men of Juda, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, Break up fresh ground for yourselves, and sow not among thorns.

Douay-Rheims Bible
For thus saith the Lord to the men of Juda and Jerusalem: Break up anew your fallow ground, and sow not upon thorns:

Darby Bible Translation
For thus saith Jehovah to the men of Judah and Jerusalem: Break up for you a fallow ground, and sow not among thorns.

English Revised Version
For thus saith the LORD to the men of Judah and to Jerusalem, Break up your fallow ground, and sow not among thorns.

Webster's Bible Translation
For thus saith the LORD to the men of Judah and Jerusalem, Break up your fallow ground, and sow not among thorns.

World English Bible
For thus says Yahweh to the men of Judah and to Jerusalem, "Break up your fallow ground, and don't sow among thorns.

Young's Literal Translation
For thus said Jehovah, To the man of Judah, and to Jerusalem: Till for yourselves tillage, And do not sow unto the thorns.
Study Bible
God Calls Israel by His Promise
2and if you can swear, ‘As surely as the LORD lives,’ in truth, in justice, and in righteousness, then the nations will be blessed by Him, and in Him they will glory.” 3For this is what the LORD says to the men of Judah and Jerusalem: “Break up your unplowed ground, and do not sow among the thorns. 4Circumcise yourselves to the LORD, remove the foreskins of your hearts, O men of Judah and people of Jerusalem. Otherwise, My wrath will break out like fire and burn with no one to extinguish it, because of your evil deeds.”…
Cross References
Matthew 13:7
Other seeds fell among the thorns, which grew up and choked the seedlings.

Exodus 23:11
but in the seventh year you must let it rest and lie fallow, so that the poor among your people may eat of the field, and the wild animals may consume what they leave. Do the same with your vineyard and olive grove.

Hosea 10:12
Sow for yourselves righteousness and reap the fruit of loving devotion; break up your unplowed ground. For it is time to seek the LORD until He comes and sends righteousness upon you like rain.

Treasury of Scripture

For thus said the LORD to the men of Judah and Jerusalem, Break up your fallow ground, and sow not among thorns.

break

Genesis 3:18
Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;

Hosea 10:12
Sow to yourselves in righteousness, reap in mercy; break up your fallow ground: for it is time to seek the LORD, till he come and rain righteousness upon you.

Matthew 13:7,22
And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them: …







Lexicon
For
כִּי־ (kî-)
Conjunction
Strong's Hebrew 3588: A relative conjunction

this is what
כֹ֣ה ׀ (ḵōh)
Adverb
Strong's Hebrew 3541: Like this, thus, here, now

the LORD
יְהֹוָ֗ה (Yah·weh)
Noun - proper - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 3068: LORD -- the proper name of the God of Israel

says
אָמַ֣ר (’ā·mar)
Verb - Qal - Perfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 559: To utter, say

to the men
לְאִ֤ישׁ (lə·’îš)
Preposition-l | Noun - masculine singular construct
Strong's Hebrew 376: A man as an individual, a male person

of Judah
יְהוּדָה֙ (yə·hū·ḏāh)
Noun - proper - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 3063: Judah -- 'praised', a son of Jacob, also the southern kingdom, also four Israelites

and Jerusalem:
וְלִיר֣וּשָׁלִַ֔ם (wə·lî·rū·šā·lim)
Conjunctive waw, Preposition-l | Noun - proper - feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 3389: Jerusalem -- probably 'foundation of peace', capital city of all Israel

“Break up
נִ֥ירוּ (nî·rū)
Verb - Qal - Imperative - masculine plural
Strong's Hebrew 5214: To break up, freshly till

your unplowed ground,
נִ֑יר (nîr)
Noun - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 5215: Plowing, freshly plowed land

and do not
וְאַֽל־ (wə·’al-)
Conjunctive waw | Adverb
Strong's Hebrew 408: Not

sow
תִּזְרְע֖וּ (tiz·rə·‘ū)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - second person masculine plural
Strong's Hebrew 2232: To sow, to disseminate, plant, fructify

among
אֶל־ (’el-)
Preposition
Strong's Hebrew 413: Near, with, among, to

the thorns.
קוֹצִֽים׃ (qō·w·ṣîm)
Noun - masculine plural
Strong's Hebrew 6975: A thorn, thornbush
(3) For thus saith the Lord . . .--The words seem the close of one discourse, the opening of another. The parable of Israel is left behind, and the appeal to Judah and Jerusalem is more direct.

To the men of Judah.--Literally, to each man individually.

Break up your fallow ground.--The Hebrew has the force which comes from the verb and noun being from the same root, Break up for you a broken ground or fallow a fallow field. The metaphor had been used before by Hosea (Hosea 10:12). What the spiritual field needed was to be exposed to God's sun and God's free air, to the influences of spiritual light and warmth, and the dew and soft showers of His grace.

Sow not among thorns.--Not without a special interest as, perhaps, containing the germ of the Parable of the Sower in Matthew 13:7. Here, as there, the seed is the "word of God," spoken by the prophet, and taking root in the heart, and the thorns are the "cares of this world," the selfish desires which choke the good seed and render it unfruitful.

Verse 3. - There is no occasion to separate vers. 3, 4, from the preceding prophecy. We have other instances of as sudden a transition from the Israelites (in the narrower sense) to the men of Judah (see Isaiah 8:6-14; Isaiah 10:1-4; Isaiah 28:1-6; in the writer's commentary). For thus, etc. "For" is here not causal, but explanatory: "I say this not only to the men of Israel, but to you, O men of Judah, who need the admonition to repentance, how deeply!" (see Jeremiah 5:2). Break up your fallow ground; the same figure as in Hosea 10:12. To understand it we must read the clause in connection with the following one. Sow not among thorns. The prophet means, though he does not say so, the roots which will spring up into thorns. "Do not plant your good resolutions in a heart filled up with the roots of thorns, but first rake up the soil, and clear it of noxious germs, and then sow the seed which will grow up in a holy life" (comp. Matthew 13:7). 4:3,4 An unhumbled heart is like ground untilled. It is ground which may be improved; it is our ground let out to us; but it is fallow; it is over-grown with thorns and weeds, the natural product of the corrupt heart. Let us entreat the Lord to create in us a clean heart, and to renew a right spirit within us; for except a man be born again, he cannot enter into the kingdom of heaven.
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