Jeremiah 15:12
Parallel Verses
New International Version
"Can a man break iron-- iron from the north--or bronze?

King James Bible
Shall iron break the northern iron and the steel?

Darby Bible Translation
Will iron break? iron from the north? and bronze?

World English Bible
Can one break iron, even iron from the north, and brass?

Young's Literal Translation
Doth one break iron -- northern iron, and brass?

Jeremiah 15:12 Parallel
Clarke's Commentary on the Bible

Shall iron break the northern iron and the steel? - Shall our weak forces be able to oppose and overcome the powers of the Chaldeans? נחשת nechasheth, which we here translate steel, property signifies brass or copper united with tin, which gives it much hardness, and enables it to bear a good edge.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Shall iron.

Jeremiah 1:18,19 For, behold, I have made you this day a defended city, and an iron pillar, and brazen walls against the whole land...

Jeremiah 21:4,5 Thus said the LORD God of Israel; Behold, I will turn back the weapons of war that are in your hands...

Job 40:9 Have you an arm like God? or can you thunder with a voice like him?

Isaiah 45:9 Woe to him that strives with his Maker! Let the potsherd strive with the potsherds of the earth...

Habakkuk 1:5-10 Behold you among the heathen, and regard, and wonder marvelously: for I will work a work in your days which you will not believe...

The Northern Iron and the Steel
That being the literal meaning, we shall draw from our text a general principle. It is a proverbial expression, no doubt, and applicable to many other matters besides that of the prophet and the Jews; it is clearly meant to show, that in order to achieve a purpose, there must be a sufficient force. The weaker cannot overcome the stronger. In a general clash the firmest will win. There must be sufficient firmness in the instrument or the work cannot be done. You cannot cut granite with a pen-knife,
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 17: 1871

The Sins of Communities Noted and Punished.
"Verily I say unto you, All these things shall come upon this generation." This is predicated of the judgments of God on those who had shed the blood of his saints. The Savior declares that all the righteous blood which had been shed on the earth from that of Abel down to the gospel day, should come on that generation! But is not this unreasonable and contrary to the Scriptures? "Far be wickedness from God and iniquity from the Almighty. For the work of man shall be render unto him, and cause every
Andrew Lee et al—Sermons on Various Important Subjects

Cross References
Numbers 34:7
"'For your northern boundary, run a line from the Mediterranean Sea to Mount Hor

Jeremiah 28:14
This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: I will put an iron yoke on the necks of all these nations to make them serve Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and they will serve him. I will even give him control over the wild animals.'"

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