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Jeremiah’s Latest Prophecy (after 586 b.c.). (The prophecies against the Gentile nations (Jeremiah 46-51) were mostly uttered after the battle of Carchemish, 605 b.c.)
He denounces the unabated idolatry which still characterised the people now that they dwelt in Egypt. Their experience of suffering had taught them nothing.
1-10. Jeremiah’s countrymen rebuked.
1. Migdol] on the northern boundary of Egypt. For Noph and Tahpanhes see on Jeremiah 2:16.
8. The works of your hands] i.e. your idols. Might cut yourselves off] RV ’may be cut off.’
11-14. Their punishment foretold.
15-19. They persist in their idolatry.
15. All the women that stood by] Probably the occasion was an idolatrous festival in which the women were taking a leading part. All the people, etc.] not, of course, to be taken literally, but meaning that they were very numerous and represented the whole.
17. Whatsoever thing goeth forth] RV ’every word that is gone forth.’They refer to their religious vows: cp. Numbers 30:2; Deuteronomy 23:23.
Queen of heaven] see on Jeremiah 7:18. Then had we plenty of victuals] They perversely attribute the misfortunes which had befallen their country from the battle of Megiddo and death of Josiah onwards to the attack made upon idolatry (2 Kings 23) by that king, and not to the gradual degradation of the people through the medium of that idolatry during the reigns of Manasseh and A mon and the earlier part of that of Josiah.
19. Worship] RM ’pourtray,’refer-ring to the full moon, as represented either by the shape of the cake itself or by a’figure upon it. Men] RV ’husbands.’A wife’s vow was not binding unless with the consent of the husband: see Numbers 30:6.
20-23. Jeremiah answers. It was, he says, owing to the idolatry, which had been so long rampant and which Josiah’s reforms had scotched, not killed, that the overthrow at last came.
25. With your hand] BV ’with your hands,’pointing, perhaps, to the cakes which they were carrying. Ye will surely, etc.] RV ’Establish then.. and perform.’If ye persist, then be it so.
26. As being faithless to their covenant with God, they shall lose the right of calling upon His name as such.
29. The sign referred to, viz. Nebuchadnezzar’s invasion of Egypt, did not take place till 586 b.c. For other instances of a sign not to take effect for a considerable time after its announcement cp. Exodus 3:12; 2 Kings 19:29
It is not improbable that it was on this occasion that Jeremiah met with a martyr’s death at the hands of his apostate countrymen, as tradition recounts.
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Dummelow, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 44". "Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible". https://studylight.org/
the Fourth Week after Epiphany