Notes & Commentary:
If. The Geneva Bible reads corruptly, "Though Moses...stood," contrary to Hebrew and Greek. (Worthington) --- And
Samuel. These two had shewn a particular love for the people, Exodus xxxii., and 2 Kings xii. (Calmet) --- Ezechiel (xiv.
4.) specifies Noe[Noah], Daniel, and Job, who were eminent for sanctity. Daniel was still alive. Yet God will not grant their
request; and he forbids his prophet to pray for those who were resolved not to repent, chap. xiv. 11. (Haydock) --- Their
punishment was fixed, and God will not remit it at the request either of the living or of the dead. Hence it is evident, that
the dead could and did sometimes make intercession, otherwise they would not here be mentioned. To evade this argument, Protestants
in the Geneva Bible, suppose God's "meaning to be, that if there were any man living, moved with so great zeal towards
the people as were these two, yet he would not grant their request, for so much as he had determined the contrary." Yet surely
Jeremias, Daniel, &c., had a similar zeal; and therefore the text speaks of Moses and Samuel in a state of happiness,
where their charity is greater than in this life, as St. Jerome, St. Chrysostom (hom. 1. in 1 Thessalonians) and St. Gregory
(Mor. ix. 12.) explain it. (Worthington) --- Jeremias had been praying earnestly for the people in the temple. But God answers
his request with a severity rarely witnessed in Scripture, ordering him to drive the people out, or to announce that they
should be thus treated. (Calmet)
Death. This Hebrew phrase intimates that some should die by sickness, &c. (Worthington)
Kinds of persecutors, the sword, &c. (Calmet)
Rage. Hebrew, "agitation." (Calmet) --- Septuagint, "necessities." Protestants, "to be removed into all," &c. (Haydock)
This the event verified, Isaias xi. 11. --- Manasses. Though he obtained pardon, the people would not imitate his repentance.
A dreadful warning for princes! (Calmet) --- "The people generally perish by the fault of their governors." (St. Jerome)
Peace. All will abhor thee. (Calmet) --- "The creatures cannot be so clement as the Creator." (St. Jerome)
Intreating thee. Hebrew, "of being intreated;" (St. Jerome) or, "of repenting," and suspending the effects of my wrath.
(Calmet) --- Septuagint, "I will no longer spare them." (Haydock)
Will, or "have scattered" the ten tribes, and many of Juda, before the last siege. (Calmet)
Man, or "a spoiler of the young man," (Haydock) so that the widow shall also be deprived of her children. Hebrew,
"the young spoiler," Nabuchodonosor. He shall not come like a night thief, to attack the metropolis.
Seven: many. It is not common for a mother to lose so numerous a family; yet such shall be the misfortune of Jewish
parents. The synagogues shall decrease. --- Day. Her prosperity shall end on a sudden. (Calmet)
Strife. Jeremias was under continual persecution, (Menochius) yet ceased not to reprimand the wicked. (Haydock) ---
Obsequium amicos, veritas odium parit. (Cicero) --- Usury. Such people are exposed to contention. (Menochius)
Remnant; posterity, (Calmet) or rather possessions, as the prophet never married, chap. xvi. 2. (Haydock) --- God assures
him that he shall be protected. (Menochius) --- The Chaldeans treated him with respect, chap. xxxix. 2., and xl. 1. Sedecias
and the people had often recourse to him. Chaldean, "They will come to intreat thee, when the enemy shall straiten them."
Iron. Shall the iron (that is, the strength of Juda) stand against the stronger iron of the north, (that is,
of Babylon) or enter into an alliance upon equal footing with it? No, certainly; but it must be broken by it. (Challoner)
--- Iron is not easily united with brass, though Pliny ([Natural History?] xxxiv. 4.) mentions a statue of this nature. Neither
iron nor brass can stand against steel, which is meant by the iron from the north. The Jews shall not hurt Jeremias, ver.
20., and chap. i. 17. (Calmet) --- Protestants, "shall iron break the northern iron and the steel?" The riches of Juda
shall become a prey, ver. 13. (Haydock) --- Stronger kingdoms easily oppress their weak allies. (Worthington)
Bring. Septuagint, "enslave thee to thy," &c. Chaldean, "thou shalt serve." (Haydock) --- They have read (Calmet)
hahabadti. Hebrew has r instead of d, "I will make thee to pass with thine enemies into a," &c.
Patience. That is, let not thy patience and long suffering, which thou usest towards sinners, keep thee from making
haste to my assistance. (Challoner) --- He is actuated by a zeal for God's glory. (Calmet) --- He is afraid of his own weakness,
and begs to be delivered shortly, Psalm xii. 2. (Worthington)
Eat them. I received them most cordially, (Ezechiel iii. 1.; Haydock) as one who is hungry. --- Upon me. I was
recognized as the prophet of the Lord.
Jesters, who deride religion, (Psalm i. 1.) or sport away their time. (Calmet) --- Hand, through vanity. Literally,
"and I boast of." (Haydock) --- I rejoiced in suffering, as this prophet. Many (Calmet) supply nor from the former
part of the sentence. (Menochius) --- Threats. I could not refrain from admonishing the people of their ways, (Haydock)
which I would not countenance by my presence. (Calmet) --- All indeed kept at a distance from me.
Trusted. It is not cured as soon as might be expected. (Haydock) --- It continually breaks out again, (Menochius) like
a bog not properly drained. (Haydock) --- Hebrew, "Thou art become," &c. Chaldean, "break not thy promise, as," &c.,
Do not reject me when I stand most in need of redress. (Calmet) --- My hopes seem (Haydock) vain. (Worthington)
Converted, and cease to fear the people; (Calmet) and confide in my precious words, (Haydock) despising the
vile threats of the people. (Menochius) --- Mouth; interpreter, Exodus iv. 16. Chaldean, "If thou wilt recall
the wicked into the way of justice, though shalt fulfill my will." See St. Jerome in Psalm cv. 32. --- To thee. Thus
Sedecias and the people acted, chap. xxi. 1., and xlii. 2. (Calmet) --- The prophet must not give way to sinners, but they
must be reclaimed. (Worthington)
Mighty; Chaldeans. Providence watched over Jeremias, amid all his enemies. (Calmet)
Bible Text & Cross-references:
God is deternined to punish the Jews for their sins. The prophet's
complaint, and God's promise to him.
1 And the Lord said to me: If Moses and Samuel shall stand before me, my
soul is not towards this people: cast them out from my sight, and let them go forth.
2 And if they shall say unto thee: Whither shall we go forth? thou shalt
say to them: Thus saith the Lord: *Such as are for death, to death: and such as are for the sword, to the sword: and
such as are for famine, to famine: and such as are for captivity, to captivity.
3 And I will visit them with four kinds, saith the Lord: The sword to kill,
and the dogs to tear, and the fowls of the air, and the beasts of the earth to devour and destroy.
4 And I will give them up to the rage of all the kingdoms of the earth:
*because of Manasses, the son of Ezechias, the king of Juda, for all that he did in Jerusalem.
5 For who shall have pity on thee, O Jerusalem? or who shall bemoan thee?
or who shall go to pray for thy peace?
6 Thou hast forsaken me, saith the Lord, thou art gone backward: and I
will stretch out my hand against thee, and I will destroy thee: I am weary of intreating thee.
7 And I will scatter them with a fan in the gates of the land: I have killed
and destroyed my people, and yet they are not returned from their ways.
8 Their widows are multiplied unto me above the sand of the sea: I have
brought upon them against the mother of the young man, a spoiler at noon-day: I have cast a terror on a sudden upon the cities.
9 *She that hath borne seven is become weak, her soul hath fainted away:
**her sun is gone down, while it was yet day: she is confounded, and ashamed: and the residue of them I will give up to the
sword in the sight of their enemies, saith the Lord.
10 Woe is me, my mother: why hast thou borne me a man of strife, a man
of contention to all the earth? I have not lent on usury, neither hath any man lent to me on usury, yet all curse me.
11 The Lord saith to me: Assuredly it shall be well with thy remnant,
assuredly I shall help thee in the time of affliction, and in the time of tribulation, against the enemy.
12 Shall iron be allied with the iron from the north, and the brass?
13 Thy riches and thy treasures I will give unto spoil for nothing, because
of all thy sins, even in all thy borders.
14 And I will bring thy enemies out of a land which thou knowest not: for
a fire is kindled in my rage, it shall burn upon you.
15 O Lord, thou knowest, remember me, and visit me, and defend me from
them that persecute me, do not defend me in thy patience: know that for thy sake I have suffered reproach.
16 Thy words were found, and I did eat them, and thy word was to me a joy
and gladness of my heart: for thy name is called upon me, O Lord God of hosts.
17 *I sat not in the assembly of jesters, nor did I make a boast of the
presence of thy hand: I sat alone, because thou hast filled me with threats.
18 *Why is my sorrow become perpetual, and my wound desperate, so as to
refuse to be healed? it is become to me as the falsehood of deceitful waters that cannot be trusted.
19 Therefore, thus saith the Lord: If thou wilt be converted, I will convert
thee, and thou shalt stand before my face: and if thou wilt separate the precious from the vile, thou shalt be as my mouth:
they shall be turned to thee, and thou shalt not be turned to them.
20 And I will make thee to this people as a strong wall of brass: and they
shall fight against thee, and shall not prevail: for I am with thee to save thee, and to deliver thee, saith the Lord.
21 And I will deliver thee out of the hand of the wicked, and I will redeem
thee out of the hand of the mighty.
2: Zacharias xi. 9.
4: 4 Kings xxi. 7. and 12.
9: 1 Kings ii. 5. --- ** Amos viii. 9.
17: Psalm i. 1. and xxv. 4.
18: Jeremias xxx. 15.