Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary, 1859 edition.

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JEREMIAS - Chapter 40

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Jeremias xl.

Notes & Commentary:

Ver. 1. Word. This happened to Jeremias; (Raban) or the prophet rather interrupts what he was about to say, to let the reader know the state of affairs, when he was consulted about the journey into Egypt, chap. xlii. 9. --- Rama; probably in Benjamin, near Bethel, Judges xix. 12. (Calmet) --- In this last part, Jeremias foretells what would befall the Jews in Egypt, and other nations. (Worthington)

Ver. 3. You, people of Juda. (Haydock) --- This pagan acknowledges that God had punished his people, (chap. xviii. 16.; Calmet) as Titus did at the last siege. (Josephus) (Haydock) --- He acknowledges the justice of God. (Worthington)

Ver. 4. Eyes, with all kindness, chap. xxxix. 12. (Haydock) --- Before thee. Thou hast liberty to choose, Genesis xiii. 9., and xx. 15., and xxiv. 51.

Ver. 5. And. Hebrew, "And as he (the people, or Godolias) will not return, dwell;" or, "He had not yet answered, when the general said: Return to Godolias." He perceived that the prophet was not desirous of going to Babylon; and he insinuated that such a step would not be for his advantage, as the captives would not return. --- Presents. He had been plundered like the rest.

Ver. 6. Masphath; because it was near Jerusalem, and an ancient place of devotion. (Calmet)

Ver. 7. Captains, who had fled from Sedecias, and effected their escape. (Josephus, Antiquities x. 11.)

Ver. 9. With you. They might naturally suspect Godolias, and think that the Chaldeans would seize them as soon as they should know of their escape.

Ver. 10. Answer. Hebrew, "stand before," as minister (Haydock) for the Chaldeans. You need not be jealous of my power; and I can answer that they will not hurt you, provided you continue quiet. (Calmet) --- He promises to act in behalf of the people, as a governor ought to do. (Worthington)

Ver. 11. Countries. They had fled to avoid the taxes, &c., but found no redress, Lamentations i. 3.

Ver. 13. Came, having discovered the design of Ismahel, whose ambition prompted him to murder the governor, that he might reign: as he was of the royal family, chap. xli. 1. (Calmet)

Ver. 14. Baalis. Queen. (Grotius) --- The Ammonites sought the entire ruin of the Jews.

Ver. 16. Do not. He did right in forbidding this assassination, which could never be authorized, even to prevent a similar crime. Godolias should have taken precautions: but he was too open, (Calmet) like Eumenes. (Grotius)

Bible Text & Cross-references:

Jeremias remains with Godolias, the governor; who receives all the Jews that resort to him.

1 The *word that came to Jeremias from the Lord, after that Nabuzardan, the general, had let him go from Rama, when he had taken him, being bound with chains, among all them that were carried away from Jerusalem and Juda, and were carried to Babylon.

2 And the general of the army taking Jeremias, said to him: The Lord, thy God, hath pronounced this evil upon this place.

3 And he hath brought it: and the Lord hath done as he hath said: because you have sinned against the Lord, and have not hearkened to his voice, and this word is come upon you.

4 Now then, behold I have loosed thee this day from the chains which were upon thy hands: if it please thee to come with me to Babylon, come: and I will set my eyes upon thee: but if it do not please thee to come with me to Babylon, stay here: behold all the land is before thee, as thou shalt choose, and whither it shall please thee to go, thither go.

5 And come not with me: but dwell with Godolias, the son of Ahicam, the son of Saphan, whom the king of Babylon hath made governor over the cities of Juda: dwell, therefore, with him in the midst of the people: or whithersoever it shall please thee to go, go. And the general of the army gave him victuals and presents, and let him go.

6 And Jeremias went to Godolias, the son of Ahicam, to Masphath: and dwelt with him in the midst of the people, that were left in the land.

7 And when all the captains of the army that were scattered through the countries, they and their companions, had heard that the king of Babylon had made Godolias, the son of Ahicam, governor of the country, and that he had committed unto him men and women, and children, and of the poor of the land, them that had not been carried away captive to Babylon:

8 They came to Godolias, to Masphath: and Ismahel, the son of Nathanias, and Johanan, and Jonathan, the sons of Caree, and Sareas, the son of Thanehumeth, and the children of Ophi, that were of Netophathi, and Jezonias, the son of Maachati, they and their men.

9 *And Godolias, the son of Ahicam, the son of Saphan, swore to them, and to their companions, saying: Fear not to serve the Chaldeans: dwell in the land, and serve the king of Babylon, and it shall be well with you.

10 Behold, I dwell in Masphath, that I may answer the commandment of the Chaldeans that are sent to us; but as for you, gather ye the vintage, and the harvest, and the oil, and lay it up in your vessels, and abide in your cities which you hold.

11 Moreover, all the Jews that were in Moab, and among the children of Ammon, and in Edom, and in all the countries, when they heard that the king of Babylon had left a remnant in Judea, and that he had made Godolias, the son of Ahicam, the son of Saphan ruler over them:

12 All the Jews, I say, returned out of all the places to which they had fled, and they came into the land of Juda, to Godolias, to Masphath; and they gathered wine, and a very great harvest.

13 Then Johanan, the son of Caree, and all the captains of the army, that had been scattered about the countries, came to Godolias, to Masphath.

14 And they said to him: Know that Baalis, the king of the children of Ammon, hath sent Ismahel, the son of Nathanias, to kill thee. And Godolias, the son of Ahicam, believed them not.

15 But Johanan, the son of Caree, spoke to Godolias privately in Masphath, saying: I will go, and I will kill Ismahel, the son of Nathanias, and no man shall know it, lest he kill thee, and all the Jews be scattered, that are gathered unto thee, and the remnant of Juda perish.

16 And Godolias, the son of Ahicam, said to Johanan, the son of Caree: Do not this thing: for what thou sayest of Ismahel is false.



1: Year of the World 3416.

9: 4 Kings xxv. 24.