Jeremiah 13:27
I have seen your adulteries, and your neighings, the lewdness of your prostitution, and your abominations on the hills in the fields. Woe to you, O Jerusalem! will you not be made clean? when shall it once be?
Jump to: BarnesBensonBICalvinCambridgeClarkeDarbyEllicottExpositor'sExp DctGaebeleinGSBGillGrayHaydockHastingsHomileticsJFBKDKellyKJTLangeMacLarenMHCMHCWParkerPoolePulpitSermonSCOTTBWESTSK
EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(27) Thine adulteries.—The words refer primarily to the spiritual adultery of the idolatries of Judah. The “neighings,” as in Jeremiah 2:24; Jeremiah 5:8, express the unbridled eagerness of animal passion transferred in this passage to the spiritual sin. The “abominations on the hills” are the orgiastic rites of the worship of the high places, which are further described as “in the field” to emphasise their publicity.

Wilt thou not be made clean?—Better, thou wilt not be cleansed; after how long yet? Sad as the last words are, they in some measure soften the idea of irretrievable finality, “Will the time ever come, and if so, when?” Like the cry addressed to God, “How long, O Lord . . .” (Revelation 6:10), it implies a hope, though only just short of despair.

13:18-27 Here is a message sent to king Jehoiakim, and his queen. Their sorrows would be great indeed. Do they ask, Wherefore come these things upon us? Let them know, it is for their obstinacy in sin. We cannot alter the natural colour of the skin; and so is it morally impossible to reclaim and reform these people. Sin is the blackness of the soul; it is the discolouring of it; we were shapen in it, so that we cannot get clear of it by any power of our own. But Almighty grace is able to change the Ethiopian's skin. Neither natural depravity, nor strong habits of sin, form an obstacle to the working of God, the new-creating Spirit. The Lord asks of Jerusalem, whether she is determined not be made clean. If any poor slave of sin feels that he could as soon change his nature as master his headstrong lusts, let him not despair; for things impossible to men are possible with God. Let us then seek help from Him who is mighty to save.And thine abominations - "Even thy abominations." The prophet sums up the three charges against Judah, namely, spiritual adultery, inordinate eagerness after idolatry (see the note at Jeremiah 5:7 note), and shameless participation in pagan orgies.

In the fields - "in the field," the open, unenclosed country (see Jeremiah 6:25; Jeremiah 12:4).

Wilt thou not ... once be? - "Or, how long yet ere thou be made clean!" These words explain the teaching of Jeremiah 13:23. Repentance was not an actual, but a moral impossibility, and after a long time Judah was to be cleansed. It was to return from exile penitent and forgiven.

27. neighings—(Jer 5:8), image from the lust of horses; the lust after idols degrades to the level of the brute.

hills—where, as being nearer heaven, sacrifices were thought most acceptable to the gods.

wilt thou not … ? when—literally, "thou wilt not be made clean after how long a time yet." (So Jer 13:23). Jeremiah denies the moral possibility of one so long hardened in sin becoming soon cleansed. But see Jer 32:17; Lu 18:27.

Some think the prophet here reflects upon them for their corporal adulteries, and their madness upon them, which he compareth to the

neighings of horses; but those words

on the hills in the fields in the next clause seem to inform us that he means here only their idolatries, which are in holy writ often compared to adulteries, which are the greatest sins in their kind, the greatest violations of the marriage covenant, and provocations of persons in conjugal relation, and the only cause of lawful divorce. He concludes with pathetical interrogations, intimating that yet there was hope if they would reform; and though. giving over their case almost as desperate, and not knowing what would not be, yet he leaves no means untried, but asks them if it was not yet time, or when such a thing might be hoped for at their hands. I have seen thine adulteries,.... Not literally such, though they were greatly guilty of that sin; but figuratively, their idolatries:

thy neighings; expressive of their strong desires after other gods, like that of adulterers and adulteresses after one another; and both which are like the neighing of horses. Kimchi thinks this designs their rejoicing in their evil works:

the lewdness of thy whoredom; their sinful thoughts, and wicked desires, which were continually after their idols and idolatrous practices:

and thine abominations on the hills in the fields; their idols, which were abominable to God, and ought to have been so to them; and which they placed on high hills, and there worshipped them; all which were seen and known by the Lord, nor could it be denied by them; and this was the reason of their being carried captive, and therefore could not complain they had been hardly dealt with; yea, notwithstanding all this, the Lord expresses a tender and compassionate concern for them:

woe unto thee, O Jerusalem! sad will be thy case, dreadful are the calamities coming upon thee, unless thou repentest:

wilt thou not be made clean? wilt thou show no concern, land make use of no means to be cleansed, nor seek for it, where it is to be had? neither repent of sin, nor reform from it, nor seek to God for his grace, signified by clean water; or to the blood of Christ, the fountain opened, which cleanses from it:

when shall it once be? some instances there were of it in the times of Christ and his apostles; but it will not be completely done until they seek the Lord, and his Christ, and fear him, and his goodness, in the latter day; when they shall turn unto him, and all Israel shall be saved; or, "thou wilt not be cleansed after a long time" (w); this the Lord foresaw, and therefore pronounces her case sad and miserable.

(w) "non mundaberis quousque adhuc, vel post quantum adhuc tempus", Schmidt; "non mundaberis posthac aliquamdiu"; so some in Vatablus.

I have seen thy adulteries, and thy {n} neighings, the lewdness of thy harlotry, and thy abominations on the hills in {o} the fields. Woe to thee, O Jerusalem! wilt thou not be made clean? when shall it once be?

(n) He compares idolaters to horses inflamed after mares.

(o) There is no place so high nor low, where the marks and signs of your idolatry do not appear.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
27. thou wilt not, etc.] rather, How long will it be, ere thou be made clean?Verse 27. - I have seen, etc. The Hebrew is again more forcible than the English. It runs, "Thine adulteries and thy neighings," etc. l (this is an exclamation as it were; then more reflectively)," I have seen thine abominations." Neighings; i.e. passionate craving for illegitimate objects of worship (comp. Jeremiah 2:24, 25; Jeremiah 5:8). In the fields. The Hebrew has the singular. The "field," as usual, means the open country. Wilt thou not, etc.? rather, How long ere thou be made clean? In Ver. 23 the prophet had vehemently declared his people to be incorrigible. But, like the tender Hoses, he cannot continue to hold such gloomy thoughts; surely Israel, God's people, must eventually be "made clean!" But this can only be as the result of judicial affliction, and these afflictions will be no slight or transient ones.



The fall of the kingdom, the captivity of Judah, with upbraidings against Jerusalem for her grievous guilt in the matter of idolatry. - Jeremiah 13:18. "Say unto the king and to the sovereign lady: Sit you low down, for from your heads falls the crown of your glory. Jeremiah 13:19. The cities of the south are shut and no man openeth; Judah is carried away captive all of it, wholly carried away captive. Jeremiah 13:20. Lift up your eyes and behold them that come from midnight! Where is the flock that was given thee, thy glorious flock? Jeremiah 13:21. What wilt thou say, if He set over thee those whom thou hast accustomed to thee as familiar friends, for a head? Shall not sorrows take thee, as a woman in travail? Jeremiah 13:22. And if thou say in thine heart, Wherefore cometh this upon me? for the plenty of thine iniquity are thy skirts uncovered, thy heels abused. Jeremiah 13:23. Can an Ethiopian change his skin, and a leopard his spots? Then may ye also do good that are accustomed to doing evil. Jeremiah 13:24. Therefore will I scatter them like chaff that flies before the wind of the wilderness. Jeremiah 13:25. This is thy lot, thine apportioned inheritance from me, because thou hast forgotten me and trustedst in falsehood. Jeremiah 13:26. Therefore will I turn thy skirts over thy face, that thy shame be seen. Jeremiah 13:27. Thine adultery and thy neighing, the crime of thy whoredom upon the ills, in the fields, I have seen thine abominations. Woe unto thee, Jerusalem! thou shalt not be made clean after how long a time yet!"

From Jeremiah 13:18 on the prophet's discourse is addressed to the king and the queen-mother. The latter as such exercised great influence on the government, and is in the Books of Kings mentioned alongside of almost all the reigning kings (cf. 1 Kings 15:13; 2 Kings 10:13, etc.); so that we are not necessarily led to think of Jechoniah and his mother in especial. To them he proclaims the loss of the crown and the captivity of Judah. Set yourselves low down (cf. Gesen. 142, 3, b), i.e., descend from the throne; not in order to turn aside the threatening danger by humiliation, but, as the reason that follows show, because the kingdom is passing from you. For fallen is מראשׁתיכם, your head-gear, lit., what is about or on your head (elsewhere pointed מראשׁות, 1 Samuel 19:13; 1 Samuel 26:7), namely, your splendid crown. The perf. here is prophetic. The crown falls when the king loses country and kingship. This is put expressly in Jeremiah 13:19. The meaning of the first half of the verse, which is variously taken, may be gathered from the second. In the latter the complete deportation of Judah is spoken of as an accomplished fact, because it is as sure to happen as if it had taken place already. Accordingly the first clause cannot bespeak expectation merely, or be understood, as it is by Grotius, as meaning that Judah need hope for no help from Egypt. This interpretation is irreconcilable with "the cities of the south." "The south" is the south country of Judah, cf. Joshua 10:40; Genesis 13:1, etc., and is not to be taken according to the prophetic use of "king of the south," Daniel 11:5, Daniel 11:9. The shutting of the cities is not to be taken, with Jerome, as siege by the enemy, as in Joshua 6:1. There the closedness is otherwise illustrated: No man was going out or in; here, on the other hand, it is: No man openeth. "Shut" is to be explained according to Isaiah 24:10 : the cities are shut up by reason of ruins which block up the entrances to them; and in them is none that can open, because all Judah is utterly carried away. The cities of the south are mentioned, not because the enemy, avoiding the capital, had first brought the southern part of the land under his power, as Sennacherib had once advanced against Jerusalem from the south, 2 Kings 18:13., Jeremiah 19:8 (Graf, Ng., etc.), but because they were the part of the kingdom most remote for an enemy approaching from the north; so that when they were taken, the land was reduced and the captivity of all Judah accomplished. For the form הגלת see Ew. 194, a, Ges. 75, Rem. 1. שׁלומים is adverbial accusative: in entirety, like מישׁרים, Psalm 58:2, etc. For this cf. גּלוּת, Amos 1:6, Amos 1:9.

The announcement of captivity is carried on in Jeremiah 13:20, where we have first an account of the impression which the carrying away captive will produce upon Jerusalem (Jeremiah 13:20 and Jeremiah 13:21), and next a statement of the cause of that judgment (Jeremiah 13:22-27). In שׂאי and ראי a feminine is addressed, and, as appears from the suffix in עיניכם, one which is collective. The same holds good of the following verses on to Jeremiah 13:27, where Jerusalem is named, doubtless the inhabitants of it, personified as the daughter of Zion - a frequent case. Ng. is wrong in supposing that the feminines in Jeremiah 13:20 are called for by the previously mentioned queen-mother, that Jeremiah 13:20-22 are still addressed to her, and that not till Jeremiah 13:23 is there a transition from her in the address to the nation taken collectively and regarded as the mother of the country. The contents of Jeremiah 13:20 do not tally with Ng.'s view; for the queen-mother was not the reigning sovereign, so that the inhabitants of the land could have been called her flock, however great was the influence she might exercise upon the king. The mention of foes coming from the north, and the question coupled therewith: Where is the flock? convey the thought that the flock is carried off by those enemies. The flock is the flock of Jahveh (Jeremiah 13:17), and, in virtue of God's choice of it, a herd of gloriousness. The relative clause: "that was given thee," implies that the person addressed is to be regarded as the shepherd or owner of the flock. This will not apply to the capital and its citizens; for the influence exerted by the capital in the country is not so great as to make it appear the shepherd or lord of the people. But the relative clause is in good keeping with the idea of the idea of the daughter of Zion, with which is readily associated that of ruler of land and people. It intimates the suffering that will be endured by the daughter of Zion when those who have been hitherto her paramours are set up as head over her. The verse is variously explained. The old transll. and comm. take פּקד על in the sense of visit, chastise; so too Chr. B. Mich. and Ros.; and Ew. besides, who alters the text acc. to the lxx, changing יפקד into the plural יפקדוּ. For this change there is no sufficient reason; and without such change, the signif. visit, punish, gives us no suitable sense. The phrase means also: to appoint or set over anybody; cf. e.g., Jeremiah 15:3. The subject can only be Jahveh. The words from ואתּ onwards form an adversative circumstantial clause: and yet thou hast accustomed them עליך, for אליך rof ,, to thee (cf. for למּד c. אל, Jeremiah 10:2). The connection of the words אלּפים לראשׁ depends upon the sig. assigned to אלּפים. Gesen. (thes.) and Ros. still adhere to the meaning taken by Luther, Vat., and many others, viz., principes, princes, taking for the sense of the whole: whom thou hast accustomed (trained) to be princes over thee. This word is indeed the technical term for the old Edomitish chieftains of clans, Genesis 36:15., and is applied as an archaic term by Zechariah 9:7 to the tribal princes of Judah; but it does not, as a general rule, mean prince, but familiar, friend, Ps. 655:14, Proverbs 16:28, Micah 7:5; cf. Jeremiah 11:19. This being the well-attested signification, it is, in the first place, not competent to render עליך over or against thee (adversus te, Jerome); and Hitz.'s exposition: thou hast instructed them to thy hurt, hast taught them a disposition hostile to thee, cannot be justified by usage. In the second place, אלפים cannot be attached to the principal clause, "set over thee," and joined with "for a head:" if He set over thee - as princes for a head; but it belongs to "hast accustomed," while only "for a head" goes with "if He set" (as de Wet., Umbr., Ng., etc., construe). The prophet means the heathen kings, for whose favour Judah had hitherto been intriguing, the Babylonians and Egyptians. There is no cogent reason for referring the words, as many comm. do, to the Babylonians alone. For the statement is quite general throughout; and, on the one hand, Judah had, from the days of Ahaz on, courted the alliance not of the Babylonians alone, but of the Egyptians too (cf. Jeremiah 2:18); and, on the other hand, after the death of Josiah, Judah had become subject to Egypt, and had had to endure the grievous domination of the Pharaohs, as Jeremiah had threatened, Jeremiah 2:16. If God deliver the daughter of Zion into the power of these her paramours, i.e., if she be subjected to their rule, then will grief and pain seize on her as on a woman in childbirth; cf. Jeremiah 6:24; Jeremiah 22:23, etc. אשׁת לדה, woman of bearing; so here, only, elsewhere יולדה (cf. the passages cited); לדה is infin., as in Isaiah 37:3; 2 Kings 19:3; Hosea 9:11.

Links
Jeremiah 13:27 Interlinear
Jeremiah 13:27 Parallel Texts


Jeremiah 13:27 NIV
Jeremiah 13:27 NLT
Jeremiah 13:27 ESV
Jeremiah 13:27 NASB
Jeremiah 13:27 KJV

Jeremiah 13:27 Bible Apps
Jeremiah 13:27 Parallel
Jeremiah 13:27 Biblia Paralela
Jeremiah 13:27 Chinese Bible
Jeremiah 13:27 French Bible
Jeremiah 13:27 German Bible

Bible Hub






Jeremiah 13:26
Top of Page
Top of Page