Jeremiah 28:7
Nevertheless hear you now this word that I speak in your ears, and in the ears of all the people;
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28:1-9 Hananiah spoke a false prophecy. Here is not a word of good counsel urging the Jews to repent and return to God. He promises temporal mercies, in God's name, but makes no mention of the spiritual mercies which God always promised with earthly blessings. This was not the first time Jeremiah had prayed for the people, though he prophesied against them. He appeals to the event, to prove Hananiah's falsehood. The prophet who spake only of peace and prosperity, without adding that they must not by wilful sin stop God's favours, will be proved a false prophet. Those who do not declare the alarming as well as the encouraging parts of God's word, and call men to repentance, and faith, and holiness, tread in the steps of the false prophets. The gospel of Christ encourages men to do works meet for repentance, but gives no encouragement to continue in sin.Jeremiah's own wishes concurred with Hananiah's prediction, but asserts that that prediction was at variance with the language of the older prophets.6. Amen—Jeremiah prays for the people, though constrained to prophesy against them (1Ki 1:36). The event was the appointed test between contradictory predictions (De 18:21, 22). "Would that what you say were true!" I prefer the safety of my country even to my own estimation. The prophets had no pleasure in announcing God's judgment, but did so as a matter of stern duty, not thereby divesting themselves of their natural feelings of sorrow for their country's woe. Compare Ex 32:32; Ro 9:3, as instances of how God's servants, intent only on the glory of God and the salvation of the country, forgot self and uttered wishes in a state of feeling transported out of themselves. So Jeremiah wished not to diminish aught from the word of God, though as a Jew he uttered the wish for his people [Calvin]. The word which I am now about to speak concerneth, thee, and not thee alone, but all the people; therefore do thou mark it well, and let them mark it also. Nevertheless, hear thou now this word that I speak in thine ears,.... Though this would be very acceptable to me, and I should be glad to have it fulfilled; yet carefully attend to what I am about to say, it being what greatly concerns thee to observe, as well as all present to listen to: and therefore it is added,

and in the ears of all the people; that stood round to hear the conversation that passed between the two prophets.

Nevertheless hear thou now this word that I speak in thine ears, and in the ears of all the people;
7–9. The passage forms an important aid to our grasping of the real nature of O.T. prophecy. True prophets did not flatter with promises of good fortune, seeing that their aim was to preach repentance and reformation to a sinful world. Any future prosperity which they contemplated could only be subsequent to the purging away of evil by the Divine judgements. For such an attitude on the part of the prophet courage and self-denial were needed; hence the presumption was a safe one that one who spoke thus was sent by God, and so refused to pander from selfish motives to the wishes of his hearers. Nothing could avail against this argument in proof of the trustworthiness of the true prophet, except the actual fulfilment of his opponent’s prediction to the contrary. It was probably as realising this that Hananiah, in spite of the risk of exposure involved, fixed an early date for the fulfilment of his pleasing forecast (Jeremiah 28:3), and thereupon had his own weapon turned against him (Jeremiah 28:16 f.). For this passage cp. Deuteronomy 18:22, also Jeremiah 13:1-3.Against the False Prophet Hananiah. - Jeremiah 28:1-4. This man's prophecy. At the same time, namely in the fourth year of Zedekiah (cf. rem. on Jeremiah 27:1. The Chet. בּשׁנת is supported by Jeremiah 46:2 and Jeremiah 51:59; the Keri בּשּׁנה is an unnecessary alteration), in the fifth month, spake Hananiah the son of Azur, - a prophet not otherwise known, belonging to Gibeon, a city of the priests (Joshua 21:17; now Jib, a large village two hours north-west of Jerusalem; see on Joshua 9:3), possibly therefore himself a priest - in the house of the Lord, in the presence of the priests and people assembled there, saying: Jeremiah 28:2. "Thus hath Jahveh of hosts, the God of Israel, said: I break the yoke of the king of Babylon. Jeremiah 28:3. Within two years I bring again into this place the vessels of the house of Jahveh, which Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon took away from this place and carried them to Babylon. Jeremiah 28:4. And Jechoniah, the son of Jehoiakim the king of Judah, and all the captives of Judah that went into Babylon, bring I again to this place, saith Jahveh; for I will break the yoke of the king of Babylon." - The false prophet endeavours to stamp on his prediction the impress of a true, God-inspired prophecy, by copying the title of God, so often used by Jeremiah, "Jahveh of hosts, the God of Israel," and by giving the utmost definiteness to his promise: "within two years" (in contrast to Jeremiah's seventy years). "Two years" is made as definite as possible by the addition of ימים: two years in days, i.e., in two full years.See on Genesis 41:1; 2 Samuel 13:23.
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