Saying, No; but we will go into the land of Egypt, where we shall see no war, nor hear the sound of the trumpet, nor have hunger of bread; and there will we dwell:
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)No; but we will go into the land of Egypt.—The thoughts that were in the hearts of the applicants are stated with dramatic vividness. Egypt, then under Apries (the Pharaoh-hophra of Jeremiah 44:30), seemed to them so safe and peaceful. As of old, it was still the granary of the East, and its plenteous harvests formed a bright contrast to the famine which they had experienced during the invasion of the Chaldæans. Jeremiah, however, has simply to reject the plan, as from first to last he had resisted altogether the thought of an Egyptian alliance (Jeremiah 2:36; Jeremiah 37:7): there would be no safety nor peace nor plenty found in acting on it. Ezekiel’s prophecies as to Egypt and her king were in this respect in harmony with Jeremiah’s (Ezekiel 17:11-18; Ezekiel 29-32), and were, as nearly as possible, contemporary with them.
where we shall see no war; either internal, or with a foreign enemy; as both of late in their own land, and which they feared would be again; but promised themselves exemption from both in the land of Egypt, and therefore coveted to dwell there:
nor hear the sound of the trumpet; neither hear of wars nor rumours of wars; not the sound of the trumpet in the armies of the enemy, or among themselves, to gather together and prepare for battle; or, as Jarchi thinks, the sound of the trumpet blown by the watchman, giving notice to the people of the approach of an enemy:
nor have hunger of bread; as they had had while Judea was invaded and Jerusalem besieged, and a foreign army in the land; and though they had no reason to fear this now, yet they thought they should be more out of the danger of it in Egypt, a fruitful country, overflowed by the Nile:Saying, No; but we will go into the land of Egypt, where we shall see no war, nor hear the sound of the trumpet, nor have hunger of bread; and there will we dwell:
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)14. we shall see no war] We shall be in a land further from Babylon, and therefore not so liable to invasion.Jeremiah 42:8. Jeremiah called the captains and all the people together, and announced to them as follows: Jeremiah 42:9. "Thus saith Jahveh, the God of Israel, to whom ye have sent me, that I might bring your supplication before Him: Jeremiah 42:10. If ye will indeed abide in this land, then will I build you up and not pull down; and I will plant you, but not root out; for I repent of the evil that I have done to you. Jeremiah 42:11. Be not afraid of the king of Babylon, whom ye fear, be not afraid of him, saith Jahveh; for I am with you to save you and to deliver you out of his hand. Jeremiah 42:12. And I will get pity for you, so that he shall take pity on you, and bring you back to your land. Jeremiah 42:13. But if ye say, We will not remain in this land, so that ye will not obey the voice of Jahveh your God, Jeremiah 42:14. Saying, Nay, but we will go to the land of Egypt, that we may not see war nor hear the wound of a trumpet, and we shall not hunger after bread, and we will dwell there. - Jeremiah 42:15. Now therefore hear the word of Jahveh, ye remnant of Judah: Thus saith Jahveh of hosts, the God of Israel, If ye do indeed set your face to go to Egypt, and go to sojourn there, Jeremiah 42:16. Then shall the sword, of which ye are afraid, overtake you there, in the land of Egypt, and hunger, which ye dread, shall there follow hard after you, in Egypt, and there shall ye die. Jeremiah 42:17. And all the men who have set their face to go to Egypt, to sojourn there, shall die by the sword, and through hunger, and from the plague; nor shall they have any one left or escaped from the evil which I will bring on them. Jeremiah 42:18. For thus saith Jahveh of hosts, the God of Israel: As mine anger and my wrath were poured out upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so shall my wrath be poured out upon you when ye go to Egypt, and ye shall become an execration, and an astonishment, and a curse, and a reproach, and ye shall not see this place again. - Jeremiah 42:19. Jahveh hath spoken to you, O remnant of Judah. Go not to Egypt: ye shall know for certain that I have warned you to-day. Jeremiah 42:20. For ye err at the risk of your souls when ye sent me to Jahveh your God, saying, Pray for us to Jahveh our God, and according to all that Jahveh our God shall say to us, so tell us, and we will do it. Jeremiah 42:21. Now I have told you to-day, and ye have not obeyed the voice of Jahveh your God, nor in anything for which He hath sent me unto you. Jeremiah 42:22. Now, therefore, ye must surely know that ye shall die by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence in the place whither ye have been pleased to go to sojourn."
The Lord's reply extends as far as Jeremiah 42:18; the last four verses (19-22) form an epilogue, a further address by the prophet, in which he once more specially impresses God's resolution on the minds of the people. The answer of God consists (1) in the promise that, if they will remain in the land, the Lord is willing to build them up, and protect them from the wrath of the king of Babylon (Jeremiah 42:9-12); and (2) the threat that, if they will go to Egypt against the advice and will of the Lord, they shall certainly perish there by the sword, famine, and pestilence (Jeremiah 42:13-18). On the expression הפּיל תּהנּה, see on Jeremiah 36:7. שׁוב (Jeremiah 42:10) can only be inf. abs. of ישׁב, for ישׁוב ; if we view it as coming from שׁוּב morf , we get no suitable meaning, for the thought si revertendo illuc manseritis in hc terr (C. B. Michaelis) could not be expressed by שׁוב תּשׁבוּ. Certainly there is no other instance of such a form as שׁוב being used for ישׁוב; in a verb like ישׁב, however, which drops the י in the inf. constr., a like omission in the inf. abs. is quite conceivable, while the supposition of some injury having been done to the text (Olshausen, Gram. 89) is less probable. On the expression, "I will build you," etc., cf. Jeremiah 24:6; Jeremiah 31:4; Jeremiah 33:7. "I repent of the evil" is an anthropopathic expression for the cancelling of a penal sentence: cf. Joel 2:14, etc. - In Jeremiah 42:11, the repetition of the words "do not fear him" produces special emphasis.
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