Jeremiah 9:24
But let him that glories glory in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the LORD which exercise loving kindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, said the LORD.
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(24) Let him that glorieth glory in this . . .—The passage is interesting as having clearly been present to the mind of St. Paul in writing 1Corinthians 1:31; 2Corinthians 10:17. He had learnt from it to estimate the wisdom and the greatness on which the Corinthians prided themselves at their true value. We may find a parallel even in the higher words which teach us that “eternal life is to know God” (John 17:3), to understand those attributes, love, judgment, righteousness, which we associate with our thoughts of Him, as indeed they are in their infinite perfection, and which when we know them as we ought to know, we must needs strive to reproduce.

9:23-26 In this world of sin and sorrow, ending soon in death and judgement, how foolish for men to glory in their knowledge, health, strength, riches, or in any thing which leaves them under the dominion of sin and the wrath of God! and of which an account must hereafter be rendered; it will but increase their misery. Those are the true Israel who worship God in the Spirit, rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh. Let us prize the distinction which comes from God, and will last for ever. Let us seek it diligently.This is the prophet's remedy for the healing of the nation. It is the true understanding and knowledge of God, of which the first means the spiritual enlightenment of the mind 1 Corinthians 2:13-14, the other the training of the heart unto obedience John 8:31-32. This knowledge of God is further said to find in Him three chief attributes,

(1) "lovingkindness," i. e., readiness to show grace and mercy;

(2) "judgment," a belief in which is declared in Hebrews 11:6 to be essential to faith;

(3) "righteousness," which is essential to religion absolutely.

Unless men believe that God's dealings with them in life and death are right and just, they can neither love nor reverence him.

24. Nothing but an experimental knowledge of God will save the nation.

understandeth—theoretically; in the intellect.

knoweth—practically: so as to walk in My ways (Jer 22:16; Job 22:21; 1Co 1:31).

loving kindness—God's mercy is put in the first and highest place, because without it we should flee from God in fear and despair.

judgment … righteousness—loving-kindness towards the godly; judgment towards the ungodly; righteousness the most perfect fairness in all cases [Grotius]. Faithfulness to His promises to preserve the godly, as well as stern execution of judgment on the ungodly, is included in "righteousness."

in the earth—contrary to the dogma of some philosophers, that God does not interfere in terrestrial concerns (Ps 58:11).

in these … I delight—as well in doing them as in seeing them done by others (Mic 6:8; 7:18).

Understandeth and knoweth me: whether we make any curious distinction between understanding God, as if that be more speculative, whereby we rightly apprehend his nature; and knowing God, as if that be more practical, as directing the conversation; we need not here inquire; yet certainly both centre in this, that we so know and understand God as to trust in him and depend on him alone in all conditions.

Which exercise loving-kindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth; kindness, as it relates to his own people, Psalm 5:12; judgment, with reference to his punishing the wicked; righteousness, namely, as he deals justly and uprightly with both, Psalm 92:15. The meaning here, I conceive is to show God’s orderly governing and disposing of things in the world in his distributive justice, that all things are right and equal.

In these things I delight; both in himself and others, Psalm 11:7. But let him that glorieth glory in this,.... In the Lord alone, as it is interpreted by the apostle, 1 Corinthians 1:31,

that he understandeth and knoweth me; or, "in understanding and knowing me" (g); or, "he understanding and knowing me"; for this clause is descriptive of the person that is to glory in the Lord, and not of the thing in which he is to glory; for it is not even in the knowledge of God that men are to glory, but in the Lord himself; and he that understands himself as a creature dependent on God, and especially as a fallen sinful creature; and still more as one regenerated by the grace of God; he will never glory in himself, but in the Lord; and so, if he understands divine things, and the scheme of salvation by the grace of God, and not by the works of men; and if he knows the Lord, he will never glory in his own wisdom, nor in his own strength, nor in his riches, nor in his righteousness, nor in any man or creature, but in the Lord only; and particularly in what follows:

that I am the Lord, which exercise lovingkindness; in such various instances; in election, redemption, effectual calling, the pardon of sin, justification, adoption, and eternal life; and towards persons so very undeserving of any favour; and to have an interest in this exceeds all things else; it is better than life, and all the enjoyments of it:

judgment; exercising it on Christ, sin being laid, found, and condemned on him; and through Christ protecting and defending his people; and by Christ at the last day:

and righteousness in the earth; wrought by Christ here on earth in our nature, and imputed to his people in their present state, whereby they have a right to eternal glory:

for in these things I delight, saith the Lord; in showing mercy, grace, and favour, to miserable and undeserving men; in making his Son an offering for sin, and bruising him; and in his righteousness, whereby the law is magnified and made honourable.

(g) "intelligendo et sciendo me", Montanus.

But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD who {s} exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD.

(s) These three points are necessary to know correctly his mercy, in which consists our salvation: his judgment, which he executes continually against the wicked, and his justice, by which he defends and maintains the faithful.

24. Quoted freely 1 Corinthians 1:31; 2 Corinthians 10:17.Verse 24. - The knowledge of God relates to three leading attributes, the combination of which is very instructive. First, loving-kindness. This is not to be understood in a vague and general sense of the love of God to all mankind; the term has a special connotation with regard to the Israelitish people. God shows loving-kindness to those with whom he is in covenant; hence the combination "loving-kindness and faithfulness" (Psalm 85:10, corrected version), and as here (comp. Psalm 5:7, 8; Psalm 36:5, 6), "mercy and righteousness." Israel is weak and erring, and needs mercies of all sorts, which Jehovah, in his "loving-kindness," vouchsafes. Next, judgment, or justice. Jehovah is a King, helps the poor and weak to their right, and punishes the wrong-doer (comp. Jeremiah 21:12). Then, righteousness - a similar but wider term. This is the quality which leads its subject to adhere to a fixed rule of conduct. God's rule is his covenant; hence "righteousness" shows itself in all such acts as tend to the full realizing of the covenant with Israel, including the "plan of salvation." It is by no means to be confined to exacting penalties and conferring rewards. Jeremiah 9:18 gives the reason why the mourning women are to be called: Loud lamentation is heard out of Zion. Ew. takes "out of Zion" of the Israelites carried away from their country - a view arbitrary in itself, and incompatible with Jeremiah 9:20. "How are we spoiled!" cf. Jeremiah 4:13; brought utterly to shame, because we have left the land, i.e., have been forced to leave it, and because they (the enemies) have thrown down our dwellings! השׁליך, cast down, overthrow, Job 18:7, cf. Ezekiel 19:12, and of buildings, Daniel 8:11. Kimchi and Hitz., again, take "our dwellings" as subject: our dwellings have cast us out, and appeal to Leviticus 18:25 : The land vomited out its inhabitants. But the figurative style in this passage does not justify us in adopting so unnatural a figure as this, that the dwellings cast out their occupants. Nor could the object be omitted in such a case. The passages, Isaiah 33:9; Micah 2:4, to which Hitz. appeals, are not analogous to the present one. The subject, not expressed, acc. to our view of the passage, is readily suggested by the context and the nature of the case. The "for" in Jeremiah 9:19 gives a second reason for calling the mourning women together. They are to come not only to chant laments for the spoiling of Zion, but that they may train their daughters and other women in the art of dirge-singing, because the number of deaths will be so great that the existing number of mourning women will not be sufficient for the task about to fall on them. This thought is introduced by a command of God, in order to certify that this great harvest of death will without fail be gathered. אזנכם and בּנתיכם have masc. suffixes instead of feminine, the masc. being often thus used as the more general form; cf. Ew. 184, c. In the last clause the verb "teach" is to be supplied from the preceding context.
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