New International Version
Then the LORD asked me, "What do you see, Jeremiah?" "Figs," I answered. "The good ones are very good, but the bad ones are so bad they cannot be eaten."
King James Bible
Then said the LORD unto me, What seest thou, Jeremiah? And I said, Figs; the good figs, very good; and the evil, very evil, that cannot be eaten, they are so evil.
Darby Bible Translation
And Jehovah said unto me, What seest thou, Jeremiah? And I said, Figs: the good figs very good; and the bad very bad, which cannot be eaten for badness.
World English Bible
Then Yahweh said to me, What do you see, Jeremiah? I said, Figs; the good figs, very good; and the bad, very bad, that can't be eaten, they are so bad.
Young's Literal Translation
And Jehovah saith unto me, 'What art thou seeing, Jeremiah?' and I say, 'Figs, the good figs are very good, and the bad are very bad, that are not eaten for badness.'
Jeremiah 24:3 Parallel
CommentaryClarke's Commentary on the Bible
The Lord showed me, and, behold, two baskets of figs - Besides the transposition of whole chapters in this book, there is not unfrequently a transposition of verses, and parts of verses. Of this we have an instance in the verse before us; the first clause of which should be the last. Thus: -
"After that Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon had carried away captive Jeconiah, the son of Jehoiakim king of Judah, with the carpenters and smiths from Jerusalem, and had brought them to Babylon, the Lord showed me, and, behold, two baskets of figs were set before the temple of the Lord."
Jeremiah 24:2 - "One basket had very good figs, even like the figs that are first ripe; and the other basket had very naughty figs, which could not be eaten, they were so bad."
This arrangement restores these verses to a better sense, by restoring the natural connection.
This prophecy was undoubtedly delivered in the first year of the reign of Zedekiah.
Under the type of good and bad figs, God represents the state of the persons who had already been carried captives into Babylon, with their king Jeconiah, compared with the state of those who should be carried away with Zedekiah. Those already carried away, being the choice of the people, are represented by the good figs: those now remaining, and soon to be carried into captivity, are represented by the bad figs, that were good for nothing. The state also of the former in their captivity was vastly preferable to the state of those who were now about to be delivered into the hand of the king of Babylon. The latter would be treated as double rebels; the former, being the most respectable of the inhabitants, were treated well; and even in captivity, a marked distinction would be made between them, God ordering it so. But the prophet sufficiently explains his own meaning.
Set before the temple - As an offering of the first-fruits of that kind.
Very good figs - Or, figs of the early sort. The fig-trees in Palestine, says Dr. Shaw, produce fruit thrice each year. The first sort, called boccore, those here mentioned, come to perfection about the middle or end of June. The second sort, called kermez, or summer fig, is seldom ripe before August. And the third, which is called the winter fig, which is larger, and of a darker complexion than the preceding, hangs all the winter on the tree, ripening even when the leaves are shed, and is fit for gathering in the beginning of spring.
Could not be eaten - The winter fig, - then in its crude or unripe state; the spring not being yet come.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
LibraryThe Worst Things Work for Good to the Godly
DO not mistake me, I do not say that of their own nature the worst things are good, for they are a fruit of the curse; but though they are naturally evil, yet the wise overruling hand of God disposing and sanctifying them, they are morally good. As the elements, though of contrary qualities, yet God has so tempered them, that they all work in a harmonious manner for the good of the universe. Or as in a watch, the wheels seem to move contrary one to another, but all carry on the motions of the watch: …
Thomas Watson—A Divine Cordial
Seasonable Counsel: Or, Advice to Sufferers.
The word of the LORD came to me: "What do you see, Jeremiah?" "I see the branch of an almond tree," I replied.
The word of the LORD came to me again: "What do you see?" "I see a pot that is boiling," I answered. "It is tilting toward us from the north."
Then the word of the LORD came to me:
yes, this is what the LORD Almighty says: "I will send the sword, famine and plague against them and I will make them like figs that are so bad they cannot be eaten.
"What do you see, Amos?" he asked. "A basket of ripe fruit," I answered. Then the LORD said to me, "The time is ripe for my people Israel; I will spare them no longer.
He asked me, "What do you see?" I answered, "I see a solid gold lampstand with a bowl at the top and seven lamps on it, with seven channels to the lamps.
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