The Book of Jeremiah
Chapters 21 to 24
A Biblical Commentary Courtesy of Brit-Am
[Jeremiah 22:2] AND SAY, HEAR THE WORD OF THE LORD, O KING OF JUDAH, THAT SITTEST UPON THE THRONE OF DAVID, THOU, AND THY SERVANTS, AND THY PEOPLE THAT ENTER IN BY THESE GATES:
[Jeremiah 22:3] THUS SAITH THE LORD; EXECUTE YE JUDGMENT AND RIGHTEOUSNESS,
AND DELIVER THE SPOILED OUT OF THE HAND OF THE OPPRESSOR: AND DO NO WRONG, DO
NO VIOLENCE TO THE STRANGER, THE FATHERLESS, NOR THE WIDOW, NEITHER SHED INNOCENT
BLOOD IN THIS PLACE.
“STRANGER, THE FATHERLESS, NOR THE WIDOW, NEITHER SHED INNOCENT BLOOD”: All of these categories are vulnerable entities. Under pressure the vulnerable are always the first victims. Even in our societies the poor and unfortunate are often the victims of predators, housing scams, crime and minimalized police protection, street attacks, exploitation, shoddy goods and services, etc.
[Jeremiah 22:4] FOR IF YE DO THIS THING INDEED, THEN SHALL THERE ENTER IN BY
THE GATES OF THIS HOUSE KINGS SITTING UPON THE THRONE OF DAVID, RIDING IN CHARIOTS
AND ON HORSES, HE, AND HIS SERVANTS, AND HIS PEOPLE.
If we do good God will help us. The House of David especially would be blessed if it ruled well since rulership was the inborn inherent task of this family and it had only to fulfill its destined duty. Each one of us should endeavor to realize our destined duties.
[Jeremiah 22:5] BUT IF YE WILL NOT HEAR THESE WORDS, I SWEAR BY MYSELF, SAITH THE LORD, THAT THIS HOUSE SHALL BECOME A DESOLATION.
[Jeremiah 22:6] FOR THUS SAITH THE LORD UNTO THE KING'S HOUSE OF JUDAH; THOU
ART GILEAD UNTO ME, AND THE HEAD OF LEBANON: YET SURELY I WILL MAKE THEE A WILDERNESS,
AND CITIES WHICH ARE NOT INHABITED.
Gilead and Lebanon were fertile regions. The ancestors of many people in North America once dwelt in these regions. Gilead was known in the Middle East as a breeding ground for horses and for grooms from ancient times possibly even from before the Israelite occupation.
[Jeremiah 22:7] AND I WILL PREPARE DESTROYERS AGAINST THEE, EVERY ONE WITH HIS WEAPONS: AND THEY SHALL CUT DOWN THY CHOICE CEDARS, AND CAST THEM INTO THE FIRE.
[Jeremiah 22:8] AND MANY NATIONS SHALL PASS BY THIS CITY, AND THEY SHALL SAY EVERY MAN TO HIS NEIGHBOUR, WHEREFORE HATH THE LORD DONE THUS UNTO THIS GREAT CITY?
[Jeremiah 22:9] THEN THEY SHALL ANSWER, BECAUSE THEY HAVE FORSAKEN THE COVENANT OF THE LORD THEIR GOD, AND WORSHIPPED OTHER GODS, AND SERVED THEM.
[Jeremiah 22:10] WEEP YE NOT FOR THE DEAD, NEITHER BEMOAN HIM: BUT WEEP SORE FOR HIM THAT GOETH AWAY: FOR HE SHALL RETURN NO MORE, NOR SEE HIS NATIVE COUNTRY.
[Jeremiah 22:11] FOR THUS SAITH THE LORD TOUCHING SHALLUM THE SON OF JOSIAH
KING OF JUDAH, WHICH REIGNED INSTEAD OF JOSIAH HIS FATHER, WHICH WENT FORTH
OUT OF THIS PLACE; HE SHALL NOT RETURN THITHER ANY MORE:
In the Hebrew this verse should be read as saying that Shallum would have reigned. King Josiah the son of Amon had been killed at Megiddo. Four sons of Josiah are mentioned:
[1-Chronicles 3:15] AND THE SONS OF JOSIAH WERE, THE FIRSTBORN JOHANAN, THE SECOND JEHOIAKIM, THE THIRD ZEDEKIAH, THE FOURTH SHALLUM.
[Jeremiah 22:12] BUT HE SHALL DIE IN THE PLACE WHITHER THEY HAVE LED HIM CAPTIVE,
AND SHALL SEE THIS LAND NO MORE.
Shallum had been taken into exile and would not return to reign over Judah.
[Jeremiah 22:13] WOE UNTO HIM THAT BUILDETH HIS HOUSE BY UNRIGHTEOUSNESS, AND
HIS CHAMBERS BY WRONG; THAT USETH HIS NEIGHBOUR'S SERVICE WITHOUT WAGES, AND
GIVETH HIM NOT FOR HIS WORK;
Jehoiakim became king and apparently forced his subjects to build buildings and public works and did not pay them.
Incidentally it appears that King Solomon towards the end of his reign had began to worship other gods or had tolerated the worship of other gods by his foreign wives and their attendants. Solomon had also built a palace and neighborhood in Jerusalem and other considerations elsewhere for his wife the daughter of Pharoah king of Egypt. Solomon had used a levy (semi-forced conscription) from the Tribe of Ephraim for these works. Solomon had received as a dowry the city of Gezer from the King of Egypt. Gezer was not in the south but in the north in the region of Ephraim. It was an enclave of Canaanites in the Land of Ephraim who in the past had been conquered by Ephraim but later had asserted their independence. Pharaoh conquered Gezer and handed it over to Solomon. Solomon apparently had been justified in using people from Ephraim to rebuild Gezer but he had then “extended” their usage into further works on behalf of the daughter of Pharoah as if it was owed to her. Jeroboam the son of Nebat had been appointed over the workmen from Ephraim who felt misused. Led by Jeroboam the workmen rebelled, the rebellion was put down and Jeroboam fled to Egypt which now was [probably?] ruled by someone else. When Solomon died Jeroboam came back and was appointed as a spokesman for Ephraim and for all Israel in a delegation to Rehoboam the son of Solomon. The delegation requested that Rehoboam agree to be less oppressive that Solomon towards the end of his life had been. Rehoboam refused and so the northern Ten Tribes rebelled and set up their own kingdom with Jeroboam at its head. A few centuries later this independent kingdom of “Israel” was conquered and all its people exiled. Their identity was lost and they became the Lost Ten Tribes of Israel.
[Jeremiah 22:14] THAT SAITH, I WILL BUILD ME A WIDE HOUSE AND LARGE CHAMBERS, AND CUTTETH HIM OUT WINDOWS; AND IT IS CIELED WITH CEDAR, AND PAINTED WITH VERMILION.
[Jeremiah 22:15] SHALT THOU REIGN, BECAUSE THOU CLOSEST THYSELF IN CEDAR? DID NOT THY FATHER EAT AND DRINK, AND DO JUDGMENT AND JUSTICE, AND THEN IT WAS WELL WITH HIM?
[Jeremiah 22:16] HE JUDGED THE CAUSE OF THE POOR AND NEEDY; THEN IT WAS WELL
WITH HIM: WAS NOT THIS TO KNOW ME? SAITH THE LORD.
He is referring to King Josiah the son of Amon who was a good king and attempted to reconcile the exiled northern tribes and resettle some of them in the northern parts of Israel. A few did return but after Josiah was killed they appear to have left once again and rejoined their brothers in exile. See “The Tribes” and “Lost Israelite Identity”.
[Jeremiah 22:17] BUT THINE EYES AND THINE HEART ARE NOT BUT FOR THY COVETOUSNESS, AND FOR TO SHED INNOCENT BLOOD, AND FOR OPPRESSION, AND FOR VIOLENCE, TO DO IT.
[Jeremiah 22:18] THEREFORE THUS SAITH THE LORD CONCERNING JEHOIAKIM THE SON OF JOSIAH KING OF JUDAH; THEY SHALL NOT LAMENT FOR HIM, SAYING, AH MY BROTHER! OR, AH SISTER! THEY SHALL NOT LAMENT FOR HIM, SAYING, AH LORD! OR, AH HIS GLORY!
[Jeremiah 22:19] HE SHALL BE BURIED WITH THE BURIAL OF AN ASS, DRAWN AND CAST FORTH BEYOND THE GATES OF JERUSALEM.
[Jeremiah 22:20] GO UP TO LEBANON, AND CRY; AND LIFT UP THY VOICE IN BASHAN,
AND CRY FROM THE PASSAGES: FOR ALL THY LOVERS ARE DESTROYED.
The Ten Tribes had been exiled from Lebanon and Bashan (Syria); under King Josiah there had been a chance that the exiles would return but now since the sons of King Josiah did not continue in his path this chance was lost.
[Jeremiah 22:21] I SPAKE UNTO THEE IN THY PROSPERITY; BUT THOU SAIDST, I WILL NOT HEAR. THIS HATH BEEN THY MANNER FROM THY YOUTH, THAT THOU OBEYEDST NOT MY VOICE.
[Jeremiah 22:22] THE WIND SHALL EAT UP ALL THY PASTORS, AND THY LOVERS SHALL GO INTO CAPTIVITY: SURELY THEN SHALT THOU BE ASHAMED AND CONFOUNDED FOR ALL THY WICKEDNESS.
[Jeremiah 22:23] O INHABITANT OF LEBANON, THAT MAKEST THY NEST IN THE CEDARS, HOW GRACIOUS SHALT THOU BE WHEN PANGS COME UPON THEE, THE PAIN AS OF A WOMAN IN TRAVAIL!
[Jeremiah 22:24] AS I LIVE, SAITH THE LORD, THOUGH CONIAH THE SON OF JEHOIAKIM
KING OF JUDAH WERE THE SIGNET UPON MY RIGHT HAND, YET WOULD I PLUCK THEE THENCE;
He would be plucked away but his descendants would not as explained (in the same language) by the Prophet Haggai.
[Jeremiah 22:25] AND I WILL GIVE THEE INTO THE HAND OF THEM THAT SEEK THY LIFE, AND INTO THE HAND OF THEM WHOSE FACE THOU FEAREST, EVEN INTO THE HAND OF NEBUCHADREZZAR KING OF BABYLON, AND INTO THE HAND OF THE CHALDEANS.
[Jeremiah 22:26] AND I WILL CAST THEE OUT, AND THY MOTHER THAT BARE THEE, INTO ANOTHER COUNTRY, WHERE YE WERE NOT BORN; AND THERE SHALL YE DIE.
[Jeremiah 22:27] BUT TO THE LAND WHEREUNTO THEY DESIRE TO RETURN, THITHER SHALL THEY NOT RETURN.
[Jeremiah 22:28] IS THIS MAN CONIAH A DESPISED BROKEN IDOL? IS HE A VESSEL
WHEREIN IS NO PLEASURE? WHEREFORE ARE THEY CAST OUT, HE AND HIS SEED, AND ARE
CAST INTO A LAND WHICH THEY KNOW NOT?
Coniah is Jehoyacin the son of Jehoyakim who would reign after him.
[Jeremiah 22:29] O EARTH, EARTH, EARTH, HEAR THE WORD OF THE LORD.
[Jeremiah 22:30] THUS SAITH THE LORD, WRITE YE THIS MAN CHILDLESS, A MAN THAT
SHALL NOT PROSPER IN HIS DAYS: FOR NO MAN OF HIS SEED SHALL PROSPER, SITTING
UPON THE THRONE OF DAVID, AND RULING ANY MORE IN JUDAH.
Menachem Buleh (“Daat Mikra”) on this verse comments that it sounds as if from “Coniah” (Jehojacin) would not emerge a future ruler of Judah but we find other prophecies indicating otherwise.
The Rabbis gave various explanations:
1. Exile atones for everything (Sanhedrin 37).
2. The Prophesy says: “A MAN THAT SHALL NOT PROSPER IN HIS DAYS: FOR NO MAN OF HIS SEED SHALL PROSPER”. It says “IN HIS DAYS” but not necessarily in the days of his descendants.
3. Jehojacin or his sons repented and Repentance is capable of annulling all negative decrees.
Three things were given on condition: The Land of Israel; the Temple; the Kingdom of David. How do we know that the Kingdom of David was given condition? As it says, “THE LORD HATH SWORN IN TRUTH UNTO DAVID; HE WILL NOT TURN FROM IT; OF THE FRUIT OF THY BODY WILL I SET UPON THY THRONE.
“IF THY CHILDREN WILL KEEP MY COVENANT AND MY TESTIMONY THAT I SHALL TEACH THEM, THEIR CHILDREN SHALL ALSO SIT UPON THY THRONE FOR EVERMORE” [Psalms 132:11-12].
Menachem Buleh points out that:
Zerubabel the son of Shaltiel was a leader of the Exiles who return with Ezra to rebuild the Temple after the Babylonian Exile. Zerubabel was a grandson of Jehoyacin.
[Ezra 2:2] WHICH CAME WITH ZERUBBABEL: JESHUA, NEHEMIAH, SERAIAH, REELAIAH, MORDECAI, BILSHAN, MIZPAR, BIGVAI, REHUM, BAANAH. THE NUMBER OF THE MEN OF THE PEOPLE OF ISRAEL:
[Ezra 3:2] THEN STOOD UP JESHUA THE SON OF JOZADAK, AND HIS BRETHREN THE PRIESTS, AND ZERUBBABEL THE SON OF SHEALTIEL, AND HIS BRETHREN, AND BUILDED THE ALTAR OF THE GOD OF ISRAEL, TO OFFER BURNT OFFERINGS THEREON, AS IT IS WRITTEN IN THE LAW OF MOSES THE MAN OF GOD.
The Prophet Haggai calls Zerubabel “Governor of Judah” and apparently he had been so appointed by the King of Persia.
[Haggai 1:1] IN THE SECOND YEAR OF DARIUS THE KING, IN THE SIXTH MONTH, IN THE FIRST DAY OF THE MONTH, CAME THE WORD OF THE LORD BY HAGGAI THE PROPHET UNTO ZERUBBABEL THE SON OF SHEALTIEL, GOVERNOR OF JUDAH, AND TO JOSHUA THE SON OF JOSEDECH, THE HIGH PRIEST, SAYING,
Haggai addressed himself to Zerubabel and prophesied concerning the Messianic
[Haggai 2:21] SPEAK TO ZERUBBABEL, GOVERNOR OF JUDAH, SAYING, I WILL SHAKE THE HEAVENS AND THE EARTH;
[Haggai 2:22] AND I WILL OVERTHROW THE THRONE OF KINGDOMS, AND I WILL DESTROY THE STRENGTH OF THE KINGDOMS OF THE HEATHEN; AND I WILL OVERTHROW THE CHARIOTS, AND THOSE THAT RIDE IN THEM; AND THE HORSES AND THEIR RIDERS SHALL COME DOWN, EVERY ONE BY THE SWORD OF HIS BROTHER.
[Haggai 2:23] IN THAT DAY, SAITH THE LORD OF HOSTS, WILL I TAKE THEE, O ZERUBBABEL, MY SERVANT, THE SON OF SHEALTIEL, SAITH THE LORD, AND WILL MAKE THEE AS A SIGNET: FOR I HAVE CHOSEN THEE, SAITH THE LORD OF HOSTS.
Here Haggai is indicating that the future Messianic ruler will be a descendant
of Zerubabel son of Shaltiel son of Jehojacin. Haggai says concerning Zerubabel
and his future descendant “WILL MAKE THEE AS A SIGNET: FOR I HAVE CHOSEN
This is in juxtaposition to what Jeremiah said above about Jehojacin:
[Jeremiah 22:24] AS I LIVE, SAITH THE LORD, THOUGH CONIAH THE SON OF JEHOIAKIM KING OF JUDAH WERE THE SIGNET UPON MY RIGHT HAND, YET WOULD I PLUCK THEE THENCE;
Jeremiah 22 – addenda:
We have a principle that all Prophecy that was necessary both for its own time and for the future was written and that which was not pertinent to the future was not written. By the future is meant the time of the Messianic Era and the Period preceding it. We are somewhere in this period, maybe at the very beginning or maybe well along the way. The Book of Jeremiah was intended primarily as Prophecy not history. As a Prophet Jeremiah wrote in terms of events of his own time or about to happen shortly after but even so he also intended another meaning for the future, for us. Jeremiah himself may well not have been conscious of the full future significance of his own words.
Let us briefly re-examine Jeremiah chapter 22 and perhaps receive a glimpse of what Jeremiah (unbeknown to himself?) was trying to tell us.
[Jeremiah 22:6] FOR THUS SAITH THE LORD UNTO THE KING'S HOUSE OF JUDAH; THOU ART GILEAD UNTO ME, AND THE HEAD OF LEBANON: YET SURELY I WILL MAKE THEE A WILDERNESS, AND CITIES WHICH ARE NOT INHABITED.
He associates the body spoken to as Gilead and Lebanon: THOU ART GILEAD UNTO ME, AND THE HEAD OF LEBANON: As we explained in “Joseph” Gilead was the area east of the Jordan in which dwelt the Tribes of Reuben, Gad, and half-Menasseh. Menasseh was divided into two portions, one-half west of the Jordan and the other half east of it. The half of Menasseh east of the Jordan was dominated by clans of Machir the first-born son of Menasseh. “America” is a name derived from a Latinised form of the Hebrew “Ha-Machiri” which in Biblical Hebrew meant “The Machirities” and in Medieval Hebrew could be used to mean “He who belongs to Machir”. The area of Menasseh east of the Jordan was known as Gilead and as Bashan or Gilead and Bashan were separate regions though the distinction is not clear. Descendants of Gilead of Menasseh were especially important in the settlement of the south and west of the USA though the name in Prophecy could perhaps be applied to the USA in general.
“Lebanon” can refer to Britain. The name “Albion” is a nickname for Britain and this name means the same as “Lebanon”, i.e. whiteness and may well be another form of this name, i.e. Lebanon = Liban = Alban = Albion. Ephraim dominates Britain. In ancient times Ephraim dwelt primarily in the center of the Land of Israel west of the Jordan but segments of the tribe did move northwards. The famous explorer Nahum SLOUSCHZ (Nahum SLOUSCHZ, "Les Hebreo-Pheniciens. Introduction a ire Des Origines de la Colonisation Hebraique dans les Pays Mediteranee,". Paris 1909) opined that mercenaries from Ephraim served in the forces of the Phoenician city of Tyre in Lebanon. This was hinted at by Hosea:
[Hosea 9:13] EPHRAIM, AS I SAW TYRUS, IS PLANTED IN A PLEASANT PLACE: BUT EPHRAIM SHALL BRING FORTH HIS CHILDREN TO THE MURDERER.
“TYRUS” (in Hebrew: “Tsor”) i.e. the Phoenician city of Tyre. Ephraim was associated with Tyre who betrayed them and assisted the Assyrians in exiling them to the west as referred to by Amos:
"...FOR THREE TRANSGRESSIONS OF TYRE ...I WILL NOT TURN AWAY THE PUNISHMENT THEREOF: BECAUSE THEY DELIVERED UP THE WHOLE CAPTIVITY TO EDOM, AND REMEMBERED NOT THE COVENANT OF BROTHERS" (Amos 1;9).
Ephraim is destined to return and colonize the Lebanon and Gilead (Syria and Jordan) as indicated by Zechariah:
[Zechariah 10:7] AND THEY OF EPHRAIM SHALL BE LIKE A MIGHTY MAN, AND THEIR HEART SHALL REJOICE AS THROUGH WINE: YEA, THEIR CHILDREN SHALL SEE IT, AND BE GLAD; THEIR HEART SHALL REJOICE IN THE LORD.
[Zechariah 10:8] I WILL HISS FOR THEM, AND GATHER THEM; FOR I HAVE REDEEMED THEM: AND THEY SHALL INCREASE AS THEY HAVE INCREASED.
[Zechariah 10:9] AND I WILL SOW THEM AMONG THE PEOPLE: AND THEY SHALL REMEMBER ME IN FAR COUNTRIES; AND THEY SHALL LIVE WITH THEIR CHILDREN, AND TURN AGAIN.
[Zechariah 10:10] I WILL BRING THEM AGAIN ALSO OUT OF THE LAND OF EGYPT, AND GATHER THEM OUT OF ASSYRIA; AND I WILL BRING THEM INTO THE LAND OF GILEAD AND LEBANON; AND PLACE SHALL NOT BE FOUND FOR THEM.
The whole of Jeremiah 22 may be understood as in one sense referring to the USA and Britain. References to the House of David in this chapter may also refer to the ruling classes of Britain and America many of whom may well be descended from the House of David. Descendants of David intermarried with leading houses in the Northern Kingdom of Israel before its exile and settled amongst them.
The area east of the Jordan was also known as Bashan and Jeremiah refers to this area:
[Jeremiah 22:20] GO UP TO LEBANON, AND CRY; AND LIFT UP THY VOICE IN BASHAN, AND CRY FROM THE PASSAGES: FOR ALL THY LOVERS ARE DESTROYED.
[Jeremiah 22:23] O INHABITANT OF LEBANON, THAT MAKEST THY NEST IN THE CEDARS, HOW GRACIOUS SHALT THOU BE WHEN PANGS COME UPON THEE, THE PAIN AS OF A WOMAN IN TRAVAIL!
As we explained in our work “Joseph” there is a tradition that descendants of Gilead from east of the Jordan will be the first of the Lost Ten Tribes to return. According to our studies descendants of “Gilead” are now to be found in the “Bible Belt” of the USA!
Jeremiah 23 part one
[Jeremiah 23:1] WOE BE UNTO THE PASTORS THAT DESTROY AND SCATTER THE SHEEP OF MY PASTURE! SAITH THE LORD.
The word “pastors” means “shepherds” or leaders.
[Jeremiah 23:2] THEREFORE THUS SAITH THE LORD GOD OF ISRAEL AGAINST THE PASTORS THAT FEED MY PEOPLE; YE HAVE SCATTERED MY FLOCK, AND DRIVEN THEM AWAY, AND HAVE NOT VISITED THEM: BEHOLD, I WILL VISIT UPON YOU THE EVIL OF YOUR DOINGS, SAITH THE LORD.
[Jeremiah 23:3] AND I WILL GATHER THE REMNANT OF MY FLOCK OUT OF ALL COUNTRIES WHITHER I HAVE DRIVEN THEM, AND WILL BRING THEM AGAIN TO THEIR FOLDS; AND THEY SHALL BE FRUITFUL AND INCREASE.
Here Jeremiah is speaking about both Judah and “Israel” (Joseph) as is made clear later.
[Jeremiah 23:4] AND I WILL SET UP SHEPHERDS OVER THEM WHICH SHALL FEED THEM: AND THEY SHALL FEAR NO MORE, NOR BE DISMAYED, NEITHER SHALL THEY BE LACKING, SAITH THE LORD.
[Jeremiah 23:5] BEHOLD, THE DAYS COME, SAITH THE LORD, THAT I WILL RAISE UNTO DAVID A RIGHTEOUS BRANCH, AND A KING SHALL REIGN AND PROSPER, AND SHALL EXECUTE JUDGMENT AND JUSTICE IN THE EARTH.
A descendant of David will arise who shall be righteous and will become the leader of all the Israelites. This is the Messiah son of David.
[Jeremiah 23:6] IN HIS DAYS JUDAH SHALL BE SAVED, AND ISRAEL SHALL DWELL SAFELY: AND THIS IS HIS NAME WHEREBY HE SHALL BE CALLED, THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS.
Judah and “Israel” meaning the Lost Ten Tribes will be saved from whatever troubles and afflictions came upon them. “THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS” i.e. through God we will find justification for our existence and being.
[Jeremiah 23:7] THEREFORE, BEHOLD, THE DAYS COME, SAITH THE LORD, THAT THEY SHALL NO MORE SAY, THE LORD LIVETH, WHICH BROUGHT UP THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL OUT OF THE LAND OF EGYPT;
[Jeremiah 23:8] BUT, THE LORD LIVETH, WHICH BROUGHT UP AND WHICH LED THE SEED OF THE HOUSE OF ISRAEL OUT OF THE NORTH COUNTRY, AND FROM ALL COUNTRIES WHITHER I HAD DRIVEN THEM; AND THEY SHALL DWELL IN THEIR OWN LAND.
“ISRAEL OUT OF THE NORTH COUNTRY”: This is primarily referring to the Lost Ten Tribes whose major place of residence will be in the North Country. Barry Fell claimed that the Phoenicians referred to North America as “The Great North Country”. Barry Fell wrote books such as “Bronze Age America” and founded The Epigraphical Society. He claimed that the Americas had been known to and visited by the Phoenicians, Egyptians, Ancient Libyans, Celts, Romans, Medieval Arabs, Chinese, etc. At one stage I was inclined to be very skeptical about these claims but now I realize that they are probably correct. Mainstream academic opinion slowly but surely also appears to be inclining in this direction. A lot of Fell’s claims appear to be substantiated. He, in his own field and general knowledge, was extremely well accomplished. The problem is that Fell often did not supply his sources or adequately explain how he reached his conclusions. At all events Fell may have been right in many of his statements and he claimed that North America was known to the Phoenicians as “The Great North Country”. The Phoenicians were mixed Canaanites and others dwelling in the coastal cities of Lebanon and Syria. If North America was known as “The Great North Country” to the Phoenicians then it would also have been known as such to the Hebrews since some of the Israelite Tribes were culturally Phoenician and participated with them in Oceanic enterprises. Similarly the “ends of the earth” is also a term frequently connected with the Lost Ten Tribes in Scripture and according to Jurgen Spanuth, (“Atlantis of the North,” Great Britain, 1980) “ENDS OF THE EARTH” in the time of the Prophets was an expression used by the Hebrews, Egyptians, and Babylonians to describe the most northern areas of Europe (Spanuth p.28). Literally (and in our time) it means the geographical extremities of the world when the Land of Israel is taken as the center: Scandinavia, Holland, Britain, North America, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand.
[Jeremiah 23:9] MINE HEART WITHIN ME IS BROKEN BECAUSE OF THE PROPHETS; ALL MY BONES SHAKE; I AM LIKE A DRUNKEN MAN, AND LIKE A MAN WHOM WINE HATH OVERCOME, BECAUSE OF THE LORD, AND BECAUSE OF THE WORDS OF HIS HOLINESS.
A drunk staggers about and cannot control his movements. So too a person under great stress and overcome by grief moves like a drunkard.
[Jeremiah 23:10] FOR THE LAND IS FULL OF ADULTERERS; FOR BECAUSE OF SWEARING THE LAND MOURNETH; THE PLEASANT PLACES OF THE WILDERNESS ARE DRIED UP, AND THEIR COURSE IS EVIL, AND THEIR FORCE IS NOT RIGHT.
Adultery in Scripture means both taking another man’s woman and idolatry. Sexual adultery is common in our days and should be avoided like the plague. God is in heaven and He knows what He wants of us.
“BECAUSE OF SWEARING”: One meaning is because of falsehood. One should endeavor to tell the truth. There are justifiable exceptions but they should remain exceptions and not turn into general rules. Adultery and lies and false oaths and declarations are all part of a corrupt lifestyle. One should not deceive oneself.
[Jeremiah 23:11] FOR BOTH PROPHET AND PRIEST ARE PROFANE; YEA, IN MY HOUSE HAVE I FOUND THEIR WICKEDNESS, SAITH THE LORD.
[Jeremiah 23:12] WHEREFORE THEIR WAY SHALL BE UNTO THEM AS SLIPPERY WAYS IN THE DARKNESS: THEY SHALL BE DRIVEN ON, AND FALL THEREIN: FOR I WILL BRING EVIL UPON THEM, EVEN THE YEAR OF THEIR VISITATION, SAITH THE LORD.
[Jeremiah 23:13] AND I HAVE SEEN FOLLY IN THE PROPHETS OF SAMARIA; THEY PROPHESIED IN BAAL, AND CAUSED MY PEOPLE ISRAEL TO ERR.
Jeremiah is here speaking concerning the Lost Ten Tribes a remnant of whom were centered in Samaria before being exiled. First Israelites were exiled from East of the Jordan, then they were exiled from north Israel and the Galilee, then they were exiled from the region around Samaria. Samaria had been the capital and chief province of the Northern Kingdom. Samaria was in the region of Menasseh. “Samaria” is the Phoenician, Greek, and probably North Israelite pronunciation of the name rendered in the Hebrew Bible as “Shomron”. The Northern Israelites had worshipped “baal” and had created a synthetic cult of their own that mixed elements of Baal worship with Hebrew practices. Jeremiah may be understood (says Menachem Buleh, “Daat Mikra”) as warning Judah that just as the worship of “Baal” had caused destruction to the Northern Kingdom so too would it bring disaster on Jerusalem.
[Jeremiah 23:14] I HAVE SEEN ALSO IN THE PROPHETS OF JERUSALEM AN HORRIBLE THING: THEY COMMIT ADULTERY, AND WALK IN LIES: THEY STRENGTHEN ALSO THE HANDS OF EVILDOERS, THAT NONE DOTH RETURN FROM HIS WICKEDNESS; THEY ARE ALL OF THEM UNTO ME AS SODOM, AND THE INHABITANTS THEREOF AS GOMORRAH.
“THEY COMMIT ADULTERY”: Buleh suggests that they were practicing sacred prostitution in which married women were also involved. Recently a certain cult in the USA also re-instituted sacred prostitution for its female members. The “Carnival” in Brazil probably also has its origins in practices of sacred prostitution.
“THEY STRENGTHEN ALSO THE HANDS OF EVILDOERS”: Nowadays psychologists, sociologists, educators, newspaper writers, media people, etc provide justifications for immoral and self-destructive behavior. Once certain activity becomes socially accepted the necessary aversion is lessened and people cease to avoid it. Many TV programs are basically immoral.
[Jeremiah 23:15] THEREFORE THUS SAITH THE LORD OF HOSTS CONCERNING THE PROPHETS; BEHOLD, I WILL FEED THEM WITH WORMWOOD, AND MAKE THEM DRINK THE WATER OF GALL: FOR FROM THE PROPHETS OF JERUSALEM IS PROFANENESS GONE FORTH INTO ALL THE LAND.
The equivalent of “PROPHETS” in our time would be the formers of public opinion.
[Jeremiah 23:16] THUS SAITH THE LORD OF HOSTS, HEARKEN NOT UNTO THE WORDS OF THE PROPHETS THAT PROPHESY UNTO YOU: THEY MAKE YOU VAIN: THEY SPEAK A VISION OF THEIR OWN HEART, AND NOT OUT OF THE MOUTH OF THE LORD.
[Jeremiah 23:17] THEY SAY STILL UNTO THEM THAT DESPISE ME, THE LORD HATH SAID, YE SHALL HAVE PEACE; AND THEY SAY UNTO EVERY ONE THAT WALKETH AFTER THE IMAGINATION OF HIS OWN HEART, NO EVIL SHALL COME UPON YOU.
False prophets say: YE SHALL HAVE PEACE. The Oslo Peace Process was a license to kill Jews and attempt the destruction of the State of Israel. The European Union is turning into the enemy of the State of Israel and of the Jewish people. They are dominated by descendants of Edom and Canaan.
[Jeremiah 23:18] FOR WHO HATH STOOD IN THE COUNSEL OF THE LORD, AND HATH PERCEIVED AND HEARD HIS WORD? WHO HATH MARKED HIS WORD, AND HEARD IT?
[Jeremiah 23:19] BEHOLD, A WHIRLWIND OF THE LORD IS GONE FORTH IN FURY, EVEN A GRIEVOUS WHIRLWIND: IT SHALL FALL GRIEVOUSLY UPON THE HEAD OF THE WICKED.
The wicked shall cause their own destruction. The enemies of Israel will be repaid in their own coinage.
Jeremiah 23 part two
[Jeremiah 23:20] THE ANGER OF THE LORD SHALL NOT RETURN, UNTIL HE HAVE EXECUTED, AND TILL HE HAVE PERFORMED THE THOUGHTS OF HIS HEART: IN THE LATTER DAYS YE SHALL CONSIDER IT PERFECTLY.
God has plenty of time.
[Jeremiah 23:21] I HAVE NOT SENT THESE PROPHETS, YET THEY RAN: I HAVE NOT SPOKEN TO THEM, YET THEY PROPHESIED.
Formers of public opinion and media people should be exhorting the public to turn to God and do good or at least refrain from evil. In a sense we are all responsible since in our sense these media freaks are giving us what we seem eager to pay for.
[Jeremiah 23:22] BUT IF THEY HAD STOOD IN MY COUNSEL, AND HAD CAUSED MY PEOPLE TO HEAR MY WORDS, THEN THEY SHOULD HAVE TURNED THEM FROM THEIR EVIL WAY, AND FROM THE EVIL OF THEIR DOINGS.
Even so the media freaks could have saved us if they had have been half decent. We would probably have listened since we listen to everybody who speaks to us through “respectable”-looking channels.
[Jeremiah 23:23] AM I A GOD AT HAND, SAITH THE LORD, AND NOT A GOD AFAR OFF?
[Jeremiah 23:24] CAN ANY HIDE HIMSELF IN SECRET PLACES THAT I SHALL NOT SEE HIM? SAITH THE LORD. DO NOT I FILL HEAVEN AND EARTH? SAITH THE LORD.
God is with us if we only make ourselves aware of it.
[Jeremiah 23:25] I HAVE HEARD WHAT THE PROPHETS SAID, THAT PROPHESY LIES IN MY NAME, SAYING, I HAVE DREAMED, I HAVE DREAMED.
[Jeremiah 23:26] HOW LONG SHALL THIS BE IN THE HEART OF THE PROPHETS THAT PROPHESY LIES? YEA, THEY ARE PROPHETS OF THE DECEIT OF THEIR OWN HEART;
People do sometimes receive Divine Inspirations and Insights from above but we must be careful not to confuse our own wants and imaginations with directions from Heaven. Also people in authority and positions of influence sometimes let themselves be misled into directing others in mistaken ways due to their own conscious or unconscious ego trips.
[Jeremiah 23:27] WHICH THINK TO CAUSE MY PEOPLE TO FORGET MY NAME BY THEIR DREAMS WHICH THEY TELL EVERY MAN TO HIS NEIGHBOUR, AS THEIR FATHERS HAVE FORGOTTEN MY NAME FOR BAAL.
The British Celts called themselves Hiberi (i.e. Hebrews) and worshipped “Bel” which is another form of the name Baal.
[Jeremiah 23:28] THE PROPHET THAT HATH A DREAM, LET HIM TELL A DREAM; AND HE THAT HATH MY WORD, LET HIM SPEAK MY WORD FAITHFULLY. WHAT IS THE CHAFF TO THE WHEAT? SAITH THE LORD.
“WHAT IS THE CHAFF TO THE WHEAT?” Buleh explains that this was evidently a popular phrase. Before wheat can be eaten it has to be winnowed and the chaff (inedible husks surrounding the grain) separated. Before the people can be helped they must learn to distinguish between true and false prophesies.
[Jeremiah 23:29] IS NOT MY WORD LIKE AS A FIRE? SAITH THE LORD; AND LIKE A HAMMER THAT BREAKETH THE ROCK IN PIECES?
“LIKE A HAMMER THAT BREAKETH THE ROCK IN PIECES”: From this expression we find support for the principle that the words of Scripture can have several meanings all of which are correct in their proper context.
[Jeremiah 23:30] THEREFORE, BEHOLD, I AM AGAINST THE PROPHETS, SAITH THE LORD, THAT STEAL MY WORDS EVERY ONE FROM HIS NEIGHBOUR.
[Jeremiah 23:31] BEHOLD, I AM AGAINST THE PROPHETS, SAITH THE LORD, THAT USE THEIR TONGUES, AND SAY, HE SAITH.
[Jeremiah 23:32] BEHOLD, I AM AGAINST THEM THAT PROPHESY FALSE DREAMS, SAITH THE LORD, AND DO TELL THEM, AND CAUSE MY PEOPLE TO ERR BY THEIR LIES, AND BY THEIR LIGHTNESS; YET I SENT THEM NOT, NOR COMMANDED THEM: THEREFORE THEY SHALL NOT PROFIT THIS PEOPLE AT ALL, SAITH THE LORD.
Buleh sums up this section and says that Jeremiah mentions three types of Prophet: (1). True Prophets of God.
2. False Prophets in the name of God.
3. Prophets of Baal.
Buleh says that Jeremiah distinguishes between true and false prophets. False Prophets may be distinguished in their methods by:
a. Their lightness of speech by which they deceive others.
b. They declare they dreamt dreams that were inspired and give “proofs” of their inspiration.
c. They utter their prophesies in the name of God though God spoke not unto them.
d. They take the prophesies of true prophets and jumble them up with their own fantasies.
e. They teach each other their dreams and fantasies in order to receive mutual confirmation from each other.
Buleh lists the main claims that Jeremiah makes against the False Prophets:
(i) They do not exhort the people to repent and this is the main task of a Prophet.
(ii) They mislead the people into thinking that things will be good, that there will be “peace” whereas in fact disaster is impending.
(iii) They were not sent by God.
(iv) All their prophecies are invented.
(v) Instead of encouraging people to serve God they cause the people to depart from Him.
(vi) They are not fit that Divine Inspiration be given unto them as proven by their moral weakness and adulteries.
Buleh says that according to Jeremiah True Prophets are distinguished by:
a. They work to bring the people back to God through repentance.
b. They know and understand the message of God before they utter their prophecy.
c. They warn of impending disaster that can only be averted through repentance.
d. True Prophecy is like: “A FIRE…AND LIKE A HAMMER THAT BREAKETH THE ROCK IN PIECES”!
[Jeremiah 23:33] AND WHEN THIS PEOPLE, OR THE PROPHET, OR A PRIEST, SHALL ASK THEE, SAYING, WHAT IS THE BURDEN OF THE LORD? THOU SHALT THEN SAY UNTO THEM, WHAT BURDEN? I WILL EVEN FORSAKE YOU, SAITH THE LORD.
[Jeremiah 23:34] AND AS FOR THE PROPHET, AND THE PRIEST, AND THE PEOPLE, THAT SHALL SAY, THE BURDEN OF THE LORD, I WILL EVEN PUNISH THAT MAN AND HIS HOUSE.
[Jeremiah 23:35] THUS SHALL YE SAY EVERY ONE TO HIS NEIGHBOUR, AND EVERY ONE TO HIS BROTHER, WHAT HATH THE LORD ANSWERED? AND, WHAT HATH THE LORD SPOKEN?
[Jeremiah 23:36] AND THE BURDEN OF THE LORD SHALL YE MENTION NO MORE: FOR EVERY MAN'S WORD SHALL BE HIS BURDEN; FOR YE HAVE PERVERTED THE WORDS OF THE LIVING GOD, OF THE LORD OF HOSTS OUR GOD.
[Jeremiah 23:37] THUS SHALT THOU SAY TO THE PROPHET, WHAT HATH THE LORD ANSWERED THEE? AND, WHAT HATH THE LORD SPOKEN?
[Jeremiah 23:38] BUT SINCE YE SAY, THE BURDEN OF THE LORD; THEREFORE THUS SAITH THE LORD; BECAUSE YE SAY THIS WORD, THE BURDEN OF THE LORD, AND I HAVE SENT UNTO YOU, SAYING, YE SHALL NOT SAY, THE BURDEN OF THE LORD;
[Jeremiah 23:39] THEREFORE, BEHOLD, I, EVEN I, WILL UTTERLY FORGET YOU, AND I WILL FORSAKE YOU, AND THE CITY THAT I GAVE YOU AND YOUR FATHERS, AND CAST YOU OUT OF MY PRESENCE:
[Jeremiah 23:40] AND I WILL BRING AN EVERLASTING REPROACH UPON YOU, AND A PERPETUAL SHAME, WHICH SHALL NOT BE FORGOTTEN.
We should be very careful not to do things we regret later. Through repentance everything can be forgiven but it is not easy to repent.
One is better off not sinning, believe me. We do not really want to sin. Our Evil Impulse misleads us into thinking we have no choice or that the temptation is too great. This is not so. We must not lie to ourselves. Get used to telling the truth to others as much as you are able and you will begin to see the truth yourself.
[Jeremiah 24:1] THE LORD SHEWED ME, AND, BEHOLD, TWO BASKETS OF FIGS WERE SET BEFORE THE TEMPLE OF THE LORD, AFTER THAT NEBUCHADREZZAR KING OF BABYLON HAD CARRIED AWAY CAPTIVE JECONIAH THE SON OF JEHOIAKIM KING OF JUDAH, AND THE PRINCES OF JUDAH, WITH THE CARPENTERS AND SMITHS, FROM JERUSALEM, AND HAD BROUGHT THEM TO BABYLON.
[Jeremiah 24:3] 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.
[Jeremiah 24:4] AGAIN THE WORD OF THE LORD CAME UNTO ME, SAYING,
[Jeremiah 24:5] THUS SAITH THE LORD, THE GOD OF ISRAEL; LIKE THESE GOOD FIGS,
SO WILL I ACKNOWLEDGE THEM THAT ARE CARRIED AWAY CAPTIVE OF JUDAH, WHOM I HAVE
SENT OUT OF THIS PLACE INTO THE LAND OF THE CHALDEANS FOR THEIR GOOD.
“CHALDEANS” in Hebrew “Casdim” meaning the ruling element of Babylonia. Most of the Jews were to be taken into exile to Babylon. Jeremiah is saying that those Jews who give themselves up to the Babylonians would be transferred to Babylon and treated reasonably there.
[Jeremiah 24:6] FOR I WILL SET MINE EYES UPON THEM FOR GOOD, AND I WILL BRING THEM AGAIN TO THIS LAND: AND I WILL BUILD THEM, AND NOT PULL THEM DOWN; AND I WILL PLANT THEM, AND NOT PLUCK THEM UP.
[Jeremiah 24:7] AND I WILL GIVE THEM AN HEART TO KNOW ME, THAT I AM THE LORD:
AND THEY SHALL BE MY PEOPLE, AND I WILL BE THEIR GOD: FOR THEY SHALL RETURN
UNTO ME WITH THEIR WHOLE HEART.
The Jews in Babylon in part returned under Ezra and Nehemia. Those who remained in Babylon founded a great community that spread throughout Mesopotamia. “Mesopotamia” means the land of two rivers, the land between the Tigris and Euprates. This is present-day Iraq. It was much more fertile in ancient times than it is today, agricultural practices and ecological standards were much higher and there was a more advance system of irrigation. The Jews in Babylonia were very powerful and prosperous and most learned. They created the Babylonian Talmud. They were ruled over by the Babylonians at first, then these were conquered by the Persians. After the Persians (under the Achaemenians) came the Parthians (under the Arsacides) and after the Parthians the Persians (under the Sassanians) once again. The rulers of the Parthians were Israelites and they were related to the Goths (Guti) and to the Khazars. I wrote on this. Stephen Collins also wrote on this and his account interlaps and complements my own as I will show in a future article. Before the both of us there was a researcher named Philip Lozinski.
Lozinski (B. Philip LOZINSKI, "The Original Homeland of the Parthians,” Originally a paper read in Washington 1953. The Hague, Netherlands) was an academic historical researcher. He said basically that the Parthians who conquered Persia came from Central Asia where there was once a great civilization based on vast irrigation networks. This civilization disappeared due to climatic changes and the area drying up. The people in this civilization had the same type of jewellery as the later Vikings of Scandinavia and Lozinski suggests that the “Barbarian” invaders of Europe belonged to this civilization. The Parthians had drawn their manpower from this people and when the people left the Parthian Empire deteriorated. The Parthian Kings were related to the kings of the several peoples who had formed this civilization. Lozinski believed that the peoples of this civilzation were at least in part of Semitic origin. The findings of Lozinski together with other facts and newer findings confirms our belief that the people in question belonged to the Lost Ten Tribes of Israel and that most of them migrated to the West, into Europe, see “The Tribes”.
[Jeremiah 24:8] AND AS THE EVIL FIGS, WHICH CANNOT BE EATEN, THEY ARE SO EVIL;
SURELY THUS SAITH THE LORD, SO WILL I GIVE ZEDEKIAH THE KING OF JUDAH, AND HIS
PRINCES, AND THE RESIDUE OF JERUSALEM, THAT REMAIN IN THIS LAND, AND THEM THAT
DWELL IN THE LAND OF EGYPT:
Zedekiah was plotting to rebel against Babylon with the encouragement of Egypt and the Jewish community in Egypt part of which was formed by those who had fled from Jerusalem because they plotted against Babylon. The best portion of the people had already been taken into Exile, to Babylon. Those who remained were of a lower standard and were likened unto the figs that ripen at the end of Summer and are not worth much especially when compared to the first fruits that ripen at the beginning of Summer.
[Jeremiah 24:9] AND I WILL DELIVER THEM TO BE REMOVED INTO ALL THE KINGDOMS OF THE EARTH FOR THEIR HURT, TO BE A REPROACH AND A PROVERB, A TAUNT AND A CURSE, IN ALL PLACES WHITHER I SHALL DRIVE THEM.
[Jeremiah 24:10] AND I WILL SEND THE SWORD, THE FAMINE, AND THE PESTILENCE, AMONG THEM, TILL THEY BE CONSUMED FROM OFF THE LAND THAT I GAVE UNTO THEM AND TO THEIR FATHERS.
|Jeremiah chs. 16 to 20|