Jer. 49:1 Concerning the Ammonites, thus saith the LORD; Hath Israel no sons? hath he no heir? why then doth their king inherit Gad, and his people dwell in his cities?
The Ammonites were the next nation to receive God’s judgment. God gave the tribe of Gad land in the days of Moses which originally belonged to the Ammonites. When the tribes east of Jordan were carried away by Tiglath-pileser (2Ki_15:29), Ammon supplanted Gad. This is the sin dealt with here.
Jeremiah is saying here that Israel will come back to the Land of Gad later. The land has to be desolate because of Israel’s sin, which means not even the Ammonites are allowed to live there either.
Their king - Milcom (and in Jer_49:3), see the margin. The Ammonite god stands for the Ammonites just as Chemosh Jer_48:7 is the equivalent of the Moabites. Milcom is also called Molech.
Some other translations show that “king” is Milcom.
(CEV) The LORD has this to say about the nation of Ammon: The people of Israel have plenty of children to inherit their lands. So why have you worshipers of the god Milcom taken over towns and land belonging to the Gad tribe?
(BBE) About the children of Ammon. These are the words of the Lord: Has Israel no sons? has he no one to take the heritage? why then has Milcom taken Gad for himself, putting his people in its towns?
Jer. 49:2 Therefore, behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will cause an alarm of war to be heard in Rabbah of the Ammonites; and it shall be a desolate heap, and her daughters shall be burned with fire: then shall Israel be heir unto them that were his heirs, saith the LORD.
Jer. 49:3 Howl, O Heshbon, for Ai is spoiled: cry, ye daughters of Rabbah, gird you with sackcloth; lament, and run to and fro by the hedges; for their king shall go into captivity, and his priests and his princes together.
Other versions of the Bible actually make the thoughts clearer take for instance the GNB
Jer 49:2 But the time is coming when I will make the people of the capital city of Rabbah hear the noise of battle, and it will be left in ruins and its villages burned to the ground. Then Israel will take its land back from those who took it from them. 3) 0 People of Heshbon, cry out! Ai is destroyed! Women of Rabbah, go into mourning! Put on sackcloth and mourn. Run about in confusion. Your god Molech will be taken into exile, together with his priests and princes.
Or the CEV
Jer 49:2 Someday I will send an army to attack you in Rabbah, your capital city. It will be left in ruins, and the surrounding villages will lie in ashes. You took some of Israel's land, but on that day Israel will take yours! 3) Cry, people of Heshbon; your town will become a pile of rubble. You will turn here and there, but your path will be blocked. Put on sackcloth and mourn, you citizens of Rabbah, because the idol you worship will be taken to a foreign country, along with its priests and temple officials.
Rabbah is modern day Ammon.
for Ai is spoiled; not that which was near Jericho in the land of Canaan, but a city in the land of Ammon, thought to be the Gaia of Ptolemy; this seems to be the first city in the country of Ammon that Nebuchadnezzar would lay waste:
Jer. 49:4 Wherefore gloriest thou in the valleys, thy flowing valley, O backsliding daughter? that trusted in her treasures, saying, Who shall come unto me?
thy flowing valley — rather, “thy valley shall flow,” namely with the blood of the slain; in sad contrast to their “valleys” in which they had heretofore “gloried,” as flowing with milk and honey [Grotius]. Or else, as Margin, “shall flow away.”
The (fertile) valley in which Rabbah was situated. The Septuagint again has: “in the valleys of the Anakim,” as in Jer_47:5
Jer. 49:5 Behold, I will bring a fear upon thee, saith the Lord GOD of hosts, from all those that be about thee; and ye shall be driven out every man right forth; and none shall gather up him that wandereth.
The nations that hate and persecute Israel will be desolate along side Israel. God promises to bless those who bless Israel and curse those who curse them. They may get away with it for a while, but they will be punished. This promise to Israel is still valid. Those nations (which also are some of the nations Jeremiah talks about) have not learned this lesson, and hence when Jacob’s Trouble comes, they also will receive their punishment again.
Jer. 49:6 And afterward I will bring again the captivity of the children of Ammon, saith the LORD.
The Ammonites are supposed to have returned with the Moabites and Israelites, on permission given by the edict of Cyrus.
This shows the longsuffering of God. He punished, but did not destroy. This is a promise that not everyone would die, but that in the future they could come back to their land, but their human nature did not change and they are still a thorn in Israel’s flesh.
This captivity of Israel did have a beneficial affect for the Jew in that they no longer were prone to go after heathen gods like they were before.
When God punishes us, we need to look for the lesson and apply it. God told Ammon why they were being punished, but they did not learn the lesson. As a Christian, we should learn to look for the signs of God’s displeasure and correct our course before we get to the point of needing correction from the Lord.
Jer. 49:7 Concerning Edom, thus saith the LORD of hosts; Is wisdom no more in Teman? is counsel perished from the prudent? is their wisdom vanished?
Edom stretched along the south of Judah from the border of Moab on the Dead Sea to the Mediterranean and the Arabian deserts, and held the same relation to Judah which Moab held toward the kingdom of Israel. Although expressly reserved from attack by Moses Deu_2:5, a long feud caused the Edomites to cherish so bitter an enmity against Judah, that they exulted with cruel joy over the capture of Jerusalem by the Chaldaeans, and showed great cruelty toward those why fled to them for refuge.
Of the prophecies against Edom the first eight verses of Obadiah are also found in Jeremiah (see the marginal references). As Jeremiah wrote before the capture of Jerusalem, and Obadiah apparently after it (see Jer_49:13-14).
Teman - A strip of land on the northeast of Edom, put here for Edom generally. Its inhabitants were among those “children of the East” famed for wisdom, because of their skill in proverbs and dark sayings.-Barnes
The answer to these three questions is, Yes. The destruction to Edom will leave no one behind—they will become desolate as well and all the fame that Teman had will vanish along with it.
Interesting to note that Eliphas (one of Job’s three comforters) was from Teman.
Jer. 49:8 Flee ye, turn back, dwell deep, O inhabitants of Dedan; for I will bring the calamity of Esau upon him, the time that I will visit him.
(GW) Turn and run. Hide in deep caves, inhabitants of Dedan. When I punish them, I will bring disaster on the descendants of Esau.
Dwell deep - An allusion to the custom of the Arabs, who, when about to be attacked by a powerful foe, strike their tents, pack up their utensils, lade their camels, which they can do in a couple of hours, and set off to the great desert, and so bury themselves in it that no enemy either will or can pursue, as it is the Arabs alone that know the deserts, and can find water and provender for their support.
The Dedanites, who were used to travel through the Edomite territory with their caravans, are advised to retire as far as possible into the Arabian deserts to be out of the way of the invaders.
The same advice is given later in the chapter as well.
Jer 49:30 Run far away! Find a place to hide, inhabitants of Hazor, declares the LORD. King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon has made plans against you and intends to attack you.
Dedan - Was a city of Idumea, not far from Teman.
Jer. 49:9 If grapegatherers come to thee, would they not leave some gleaning grapes? if thieves by night, they will destroy till they have enough.
“Both in vintage and harvest every grape and every stalk are not gathered; hence the gleaners get something for their pains: but your enemies shall not leave one of you behind; all shall be carried into captivity.”
Obadiah 1:5 If thieves break in at night, they steal only what they want. And people who harvest grapes always leave some unpicked. But, Edom, you are doomed!
Jer. 49:10 But I have made Esau bare, I have uncovered his secret places, and he shall not be able to hide himself: his seed is spoiled, and his brethren, and his neighbours, and he is not.
Other versions make the prophecies much easier to understand.
(CEV) But I will take everything that belongs to you, people of Edom, and I will uncover every place where you try to hide. Then you will die, and so will your children, relatives, and neighbors.
Nebuchadnezzar’s army will not stop until there is complete destruction and complete desolation. They will show no mercy, everyone will be searched out. There will be no one left to help or show pity.
Jer. 49:11 Leave thy fatherless children, I will preserve them alive; and let thy widows trust in me.
As with Moab Jer_48:47, and Ammon Jer_49:6, so there is mercy for Edom. The widows shall be protected, and in the orphans of Edom the nation shall once again revive.
Widows and orphans are the peculiar care of God. He is as the best of fathers to the one, and the most loving of husbands to the other. Even the widows and orphans of Esau, who escape the general destruction, shall be taken care of by the Lord.
Psa 68:5 A father of the fatherless, and a judge of the widows, is God in his holy habitation.
Jer. 49:12 For thus saith the LORD; Behold, they whose judgment was not to drink of the cup have assuredly drunken; and art thou he that shall altogether go unpunished? thou shalt not go unpunished, but thou shalt surely drink of it.
See the CEV: Even those nations that don't deserve to be punished will have to drink from the cup of my anger. So how can you possibly hope to escape?
A similar form of speech appears, Jer_25:29. Others, less wicked than thou, have been punished and canst thou expect to escape? Thou shalt not escape.
God is going to punish His own covenanted people for their sins against Him, so if that is the case, why would anyone else think they can get away with such sinful behavior? Especially when some of that sin is against God’s covenanted people!
Jer. 49:13 For I have sworn by myself, saith the LORD, that Bozrah shall become a desolation, a reproach, a waste, and a curse; and all the cities thereof shall be perpetual wastes.
Bozrah of Idumea, Isa_63:1; the royal city of Edom, as Kimchi; this should be utterly destroyed, and be spoken of contemptibly, and used proverbially, to express a curse; the Lord curse thee as Bozrah is cursed. It may be put for the whole country of Edom, of which it was the metropolis, since it follows, and all the cities thereof shall be perpetual wastes; either those in the neighbourhood of it, and belonging to it, it being the capital or mother city; or all the cities in the land of Edom; so general should be the desolation.--Gill
Jer. 49:14 I have heard a rumour from the LORD, and an ambassador is sent unto the heathen, saying, Gather ye together, and come against her, and rise up to the battle.
Jer. 49:15 For, lo, I will make thee small among the heathen, and despised among men.
Oba 1:1 The LORD God gave Obadiah a message about Edom, and this is what we heard: "I, the LORD, have sent a messenger with orders for the nations to attack Edom."
Small ... - Rather, small among the nations, i. e., of no political importance.
Jer. 49:16 Thy terribleness hath deceived thee, and the pride of thine heart, O thou that dwellest in the clefts of the rock, that holdest the height of the hill: though thou shouldest make thy nest as high as the eagle, I will bring thee down from thence, saith the LORD.
Edom’s “terribleness” consisted in her cities being hewn in the sides of inaccessible rocks, from where she could suddenly descend for predatory warfare, and retire to her fastnesses without fear of reprisals.
The clefts of the rock - Or, the fastnesses of Sela, the rock-city, Petra (see Isa_16:1). Petra, the chief of Idumea, was cut in the rocks; its ruins are very remarkable. The whole south of Idumea abounds in cave dwellings and rocks.
The hill - i. e., Bozrah.
As the eagle. Not any eagle is meant, but the griffon (Gypsfulvus), or great vulture (Tristram).
Like other vultures, it is a scavenger, feeding mostly from carcasses of dead animals which it finds by soaring over open areas, often moving in flocks. It establishes nesting colonies in cliffs that are undisturbed by humans while coverage of open areas and availability of dead animals within dozens of kilometres of these cliffs is high. It grunts and hisses at roosts or when feeding on carrion.
Jer. 49:17 Also Edom shall be a desolation: every one that goeth by it shall be astonished, and shall hiss at all the plagues thereof.
Also Edom shall be a desolation,.... Not only Bozrah, its principal city, before spoken of, but the whole country of Idumea should be laid waste; its fortified cities destroyed; its riches plundered; and its inhabitants slain with the sword; or carried captive:
everyone that goeth by it shall be astonished; at the desolation made, so suddenly and so universally:
and shall hiss at all the plagues thereof; rejoice at them; clap their hands, and shake their heads, as the Targum; and hiss with their tongues, insulting and deriding them.
Jer. 49:18 As in the overthrow of Sodom and Gomorrah and the neighbour cities thereof, saith the LORD, no man shall abide there, neither shall a son of man dwell in it.
Sodom and Gomorrah] The comparison appears to be taken from Deu_29:23, where the neighbour cities are mentioned by name (Admah and Zeboiim). See Gen_10:19; Gen_14:2; Gen_14:8; Deu_29:23. The v. recurs in Jer_50:40.
As in the overthrow of Sodom - The destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah and the neighboring cities was so terrible, that, when God denounces judgments against incorrigible sinners, he tells them they shall be like Sodom and Gomorrah.
No man shall abide there - It shall be so desolate as not to be habitable. Travellers may lodge on the ground for a night; but it cannot become a permanent dwelling.
A son of man - i. e., “Any man.” From 536 a.d. onward, Petra suddenly vanishes from the pages of history. Only in the present century was its real site discovered.
Jer. 49:19 Behold, he shall come up like a lion from the swelling of Jordan against the habitation of the strong: but I will suddenly make him run away from her: and who is a chosen man, that I may appoint over her? for who is like me? and who will appoint me the time? and who is that shepherd that will stand before me?
The fall of Edom is compared to the state of a flock worried by an enemy strong as a lion Jer_4:7, and swift as an eagle.
The swelling of Jordan - Or, the pride of Jordan, the thickets on his banks (marginal reference note).
Against the habitation of the strong - Or, to the abiding pasturage. The lion stalks forth from the jungle to attack the fold, sure to find sheep there because of the perennial (evergreen) pasturage: “but I will suddenly make him (the flock, Edom) run away from her (or it, the pasturage).”
suddenly — “in the twinkling of an eye,” as the Hebrew implies.
him ... her — I will make Nebuzara-dan enter Idumea, and then, having in the twinkling of an eye effected the conquest, go away speedily: elsewhere. Instead of “but,” translate, “for.” Grotius translates, “run upon her,” or “to her,” instead of “run away from her.” Maurer understands it, “I will make him (the Idumean) run away from her” (that is, from his own land); the similar change of reference of the pronouns (Jer_50:44) favors this.
And who is a chosen ... - Better, and I will appoint over it, the abandoned land of Edom, him who is chosen, i. e., my chosen ruler Nebuchadnezzar.
Who will appoint me the time? - The plaintiff, in giving notice of a suit, had to mention the time when the defendant must appear (see the margin). Yahweh identifies himself with Nebuchadnezzar Jer_25:9, and shows the hopelessness of Edom’s cause. For who is like Yahweh, His equal in power and might? Who will dare litigate with Him, and question His right? etc.
Jer. 49:20 Therefore hear the counsel of the LORD, that he hath taken against Edom; and his purposes, that he hath purposed against the inhabitants of Teman: Surely the least of the flock shall draw them out: surely he shall make their habitations desolate with them.
counsel. Referring to Teman’s wisdom. Compare Jer_49:7.
Surely the least ... the common soldiers, the weakest and most feeble in the Chaldean army: as princes are compared to shepherds, their people are like flocks; and now the least of these in the king of Babylon's army should be a match for the strongest of the Edomites; and should draw them out of their habitations, as dogs or wolves drag sheep out of the folds, and draw about dead carcasses, and devour them.
draw ... out — “shall drag them away captive” [Grotius]; shall drag them to and fro, as a lion (Jer_49:19) does feeble sheep [Maurer].
surely he shall make their habitations desolate with them; or, "their folds"; the sheep shall be destroyed, and their folds shall be demolished; that is, the inhabitants of Edom shall be slain with the sword, and their cities, towns, and villages, shall be laid waste.
Jer. 49:21 The earth is moved at the noise of their fall, at the cry the noise thereof was heard in the Red sea.
Is moved - Quakes.
At the cry ... - The arrangement is much more poetical in the Hebrew, The shriek - to the sea of Suph (Exo_10:19 note) is heard its sound.
at the cry, the noise thereof was heard in the Red sea, or, "sea of Suph", or "weeds"; where weeds and rushes grew in great abundance, from whence it had its name. This is the Arabian gulf, which washed the shores of Edom, and was called the Red sea from thence, Edom signifying red. The meaning is, that the cry of the slain, or of the conquerors at the slaughter of them, should be heard to the borders of the land, to the sea shore, and by those in ships there; who should carry the report of it to each of the parts of the worl
Jer. 49:22 Behold, he shall come up and fly as the eagle, and spread his wings over Bozrah: and at that day shall the heart of the mighty men of Edom be as the heart of a woman in her pangs.
Nebuchadnezzar shall swoop down like an eagle, the emblem of swiftness.
Behold, he shall come up, and fly as the eagle,.... The Targum is,
"behold, as an eagle comes up and flies, so shall a king come up with his army;''
the king of Babylon with his army, compared to an eagle for his swiftness and voraciousness, as before to a lion for his strength and fierceness:
and spread his wings over Bozrah; besiege that city, invest it, and seize upon it; very fitly are the wings of an army expressed by the wings of this bird, denoting both their extent and force; the same is said concerning Moab, Jer_48:40;
and at that day shall the heart of the mighty men of Moab be as the heart of a woman in her pangs; when just ready to be delivered; not only weak and timorous, but full of anguish, and: quite dispirited; See Gill on Jer_48:41.
Jer. 49:23 Concerning Damascus. Hamath is confounded, and Arpad: for they have heard evil tidings: they are fainthearted; there is sorrow on the sea; it cannot be quiet.
Concerning Damascus - This is the head or title of another prophecy. Damascus was one of the principal cities of Syria. It was taken by David, 2Sa_8:6, was retaken in the reign of Solomon, 1Ki_11:24, etc., and regained its independence. Its kings were often at war with the ten tribes, and once it joined with them for the destruction of Judah. To defend himself against these powerful enemies Ahaz made a league with the king of Assyria, who besieged Damascus, took, and demolished it. From that time we hear nothing of Damascus till we meet with it in this prophecy. It appears to have been rebuilt and restored to some consequence. It made an obstinate resistance to Nebuchadnezzar; but was at last taken and sacked by him. At present it is both a large and populous city, with considerable commerce.
Hamath is confounded - This is a city of Syria, on the Orontes. The Greeks called it Epiphania.
they are fainthearted; or "melted" (f); their hearts melted like wax, and flowed like water; they had no heart nor spirit left in them, through fear of the enemy;
There is sorrow on the sea - In the sea. As the sea is used (marginal reference) of the agitation of the thoughts of evil men, its sense here also probably is, there is sorrow, or rather anxiety, in the agitated hearts of the Syrians.
Jer. 49:24 Damascus is waxed feeble, and turneth herself to flee, and fear hath seized on her: anguish and sorrows have taken her, as a woman in travail.
How easily God can dispirit those nations that have been most celebrated for valour! Damascus waxes feeble. It was a city of joy, having all the delights of the sons of men. But those deceive themselves who place their happiness in carnal joys.
Damascus is waxed feeble,.... Or, "is become remiss" (g); her hands hang down, not being able through fear and fright to lift them up against the enemy; that is, the inhabitants of Damascus.
and turneth herself to flee; instead of going out to meet the enemy, the inhabitants of this city meditated a flight, and turned their backs upon him in order to flee from him, and escape falling into his hands:
and fear hath seized on her: or, "she seized on fear" (h); instead of seizing on arms, and laying hold on them to defend herself with, she seized on that; or however that seized on her, and made her quite unfit to stand up in her own defense:
anguish and sorrows have taken her as a woman in travail; See Gill on Jer_49:22; A phrase often used to express the sudden and inevitable destruction of a people, and their distress and inability to help themselves.
Jer. 49:25 How is the city of praise not left, the city of my joy!
How is the city of praise not left,.... The city of Damascus, famous for its antiquity, its wealth and riches, strength and power; and with the Heathens for its devotion and superstition. So Julian (i) the emperor calls it,
"the truly city of Jupiter; the eye of the whole east; Damascus the holy and the greatest;''
but more especially for its delightful and pleasant situation. Benjamin Tudelensis (k) says it was, in his time,
"a very great and beautiful city, surrounded with a wall; and the country about it was full of gardens and orchards, fifteen miles' walk on every side of it; and no city in the whole world appeared with such plenty of fruit as that did.''
Monsieur Thevenot (l) relates, that
"the city of Damascus is in the middle of a spacious plain, surrounded with hills, but all distant from the town, almost out of sight; those on the north side are the nearest, on which side it hath a great many gardens, full of trees, and most fruit trees; these gardens take up the ground from the hill of the forty martyrs, even to the town; so that at a distance it seems to be a forest.''
Mr. Maundrell (m) tells us, that the Turks relate this story of their prophet Mahomet, that,
"coming near Damascus, he took his station at a high precipice, in order to view it; and considering the ravishing beauty and delightfulness of it, he would not tempt his frailty by entering into it; but instantly departed with this reflection on it, that there was but one paradise designed for men, and for his part he was resolved not take his in this world;''
Strabo (n) says of this city, that it is worthy of praise, and almost the most famous city of all near Persia. The sense of it either is, how is it that so famous a city was not spared by the enemy, that they did not leave it untouched, but destroyed and demolished it? or how is it that it was not fortified by the inhabitants of it; that a parapet was not built about the wall all around, to strengthen it, and keep out the enemy? This sense, as well as the former, is mentioned both by Jarchi and Kimchi, who direct to Nah_3:8, for the confirmation of this sense of the word:
Jer. 49:26 Therefore her young men shall fall in her streets, and all the men of war shall be cut off in that day, saith the LORD of hosts.
Therefore her young men shall fall in her streets,.... Or "verily" (o) so Jarchi interprets it as an oath; Jehovah swearing that so it should be; that her young men, her choice ones such who were the flower of the city, and on whom its future prosperity depended; these should fall by the sword of the Chaldeans in the streets of the city, when having entered, and taken it:
and all the men of war shall be cut off in that day, saith the Lord of hosts; soldiers and officers, men of strength and valour in whom the inhabitants of Damascus trusted for their defence; these should be cut oil by the sword of the enemy at the time of the siege, and taking of it.
Jer. 49:27 And I will kindle a fire in the wall of Damascus, and it shall consume the palaces of Ben-hadad.
palaces of Ben-hadad — that palace from which so many evils and such cruelty to Israel emanated; thus implying the cause of Damascus’ overthrow. Not the Ben-hadad of 2Ki_13:3; Amo_1:4; it was a common name of the Syrian kings (compare 1Ki_15:18; meaning “son of Hadad,” the idol).
Not only the houses of the common people in general, but particularly the palaces of their king and his nobles.
Jer. 49:28 Concerning Kedar, and concerning the kingdoms of Hazor, which Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon shall smite, thus saith the LORD; Arise ye, go up to Kedar, and spoil the men of the east.
Concerning Kedar, and Concerning the Kingdoms of Hazor - This is the title of another new prophecy.
Kedar was the name of one of the sons of Ishmael (Gen_25:13) who settled in Arabia, and who gave name to a powerful tribe of Arabs who used to traffic with the Tyrians in cattle. It appears from this prophecy that Nebuchadnezzar got a commission to go against and reduce them to great misery.
Hazor, derived from a word signifying an unwalled village, is a general appellative of those Arab tribes who were partially settled, while Kedar signifies the Bedawin, who used only tents. Some think that Hazor is another way of spelling Jetor, i. e., Ituraea, whose inhabitants, with the Kedarenes, would naturally be called the sons of the East.
Jer. 49:29 Their tents and their flocks shall they take away: they shall take to themselves their curtains, and all their vessels, and their camels; and they shall cry unto them, Fear is on every side.
Their tents and their flocks - This description of property shows that they were Scenite or Nomad Arabs; persons who dwell in tents, and whose principal property was cattle, especially camels, of the whole of which they were plundered by the Chaldeans.
curtains — namely, with which the tents were covered (Jer_4:20; Jer_10:20; Psa_104:2).
Jer. 49:30 Flee, get you far off, dwell deep, O ye inhabitants of Hazor, saith the LORD; for Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon hath taken counsel against you, and hath conceived a purpose against you.
for Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon hath taken counsel against you, and hath conceived a purpose against you: had determined upon their destruction, and had consulted and contrived ways and means to effect it; and therefore, since so powerful an enemy had such a design upon them, it was high time to flee, and get as far off as they could, and hide themselves in the caverns of the earth.
Jer. 49:31 Arise, get you up unto the wealthy nation, that dwelleth without care, saith the LORD, which have neither gates nor bars, which dwell alone.
that dwelleth without care, saith the Lord; not without the care of their flocks, or without providing things necessary for themselves and families; they were not an indolent people, that lived an idle and inactive life; but they dwelt "confidently", or "securely" (t), as it may be rendered; they had no thought nor care to defend themselves from an enemy; they had no fear of any, imagining that no one would think it worth while to give themselves any trouble to invade them; their meanness they supposed was a protection to them:
which have neither gates nor bars; to their cities, or to their houses, being in no fear of an enemy to come and plunder them:
which dwell alone; being in no alliance with other nations; nor dwelling together in cities, towns, and villages, at least the common people; the greater part of them being scattered up and down, a few in one place, and a few in another; they dwelt for the convenience of feeding their flocks.
Jer. 49:32 And their camels shall be a booty, and the multitude of their cattle a spoil: and I will scatter into all winds them that are in the utmost corners; and I will bring their calamity from all sides thereof, saith the LORD.
And their camels shall be a booty,.... To the Chaldean army, as before, Jer_49:29;
and the multitude of their cattle a spoil; to the same; the Kedarenes had large flocks of sheep, as well as a multitude of camels, on which they lived, and in which their substance lay; see Isa_60:6;
and I will scatter into all winds them that are in the utmost corners; them that were gone with their flocks to feed them in the uttermost parts of their land; who, on hearing of the Chaldean army being entered and ravaging their country, would leave their flocks, and flee and be dispersed in the several parts of the world: or, "them that are cut in the corner" (u); in the corners of their beard; that have their hair cut all around, as the Arabians had; See Gill on Jer_9:26;
and I will bring their calamity from all sides thereof, saith the Lord; suggesting that Nebuchadnezzar should surround them with his army, and so dispose of his troops, by placing them some in one part, and some in another, that they should not be able to escape on any side. It denotes their utter destruction and desolation.
Jer. 49:33 And Hazor shall be a dwelling for dragons, and a desolation for ever: there shall no man abide there, nor any son of man dwell in it.
Hazor shall be a dwelling for dragons - Shall be turned into a wilderness. Dragons - i. e., jackals.
A desolation for ever - Never to be repeopled.
There shalt no man abide there - It may occasionally be visited, but never made a permanent abode.
Jer. 49:34 The word of the LORD that came to Jeremiah the prophet against Elam in the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah king of Judah, saying,
Against Elam - Or, concerning Elam. This country, better known as Susiana, is the modern Chuzistan, and lies on the east of Chaldaea, from which it is separated by the Tigris. In the cuneiform inscriptions we find the Elamites on friendly terms with Babylon. The suggestion therefore that they served as auxiliaries in the Chaldaean army in the expedition against Judah is not improbable. It was in the first year of Zedekiah that this prophecy was written, and thus it is a little prior to the prophecies against Babylon Jer_51:59, which immediately follow. The words, “the Elam,” appear in the Septuagint in Jer_25:14, followed by this prophecy, while in Jer_26:1 we find, “In the beginning of the reign of king Zedekiah there was this word about Elam,” followed in Jer_49:2 by the prophecy (Jer. 46 of the Hebrew) against Egypt. This is a proof simply of the confusion which existed in the Egyptian transcripts of the prophecies relating to the nations.
Jer. 49:35 Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Behold, I will break the bow of Elam, the chief of their might.
bow — Elam was famed for its bowmen (Isa_22:6).
chief of their might — in opposition to “bow,” that is, bowmen, who constituted their main strength.
Jer. 49:36 And upon Elam will I bring the four winds from the four quarters of heaven, and will scatter them toward all those winds; and there shall be no nation whither the outcasts of Elam shall not come.
Will I bring the four winds - Nebuchadnezzar and his armies, gathered out of different provinces, and attacking this people at all points in the same time.
There shall be no nation, etc. - They shall be scattered through the one hundred and twenty-seven provinces of which the Babylonish empire is composed.
and there shall be no nation whither the outcasts of Elam shall not come; those that are driven out of it, forced to flee from it, or are taken captive, should come into the several nations of the world; so that there would not be any in which an Elamite was not.
Jer. 49:37 For I will cause Elam to be dismayed before their enemies, and before them that seek their life: and I will bring evil upon them, even my fierce anger, saith the LORD; and I will send the sword after them, till I have consumed them:
For I will cause Elam to be dismayed before their enemies,.... Frightened; thrown into the utmost consternation, so that they shall have no heart nor spirit to go out against them, and meet them, and defend themselves; but make all haste imaginable to flee from them, such a panic would seize them:
and before them that seek their life; a further description of their enemies; they being such, who, not content with their substance, sought to take away their lives; nothing less would satisfy them, being: cruel and blood thirsty ones:
and I will bring evil upon them, even my fierce anger, saith the Lord; and a greater evil than that cannot be; signifying that the destruction that should be made among them would be the effect of the wrath of God upon them for their sins:
and I will send the sword after them, till I have consumed them; that is, those that slay with the sword, as the Targum; these should go after those that fled, and destroy them, till the greater part of them were consumed; for all of them that were taken were not destroyed; or otherwise there would have been none to return from captivity, as is promised at the close of this prophecy.
Jer. 49:38 And I will set my throne in Elam, and will destroy from thence the king and the princes, saith the LORD.
And I will set my throne in Elam,.... Nebuchadnezzar, whose palace probably was, as it is certain his successors was, in Shushan in Elam, as before observed from Dan_8:2. This is called the Lord's throne, because he gave it to him; his conquest of Elam, and his dominion over it, were from him:
and will destroy from thence the king and the princes, saith the Lord; so that there should be no more kings of Elam, and princes and nobles of their own, after this time; and because mention is made of the kings of Elam in the times of Nebuchadnezzar, Jer_25:25; though that is observed in the first year of his reign, some have thought that it is best to understand it or Cyrus, the Lord's servant and anointed; and whose throne might well be called the throne of God, which he gave him, and set him on in an eminent manner, not only there, but elsewhere; see Ezr_1:2; and when this country of Elam, or Elymais, became at part of the Persian empire, and never had any more kings to reign over it separately
Jer. 49:39 But it shall come to pass in the latter days, that I will bring again the captivity of Elam, saith the LORD.
But it shall come to pass in the latter days,.... Not in the times of Cyrus, when these people enjoyed their liberty, as the Jews and other nations did, freed by him from the Babylonian yoke; which cannot with propriety be called the latter days, being but seventy or eighty years at most after this prophecy; but in the times of the Messiah, often in prophecy called the latter days:
Elam - Elam was subject to Babylon Dan_8:2, and its capital Shushan a favorite residence of the Persian kings Est_1:2. Of its subsequent fate we know little; the Elamites continued to exist, and members of their nation were present at Pentecost among those chosen to represent the Gentile world at the first preaching of the Gospel Act_2:9.