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The New Oxford Annotated Bible New Revised Standard Study Bible that provides essential scholarship and guidance for Bible readers.

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Commentary on Jeremiah

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Commentary spanning earlier chapters

21.11–23.8 : Oracles concerning the royal house.

21.11–12 :

The king is to administer justice (1 Kings 3.9; Ps 72.1–4 ); if he does evil, he will incur the wrath of God. In contrast to texts like 2 Sam 7.11–16 and Ps 89 , which speak of disciplinary punishment if kings are disobedient to God, v. 12b suggests a more definitive judgment.

13–14 :

The house of David falsely trusts in Jerusalem's invulnerability to attack. Forest is perhaps a metaphor for the royal palace, which is elsewhere called the “House of the Forest,” because of its extensive woodwork (1 Kings 7.2 ).

22.1–5 :

Expansion of 21.11–12 (compare 22.3 with 21.12 ). If the people repent, their destruction will be averted and the Davidic dynasty (house) preserved. The criteria of justice recall Deuteronomy (Deut 16.11,14; 24.19–21 ); cf. Jer 7.5–7. 6–7 : Parallel to 21.13–14 . The mountains of Gilead, in northern Transjordan, were thickly forested, as were those of Lebanon. Foresters (destroyers) with axes and saws (weapons) will burn the “forest” (cedar‐wood palace), reducing its once beautiful site to wasteland.

8–9 :

A later comment ( 5.19; Deut 29.23–28; 1 Kings 9.8–9 ) referring to Jerusalem, not the palace.

22.10–30 : Oracles concerning Jehoahaz, Jehoiakim, and Jehoiachin, kings of Judah.

10–12 :

The deadJosiah was better off than Shallum (personal name of Jehoahaz; 1 Chr 3.15 ), who in 609 BCE wasbanished (went away) to Egypt by Pharaoh Neco (2 Kings 23.33–34; 2 Chr 36.1–4; Ezek 19.4 ).

13–19 :

Jeremiah censures Jehoiakim (608–598 BCE) for lavishly expanding his palace (house) by exploiting hissubjects (v. 14 ). An administration that will do justice and righteousness, not one housed in cedar (v. 15 ), is what makes the king ( 21.11–12; Mic 3.9–10 ). References to elaborate building projects completed bymeans of uncompensated labor suggest that Jehoiakim was perceived as imitating Solomon's grandeurand autocratic power (1 Kings 5.13–18 ). Jehoiakim should rather emulate his father Josiah (vv. 15–16 ),whose death was mourned. His own death will be accompanied by indignities because of his misdeeds( 36.30; 2 Kings 24.1–5 ). 20–23: The addressee is an individual feminine figure, presumably Jerusalem;cf. 2.20–25 ,33–37. From the highest peaks (Lebanon, Bashan in northern Transjordan, Abarim east ofthe Dead Sea) lamentations will rise over the desertion of Jerusalem by her allies (lovers; 3.1 ), the exileof her leaders (shepherds; 23.1 ), and her own terror (inhabitant of Lebanon; cf. 21.13–14 ).

21 :

But you said, cf. 2.20 ,23,25,35.

24–30 :

The symbol of authority (signet ring; Hag 2.23 ) and a broken pot(cf. 19.11 ) describe the inexorable punishment of Jehoiachin (597 BCE; King Coniah) and his mother( 13.18 ). The threefold address (v. 29a; Isa 6.3; Ezek 21.27 ) emphasizes the following oracle announcingthat no descendant of Jehoiachin shall rule Judah.

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