Jeremiah 47 commentary

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Information about Jeremiah 47 commentary

Published on November 30, 2016

Author: glenndpease


1. JEREMIAH 47 COMMENTARY EDITED BY GLENN PEASE A Message About the Philistines 1 This is the word of the Lord that came to Jeremiah the prophet concerning the Philistines before Pharaoh attacked Gaza: BARNES, "that Pharaoh - Pharaoh-Necho though defeated at Carchemish, was probably able to seize Gaza upon his retreat, when obviously the possession of so strong a fortress would be most useful to him to prevent the entrance of the victorious Chaldaeans into Egypt. CLARKE, "The word of the Lord - against the Philistines - The date of this prophecy cannot be easily ascertained. Dr. Blayney thinks it was delivered about the fourth year of Zedekiah, while Dahler assigns it some time in the reign of Josiah. Before that Pharaoh smote Gaza - We have no historical relation of any Egyptian king smiting Gaza. It was no doubt smitten by some of them; but when, and by whom, does not appear either from sacred or profane history. GILL, "The word of the Lord that came to Jeremiah the prophet against the Philistines,.... As the former prophecies were against the Egyptians, the friends and allies of the Jews, in whom they trusted; this is against the Philistines, the near neighbours of the Jews, and their implacable enemies: the time of this prophecy was, before Pharaoh smote Gaza; one of the five cities of the Philistines, a very strong and fortified place, as its name signifies; See Gill on Act_8:26. The Jews, in their chronicle, say (t) this was fulfilled in the eighth year of Zedekiah, when Pharaoh came out of Egypt, while the Chaldeans were besieging Jerusalem; which they hearing of, broke up the siege, and went forth to meet him; upon which he went to Gaza, and destroyed that, and returned to Egypt again. Both Jarchi and Kimchi make mention of this, but say it was in the tenth year of Zedekiah; and which, no doubt, is the truest 1

2. reading, since the Chaldean army did not come up against Jerusalem until the ninth year of his reign. But it is more likely that this Pharaoh was Pharaohnecho, and that he fell upon Gaza, and smote it, either when he came to Carchemish, or when he returned from thence, after he had slain Josiah. Now this prophecy was delivered out before anything of this kind happened, and when the Philistines were in the utmost peace, and in no fear or expectation of destruction; and the smiting of this single city by the king of Egypt is foretold, as the forerunner and pledge of a greater destruction of the land by the king of Babylon, next mentioned. HENRY 1-7, "As the Egyptians had often proved false friends, so the Philistines had always been sworn enemies, to the Israel of God, and the more dangerous and vexatious for their being such near neighbours to them. They were considerably humbled in David's time, but, it seems they had got head again and were a considerable people till Nebuchadnezzar cut them off with their neighbours, which is the event here foretold. The date of this prophecy is observable; it was before Pharaoh smote Gaza. When this blow was given to Gaza by the king of Egypt is not certain, whether in his expedition against Carchemish or in his return thence, after he had slain Josiah, or when he afterwards came with design to relieve Jerusalem; but this is mentioned here to show that this word of the Lord came to Jeremiah against the Philistines when they were in their full strength and lustre, themselves and their cities in good condition, in no peril from any adversary or evil occurrent. When no disturbance of their repose was foreseen by any human probabilities, yet then Jeremiah foretold their ruin, which Pharaoh's smiting Gaza soon after would be but an earnest of, and, as it were, the beginning of sorrows to that country. It is here foretold, 1. That a foreign enemy and a very formidable one shall be brought upon them: Waters rise up out of the north, Jer_47:2. Waters sometimes signify multitudes of people and nations (Rev_17:15), sometimes great and threatening calamities (Psa_69:1); here they signify both. They rise out of the north, whence fair weather and the wind that drives away rain are said to come; but now a terrible storm comes out of that cold climate. The Chaldean army shall overflow the land like a deluge. Probably this happened before the destruction of Jerusalem, for it should seem that in Gedaliah's time, which was just after, the army of the Chaldeans was quite withdrawn out of those parts. The country of the Philistines was but of small extent, so that it would soon be overwhelmed by so vast an army. 2. That they shall all be in a consternation upon it. The men shall have no heart to fight, but shall sit down and cry like children: All the inhabitants of the land shall howl, so that nothing but lamentation shall be heard in all places. The occasion of the fright is elegantly described, Jer_47:3. Before it comes to killing and slaying, the very stamping of the horses and rattling of the chariots, when the enemy makes his approach, shall strike a terror upon the people, to such a degree that parents in their fright shall seem void of natural affection, for they shall not look back to their children, to provide for their safety, or so much as to see what becomes of them. Their hands shall be so feeble that they shall despair of carrying them off with them, and therefore they shall not care for seeing them, but leave them to take their lot; or they shall be in such a consternation that they shall quite forget even those pieces of themselves. Let none be over-fond of their children, nor dote upon them, since such distress may come that they may either wish they had none or forget that they have, and have no heart to look upon them. 3. That the country of the Philistines shall be spoiled and laid waste, and the other countries adjoining to them and in alliance with them. It is a day to spoil the Philistines, for the Lord will spoil them, Jer_47:4. Note, Those whom God will spoil must needs be spoiled; for, if God be against 2

3. them, who can be for them? Tyre and Zidon were strong and wealthy cities, and they used to help the Philistines in a strait, but now they shall themselves be involved in the common ruin, and God will cut off from them every helper that remains. Note, Those that trust to help from creatures will find it cut off when they most need it and will thereby be put into the utmost confusion. Who the remnant of the country of Caphtor were is uncertain, but we find that the Caphtorim were near akin to the Philistines (Gen_10:14), and probably when their own country was destroyed such as remained came and settled with their kinsmen the Philistines, and were now spoiled with them. Some particular places are here named, Gaza, and Ashkelon, Jer_47:5. Baldness has come upon them; the invaders have stripped them of all their ornaments, or they have made themselves bald in token of extreme grief, and they are cut off, with the other cities that were in the plain or valley about them. The products of their fruitful valley shall be spoiled, and made a prey of, by the conquerors. 4. That these calamities should continue long. The prophet, in the foresight of this, with his usual tenderness, asks them first (Jer_47:5), How long will you cut yourselves, as men in extreme sorrow and anguish do? O how tedious will the calamity be! not only cutting, but long cutting. But he turns from the effect to the cause: They cut themselves, for the sword of the Lord cuts them. And therefore, (1.) He bespeaks that to be still (Jer_47:6): O thou sword of the Lord! how long will it be ere thou be quiet? He begs it would put up itself into the scabbard, would devour no more flesh, drink no more blood. This expresses the prophet's earnest desire to see an end of the war, looking with compassion, as became a man, even upon the Philistines themselves, when their country was made desolate by the sword. Note, War is the sword of the Lord; with it he punishes the crimes of his enemies and pleads the cause of his own people. When war is once begun it often lasts long; the sword, once drawn, does not quickly find the way into the scabbard again; nay, some when they draw the sword throw away the scabbard, for they delight in war. So deplorable are the desolations of war that the blessings of peace cannot but be very desirable. O that swords might be beaten into ploughshares! (2.) Yet he gives a satisfactory account of the continuance of the war and stops the mouth of his own complaint (Jer_47:7): How can it be quiet, seeing the Lord hath given it a charge against such and such places, particularly specified in its commission? There hath he appointed it. Note, [1.] The sword of war hath its charge from the Lord of hosts. Every bullet has its charge; you call them blind bullets, but they are directed by an all-seeing God. The war itself has its charge; he saith to it, Go, and it goes - Come, and it comes - Do this, and it does it; for he is commander-in-chief. [2.] When the sword is drawn we cannot expect it should be sheathed till it has fulfilled its charge. As the word of God, so his rod and his sword, shall accomplish that for which he sends them. JAMISON, "Jer_47:1-7. Prophecy against the Philistines. Pharaoh-necho probably smote Gaza on his return after defeating Josiah at Megiddo (2Ch_35:20) [Grotius]. Or, Pharaoh-hophra (Jer_37:5, Jer_37:7) is intended: probably on his return from his fruitless attempt to save Jerusalem from the Chaldeans, he smote Gaza in order that his expedition might not be thought altogether in vain [Calvin] (Amo_1:6, Amo_1:7). K&D, "The word of the Lord against the Philistines came to Jeremiah "before 3

4. Pharaoh smote Gaza." If we understand this time-definition in such a way that "the prophecy would refer to the conquest of Gaza by Pharaoh," as Graf thinks, and as Hitzig also is inclined to suppose, then this portion of the title does not accord with the contents of the following prophecy; for, according to Jer_47:2, the devastator of Philistia approaches from the north, and the desolation comes not merely on Gaza, but on all Philistia, and even Tyre and Sidon (Jer_47:4, Jer_47:5). Hence Graf thinks that, if any one is inclined to consider the title as utterly incorrect, only two hypotheses are possible: either the author of the title overlooked the statement in Jer_47:2, that the hostile army was to come from the north; in which case this conquest might have taken place at any time during the wearisome struggles, fraught with such changes of fortune, between the Chaldeans and the Egyptians for the possession of the border fortresses, during the reign of Jehoiakim (which is Ewald's opinion): or he may possibly have noticed the statement, but found no difficulty in it; in which case, in spite of all opposing considerations (see M. von Niebuhr, Gesch. Assyr. und Bab. p. 369), it must be assumed that the conquest was effected by the defeated army as it was returning from the Euphrates, when Necho, on his march home, reduced Gaza (Hitzig), and by taking this fortress from the enemy, barred the way to Egypt. Of these two alternatives, we can accept neither as probable. The neglect, on the part of the author of the title, to observe the statement that the enemy is to come from the north, would show too great carelessness for us to trust him. But if he did notice the remark, then it merely follows that Pharaoh must have reduced Gaza on his return, after being defeated at Carchemish. Nor is it legitimate to conclude, as Ewald does, from the statement in 2Ki_24:7 ("The king of Egypt went no more out of his land; for the king of Babylon had taken all that had belonged to the king of Egypt, from the river of Egypt unto the river Euphrates"), that the wars between the Chaldeans and the Egyptians for the possession of the border fortresses, such as Gaza, were tedious, and attended with frequent changes of fortune. In the connection in which it stands, this statement merely shows that, after Nebuchadnezzar had made Jehoiakim his vassal, the latter could not receive any help from Egypt in his rebellion, after he had ruled three years, because Pharaoh did not venture to march out of his own territory any more. But it plainly follows from this, that Pharaoh cannot have taken the fortress of Gaza while retreating before Nebuchadnezzar. For, in this case, Nebuchadnezzar would have been obliged to drive him thence before ever he could have reduced King Jehoiakim again to subjection. The assumption is difficult to reconcile with what Berosus says regarding the campaign of Nebuchadnezzar, viz., that the continued in the field till he heard of the death of his father. Add to this, that, as M. von Niebuhr very rightly says, "there is every military probability against it" (i.e., against the assumption that Gaza was reduced by Necho on his retreat). "If this fortress had stood out till the battle of Carchemish, then it is inconceivable that a routed eastern army should have taken the city during its retreat, even though there were, on the line of march, the strongest positions on the Orontes, in Lebanon, etc., where it might have taken its stand." Hence Niebuhr thinks it "infinitely more improbable either that Gaza was conquered before the battle of Carchemish, about the same time as Ashdod, and that Jeremiah, in Jer_47:1-7, predicts the approach of the army which was still engaged in the neighbourhood of Nineveh; or that the capture of the fortress did not take place till later, when Nebuchadnezzar was again engaged in Babylon, and that the prophet announces his return, not his first approach." Rosenmüller and Nägelsbach have declared in favour of the first of these suppositions. Both of them place the capture of Gaza in the time of Necho's march against the Assyrians under Josiah; Rosenmüller before the battle of Megiddo; Nägelsbach after 4

5. that engagement, because he assumes, with all modern expositors, that Necho had landed with his army at the Bay of Acre. He endeavours to support this view by the observation that Necho, before marching farther north, sought to keep the way clear for a retreat to Egypt, since he would otherwise have been lost after the battle of Carchemish, if he did not previously reduce Gaza, the key of the high road to Egypt. In this, Nägelsbach rightly assumes that the heading, "before Pharaoh smote Gaza," was not intended to show the fulfilment of the prophecy in the conquest of Gaza by Necho soon afterwards, but merely states that Jeremiah predicts to the Philistines that they will be destroyed by a foe from the north, at a time when conquest by a foe from the north was impending over them. Rightly, too, does Niebuhr remark that, in support of the view that Gaza was taken after the battle at Carchemish, there is nothing more than the announcement of the attack from the north, and the arrangement of the prophecies in Jeremiah, in which that against the Philistines is placed after that about the battle of Carchemish. Hitzig and Graf lay great weight upon this order and arrangement, and thence conclude that all the prophecies against the nations in Jer 46-49, with the exception of that regarding Elam, were uttered in the fourth year of Jehoiakim. There are no sufficient grounds for this conclusion. The agreement between this prophecy now before us and that in Jer 46, as regards particular figures and expressions (Graf), is too insignificant to afford a proof that the two belong to the same time; nor is much to be made out of the point so strongly insisted on by Hitzig, that after the Egyptians, as the chief nation, had been treated of, the author properly brings forward those who, from the situation of their country, must be visited by war immediately before it is sent on the Egyptians. The main foundation for this view is taken from the notice by Herodotus (ii. 159), that Necho, after the battle at Magdolos, took the large Syrian city Κάδυτις. Magdolos is here taken as a variation of Megiddo, and Kadytis of Gaza. But neither Hitzig nor Stark have proved the identity of Kadytis with Gaza, as we have already remarked on 2Ki_23:33; so that we cannot safely draw any conclusion, regarding the time when Gaza was taken, from that statement of Herodotus. In consequence of the want of evidence from other sources, the date of this event cannot be more exactly determined. From the contents of this prophecy and its position among the oracles against the nations, we can draw no more than a very probable inference that it was not published before the fourth year of Jehoiakim, inasmuch as it is evidently but a further amplification of the sentence pronounced in that year against all the nations, and recorded in Jer 25. Thus all conjectures as to the capture of Gaza by Necho on his march to the Euphrates, before the battle at Carchemish, become very precarious. But the assumption is utterly improbable also, that Necho at a later period, whether in his flight before the Chaldeans, or afterwards, while Nebuchadnezzar was occupied in Babylon, undertook an expedition against Philistia: such a hypothesis is irreconcilable with the statement given in 2 Kings 24; 7. There is thus no course left open for us, but to understand, by the Pharaoh of the title here, not Necho, but his successor Hophra: this has been suggested by Rashi, who refers to Jer_37:5, Jer_37:11, and by Perizonius, in his Origg. Aegypt. p. 459, who founds on the notices of Herodotus (ii. 261) and of Diodorus Siculus, i. 68, regarding the naval battle between Apries on the one hand and the Cyprians and Phoenicians on the other. From these notices, it appears pretty certain that Pharaoh-Hophra sought to avenge the defeat of Necho on the Chaldeans, and to extend the power of Egypt in Asia. Hence it is also very probable that he took Gaza, with the view of getting into his hands this key of the highway to Egypt. This assumption we regard as the most probable, since nothing has been made out against it; there are no 5

6. sufficient grounds for the opinion that this prophecy belongs to the same time as that in Jer 46. Contents of the Prophecy. - From the north there pours forth a river, inundating fields and cities, whereupon lamentation begins. Every one flees in haste before the sound of the hostile army, for the day of desolation is come on all Philistia and Phoenicia (Jer_ 47:2-4). The cities of Philistia mourn, for the sword of the Lord is incessantly active among them (Jer_47:5-7). This brief prophecy thus falls into two strophes: in the first (Jer_47:2-4), the ruin that is breaking over Philistia is described; in the second (Jer_ 47:5-7), its operation on the country and on the people. CALVIN, "Jeremiah prophesies here against the Philistines, who were enemies to the Israelites, and had contrived against them many cruel and unjust things. There is then no doubt, but that God intended to testify, by this prophecy, his love towards the Israelites, for he undertook their cause, and avenged the wrongs done to them. We hence perceive why God had predicted the ruin of the Philistines, even that the Israelites might know his paternal love towards them, as he set himself against their enemies; and thus he gave them a reason for patience, because it behooved them to wait until God fulfilled this prophecy. And he points out the time, Before Pharaoh smote Aza, or Gaza. The ancient Gaza, as far as we can find out, was near the sea; but after it was destroyed, another was built, which is mentioned by Luke, (Acts 8:26;) it appears from heathen writers that it was a celebrated city and opulent. But they are mistaken who think that its name is derived from the Persic word “Gaza,” which means treasures; for they say, that when Cambyses led an army against Egypt, he left there his riches. But the word ‫,עזה‬ Oze, is a very ancient Hebrew word; and it is well known that the ‫,ע‬ oin, has been pronounced like our g; and this is the case as to other words, as for instance, Gomorrah, ‫,עמרה‬ the ‫,ע‬ oin, has the sound of ‫,ג‬ gimel; so also ‫,צער‬ Tsor, the Greek and Latin interpreters have rendered it, Segor. Then Gaza has not derived its name from treasures, but it is a Hebrew word, signifying fortitude or strength. Now Jeremiah says, that he prophesied against the Philistines before Pharaoh smote that city, but he did not demolish it. But we see that the Prophet threatens nothing to it from the Egyptians, but rather from the Chaldeans. Why then does he speak here of Pharaoh? We must refer to history, and then we shall see what the design of the Holy Spirit was. When Pharaoh came to bring assistance to the Jews under Zedekiah, as we have already seen, he was soon compelled to return to Egypt, for the Chaldeans, having raised the siege, went against the Egyptians; for if they routed them, they knew that they could soon possess themselves of the whole of Judea. Haying then left the Jews for a time, they went against the Egyptians. Pharaoh, possessing no confidence in himself, as I have said, retreated; but he plundered Gaza in his way, because it was very hostile to the Jews; and he wished to shew that he did not come altogether in vain, though this afforded no relief to the Jews. But thus in things of 6

7. nought earthly kings shew off themselves. Pharaoh then at that time plundered Gaza, but he did not retain it. At this time Jeremiah predicted greater calamities. And this ought to be carefully noticed, for there would be no reason why the Prophet spake of the Philistines, except, he had respect to something farther. Let us now then come to the second verse: COFFMAN, "Verse 1 JEREMIAH 47 THE PROPHECY AGAINST PHILISTIA This little chapter deals with the prophecy against the Philistines, and also the coastal cities of Tyre and Sidon, in other words, the western coastline of Palestine. The big problem to which commentators usually address most of their comments on this chapter regards Jeremiah 47:1. Jeremiah 47:1 "The word of Jehovah that came to Jeremiah the prophet concerning the Philistines, before that Pharaoh smote Gaza." "Before that Pharaoh smote Gaza ..." (Jeremiah 47:10). What makes this difficult is that there is no hint here of "which Pharaoh" is meant. Three different dates are suggested for the capture of Gaza mentioned here. (1) Pharaoh-Necho marched against Babylon in 609 B.C., that being when Josiah opposed him and was killed at Megiddo. It is not certainly known, but it is supposed that Pharaoh-Necho might have taken and fortified Gaza at the beginning of that campaign in order to secure his eventual retreat. (2) It has also been suggested that this same Pharaoh-Necho, severely defeated at Carchemish, took Gaza and fortified it, as a bastion against Nebuchadnezzar's following him into Egypt. (3) Another king, Pharaoh-Hophra (588-570 B.C.) is alleged to have taken Gaza in an expedition against Tyre and Sidon. J. R. Dummelow mentions all three of these possibilities.[1] The trouble with finding any certainty in the answer is due to, "Our ignorance of contemporary history."[2] Other dates for Pharaoh's capture of Gaza, as mentioned here, have been proposed as 608 B.C.,[3] and 605-604 B.C.[4] Our own preference for the date is grounded in our conviction that the Jeremiahic prophecy of the Babylonian campaign against Jerusalem, Egypt, Philistia, and the whole region was written well in advance of the actual advance of the Babylonians, and in fact, at a time when Egypt, not Babylon, was the power most people feared. The weight of this first verse, as we understand it is, therefore: "At a time when 7

8. Pharaoh of Egypt was the dominating power, even at that early time, Jeremiah prophesied the great flood of the Babylonian invasion `from the north.'" Another excellent reason for dating this prophecy prior to 609 B.C., is seen in the fact that, according to the Babylonian Chronicle for the year 604 B.C., "Nebuchadnezzar marched against Ashkelon, took its king captive, carried off booty, and prisoners, turning the city into ruins and a heap of rubble."[5] This of course, is a complete fulfillment of Jeremiah's prophecy. We cannot believe that Jeremiah's prophecy of that destroying flood from the north was a "prophecy after the event," but that it came long before the actual destruction; and that conviction limits this writer to the conclusion that the date of the prophecy was before the death of Josiah in 609 B.C. Certainly, our guess on this is as good as anyone's! We are glad to note that R. K. Harrison, writing in the Tyndale Commentaries also favored this date.[6] Jeremiah is not the only one who prophesied against the Philistines. Amos 1:6-8; Ezekiel 25:15-17; Isaiah 14:28-31; and Zephaniah 2:4-7, are others. HISTORY OF THE PHILISTINES The Philistines were a vigorous people who migrated to the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea from the Island of Crete in very early times, in fact, giving their name (Palestine) to the whole area. Israel never was able to drive them out of the land; but, under king David, they did submit to the government of Israel. However, in the days of the divided kingdom, they quickly regained their independence, which they maintained through many military operations against them through the ages, which gradually weakened them, leading to their final conquest by the Maccabees in the second century B.C. From this time, they seem to have been totally merged with Israel. Their principal cities were Ekron, Ashkelon, Ashdod, Gath and Gaza. COKE, ". Before that Pharaoh smote Gaza— When the country was in seeming quiet and security. The destruction of Gaza probably followed Pharaoh's victories at Megiddo and Carchemish, when Judaea became tributary to him. See 2 Chronicles 35:20; 2 Chronicles 36:3. This prophesy was the more remarkable, as at the time of its delivery there was a common hatred to the Jews between the Chaldeans and the Philistines. See Grotius. EXPOSITOR'S BIBLE COMMENTARY, "THE PHILISTINES Jeremiah 47:1-7 "O sword of Jehovah, how long will it be ere thou be quiet? put up thyself into thy 8

9. scabbard; rest, and be still."- Jeremiah 47:6 ACCORDING to the title placed at the head of this prophecy, it was uttered "before Pharaoh smote Gaza." The Pharaoh is evidently Pharaoh Necho, and this capture of Gaza was one of the incidents of the campaign which opened with the victory at Megiddo and concluded so disastrously at Carchemish. Our first impulse is to look for some connection between this incident and the contents of the prophecy: possibly the editor who prefixed the heading may have understood by the northern enemy Pharaoh Necho on his return from Carchemish; but would Jeremiah have described a defeated army thus? "Behold, waters rise out of the north, and become an overflowing torrent; They overflow the land, and all that is therein, the city and its inhabitants. Men cry out, and all the inhabitants of the land howl, At the sound of the stamping of the hoofs of his stallions, At the rattling of his chariots and the rumbling of his wheels." Here as elsewhere the enemy from the north is Nebuchadnezzar. Pharaohs might come and go, winning victories and taking cities, but these broken reeds count for little; not they, but the king of Babylon is the instrument of Jehovah’s supreme purpose. The utter terror caused by the Chaldean advance is expressed by a striking figure:- "The fathers look not back to their children for slackness of hands." Their very bodies are possessed and crippled with fear, their palsied muscles cannot respond to the impulses of natural affection; they can do nothing but hurry on in headlong flight, unable to look round or stretch out a helping hand to their children:- "Because of the day that cometh for the spoiling of all the Philistines, For cutting off every ally that remaineth unto Tyre and Zidon: For Jehovah spoileth the Philistines the remnant of the coast of Caphtor. Baldness cometh upon Gaza; Ashkelon is destroyed: O remnant of the Anakim, how long wilt thou cut thyself?" This list is remarkable both for what it includes and what it omits. In order to understand the reference to Tyre and Zidon, we must remember that 9

10. Nebuchadnezzar’s expedition was partly directed against these cities, with which the Philistines had evidently been allied. The Chaldean king would hasten the submission of the Phoenicians, by cutting off all hope of succour from without. There are various possible reasons why out of the five Philistine cities only two- Ashkelon and Gaza-are mentioned; Ekron, Gath, and Ashdod may have been reduced to comparative insignificance. Ashdod had recently been taken by Psammetichus after a twenty-nine years’ siege. Or the names of two of these cities may be given by way of paronomasia in the text: Ashdod may be suggested by the double reference to the spoiling and the spoiler, Shdod and Shoded; Gath may be hinted at by the word used for the mutilation practised by mourners, Tithgoddadi, and by the mention of the Anakim, who are connected with Gath, Ashdod, and Gaza in Joshua 11:22. As Jeremiah contemplates this fresh array of victims of Chaldean cruelty, he is moved to protest against the weary monotony of ruin:- "O sword of Jehovah, how long will it be ere thou be quiet? Put up thyself into thy scabbard; rest, and be still." The prophet ceases to be the mouthpiece of God, and breaks out into the cry of human anguish. How often since, amid the barbarian inroads that overwhelmed the Roman Empire, amid the prolonged horrors of the Thirty Years’ War, amid the carnage of the French Revolution, men have uttered a like appeal to an unanswering and relentless Providence! Indeed, not in war only, but even in peace, the tide of human misery and sin often seems to flow, century after century, with undiminished volume, and ever and again a vain "How long" is wrung from pallid and despairing lips. For the Divine purpose may not be hindered, and the sword of Jehovah must still strike home. "How can it be quiet, seeing that Jehovah hath given it a charge? Against Ashkelon and against the seashore, there hath He appointed it." Yet Ashkelon survived to be a stronghold of the Crusaders, and Gaza to be captured by Alexander and even by Napoleon. Jehovah has other instruments besides His devastating sword; the victorious endurance and recuperative vitality of men and nations also come from Him. "Come and let us return unto Jehovah: For He hath torn, and He will heal us; He hath smitten, and He will bind us up." [Hosea 6:1] 10

11. PETT, " Verses 1-7 C). Prophecy Concerning Philistia And Its Great Cities Including Within It A Word Against Tyre and Sidon (Jeremiah 47:1-7). To the west of Judah was Philistia, with its great semi-independent cities such as Gaza (the Azzah of Jeremiah 25:20) and Ashkelon (along with Ekron and the remnant of Ashdod - Jeremiah 25:20, and earlier, Gath), and to the north-west the Phoenician cities of Tyre and Sidon. The Philistines had been a constant thorn in the side of Israel ever since they had arrived from the Aegean in the Coastal Plain around 1200 BC where, having been repulsed by Egypt, they had established themselves as a military elite over the Canaanites on the Coastal Plain. Indeed during the Judges period they had almost swallowed up central Israel and Judah, a situation which was partly alleviated by Samuel and was finally solved by David. After David any Philistine encroachment was limited. But ruled over by five semi- independent ‘tyrants’, and relatively strong in themselves, they had still caused trouble for Israel/Judah, either by their belligerence at times of weakness (compare Ezekiel 25:15-17), or by persuading them to enter into alliances against a common enemy. Their own problem was that they were in the direct path of any northern incursion against Egypt, for invaders from the north would march down the Coastal Plain through Philistia. Jeremiah 47:1 ‘The word (dbr) of YHWH which came to Jeremiah the prophet concerning the Philistines, before Pharaoh smote Gaza.’ The timing of the prophecy is indicated by the fact that it was ‘before Pharaoh smote Gaza’. This may suggest a date between 609-600 BC. During that period the Egyptians were active in the region a number of times, including their march to the aid of the Assyrians in 609 BC, as a result of which Josiah was slain, their control over the area until their defeat at Carchemish in 605 BC, and their subsequent repulsion of the Babylonians in that area in 601 BC. Herodotus, 2:159, says that Pharaoh Necho took Kadytis, which may well be Greek for Gaza , in 609 BC, presumably on his march north, and the Babylonian Chronicles indicate that Necho may have attacked and defeated Gaza in 601 BC. If this be the case the prophecy occurs either in the latter part of the reign of Josiah or in that of Jehoiakim. The reference to the sacking of Ashkelon (Jeremiah 47:7) may point to a date prior to 604 BC when the Babylonian Chronicles tell us that Nebuchadrezzar sacked Ashkelon. Some view it as unlikely that Pharaoh Necoh ‘smote Gaza’, and argue that this refers to a later Pharaoh, namely Pharaoh Hophra, who is known to have been widely belligerent.. PULPIT, "Verses 1-7 11

12. PROPHECY ON THE PHILISTINES. EXPOSITION It is clear from the contents of the prophecy (and the inference is thoroughly confirmed by its position) that it was written after the battle of Carchemish, with reference to the dreaded northern foe—Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon. The prophecy against Egypt precedes, because Egypt was by far the most important of the nations threatened by the advance of Nebuchadnezzar. But chronologically and geographically, it ought rather to have been placed at the end of the series, for Palestine had to be conquered before a design upon Egypt could have a reasonable chance of success. The commentators have given themselves much unnecessary trouble with the heading in Jeremiah 47:1, which assigns the date of the prophecy to a period prior (as it would seem) to the battle of Carchemish. They forget that the headings are not to be received without criticism as historical evidence for the date of the prophecies. Knowing, as we do, that the prophecies were edited, not only by the disciples of the prophets, but by students of the Scriptures long after their time, it is gratuitously embarrassing one's self to give as much historical weight to the statement of a heading as to a clear inference from the contents of a prophecy. No doubt Providence watched over the movements of the editors; they must even be credited with a degree of inspiration, so far as moral and religious truths are concerned; but they were not exempt from being dependent on the ordinary sources of information in matters of history. It would seem, then, that, out of the various sieges of Gaza in the last century of the Jewish state, one in particular had fixed itself in the memory of the Jews; and it was not a siege by the Babylonians, but by the Egyptians. Seeing a reference to Gaza in Jeremiah 47:5, a late editor of Jeremiah appended to the heading already in existence the words, "before that Pharaoh smote Gaza." He was wrong in so doing, but he only carried out, like many favourite modern preachers, what has been called the atomistic method of exegesis, by which a single verse is isolated from its context, and interpreted with total disregard of the rest of the passage. But which Pharaoh did this editor mean? and when did he lay siege to Gaza? The general view is that he means Pharaoh-necho, who, according to Herodotus (2:159), first defeated "the Syrians at Magdolus," and then "made himself master of Cadytis, a large city of Syria." It is assumed that Magdolus is a mistake for Megiddo, and that Cadytis means Gaza; and the former supposition is probable enough (a similar confusion has been made by certain manuscripts at Matthew 15:39; comp. the Authorized and Revised Versions); but the latter is rather doubtful. It is true that in Jeremiah 3:5 Herodotus speaks of "the country from Phoenicia to the borders of the city Cadyfis" as belonging to "the Palestine Syrians;" but is it not more probable that Herodotus mistook the position of Jerusalem (Cadushta, "the holy (city)," in Aramaic) than that he called Gaza "a city almost as large as Sardis"? Gaza was never called" the holy city;" Jerusalem was. Sir Gardner Wilkinson (ap. Rawlinson's 'Herodotus') takes a different view. 12

13. According to him (and to Rashi long before) it was Pharaoh-hophra or Apries who captured Gaza. We know from Herodotus (2:161) that this king waged war with Phoenicia, which is, perhaps, to be taken in connection with the notice in Jeremiah 37:5, Jeremiah 37:11, of the diversion created by an Egyptian army during the siege of Jerusalem. This hypothesis is to a certain extent confirmed by the mention of "Tyrus and Zidon" in Jeremiah 37:4, but stands in much need of some direct historical confirmation. Jeremiah 47:1 Against the Philistines; rather, concerning (as usual in similar cases). Before that Pharaoh, etc. (see introduction to chapter). 2 This is what the Lord says: “See how the waters are rising in the north; they will become an overflowing torrent. They will overflow the land and everything in it, the towns and those who live in them. The people will cry out; all who dwell in the land will wail BARNES, "Waters rise up - A metaphor for the assembling of an army (compare the marginal references). Out of the north - The Chaldaean army must cross the Euphrates at Carchemish. An overflowing flood - Or, “torrent.” To understand the metaphors of the Bible we must keep the natural phenomena of the country in mind. In Palestine rivers are torrents, dashing furiously along in the rainy seasons, and dry, or nearly so, in the summer. All that is therein - The marginal rendering contrasts the wealth of Egypt, which forms its fullness, and the inhabitants. 13

14. CLARKE, "Waters rise up out of the north - Waters is a common prophetic image for a multitude of people. The north here, as in other places of this prophecy, means Chaldea. GILL, "Thus saith the Lord, behold, waters rise up out of the north,.... Meaning an army of men, which should come in great numbers, and with great force and rapidity, like an overflowing flood. So the Targum, "behold, people shall come from the north;'' that is, from Chaldea, which lay north of Palestine: and shall be an overflowing flood, and shall overflow the land, and all that is therein; or, "the fulness of it" (u); the land of the Philistines, and carry off the men and cattle, and all the riches thereof; the city, and them that dwell therein; not any particular or single city, as Gaza; but the several cities of Palestine, and the inhabitants of them: then the men shall cry, and all the inhabitants of the land shall howl; not being able to do anything else; not to defend themselves, their families, and property; and seeing nothing but ruin and destruction before their eyes. JAMISON, "waters — (Isa_8:7). The Chaldeans from the north are compared to the overwhelming waters of their own Euphrates. The smiting of Gaza was to be only the prelude of a greater disaster to the Philistines. Nebuzara-dan was left by Nebuchadnezzar, after he had taken Jerusalem, to subdue the rest of the adjoining cities and country. CALVIN, "The Prophet, no doubt, wished to remind the Jews that it would only be a prelude when Gaza was plundered, and that a far more grievous punishment was impending over that ungodly nation, which had done so many wrongs to God’s people. For if Gaza had suffered only that loss, the Jews might have complained of their lot, as those ungodly men who had acted so wickedly and in so many ways provoked God’s vengeance, had lightly suffered. They might then have objected and said, “What can this mean? God has indeed lightly smitten Gaza; but we would thus willingly redeem our lives: as those who wish to avoid shipwreck cast forth their goods into the sea, and whatever precious thing they may have; so we, if life only be given us, are prepared to part with all our property.” The Jews then might have thus deplored their lot. Hence the Prophet says, that something more grievous awaited that city. “When ye see Gaza plundered,” he says, “think not that this is the last judgment of God; for, behold, waters shall rise from the north, that is, the Chaldeans shall complete the work of executing God’s vengeance; the Egyptians shall only plunder the wealth of the city, which will be endurable; but at length the Chaldeans will 14

15. come to exercise boundless cruelty, and they shall be like a flood, and shall overwhelm Gaza, so as utterly to destroy it.” We now, then, see what the Prophet meant: there is implied a comparison between the plunder effected by the Egyptians and the final ruin brought on it by the Chaldeans. The rising or ascending of waters is evidently a metaphorical expression. He adds that they would be an overflowing torrent, that is, the waters would be like an inundating river; and they will inundate the land. He speaks of the land of the Philistines, where this city was. They will inundate, he says, the land and its fullness Fullness is taken in Hebrew for opulence or wealth; trees, corn, and animals are called the fullness of the land; for when the land brings forth no corn and no fruits, when it breeds no animals, it is deemed naked and empty. As then God clothes the land with such ornaments, the land is said to be full, when it abounds in those productions with which God enriches it. he afterwards speaks of men, the city, he says; he speaks not now of the city Gaza, but of the whole country; then the singular number is to be taken here for the plural. At length he says, Cry shall men, and howl shall all the inhabitants of the land The number as to the verbs is here changed, but there is no ambiguity in the meaning. And by these words the Prophet intimates, that a most grievous punishment would be inflicted on the Philistines, so that they would not only cry for sorrow, but even howl. It follows, — COFFMAN, "Verse 2 "Thus saith Jehovah: Behold, waters rise up out of the north, and shall become an overflowing stream, and shall overflow the land and all that is therein, the city and them that dwell therein; and the men shall cry, and all the inhabitants of the land shall wail. At the noise of the stamping of the hoofs of his strong ones, at the rushing of his chariots, at the rumbling of his wheels, the fathers look not back to their children for feebleness of hands." "Waters rise up out of the north ..." (Jeremiah 47:2). Isaiah also compared the ravages of the great Assyrian army as the Euphrates River at flood (Isaiah 8:7,8); and here Jeremiah uses the same metaphor to describe the ravages of the Babylonians. "Fathers look not back to their children for feebleness of hands ..." (Jeremiah 47:3). This depicts the terror stricken fathers as so overcome with fear that they could not even try to protect their children. It is an exceedingly powerful comment on the kind of terror inspired by the terrible armies of the Babylonians. PETT, "Jeremiah 47:2 ‘Thus says YHWH: “Behold, waters rise up out of the north, 15

16. And will become an overflowing stream, And will overflow the land and all that is in it, The city and those who dwell in it, And the men will cry, And all the inhabitants of the land will wail.” That this refers to an enemy ‘out of the north’ and not to Pharaoh Necho points to a coming Babylonian invasion. For the picture used compare Jeremiah 46:8; Isaiah 8:7. The invasion is likened to a great flood which inundates the land and overwhelms the cities, something illustrated in the following verses. The consequence is that the people wail and mourn because of what has come on them. PULPIT, "Waters rise up. The prophets think in figures, and no figure is so familiar to them (alas for the unstable condition of those times!) as that of an overflowing torrent for an invading army (see on Jeremiah 46:8, and add to the parallel passages Isaiah 28:18; Ezekiel 26:19; Daniel 11:10). Out of the north. To suppose that this refers to Pharaoh-necho returning from Carchemish seems forced and unnatural. If Necho conquered Gaza at the period supposed, it would be on his way to Carchemish, and not on his return. Besides," the north" is the standing symbol for the home of the dreaded Assyrian and Babylonian foes (see on Jeremiah 1:14). Isaiah had uttered a very similar prediction when the Assyrian hosts were sweeping through Palestine (Isaiah 14:31). An overflowing flood; rather, torrent. The same phrase occurs in Isaiah 30:28, where the "breath" of the angry God is described with this figurative expression. It is in autumn time that the torrents of Palestine become dangerous, and water courses, dry or almost dry in summer (comp. Jeremiah 15:18), become filled with a furiously rushing stream. 3 at the sound of the hooves of galloping steeds, at the noise of enemy chariots and the rumble of their wheels. Parents will not turn to help their children; their hands will hang limp. 16

17. BARNES, "His strong horses - War-horses, chargers. The rushing of his chariots - Rather, the rattling, the crashing noise which they make as they advance. For feebleness of hands - The Philistines flee in such panic that a father would not even turn round to see whether his sons were effecting their escape or not. CLARKE, "The stamping of the hoofs - At the galloping sound, - Quadrupedante putrem sonitu quatit ungula campum, is a line of Virgil, (Aen. 8:596), much celebrated; and quoted here by Blayney, where the galloping sound of the horses’ hoofs is heard. In the stamping of the horses, the rushing of the chariots, and the rumbling of the wheels, our translators intended to convey the sense by the sound of the words, and they have not been unsuccessful. Their translation of the original is at the same time sufficiently literal. The fathers shall not look back - Though their children are left behind, they have neither strength nor courage to go back to bring them off. GILL, "At the noise of the stamping of the hoofs of his strong horses,.... The noise of the cavalry of Nebuchadnezzar's army, as they came marching on towards the country of the Philistines; who, being mounted on strong prancing horses, made a great noise as they came along, and were heard at a distance: at the rushing of his chariots, and at the rumbling, of his wheels; the rattling and clatter the chariot wheels made; in which rode the chief officers and generals, with other mighty men: chariots were much used in war in those times: the fathers shall not look back to their children for feebleness of hands; they should be so frightened at the approach of the enemy, and flee with much precipitancy to provide for their own safety, that they should not think of their children, or stay to deliver and save them, the most near and dear unto them; being so terrified as not to be able to lift up their hands to defend themselves, and protect their children. The Targum is, "the fathers shall not look back to have mercy on their children;'' in their fright should forget their natural affection to them, and not so much as look back with an eye of pity and compassion on them; so intent upon their own deliverance and safety. JAMISON, "(Compare Jer_4:29). fathers ... not look back to ... children — Each shall think only of his own safety, not even the fathers regarding their own children. So desperate shall be the calamity that 17

18. men shall divest themselves of the natural affections. for feebleness of hands — The hands, the principal instruments of action, shall have lost all power; their whole hope shall be in their feet. CALVIN, "He continues the same subject; for he says, that so grievous would be the calamity, that fathers would not have a care for their children, which is a proof of extreme sorrow; for men even in adversity do not divest themselves of their natural feelings. When a father has children, he would willingly undergo ten deaths, if necessary, in order to save their life; but when men forget that they are parents, it is a proof, as I have said, of the greatest grief, as though men, having changed their nature, were become logs of wood. But the Prophet expresses the cause, not only of sorrow, but also of anxiety; From the voice, he says, of the noise of the hoofs of his valiant ones; he does not name the horses, but ‫,פרסות‬ peresut, refer to horses; hoofs, he says, shall make a great noise by stamping. And then such would be the commotion by the driving of chariots, and such a tumult would the revolving wheels create, that fathers, being astonished, would not. look on their children At length, he adds, through dissolution of hands By dissolution of hands he means loss of courage or fainting. For as vigor spreads from the heart through every part of the body, so also the bands are the chief instruments of all actions. When therefore the bands are relaxed and become feeble, it follows that men become as it were inanimate. The Prophet now means that the Philistines would become like the dead, so as not to move, no, not even their fingers; and why? because they would be so terrified by the stamping of horses, by the commotion of chariots, and by the rumbling of wheels, that they would lose their senses. It follows, — PETT, "Jeremiah 47:3-4 “At the noise of the stamping of the hoofs of his strong ones, At the rushing of his chariots, at the rumbling of his wheels, The fathers do not look back to their children, Because of feebleness of hands; Because of the day which comes to destroy all the Philistines, To cut off from Tyre and Sidon every helper who remains, For YHWH will destroy the Philistines, The remnant of the isle of Caphtor.” The vivid picture portrays the awfulness of seeing the invaders arrive in irresistible 18

19. force. The hoofbeats of the horses and the noise of the chariots brings terror to the neighbourhood such that children are abandoned in the haste to get away. It is a day of destruction and it is a day which will destroy ‘all the Philistines’, and will include their allies in Tyre and Sidon (compare Psalms 83:7). And all this was because YHWH has determined to destroy the Philistines who had previously arrived (among the Sea People) from Crete and the Aegean, taking over parts of YHWH’s land and harassing His people. Once again we see that YHWH’s purposes are being brought about by the activities of men, and that although His action is sometimes delayed He never forgets how His people have been treated. ‘To cut off from Tyre and Sidon every helper who remains.’ This may suggest that Philistia’s great fault in Nebuchadrezzar’s eyes (their being seen as ‘the helper who remains’) was that they had assisted Tyre and Sidon in their struggle against Babylon, possibly by rebelling at the same time. Tyre, which had gained its independence at the demise of the Assyrian Empire, resisted Nebuchadrezzar’s siege for thirteen years, and proved a constant thorn in the flesh to him. ‘The remnant of the isle of Caphtor.’ According to Deuteronomy 2:23; Amos 9:7; the Philistines came from Caphtor, which many see as referring to Crete and its connections. In the second millennium BC the Minoan empire was extensive. But the original origins of the Philistines lay in North Africa (Genesis 10:13-14). PULPIT, "A fine specimen of Hebrew word painting. The rushing of his chariots. "Rushing" has the sense of the German rauschen, to make a rustling, murmuring sound. It is used (but as the equivalent of a different Hebrew word) in the Authorized Version of Isaiah 18:1-7 :12, 13 of the confused sound made by an army in motion. In the present passage, the Hebrew word means something more definite than that in Isaiah, l.c.; it is the "crashing" of an earthquake, or (as here) the "rattling" of chariots. The rumbling of his wheels. "Rumbling" is a happy equivalent. The Hebrew (hamon) is the word referred to in the preceding note as meaning an indefinite confused sound. The fathers shall not look back to their children, etc. An awful picture, and still more effective in the concise language of the original. The Hebrew Scriptures excel (as still more strikingly, but with too great a want of moderation, does the Koran) in the sublime of terror. So overpowering shall the panic be that fathers will not even turn an eye to their helpless children. Observe, it is said "the fathers," not "the mothers." The picture is poetically finer than that in Deuteronomy 28:56, Deuteronomy 28:57, because the shade of colouring is a degree softer. Feebleness of hands. A common expression for the enervation produced by extreme terror (see Jeremiah 6:24; Isaiah 13:7; Ezekiel 7:17; Nahum 2:11). 19

20. 4 For the day has come to destroy all the Philistines and to remove all survivors who could help Tyre and Sidon. The Lord is about to destroy the Philistines, the remnant from the coasts of Caphtor.[a] BARNES, "Because of the day that cometh to spoil - “Because” the day has come “to devastate.” The Philistines are called Tyre’s remaining (i. e., last) helper, because all besides who could have assisted her have already succumbed to the Chaldaean power. The judgment upon Philistia was in connection with that upon Tyre, and it was fulfilled by expeditions sent out by Nebuchadnezzar under him lieutenants to ravage the country and supply his main army with provisions. The country of Caphtor - The coastland of Caphtor. The Philistines came from the coast of the Egyptian Delta, and are called “a remnant” because they had been greatly reduced in numbers, partly by the long war of Psammetichus against Ashdod, partly by the capture of Gaza Jer_47:1, and partly by Assyrian invasions. CLARKE, "To spoil all the Philistines - These people, of whom there were five seignories, occupied the coast of the Mediterranean Sea, to the south of the Phoenicians. Tyrus and Zidon - Places sufficiently remarkable both in the Old and New Testament, and in profane history. They belonged to the Phoenicians; and at this time were depending on the succor of their allies, the Philistines. But their expectation was cut off. The remnant of the country of Caphtor - Crete, or Cyprus. Some think it was a district along the coast of the Mediterranean, belonging to the Philistines; others, that the Cappadocians are meant. GILL, "Because of the day that cometh to spoil all the Philistines,.... The time appointed by the Lord for their destruction, which should be universal: and to cut off from Tyrus and Zidon every helper that remaineth; these were cities in Phoenicia, which bordered on the country of the Philistines, who were their auxiliaries in time of distress; but now, being wasted themselves, could give them no help when Nebuchadnezzar attacked them; as he did Tyre particularly, which he 20

21. besieged thirteen years, and at last destroyed it, and Zidon with it: for the Lord will spoil the Philistines, the remnant of the country of Caphtor; these last are not put by way of apposition, as if they were the same with the Philistines, though they were near of kin to them, coming from Casluhim; who were the posterity of Mizraim, as well as Caphtorim, Gen_10:13; indeed the Philistines are said to be brought from Caphtor, Amo_9:7; being very probably taken captive by them, but rescued from them; and now in confederacy with them, and like to share the same fate as they. The Targum renders it, "the remnant of the island of the Cappadocians;'' and so the Vulgate Latin version. Some think the Colchi, others that the Cretians, are meant. R. Saadiah by Caphtor understands Damiata, a city in Egypt; which is the same with Pelusium or Sin, the strength of Egypt, Eze_30:15; and it is usual with the Jews (w) to call this place Caphutkia, the same with Caphtor, they say; and, in Arabic, Damiata. JAMISON, "every helper — The Philistines, being neighbors to the Phoenicians of Tyre and Sidon, would naturally make common cause with them in the case of invasion. These cities would have no helper left when the Philistines should be destroyed. Caphtor — the Caphtorim and Philistines both came from Mizraim (Gen_10:13, Gen_10:14). The Philistines are said to have been delivered by God from Caphtor (Amo_ 9:7). Perhaps before the time of Moses they dwelt near and were subjugated by the Caphtorim (Deu_2:23) and subsequently delivered. “The remnant” means here those still left after the Egyptians had attacked Gaza and Palestine; or rather, those left of the Caphtorim after the Chaldeans had attacked them previous to their attack on the Philistines. Some identify Caphtor with Cappadocia; Gesenius, with Crete (Eze_25:16, Cherethims); Kitto, Cyprus. Between Palestine and Idumea there was a city Caparorsa; and their close connection with Palestine on the one hand, and Egypt (Mizraim, Gen_ 10:13, Gen_10:14) on the other hand, makes this locality the most likely. CALVIN, "Jeremiah shews now more clearly, and without a figure, his meaning, even that destruction would come on the Philistines when their time was completed. And he mentions Tyre and Sidon, neighboring cities, and. formerly under their own jurisdiction. But Tyre in the time of Isaiah had its own king; yet afterwards in the time of Alexander the Great the city was free, as it is well known. These, however, were cities of Palestine, and the people called then Philistines were contiguous to these cities, so that the Prophet rightly includes them as it were in the same bundle. Coming, he says, is the day to destroy all the Philistines, and also to cut off the most opulent cities, even Tyre and Sidon Sidon was more ancient than Tyre; but the daughter devoured the mother, according to the common proverb. For Tyre in time flourished, and Sidon became almost forsaken. It, however, always retained a name and also some wealth on account of its commodious harbor. But Tyre was an island in the time of Alexander the Great; and was therefore more commodious for ships, as it had many harbors. But the Prophet connects them both together, because they formed then a part of 21

22. the land of the Philistines. There is no doubt but that the destruction was especially denounced on these cities, that the Jews might know that nothing would be safe throughout the whole land, inasmuch as these cities, the defenses, as it were, of the whole country, were destined to perish. He farther adds, on account of the day which is coming against all the helping remnants, for Jehovah will destroy, that is, he will destroy the Philistines, who are the remnants (it is indeed another word, but means the same) of the island of Oaphtor He confirms here the same thing in other words, even that God’s hand would be on these cities and the whole land, though external aids might come; and these he calls all the remnants of courage, or auxiliaries. Though they might have many friends alive, ready to bring them help, yet the Lord would demolish them all, as it follows,for Jehovah will destroy the Philistines, the remnants of the island of Caphtor By the island of Caphtor he no doubt means Palestine; but it is doubtful for what reason the Hebrews called the Cappadocians Caphtorim. As it is hardly credible that they who inhabited this land had come from so far a country, interpreters have supposed that others, and not Cappadocians, are here called Caphtorim. Yet Moses intimates (Deuteronomy 2:23) that those who inhabited the land from Gaza to Jordan, were not natives, that is, were not born in those places, but that they were a wandering people; for he says, that “The Caphtorim went forth and dwelt there in the place of the natives.” We may hence conclude that the Caphtorim were foreigners, who, wandering from their own country, sought an habitation elsewhere, and took possession of this land. Whether they were Cappadocians, I leave undecided; nor ought we to toil much on a subject of this kind. But as the Caphtorim had emigrated into Palestine, Jeremiah calls that region the remnants of the island of Caphtor It follows, — COFFMAN, ""Because of the day that cometh to destroy all the Philistines, to cut off from Tyre and Sidon every helper that remaineth: for Jehovah will destroy the Philistines, the remnant of the isle of Caphtor. Baldness is upon Gaza; Ashkelon is brought to naught, the remnant of their valley: how long wilt thou cut thyself." "Remnant of the isle of Caphtor ..." (Jeremiah 47:4). "Caphtor is usually identified with Crete."[7] The mention of Tyre and Sidon here puzzles some writers, but, apparently, all that is meant is that the way was then open for Babylon to destroy those cities also, but no prophecy that their destruction would follow. "Baldness is upon Gaza ... how long wilt thou cut thyself" (Jeremiah 47:5). These were signs of grief and sorrow and are a prophecy of the terrible doom in store for 22

23. Philistia. "The remnant of their valley ..." (Jeremiah 47:5). John Bright stated that, "This makes no sense!"[8] But such a comment only means that the commentator does not understand it. Neither can this writer tell what it means; but we heartily agree with Bright that the rendition given in the LXX, which reads, "The remnant of the Anakim (the giants)," while tempting, "May be nothing but a guess on the part of the LXX."[9] PULPIT, "The day that cometh; rather, the day that hath come (i.e. shall have come). It is "the day of the Lord" that is meant, that revolutionary "shaking of all things" (to use Haggai's expression, Haggai 2:21), as to which see further in note on Jeremiah 46:10. To cut off … every helper that remaineth; i.e. every ally on whom they could still reckon. This passage favours the view that the judgment upon the Philistines took place at the same time as that upon Tyre. Nebuchadnezzar's object was to isolate Tyre and Sidon as completely as possible. The remnant. The Philistines had suffered so much from repeated invasions as to be only a "remnant" of the once powerful nation which oppressed Israel (see on Jeremiah 25:20). The country of Caphtor. Some would render "the coastland of Caphtor," but the idea of "coast" seems to be a secondary one, derived in certain passages from the context. Properly speaking, it is a poetic synonym for "land," and is generally applied to distant and (accidentally) maritime countries. "Caphtor" was understood by the old versions to be Cappadocia. But as the remains of the Cappadocian language point to a Persian origin of the population which spoke it, and as the Caphtorim originally came from Egypt, it is more plausible to suppose, with Ebers, that Caphtor was a coast district of North Egypt. Crete has also been thought of (comp. Amos 9:7; Genesis 10:14; Deuteronomy 2:23). 5 Gaza will shave her head in mourning; Ashkelon will be silenced. You remnant on the plain, how long will you cut yourselves? BARNES, "Baldness - Extreme mourning (see Jer_16:6). Is cut off - Others render, is speechless through grief. 23

24. With the remnant of their valley - Others, O remnant of their valley, how long wilt thou cut thyself? Their valley is that of Gaza and Ashkelon, the low-lying plain, usually called the Shefelah, which formed the territory of the Philistines. The reading of the Septuagint is remarkable: “the remnant of the Anakim,” which probably would mean Gath, the home of giants 1Sa_17:4. Jer_47:6. Or, Alas, Sword of Yahweh, how long wilt thou not rest? For the answer, see Jer_47:7. CLARKE, "Baldness is come upon Gaza - They have cut off their hair in token of deep sorrow and distress. Ashkelon is cut off - Or put to silence; another mark of the deepest sorrow. Ashkelon was one of the five seignories of the Philistines, Gaza was another. The remnant of their valley - Or plain; for the whole land of the Philistines was a vast plain, which extended along the coast of the Mediterranean Sea from Phoenicia to the frontiers of Egypt. The whole of this plain, the territory of the Philistines, shall be desolated. GILL, "Baldness is come upon Gaza,.... The Targum is, "vengeance is come to the inhabitants of Gaza.

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