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CHAPTER 33

Jer 33:1-26. Prophecy of the Restoration from Babylon, and of Messiah as King and Priest.

1. shut up—(Jer 32:2, 3; 2Ti 2:9). Though Jeremiah was shut up in bondage, the word of God was "not bound."

2. maker thereof—rather, "the doer of it," namely, that which Jeremiah is about to prophesy, the restoration of Israel, an act which is thought now impossible, but which the Almighty will effect.

formed it—namely, Jerusalem (Jer 32:44) [Calvin]. Rather, "that formed," that is, moulds His purpose into due shape for execution (Isa 37:26).

Lord … his name—(Ex 3:14, 15).

3. Call … I will answer—(Jer 29:12; Ps 91:15). Jeremiah, as the representative of the people of God, is urged by God to pray for that which God has determined to grant; namely, the restoration. God's promises are not to slacken, but to quicken the prayers of His people (Ps 132:13, 17; Isa 62:6, 7).

mighty thingsHebrew, "inaccessible things," that is, incredible, hard to man's understanding [Maurer], namely, the restoration of the Jews, an event despaired of. "Hidden," or "recondite" [Piscator].

thou knowest not—Yet God had revealed those things to Jeremiah, but the unbelief of the people in rejecting the grace of God had caused him to forget God's promise, as though the case of the people admitted of no remedy.

4. houses … thrown down by the mounts—namely, by the missiles cast from the besiegers' mounds (Jer 32:24); "and by the sword" follows properly, as, after missiles had prepared the way, the foe next advanced to close quarters "with the sword."

5. They—the Jews; the defenders of the "houses" (Jer 33:4), "come forward to fight with the Chaldeans," who burst into the city through the "thrown-down houses," but all the effect that they produce "is, to fill them (the houses) with" their own "dead bodies."

6. (Jer 30:17). The answer to Jeremiah's mournful question (Jer 8:22).

cure—literally, the long linen bandage employed in dressing wounds.

truth—that is, stability; I will bring forth for them abundant and permanent peace, that is, prosperity.

7. cause … to return—that is, reverse (Jer 33:11; Jer 32:44). The specification, both of "Judah" and "Israel," can only apply fully to the future restoration.

as at the first—(Isa 1:26).

8. cleanse—(Eze 36:25; Zec 13:1; Heb 9:13, 14). Alluding to the legal rites of purification.

all their iniquity … all their iniquities—both the principle of sin within, and its outward manifestations in acts. The repetition is in order that the Jews may consider how great is the grace of God in not merely pardoning (as to the punishment), but also cleansing them (as to the pollution of guilt); not merely one iniquity, but all (Mic 7:18).

9. it—the city.

a name … a praise—(Jer 13:11; Isa 62:7).

them—the inhabitants of Jerusalem.

they shall fear … for all the goodness—(Ps 130:4). The Gentiles shall be led to "fear" God by the proofs of His power displayed in behalf of the Jews; the ungodly among them shall "tremble" for fear of God's judgments on them; the penitent shall reverentially fear and be converted to Him (Ps 102:15; Isa 60:3).

10. ye say … desolate—(Jer 32:43).

11. (Jer 7:34; 16:9).

Praise the Lord, &c.—the words of Ps 136:1, which were actually used by the Jews at their restoration (Ezr 3:11).

sacrifice of praise—(Ps 107:22; 116:17). This shall continue when all other sacrifices shall be at an end.

12. habitation of shepherds … flocks—in contrast to Jer 33:10, "without man … inhabitant … without beast" (Jer 32:43; compare Jer 31:24; 50:19; Isa 65:10).

13. pass … under … hands of him that telleth them—Shepherds, in sending forth and bringing back their sheep to the folds, count them by striking each as it passes with a rod, implying the shepherd's provident care that not one should be lost (Le 27:32; Mic 7:14; compare Joh 10:28, 29; 17:12).

14. perform—"I will make to rise"; God's promise having for a time seemed to "lie" dead and abortive [Calvin].

15. Repeated from Jer 23:5.

the land—the Holy Land: Israel and Judah (Jer 23:6).

16. Jerusalem—In Jer 23:6, instead of this, it is "Israel." "The name" in the Hebrew has here to be supplied from that passage; and for "he" (Messiah, the antitypical "Israel"), the antecedent there (Isa 49:3), we have "she" here, that is, Jerusalem. She is called by the same name as Messiah, "The Lord Our Righteousness," by virtue of the mystical oneness between her (as the literal representative of the spiritual Church) and her Lord and Husband. Thus, whatever belongs to the Head belongs also to the members (Eph 5:30, 32). Hence, the Church is called "Christ" (Ro 16:7; 1Co 12:12). The Church hereby professes to draw all her righteousness from Christ (Isa 45:24, 25). It is for the sake of Jerusalem, literal and spiritual, that God the Father gives this name (Jehovah, Tsidkenu, "The Lord our Righteousness") to Christ.

17. The promises of perpetuity of the throne of David fulfilled in Messiah, the son of David (2Sa 7:16; 1Ki 2:4; Ps 89:4, 29, 36; compare Lu 1:32, 33).

18. Messiah's literal priesthood (Heb 7:17, 21, 24-28), and His followers' spiritual priesthood and sacrifices (Jer 33:11; Ro 12:1; 15:16; 1Pe 2:5, 9; Re 1:6), shall never cease, according to the covenant with Levi, broken by the priests, but fulfilled by Messiah (Nu 25:12, 13; Mal 2:4, 5, 8).

20. covenant of the day—that is, covenant with the day: answering to "covenant with David" (Jer 33:21, also Jer 33:25, "with day"; compare Jer 31:35, 36; Le 26:42; Ps 89:34, 37).

22. (Ge 15:5; 22:17). The blessing there promised belonged to all the tribes; here it is restricted to the family of David and the tribe of Levi, because it was on these that the welfare of the whole people rested. When the kingdom and priesthood flourish in the person of Messiah, the whole nation shall temporally and spiritually prosper.

24. this people—certain of the Jews, especially those who spoke with Jeremiah in the court of the prison (Jer 32:12; 38:1).

the two families—Judah and Israel.

before them—in their judgment. They suppose that I have utterly cast off Israel so as to he no more a nation. The expression, "My people," of itself, shows God has not cast off Israel for ever.

25. (Jer 31:35, 36; Ge 8:22; Ps 74:16, 17). I who have established the laws of nature am the same God who has made a covenant with the Church.

26. Isaac—(Ps 105:9; Am 7:9, 16).

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