Loading

Jeremiah Forty Six

by Dr. Henry M. Morris

(taken from the Defender's Study Bible)

Jeremiah 46:1 The word of the LORD which came to Jeremiah the prophet against the Gentiles;

against the Gentiles. Most of the book of Jeremiah consists of prophetic warnings to Israel, but Part VI (chapters 45-52) is devoted to prophecies against the Gentile nations that God had used to punish Israel (Egypt, Philistia, Tyre, Sidon, Moab, Ammon, Edom, Syria, Kedar, Hazor, Elam and especially Babylonia).

Jeremiah 46:2 Against Egypt, against the army of Pharaohnecho king of Egypt, which was by the river Euphrates in Carchemish, which Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon smote in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah.

Carchemish. Carchemish, on the upper Euphrates, had once been a Hittite capital. It was here, almost immediately after this prophecy of Jeremiah, that the armies of Babylon defeated the invading Egyptians (605 b.c.), the event which inaugurated the great neo-Babylonian empire of Nebuchadnezzar.

Jeremiah 46:3 Order ye the buckler and shield, and draw near to battle.

Jeremiah 46:4 Harness the horses; and get up, ye horsemen, and stand forth with your helmets; furbish the spears, and put on the brigandines.

Jeremiah 46:5 Wherefore have I seen them dismayed and turned away back? and their mighty ones are beaten down, and are fled apace, and look not back: for fear was round about, saith the LORD.

Jeremiah 46:6 Let not the swift flee away, nor the mighty man escape; they shall stumble, and fall toward the north by the river Euphrates.

Jeremiah 46:7 Who is this that cometh up as a flood, whose waters are moved as the rivers?

Jeremiah 46:8 Egypt riseth up like a flood, and his waters are moved like the rivers; and he saith, I will go up, and will cover the earth; I will destroy the city and the inhabitants thereof.

Jeremiah 46:9 Come up, ye horses; and rage, ye chariots; and let the mighty men come forth; the Ethiopians and the Libyans, that handle the shield; and the Lydians, that handle and bend the bow.

Jeremiah 46:10 For this is the day of the Lord GOD of hosts, a day of vengeance, that he may avenge him of his adversaries: and the sword shall devour, and it shall be satiate and made drunk with their blood: for the Lord GOD of hosts hath a sacrifice in the north country by the river Euphrates.

Jeremiah 46:11 Go up into Gilead, and take balm, O virgin, the daughter of Egypt: in vain shalt thou use many medicines; for thou shalt not be cured.

Jeremiah 46:12 The nations have heard of thy shame, and thy cry hath filled the land: for the mighty man hath stumbled against the mighty, and they are fallen both together.

Jeremiah 46:13 The word that the LORD spake to Jeremiah the prophet, how Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon should come and smite the land of Egypt.

Babylon should come. After defeating the Egyptians at the Euphrates, Nebuchadnezzar did indeed invade Egypt, as Jeremiah had prophesied, inflicting great defeat on their armies, on at least two occasions.

Jeremiah 46:14 Declare ye in Egypt, and publish in Migdol, and publish in Noph and in Tahpanhes: say ye, Stand fast, and prepare thee; for the sword shall devour round about thee.

Noph. Noph is the same city as Memphis, originally lower Egypt's great capital, near which the pyramids and sphinx were erected. Although it remained a great city for many centuries, it eventually became “waste and desolate,” as Jeremiah had predicted (Jeremiah 46:19; see note on Ezekiel 30:13). Modern Cairo, ten miles away, was partially built from the stones of Memphis.

Tahpanhes. Tahpanhes and Migdol were also cities of Egypt, to which the Jewish refugees had fled (Jeremiah 44:1). The Babylonians did indeed overtake them there, as Jeremiah had warned when he had urged them to stay in their land (Jeremiah 42:15-19).

Jeremiah 46:15 Why are thy valiant men swept away? they stood not, because the LORD did drive them.

Jeremiah 46:16 He made many to fall, yea, one fell upon another: and they said, Arise, and let us go again to our own people, and to the land of our nativity, from the oppressing sword.

Jeremiah 46:17 They did cry there, Pharaoh king of Egypt is but a noise; he hath passed the time appointed.

Jeremiah 46:18 As I live, saith the King, whose name is the LORD of hosts, Surely as Tabor is among the mountains, and as Carmel by the sea, so shall he come.

Jeremiah 46:19 O thou daughter dwelling in Egypt, furnish thyself to go into captivity: for Noph shall be waste and desolate without an inhabitant.

Jeremiah 46:20 Egypt is like a very fair heifer, but destruction cometh; it cometh out of the north.

Jeremiah 46:21 Also her hired men are in the midst of her like fatted bullocks; for they also are turned back, and are fled away together: they did not stand, because the day of their calamity was come upon them, and the time of their visitation.

Jeremiah 46:22 The voice thereof shall go like a serpent; for they shall march with an army, and come against her with axes, as hewers of wood.

Jeremiah 46:23 They shall cut down her forest, saith the LORD, though it cannot be searched; because they are more than the grasshoppers, and are innumerable.

Jeremiah 46:24 The daughter of Egypt shall be confounded; she shall be delivered into the hand of the people of the north.

Jeremiah 46:25 The LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, saith; Behold, I will punish the multitude of No, and Pharaoh, and Egypt, with their gods, and their kings; even Pharaoh, and all them that trust in him:

No. No was the Hebrew name for Thebes, the metropolis and religious center of Upper Egypt. The sun-god, Amon, was worshiped there, and the city was also called No-Amon. It eventually was abandoned, but its ruins are still very impressive. See also the note on Ezekiel 30:14.

Jeremiah 46:26 And I will deliver them into the hand of those that seek their lives, and into the hand of Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of his servants: and afterward it shall be inhabited, as in the days of old, saith the LORD.

Jeremiah 46:27 But fear not thou, O my servant Jacob, and be not dismayed, O Israel: for, behold, I will save thee from afar off, and thy seed from the land of their captivity; and Jacob shall return, and be in rest and at ease, and none shall make him afraid.

Jeremiah 46:28 Fear thou not, O Jacob my servant, saith the LORD: for I am with thee; for I will make a full end of all the nations whither I have driven thee: but I will not make a full end of thee, but correct thee in measure; yet will I not leave thee wholly unpunished.

I am with thee. Despite all of Jeremiah's prophecies of calamity and exile on Israel, he repeatedly assured the people that God had not forsaken them.

full end. This remarkable prophecy has been fulfilled again and again through the long history of Israel's dispersion and persecution, with numerous examples (Assyria, Edom, etc.), and it is still being fulfilled today (Nazi Germany, Soviet Union, etc.).

correct thee in measure. This prophecy and similar prophecies throughout the Bible constitute one of the most remarkable of all prophecies. Despite millennia of exile and unparalleled persecution, the people and the nation of Israel have survived, even today ranking as one of the most strategically important nations on earth.