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Jeremiah Forty Nine

by Dr. Henry M. Morris

(taken from the Defender's Study Bible)

Jeremiah 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?

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 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?

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 49:6 And afterward I will bring again the captivity of the children of Ammon, saith the LORD.

Ammon. Ammon was the brother of Moab, both being sons of Lot by his two daughters (Genesis 19:36-38). The Ammonites lived north and east of the Moabites, and were even more perpetually at enmity with Israel than the Moabites. Like the latter, they were fiercely defeated by Nebuchadnezzar, but continued to exist as a minor nation until sometime after Christ and eventually disappearing. Their descendants, like the Moabites and others in the region, eventually became amalgamated with the Arabs and now are represented mainly by the nation called Jordan. Their chief god was the cruel Molech, often a stumbling block to Israel. Presumably because of their ancestral relation to Israel, both Moab and Ammon will be revived as nations in the latter days (see also Jeremiah 48:47). The modern-day capital of Jordan is Amman, the same as the once-desolate Rabbath-Ammon, the ancient capital before its takeover by “the men of the east” (Ezekiel 25:4).

Jeremiah 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?

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 49:11 Leave thy fatherless children, I will preserve them alive; and let thy widows trust in me.

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 49:15 For, lo, I will make thee small among the heathen, and despised among men.

Jeremiah 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.

clefts of the rock. This seems clearly to be a reference to the famous rock city of the Edomites known as Petra, or Sela (Isaiah 16:1), now uninhabited but frequently visited by tourists. In ancient times, it was a chief city of the Edomites and the Nabateans, prosperous because of its proximity to an important trade route.

Jeremiah 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.

shall be a desolation. Edom, south of the Dead Sea, is indeed now desolate. However, it was once a prosperous nation, descended from Esau, brother of Jacob, and thus closely related to Israel. Almost perpetual enemies of the Israelites, the Edomites even aided Nebuchadnezzar in his invasion of the Israelite land (note Psalm 137:1, 7). Nebuchadnezzar then permitted them to occupy the southern portion of Israel—the region thence becoming known as Idumaea—about the same time the Nabateans were driving them out of their own land. Both the original Edomites and the Nabateans have disappeared from history, and their regions are now largely desert, with the descendants presumably amalgamated with the Arabs, Jordanians and Palestinians.

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 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?

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 49:21 The earth is moved at the noise of their fall, at the cry the noise thereof was heard in the Red sea.

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 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.

Damascus. Damascus, the ancient capital of Syria, along with the other cities Arpad and Hamath and all of Syria, had already been subjugated by Assyria, which in turn had been conquered by Babylonia. Nevertheless, the invading Babylonians still further humiliated the Syrians, as Jeremiah warned.

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 49:25 How is the city of praise not left, the city of my joy!

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 49:27 And I will kindle a fire in the wall of Damascus, and it shall consume the palaces of Benhadad.

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 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. Hazor and Kedar (Jeremiah 49:28) were evidently small Arabian kingdoms that were also destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar.

dragons. Hebrew tannin probably refers to dinosaurs; small populations still existed in remote areas at this time.

Jeremiah 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,

Jeremiah 49:35 Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Behold, I will break the bow of Elam, the chief of their might.

Elam. Elam was one of the most ancient nations, originally established by a son of Shem (Genesis 10:22). At the time of Jeremiah, in spite of its long and eminent history, it had been subjugated by the Assyrians and then the Babylonians. Eventually, however, with its capital Susa (or Shushan), it would become the key section of what would expand into the great empire of Persia. Then the combined empire of Media and Persia would finally conquer Babylon itself.

Jeremiah 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.

Jeremiah 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:

Jeremiah 49:38 And I will set my throne in Elam, and will destroy from thence the king and the princes, saith the LORD.

Jeremiah 49:39 But it shall come to pass in the latter days, that I will bring again the captivity of Elam, saith the LORD.