Jeremiah 49

1 Of the children of Ammon. the LORD says: Has Israel no sons? has he no heir? why then does Malcam possess Gad, and his people dwell in its cities? 2 Therefore behold, the days come, says the LORD, that I will cause an alarm of war to be heard against Rabbah of the children of Ammon; and it shall become a desolate heap, and her daughters shall be burnt with fire: then shall Israel possess those who possessed him, says the LORD. 3 Wail, Heshbon, for Ai is laid waste; cry, you daughters of Rabbah, clothe yourself in sackcloth: lament, and run back and forth amongst the fences; for Malcam shall go into captivity, his priests and his princes together. 4 Why do you glory in the valleys, your flowing valley, backsliding daughter? who trusted in her treasures, saying, Who shall come to me? 5 Behold, I will bring a fear on you, says the Lord, the LORD of Armies, from all who are around you; and you shall be driven out every man right out, and there shall be no one to gather together the fugitives. 6 But afterward I will bring back the captivity of the children of Ammon, says the LORD. 7 Of Edom. the LORD of Armies says: Is wisdom no more in Teman? is counsel perished from the prudent? is their wisdom vanished? 8 Flee, turn back, dwell in the depths, inhabitants of Dedan; for I will bring the calamity of Esau on him, the time that I shall visit him. 9 If grape gatherers came to you, would they not leave some gleaning grapes? if thieves by night, wouldn’t they destroy until they had enough? 10 But I have made Esau bare, I have uncovered his secret places, and he shall not be able to hide himself: his offspring is destroyed, and his brothers, and his neighbors; and he is no more. 11 Leave your fatherless children, I will preserve them alive; and let your widows trust in me. 12 For the LORD says: Behold, they to whom it didn’t pertain to drink of the cup shall certainly drink; and are you he who shall altogether go unpunished? You shall not go unpunished, but you shall surely drink. 13 For I have sworn by myself, says the LORD, that Bozrah shall become an astonishment, a reproach, a waste, and a curse; and all its cities shall be perpetual wastes. 14 I have heard news from the LORD, and an ambassador is sent amongst the nations, saying, Gather yourselves together, and come against her, and rise up to the battle. 15 For, behold, I have made you small amongst the nations, and despised amongst men. 16 As for your terror, the pride of your heart has deceived you, O you who dwell in the clefts of the rock, who hold the height of the hill: though you should make your nest as high as the eagle, I will bring you down from there, says the LORD. 17 Edom shall become an astonishment: everyone who passes by it shall be astonished, and shall hiss at all its plagues. 18 As in the overthrow of Sodom and Gomorrah and the neighbor cities of it, says the LORD, no man shall dwell there, neither shall any son of man live therein. 19 Behold, he shall come up like a lion from the pride of the Jordan against the strong habitation: for I will suddenly make them run away from it; and whoever is chosen, him will I appoint over it: for who is like me? and who will appoint me a time? and who is the shepherd who will stand before me? 20 Therefore hear the counsel of the LORD, that he has taken against Edom; and his purposes, that he has purposed against the inhabitants of Teman: Surely they shall drag them away, the little ones of the flock; surely he shall make their habitation desolate over them. 21 The earth trembles at the noise of their fall; there is a cry, the noise which is heard in the Red Sea. 22 Behold, he shall come up and fly as the eagle, and spread out his wings against Bozrah: and the heart of the mighty men of Edom at that day shall be as the heart of a woman in her pangs. 23 Of Damascus. Hamath is confounded, and Arpad; for they have heard evil news, they are melted away: there is sorrow on the sea; it can’t be quiet. 24 Damascus has grown feeble, she turns herself to flee, and trembling has seized on her: anguish and sorrows have taken hold of her, as of a woman in travail. 25 How is the city of praise not forsaken, the city of my joy? 26 Therefore her young men shall fall in her streets, and all the men of war shall be brought to silence in that day, says the LORD of Armies. 27 I will kindle a fire in the wall of Damascus, and it shall devour the palaces of Ben Hadad. 28 Of Kedar, and of the kingdoms of Hazor, which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon struck. the LORD says: Arise, go up to Kedar, and destroy the children of the east. 29 Their tents and their flocks shall they take; they shall carry away for themselves their curtains, and all their vessels, and their camels; and they shall cry to them, Terror on every side! 30 Flee, wander far off, dwell in the depths, you inhabitants of Hazor, says the LORD; for Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon has taken counsel against you, and has conceived a purpose against you. 31 Arise, go up to a nation that is at ease, that dwells without care, says the LORD; that have neither gates nor bars, that dwell alone. 32 Their camels shall be a booty, and the multitude of their livestock a plunder: and I will scatter to all winds those who have the corners of their beards cut off; and I will bring their calamity from every side of them, says the LORD. 33 Hazor shall be a dwelling place of jackals, a desolation forever: no man shall dwell there, neither shall any son of man live therein. 34 the LORD’s word that came to Jeremiah the prophet concerning Elam, in the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah king of Judah, saying, 35 the LORD of Armies says: Behold, I will break the bow of Elam, the chief of their might. 36 On Elam will I bring the four winds from the four quarters of the sky, and will scatter them towards all those winds; and there shall be no nation where the outcasts of Elam shall not come. 37 I will cause Elam to be dismayed before their enemies, and before those who seek their life; and I will bring evil on them, even my fierce anger, says the LORD; and I will send the sword after them, until I have consumed them; 38 and I will set my throne in Elam, and will destroy from there king and princes, says the LORD. 39 But it shall happen in the latter days, that I will bring back the captivity of Elam, says the LORD.

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Questions about today’s reading? See if Matthew Henry can help.
Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary, 1706

Verses 1-6

Might often prevails against right among men, yet that might shall be controlled by the Almighty, who judges aright; and those will find themselves mistaken, who, like the Ammonites, think every thing their own on which they can lay their hands. The Lord will call men to account for every instance of dishonesty, especially to the destitute.

Verses 7-22

The Edomites were old enemies to the Israel of God. But their day is now at hand; it is foretold, not only to warn them, but for the sake of the Israel of God, whose afflictions were aggravated by them. Thus Divine judgments go round from nation to nation; the earth is full of commotion, and nothing can escape the ministers of Divine vengeance. The righteousness of God is to be observed amidst the violence of men.

Verses 23-27

How easily God can dispirit those nations that have been most celebrated for valour! Damascus waxes feeble. It was a city of joy, having all the delights of the sons of men. But those deceive themselves who place their happiness in carnal joys.

Verses 28-33

Nebuchadnezzar would make desolation among the people of Kedar, who dwelt in the deserts of Arabia. He who conquered many strong cities, will not leave those unconquered that dwell in tents. He will do this to gratify his own covetousness and ambition; but God orders it for correcting an unthankful people, and for warning a careless world to expect trouble when they seem most safe. They shall flee, get far off, and dwell deep in the deserts; they shall be dispersed. But privacy and obscurity are not always protection and security.

Verses 34-39

The Elamites were the Persians; they acted against God’s Israel, and must be reckoned with. Evil pursues sinners. God will make them know that he reigns. Yet the destruction of Elam shall not be for ever. But this promise was to have its full accomplishment in the days of the Messiah. In reading the Divine assurance of the destruction of all the enemies of the church, the believer sees that the issue of the holy war is not doubtful. It is blessed to recollect, that He who is for us, is more than all against us. And he will subdue the enemies of our souls.

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