Jeremiah Chapter 2-3:5 Star Chart: Clockwise from the Exodus from Egypt in 1446 B.C. (Jeremiah 2:2 & 2:6) when God "planted thee a noble vine" (2:21)(properly a Sorek vine [Isa. 5:2], which produced a red wine-- [Pr. 23:31] which had a lasting reputation Gen. 49:11)(red grape on Milky Way vine in Gemini), till the Egyptians broke "the crown of thy head" (Jeremiah 2:16) when Josiah was killed at the Battle of Megiddo in 609 B.C. (2 Ki. 23:29) is 837° years or TWO revolutions plus 117° years. "I will yet plead with you (Gemini), saith the Lord, and with your children's children will I plead" (so back to Gemini TWICE is TWO complete revolutions: 360° + 360° = 720°) (Jeremiah 2:9), leaving 117° years more from Gemini to Virgo where we see the "degenerate plant of a strange vine" (2:21). "In vain have I (Orion) smitten your children (Gemini, with solar red wound); they received no correction: your own sword (Manasseh -- Orion) hath devoured your prophets (Gemini bloodied), like a destroying lion" (Orion holding a lion) (Jeremiah 2:30). "Withhold thy (Virgo) foot from being (gibbous lunar shoe) unshod, and thy throat from (Crater cup) thirst" (2:25) (Don't run barefoot like a shameless adulteress with parched throat after strangers of different heredity)."Thou (Virgo) hadst a whore's forehead, thou refusedst to be ashamed" (3:3) (a lunar white forehead on the ground and in the mud).

 

A Noble Vine ... A Right Seed ...Turned into the Degenerate Plant of a Strange Vine

 

2:1 Moreover the word of the Lord came to me, saying,

The prophecy Jeremiah 2:1-3:5 consists of three parts, of which the first Jeremiah 2:1-13 contains an appeal from God to all Israel, i. e., the whole twelve tribes, proving to them His past love, and that their desertion of Him was without ground or reason. In the second Jeremiah 2:14-28 the prophet shows that Israel's calamities were entirely the result of her apostasy. In the last Jeremiah 2:29-3:5 we see Judah imitating Samaria's sin, and hardening itself against correction.

2 Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem (Gemini), saying, Thus saith the Lord; I remember thee, the kindness of thy youth, the love of thine espousals, when thou wentest after me in the wilderness (Gemini), in a land that was not sown (1446 B.C.).

3 Israel was holiness unto the Lord, and the (Gemini) firstfruits of his increase: all that devour him shall offend; evil shall come upon them (Gemini), saith the Lord. (Don't eat the firstfruits since they are God's. Eat the main harvest.) This verse is proof that non-Israelites will be harvested too and given salvation.

4 Hear ye the word of the Lord, O house of Jacob, and all the families of the house of Israel (Gemini):

5 Thus saith the Lord, What iniquity have your fathers (Gemini) found in me, that they are gone far from me, and have walked after vanity, and are become vain?

6 Neither said they (Gemini), Where is the Lord that brought us (Gemini) up out of the land of Egypt (1446 B.C.), that led us (Gemini) through the wilderness, through a land of deserts and of pits, through a land of drought, and of the shadow of death, through a land that no man passed through, and where no man dwelt?

7 And I brought you into a plentiful country, to eat the (red grape) fruit thereof and the goodness thereof (1406 B.C.); but when ye entered, ye defiled my land, and made mine heritage an abomination.

8 The (Gemini) priests said not, Where is the Lord? and they that handle the law (Gemini) knew me not: the (Gemini) pastors also transgressed against me, and the (Gemini) prophets prophesied by Baal, and walked after things that do not profit.

9 Wherefore I will yet plead with you (Gemini), saith the Lord, and with your children's children will I plead (Gemini -- two complete revolutions: 360° + 360° = 720°).

10 For pass over the isles of Chittim, and see (west); and send unto Kedar, and consider diligently, and see if there be such a thing (east).

11 Hath a nation changed their gods, which are yet no gods? but my people (Gemini) have changed their glory for that which doth not profit.

12 Be astonished, O ye heavens, at this, and be horribly afraid, be ye very desolate, saith the Lord.

13 For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the (Milky Way) fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns (solar and lunar), that can hold no water .

14 Is Israel a servant? is he a homeborn slave? why is he spoiled?

15 The young lions roared upon him, and yelled, and they made his land waste: his cities are burned without inhabitant.

16 Also the children of Noph and Tahapanes have broken the crown of thy head.

The children of Noph and Tahapanes - Noph and Tahapanes were two cities of Egypt, otherwise called Memphis and Daphni. It is well known that the good king was defeated by the Egyptians, and slain in battle. Thus was the crown of Judah's head broken.

Have broken the crown of thy head - literally, shall depasture the crown of thy head; i. e., make it bald; baldness was accounted by the Jews a sign of disgrace 2 Kings 2:23, and also a mark of mourning Isaiah 15:2; Isaiah 22:12. The Egyptians in slaying Josiah, and capturing Jerusalem, brought ruin, disgrace, and sorrow upon the Jews.

Also the children of Noph, &c., have broken the crown of thy head — By the children of Noph and Tahapanes are meant the Egyptians, these being the two principal cities of Egypt, called by heathen writers Memphis and Taphanes, or Daphnæ Pelusicæ. “This no doubt alludes,” says Blaney, “to the severe blow which the nation received in a capital part, when the good King Josiah was defeated by the Egyptians, and slain in battle; or when, afterward, upon the deposition of Jehoahaz, the glory of the monarchy was debased, by its being changed into a tributary and dependant kingdom, 2 Kings 23:29-34, and 2 Chronicles 35:20.

(16) Also the children of Noph . . .—We pass from the language of poetry to that of history, and the actual enemies of Israel appear on the scene, not as the threatening danger in the north, but in the far south. The words indicate that the prophet set himself from the first, as Isaiah had done (Isaiah 31:1), against the policy of an Egyptian alliance. The LXX. translators, following, we must believe, an Egyptian tradition, identify the Hebrew Noph with Memphis in northern Egypt; later critics, with Napata in the south. Its conjunction with Tahapanes, the Daphnæ of the Greeks, which was on the Pelusiac mouth of the Nile, and on the frontier, seems in favour of the former view.
Have broken.—More accurately, shall feed on, lay waste, depasture, so as to produce baldness. Baldness among the Jews, as with other -Eastern nations, was a shame and reproach (Isaiah 3:24; Isaiah 15:2; Isaiah 22:12; 2Kings 2:23), and was therefore a natural symbol of the ignominy and ruin of a people.

Also the children of Noph and Tahapanes,.... These were cities in Egypt. Noph is the same with Moph in Hosea 9:6 and which we there rightly render Memphis; as Noph is here by the Targum, Septuagint, Vulgate Latin, Syriac, and Arabic versions; and was formerly, as Pliny (g) says, the palace of the kings of Egypt. It is the same that is now called Alcairo, or Grand Cairo. According to Herodotus (h), it was built by Menes, the first king of Egypt; and who also makes mention of a city of Egypt, called Momemphis (i). Tahapanes is the same with Hanes in Isaiah 30:4, and here, in the Arabic version, is called Daphnes; and is thought by some to be the same with Daphnae Pelusiae, a city in Egypt. This Tahapanes was the metropolis of Egypt, and the seat of their kings; mention is made of Pharaoh's house in it, in Jeremiah 43:9, now the inhabitants of these, called the children of them, and who are put for the people of Egypt in general, were the allies of the Jews, and in whom they trusted for help, when attacked by their enemies, Isaiah 30:2 and yet
even these have broken the crown of thy head; which is interpreted, by the Targum, of slaying their mighty men, and spoiling their goods; perhaps it had its accomplishment when Pharaohnecho king of Egypt came out against the king of Assyria, and Josiah king of Judah went out to meet him, and was slain by him at Megiddo; and his son Jehoahaz he put in bonds, and carried him to Egypt, and put his brother upon the throne, and took tribute of gold and silver of him, 2 Kings 23:29.

(g) Nat. Hist. l. 5. c. 9. (h) L. 2. vel Euterpe, c. 99. (i) lb. c. 163, 169.

by defeating and killing the good king Josiah in battle in June or July 609 BC(2 Kings 23:29).

The reference is to the coming invasion of Judah by Pharaoh-necho of Egypt, on his return from the Euphrates, when he deposed Jehoahaz and levied a heavy tribute on the land (2Ki 23:33-35). Josiah's death in battle with the same Pharaoh is probably included (2Ki 23:29, 30).

The land of Israel is personified as a woman, as is shown by the fem. suffix in ??????. Like a land closely cropped by herds, so is Israel by the Egyptians. In Jeremiah 6:3 also the enemies are represented as shepherds coming with their flocks against Jerusalem, and pitching their tents round about the city, while each flock crops its portion of ground. In Jeremiah 12:10 shepherds lay the vineyard waste.

Verse 16. - Also the children of Noph, etc. This is the climax of the calamity. Noph, called Moph in the Hebrew text of Hosea 9:6, is generally identified with Memphis (after the Septuagint), which was called in the inscriptions Mennufr, or "the good abode," but may possibly be Napata, the Nap of the inscriptions, the residency of the Ethiopian dynasty (De Rouge'). Tahapanes. The Hebrew form is Takhpanes or Tahhpanhhes. This was a fortified frontier town on the Pelusiot arm of the Nile, called in Greek Daphnae (Herod., 2:20), or Taphnae (Septuagint here). Have broken, etc.; rather, shall break, or (for the pointing in the Hebrew Bible requires this change) shall feed off (or depasture). From this verse onwards, Judah is personified as a woman, as appears from the suffixes in the Hebrew. Baldness was a great mark of disgrace (2 Kings 2:23; Jeremiah 48:45). There is a striking parallel to this passage in Isaiah 7:18-20, where, in punishment of the negotiations of Ahaz with Assyria, the prophet threatens an invasion of Judah both by Assyria and by Egypt: and employs the very. same figure (see ver. 20). So here, the devastation threatened by Jeremiah is the punishment of the unhallowed coquetting with the Egyptian power of which the Jewish rulers had been recently guilty. The fact which corresponds to this prediction is the defeat of Josiah at Megiddo in June or July 609 BC, and the consequent subjugation of Judah (2 Kings 23:29). The abruptness with which ver. 16 follows upon ver. 15 suggests that some words have fallen out of the text.

17 Hast thou not procured this unto thyself, in that thou hast forsaken the Lord thy God, when he led thee by the way?

18 And now what hast thou to do in the way of Egypt, to drink the waters of (Milky Way) Sihor? or what hast thou to do in the way of Assyria, to drink the waters of the (red radius line) river?

Sihor - The Nile. To lean upon Egypt was a violation of the principles of theocracy.
The two rivers are the two empires, and to drink their waters is to adopt their principles and religion. Compare also Isaiah 8:6-7.

19 Thine own wickedness shall correct thee, and thy backslidings shall reprove thee: know therefore and see that it is an evil thing and bitter, that thou hast forsaken the Lord thy God, and that my fear is not in thee, saith the Lord God of hosts.

Correct thee - Or, "chastise thee." Alliances with foreign powers shall bring trouble and not safety.

20 For of old time I have broken thy (solar and lunar) yoke, and burst thy (solar and lunar) bands; and thou saidst, I will not transgress; when upon every (Milky Way) high hill and under every (Milky Way) green tree thou wanderest, playing the (Virgo) harlot.

21 Yet I had planted thee a (Milky Way) noble vine (1446 B.C. -- red grape), wholly a right (red solar) seed: how then art thou turned into the degenerate (lunar) plant of a strange (red radius line) vine unto me?

A noble vine - Properly, a Sorek vine (see Isaiah 5:2), which produced a red wine Proverbs 23:31, and had a lasting reputation Genesis 49:11.

22 For though thou wash thee with nitre, and take thee much soap, yet thine iniquity is marked before me, saith the Lord God.

Nitre - Or, natron, a mineral alkali, found in the Nile valley, where it effloresces upon the rocks and surfaces of the dykes, and in old time was carefully collected, and used to make lye for washing (see Proverbs 25:20).
Sope - A vegetable alkali, now called "potash," because obtained from the ashes of plants. Its combination with oils, etc., to form soap was not known to the Hebrews until long after Jeremiah's time, but they used the lye, formed by passing water through the ashes. Thus then, though Israel use both mineral and vegetable alkalies, the most powerful detergents known, yet will she be unable to wash away the stains of her apostasy.

Thine iniquity is marked - i. e., as a stain.

or nitre (most English-speaking countries) is the mineral form of potassium nitrate, KNO3, also known as saltpeter in America or saltpetre in other English-speaking countries. It is white in color. Historically, the term "niter" was not well differentiated from natron, both of which have been very vaguely defined but generally refer to compounds of sodium or potassium joined with carbonate or nitrate ions. Three related minerals are soda niter (sodium nitrate), ammonia niter (ammonium nitrate), and strontium nitrate.

Because of its ready solubility in water, niter is most often found in arid environments. A major source of sodium nitrate mineral ("Chile saltpeter", that is, nitratine) is the Atacama desert in Chile. Potassium and other nitrates are of great importance for use in fertilizers and, historically, gunpowder. Much of the world's demand is now met by synthetically produced nitrates, though the natural mineral is still mined and is still of significant commercial value.

23 How canst thou say, I am not polluted, I have not gone after Baalim? see thy way in the valley, know what thou hast done: thou art a swift dromedary traversing her ways;

In their defense of themselves (compare Jeremiah 2:35), the people probably appealed to the maintenance of the daily sacrifice, and the Mosaic ritual: and even more confidently perhaps to Josiah's splendid restoration of the temple, and to the suppression of the open worship of Baal. All such pleas availed little as long as the rites of Moloch were still privately practiced.
Thy way in the valley - i. e., of Hinnom (see 2 Kings 23:10 note). From the time of Ahaz it had been the seat of the worship of Moloch, and the prophet more than once identifies Moloch with Baal. "Way" is put metaphorically for "conduct, doings."

Traversing - Interlacing her ways. The word describes the tangled mazes of the dromedary's course, as she runs here and there in the heat of her passion.

24 A wild ass used to the wilderness, that snuffeth up the wind at her pleasure; in her occasion who can turn her away? all they that seek her will not weary themselves; in her month they shall find her.

A wild donkey used to the wilderness - The type of an untamed and reckless nature.
Snuffeth up the wind - The wind brings with it the scent of the male. Israel does not wait until temptation comes of itself, but looks out for any and every incentive to idolatry.

Occasion ... month - i. e., the pairing season.

25 Withhold thy (Virgo) foot from being unshod, and thy throat from thirst (Crater cup): but thou saidst, There is no hope: no; for I have loved strangers, and after them will I go.

God the true husband exhorts Israel not to run barefoot, and with parched throat, like a shameless adulteress, after strangers.

26 As the thief is ashamed when he is found, so is the house of Israel ashamed; they, their kings, their princes, and their priests, and their prophets (Gemini).

27 Saying to a (solar red) stock, Thou art my father; and to a (white lunar) stone, Thou hast brought me forth: for they have turned their back unto me, and not their face: but in the time of their trouble they will say, Arise, and save us.

"Stone" being feminine in Hebrew is here represented as the mother.
Arise, and save us - Whether it be idolatry or infidelity, it satisfies only in tranquil and prosperous times. No sooner does trouble come, than the deep conviction of the existence of a God, which is the witness for Him in our heart, resumes its authority, and man prays.

28 But where are thy gods that thou hast made thee? let them arise, if they can save thee in the time of thy trouble: for according to the number of thy cities are thy gods, O Judah.

O Judah - Hereto the argument had been addressed to Israel: suddenly the prophet charges Judah with the habitual practice of idolatry, and points to the conclusion, that as Jerusalem has been guilty of Samaria's sin, it must suffer Samaria's punishment.

29 Wherefore will ye plead with me? ye all have transgressed against me, saith the Lord.

30 In vain have I (Orion) smitten your children (Gemini); they received no correction: your own sword (Manasseh -- Orion) hath devoured your prophets (Gemini), like a destroying lion (Orion holding a lion).

31 O generation, see ye the word of the Lord. Have I been a wilderness unto Israel? a land of darkness? wherefore say my people, We are lords; we will come no more unto thee?

Your own sword hath devoured your prophets - An allusion probably to Manasseh 2 Kings 21:16. Death was the usual fate of the true prophet Nehemiah 9:26; Matthew 23:37.
A land of darkness - This word is written in Hebrew with two accents, as being a compound, signifying not merely darkness, but the darkness of Yahweh, i. e., very great darkness.

We are lords - Others render it: We rove about, wander about at our will, go where we like.

32 Can a maid forget her (lunar bell) ornaments, or a bride her attire? yet my people have forgotten me days without number.

A bride treasures all her life the girdle, which first indicated that she was a married woman, just as brides now treasure the wedding ring; but Israel, Yahweh's bride Jeremiah 2:2, cherishes no fond memorials of past affection.

33 Why trimmest thou thy way to seek love? therefore hast thou also taught the wicked ones thy ways.

Why trimmest thou thy way - literally, "Why makest thou thy way good," a phrase used here of the pains taken by the Jews to learn the idolatries of foreign nations.
The wicked ones ... - Or, "therefore thou hast taught" thy ways wickednesses."

34 Also in thy skirts is found the (red radius line) blood of the souls of the poor innocents: I have not found it by secret search, but upon all these.

I have not found it ... - Rather, thou didst not find them breaking into thy house. The meaning is, that these poor innocents had committed no crime: they were not thieves caught in the act, whom the Law permitted men to slay Exodus 22:2, and therefore Israel in killing them was guilty of murder. The one crime here of theft is put for crime generally.
Upon all these - Or, because of all this. Thou killedst the poor innocents, not for any crime, but because of this thy lust for idolatry.

35 Yet thou sayest, Because I am innocent, surely his anger shall turn from me. Behold, I will plead with thee, because thou sayest, I have not sinned.

Because I am innocent - Rather, But "I am innocent," or, "I am acquitted." Those blood-stains cannot be upon my skirts, because now, in king Josiah's days, the idolatry of Manasseh has been put away.
Shall turn from me - Or, has turned away "from me."

Plead - Or, enter into judgment.

36 Why gaddest thou about so much to change thy way? thou also shalt be ashamed of Egypt, as thou wast ashamed of Assyria.

To change thy way - The rival parties at Jerusalem looked one to Assyria, the other to Egypt, for safety. As one or other for the time prevailed, the nation "changed its way," sending its embassies now eastward to Nineveh, now westward to Memphis.
Thou also ... - literally, also of Egypt "shalt thou be ashamed." This was literally fulfilled by the failure of the attempt to raise the siege of Jerusalem Jeremiah 37:5.

37 Yea, thou shalt go forth from him, and thine hands upon thine head: for the Lord hath rejected thy confidences, and thou shalt not prosper in them.

From him - From it, from this Egypt, which though fem. as a land, yet as a people may be used as a masc. (compare Jeremiah 46:8). Now that Nineveh is trembling before the armies of Cyaxares and Nabopalassar, thou hastenest to Egypt, hoping to rest upon her strength: but thou shalt retrace thy steps, with thy hands clasped upon thy head, disgraced and discarded.
Confidences - Those in whom thou confidest.

In them - literally, "with respect to them."

3:1 They say, If a man put away his wife, and she go from him, and become another man's, shall he return unto her again? shall not that land be greatly polluted? but thou hast played the harlot with many lovers; yet return again to me, saith the Lord.

From him - From it, from this Egypt, which though fem. as a land, yet as a people may be used as a masc. (compare Jeremiah 46:8). Now that Nineveh is trembling before the armies of Cyaxares and Nabopalassar, thou hastenest to Egypt, hoping to rest upon her strength: but thou shalt retrace thy steps, with thy hands clasped upon thy head, disgraced and discarded.
Confidences - Those in whom thou confidest.

In them - literally, "with respect to them."

2 Lift up thine eyes unto the high places, and see where thou hast not been lain with (Egyptian and Assyrian heredity intermixed with Israelite). In the ways hast thou sat for them, as the Arabian in the wilderness; and thou hast polluted the land with thy whoredoms and with thy wickedness.

These words are not the language of consolation to the conscience-stricken, but of vehement expostulation with hardened sinners. They prove, therefore, the truth of the interpretation put upon the preceding verse.
As the Arabian ... - The freebooting propensities of the Bedouin had passed in ancient times into a proverb. As eager as the desert-tribes were for plunder, so was Israel for idolatry.

3 Therefore the showers have been withholden, and there hath been no latter rain; and thou (Virgo) hadst a whore's forehead, thou refusedst to be ashamed (lunar white forehead on the ground and in the mud).

4 Wilt thou not from this time cry unto me, My father, thou art the guide of my youth?

Or, Hast thou Not from this time called "me, My Father, thou art the" husband "of my youth?" i. e., from the time of Josiah's reforms in his eighteenth year, in opposition to "of old time" Jeremiah 2:20.

5 Will he reserve his anger for ever? will he keep it to the end? Behold, thou hast spoken and done evil things as thou couldest.

Rather, "Will he, the young husband," retain, "keep up His anger forever!" These words should be joined to Jeremiah 3:4.
Behold ... - Rather, "Behold, thou hast spoken" thus, but thou hast "done evil things" persistently. The King James Version translates as if Judah's words and deeds were both evil. Really her words were fair, but her deeds proved them to be false.

And here ends the prophecy, most interesting as showing what was the general nature of Jeremiah's exhortations to his countrymen, during the 14 years of Josiah's reign. He sets before them God and Israel united by a covenant of marriage, to the conditions of which Yahweh is ever true, while Israel practices with zest every form of idolatry. Therefore, the divine blessing is withheld. It is an honest and manly warning, and the great lesson it teaches us is, that with God nothing avails but a real and heartfelt repentance followed by a life of holiness and sincere devotion to His service.


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