43:1 Jeremiah finished telling all the people all these things the Lord their God had sent him to tell them. 1 43:2 Then Azariah 2 son of Hoshaiah, Johanan son of Kareah, and other arrogant men said to Jeremiah, “You are telling a lie! The Lord our God did not send you to tell us, ‘You must not go to Egypt and settle there.’ 43:3 But Baruch son of Neriah is stirring you up against us. 3 He wants to hand us over 4 to the Babylonians 5 so that they will kill us or carry us off into exile in Babylon.” 43:4 So Johanan son of Kareah, all the army officers, and all the rest of the people did not obey the Lord’s command to stay in the land. 43:5 Instead Johanan son of Kareah and all the army officers led off all the Judean remnant who had come back to live in the land of Judah from all the nations where they had been scattered. 6 43:6 They also led off all the men, women, children, and royal princesses 7 that Nebuzaradan, the captain of the royal guard, had left with Gedaliah, 8 the son of Ahikam and grandson of Shaphan. This included the prophet Jeremiah and Baruch son of Neriah. 43:7 They went on to Egypt 9 because they refused to obey the Lord, and came to Tahpanhes. 10
43:8 At Tahpanhes the Lord spoke to Jeremiah. 11 43:9 “Take some large stones 12 and bury them in the mortar of the clay pavement 13 at the entrance of Pharaoh’s residence 14 here in Tahpanhes. Do it while the people of Judah present there are watching. 15 43:10 Then tell them, 16 ‘The Lord God of Israel who rules over all 17 says, “I will bring 18 my servant 19 King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. I will set his throne over these stones which I 20 have buried. He will pitch his royal tent 21 over them. 43:11 He will come and attack Egypt. Those who are destined to die of disease will die of disease. Those who are destined to be carried off into exile will be carried off into exile. Those who are destined to die in war will die in war. 22 43:12 He will set fire 23 to the temples of the gods of Egypt. He will burn their gods or carry them off as captives. 24 He will pick Egypt clean like a shepherd picks the lice from his clothing. 25 He will leave there unharmed. 26 43:13 He will demolish the sacred pillars in the temple of the sun 27 in Egypt and will burn down the temples of the gods of Egypt.”’”
1 tn This sentence contains an emphasis that is impossible to translate into idiomatic English that would not sound redundant. In Hebrew the sentence reads: “When Jeremiah finished [the temporal subordination is left out here because it would make the sentence too long] telling all the people all the words [or all the things] which the
2 sn See the study note on 42:1 for the possible identification of this man with Jezaniah son of Hoshaiah and Jezaniah the son of the Maacathite.
3 tn Or “is inciting you against us.”
4 tn Heb “in order to give us into the hands of the Chaldeans.” The substitution “he wants to” as the equivalent of the purpose clause has been chosen to shorten the sentence to better conform with contemporary English style.
5 tn Heb “Chaldeans.” See the study note on 21:4 for explanation.
6 sn These are the people who are referred to in Jer 40:11-12.
7 tn Heb “the daughters of the king.” See the translator’s note on 41:10.
8 sn This refers to the group mentioned in Jer 40:7 and 41:10. The two groups together constituted all the people who were at Mizpah when Gedaliah was murdered, had been taken captive by Ishmael, had been rescued by Johanan and the other army officers, and had consulted Jeremiah at Geruth Chimham.
9 sn This had been their intention all along (41:17). Though they consulted the
10 sn Tahpanhes was an important fortress city on the northern border of Egypt in the northeastern Nile delta. It is generally equated with the Greek city of Daphne. It has already been mentioned in 2:16 in conjunction with Memphis (the Hebrew name is “Noph”) as a source of soldiers who did violence to the Israelites in the past.
11 tn Heb “The word of the
12 tn Heb “Take some large stones in your hands.”
13 tn The meaning of the expression “mortar of the clay pavement” is uncertain. The noun translated “mortar” occurs only here and the etymology is debated. Both BDB 572 s.v. מֶלֶט and KBL 529 s.v. מֶלֶט give the meaning “mortar.” The noun translated “clay pavement” is elsewhere used of a “brick mold.” Here BDB 527 s.v. מַלְבֵּן 2 gives “quadrangle” and KBL 527 s.v. מַלְבֵּן 2 gives “terrace of bricks.” HALOT 558 s.v. מֶלֶט and מַלְבֵּן 2 give “loamy soil” for both words, seeing the second noun as a dittography or gloss of the first (see also note c in BHS).
14 sn All the commentaries point out that this was not Pharaoh’s (main) palace but a governor’s residence or other government building that Pharaoh occupied when he was in Tahpanhes.
15 tn Heb “in Tahpanhes in the eyes of the men of Judah.”
16 sn This is another of those symbolic prophecies of Jeremiah which involved an action and an explanation. Compare Jer 19, 27.
17 tn Heb “Yahweh of armies, the God of Israel.” Compare 7:3 and see the study note on 2:19 for explanation of the translation and significance of this title.
18 tn Heb “send and take/fetch.”
19 sn See the study note on Jer 25:9 for the use of this epithet for foreign rulers. The term emphasizes God’s sovereignty over history.
20 tn The Greek version reads the verbs in this sentence as third person, “he will set,” and second person, “you have buried.” This fits the context better but it is difficult to explain how the Hebrew could have arisen from this smoother reading. The figure of substitution (metonymy of cause for effect) is probably involved: “I will have him set” and “I have had you bury.” The effect of these substitutions is to emphasize the sovereignty of God.
21 tn The meaning of this word is uncertain. The word here (שַׁפְרִירוֹ [shafriro] Qere, שַׁפְרוּרוֹ [shafruro] Kethib) occurs only here in the Hebrew Bible. According to the lexicons it refers to either the carpet for his throne or the canopy over it. See, e.g., HALOT 1510 s.v. שַׁפְרִיר.
22 tn As in 15:2 the Hebrew is very brief and staccato-like: “those to death to death, and those to captivity to captivity, and those to the sword to the sword.” As in 15:2 most commentaries and English versions assume that the word “death” refers to death by disease. See the translator’s note on 15:2 and compare also 18:21 where the sword is distinctly connected with “war” or “battle” and is distinct from “killed by death [i.e., disease].”
23 tc The translation follows the Greek, Syriac, and Latin versions. The Hebrew text reads: “I will set fire to.” While it would be possible to explain the first person subject here in the same way as in the two verbs in v. 12b, the corruption of the Hebrew text is easy to explain here as a metathesis of two letters, י (yod) and ת (tav). The Hebrew reads הִצַּתִּי (hitsatti) and the versions presuppose הִצִּית (hitsit).
24 tn Heb “burn them or carry them off as captives.” Some of the commentaries and English versions make a distinction between the objects of the verbs, i.e., burn the temples and carry off the gods. However, the burning down of the temples is referred to later in v. 13.
sn It was typical in the ancient Near East for the images of the gods of vanquished nations to be carried off and displayed in triumphal procession on the return from battle to show the superiority of the victor’s gods over those of the vanquished (cf., e.g., Isa 46:1-2).
25 tn Or “he will take over Egypt as easily as a shepherd wraps his cloak around him.” The translation follows the interpretation of HALOT 769 s.v. II ָעטָה Qal, the Greek translation, and a number of the modern commentaries (e.g., J. A. Thompson, Jeremiah [NICOT], 671). The only other passage where that translation is suggested for this verb is Isa 22:17 according to HAL. The alternate translation follows the more normal meaning of עָטָה (’atah; cf. BDB 741 s.v. I עָטָה Qal which explains “so completely will it be in his power”). The fact that the subject is “a shepherd” lends more credence to the former view though there may be a deliberate double meaning playing on the homonyms (cf. W. L. Holladay, Jeremiah [Hermeneia], 2:302).
26 tn Heb “in peace/wholeness/well-being/safety [shalom].”
27 sn It is generally agreed that the temple of the sun was located in Heliopolis, which is elsewhere referred to as On (cf. Gen 41:45). It was the center for the worship of Amon-Re, the Egyptian sun god, and was famous for its obelisks (conical shaped pillars) dedicated to that god. It was located about 6 miles (10 km) northeast of modern-day Cairo.