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Jeremiah 10:15

Context

10:15 They are worthless, mere objects to be mocked. 1 

When the time comes to punish them, they will be destroyed.

Jeremiah 16:19

Context

16:19 Then I said, 2 

Lord, you give me strength and protect me.

You are the one I can run to for safety when I am in trouble. 3 

Nations from all over the earth

will come to you and say,

‘Our ancestors had nothing but false gods –

worthless idols that could not help them at all. 4 

Jeremiah 51:18

Context

51:18 They are worthless, objects to be ridiculed.

When the time comes to punish them, they will be destroyed.

1 tn Or “objects of mockery.”

2 tn The words “Then I said” are not in the text. They are supplied in the translation to show the shift from God, who has been speaking to Jeremiah, to Jeremiah, who here addresses God.

sn The shift here is consistent with the interruptions that have taken place in chapters 14 and 15 and in Jeremiah’s response to God’s condemnation of the people of Judah’s idolatry in chapter 10 (note especially vv. 6-16).

3 tn Heb “O Lord, my strength and my fortress, my refuge in the day of trouble. The literal which piles up attributes is of course more forceful than the predications. However, piling up poetic metaphors like this adds to the length of the English sentence and risks lack of understanding on the part of some readers. Some rhetorical force has been sacrificed for the sake of clarity.

4 tn Once again the translation has sacrificed some of the rhetorical force for the sake of clarity and English style: Heb “Only falsehood did our ancestors possess, vanity and [things in which?] there was no one profiting in them.”

sn This passage offers some rather forceful contrasts. The Lord is Jeremiah’s source of strength, security, and protection. The idols are false gods, worthless idols, that can offer no help at all.



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