11:5 Then I will keep the promise I swore on oath to your ancestors to give them a land flowing with milk and honey.” 1 That is the very land that you still live in today.’” 2 And I responded, “Amen! Let it be so, 3 Lord!”
32:23 But when they came in and took possession of it, they did not obey you or live as you had instructed them. They did not do anything that you commanded them to do. 4 So you brought all this disaster on them.
1 tn The phrase “a land flowing with milk and honey” is very familiar to readers in the Jewish and Christian traditions as a proverbial description of the agricultural and pastoral abundance of the land of Israel. However, it may not mean too much to readers outside those traditions; an equivalent expression would be “a land of fertile fields and fine pastures.” E. W. Bullinger (Figures of Speech, 626) identifies this as a figure of speech called synecdoche where the species is put for the genus, “a region…abounding with pasture and fruits of all kinds.”
2 tn Heb “‘a land flowing with milk and honey,’ as at this day.” However, the literal reading is too elliptical and would lead to confusion.
3 tn The words “Let it be so” are not in the text; they are an explanation of the significance of the term “Amen” for those who may not be part of the Christian or Jewish tradition.
sn The word amen is found at the end of each of the curses in Deut 27 where the people express their agreement with the appropriateness of the curse for the offense mentioned.
4 tn Or “They did not do everything that you commanded them to do.” This is probably a case where the negative (לֹא, lo’) negates the whole category indicated by “all” (כָּל, kol; see BDB 482 s.v. כָּל 1.e(c) and compare usage in Deut 12:16; 28:14). Jeremiah has repeatedly emphasized that the history of Israel since their entry into the land has been one of persistent disobedience and rebellion (cf., e.g. 7:22-26; 11:7-8). The statement, of course, is somewhat hyperbolical as all categorical statements of this kind are.