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Jeremiah 16:1-9

Context
Jeremiah Forbidden to Marry, to Mourn, or to Feast

16:1 The Lord said to me, 16:2 “Do not get married and do not have children here in this land. 16:3 For I, the Lord, tell you what will happen to 1  the children who are born here in this land and to the men and women who are their mothers and fathers. 2  16:4 They will die of deadly diseases. No one will mourn for them. They will not be buried. Their dead bodies will lie like manure spread on the ground. They will be killed in war or die of starvation. Their corpses will be food for the birds and wild animals.

16:5 “Moreover I, the Lord, tell you: 3  ‘Do not go into a house where they are having a funeral meal. Do not go there to mourn and express your sorrow for them. For I have stopped showing them my good favor, 4  my love, and my compassion. I, the Lord, so affirm it! 5  16:6 Rich and poor alike will die in this land. They will not be buried or mourned. People will not cut their bodies or shave off their hair to show their grief for them. 6  16:7 No one will take any food to those who mourn for the dead to comfort them. No one will give them any wine to drink to console them for the loss of their father or mother.

16:8 “‘Do not go to a house where people are feasting and sit down to eat and drink with them either. 16:9 For I, the Lord God of Israel who rules over all, tell you what will happen. 7  I will put an end to the sounds of joy and gladness, to the glad celebration of brides and grooms in this land. You and the rest of the people will live to see this happen.’” 8 

1 tn Heb “For thus says the Lord concerning…”

2 tn Heb “Thus says the Lord concerning the sons and daughters who are born in the place and concerning their mothers who give them birth and their fathers who fathered them in this land.”

3 tn Heb “For thus says the Lord…”

4 tn Heb “my peace.” The Hebrew word שְׁלוֹמִי (shÿlomi) can be translated “peace, prosperity” or “well-being” (referring to wholeness or health of body and soul).

5 tn Heb “Oracle of the Lord.”

6 sn These were apparently pagan customs associated with mourning (Isa 15:2; Jer 47:5) which were forbidden in Israel (Lev 19:8; 21:5) but apparently practiced anyway (Jer 41:5).

7 tn Heb “For thus says Yahweh of armies the God of Israel.” The introductory formula which appears three times in vv. 1-9 (vv. 1, 3, 5) has been recast for smoother English style.

sn For the title “the Lord God of Israel who rules over all” see 7:3 and the study note on 2:19.

8 tn Heb “before your eyes and in your days.” The pronouns are plural including others than Jeremiah.



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