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Jeremiah 22:18-19

Context

22:18 So 1  the Lord has this to say about Josiah’s son, King Jehoiakim of Judah:

People will not mourn for him, saying,

“This makes me sad, my brother!

This makes me sad, my sister!”

They will not mourn for him, saying,

“Poor, poor lord! Poor, poor majesty!” 2 

22:19 He will be left unburied just like a dead donkey.

His body will be dragged off and thrown outside the gates of Jerusalem.’” 3 

1 sn This is the regular way of introducing the announcement of judgment after an indictment of crimes. See, e.g., Isa 5:13, 14; Jer 23:2.

2 tn The translation follows the majority of scholars who think that the address of brother and sister are the address of the mourners to one another, lamenting their loss. Some scholars feel that all four terms are parallel and represent the relation that the king had metaphorically to his subjects; i.e., he was not only Lord and Majesty to them but like a sister or a brother. In that case something like: “How sad it is for the one who was like a brother to us! How sad it is for the one who was like a sister to us.” This makes for poor poetry and is not very likely. The lover can call his bride sister in Song of Solomon (Song 4:9, 10) but there are no documented examples of a subject ever speaking of a king in this way in Israel or the ancient Near East.

3 sn A similar judgment against this ungodly king is pronounced by Jeremiah in 36:30. According to 2 Chr 36:6 he was bound over to be taken captive to Babylon but apparently died before he got there. According to the Jewish historian Josephus, Nebuchadnezzar ordered his body thrown outside the wall in fulfillment of this judgment. The Bible itself, however, does not tell us that.

map For location see Map5 B1; Map6 F3; Map7 E2; Map8 F2; Map10 B3; JP1 F4; JP2 F4; JP3 F4; JP4 F4.



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