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Jeremiah 2:11

Context

2:11 Has a nation ever changed its gods

(even though they are not really gods at all)?

But my people have exchanged me, their glorious God, 1 

for a god that cannot help them at all! 2 

Jeremiah 8:7

Context

8:7 Even the stork knows

when it is time to move on. 3 

The turtledove, swallow, and crane 4 

recognize 5  the normal times for their migration.

But my people pay no attention

to 6  what I, the Lord, require of them. 7 

1 tn Heb “have exchanged their glory [i.e., the God in whom they glory].” This is a case of a figure of speech where the attribute of a person or thing is put for the person or thing. Compare the common phrase in Isaiah, the Holy One of Israel, obviously referring to the Lord, the God of Israel.

2 tn Heb “what cannot profit.” The verb is singular and the allusion is likely to Baal. See the translator’s note on 2:8 for the likely pun or wordplay.

3 tn Heb “its appointed time.” The translation is contextually motivated to avoid lack of clarity.

4 tn There is debate in the commentaries and lexicons about the identification of some of these birds, particularly regarding the identification of the “swallow” which is more likely the “swift” and the “crane” which some identify with the “thrush.” For a discussion see the Bible encyclopedias and the UBS handbook Fauna and Flora of the Bible. The identity of the individual birds makes little difference to the point being made and “swallow” is more easily identifiable to the average reader than the “swift.”

5 tn Heb “keep.” Ironically birds, which do not think, obey the laws of nature, but Israel does not obey the laws of God.

6 tn Heb “do not know.” But here as elsewhere the word “know” is more than an intellectual matter. It is intended here to summarize both “know” and “follow” (Heb “observe”) in the preceding lines.

7 tn Heb “the ordinance/requirement of the Lord.”



TIP #07: Use the Discovery Box to further explore word(s) and verse(s). [ALL]
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