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Jeremiah 2:20

Context
The Lord Expresses His Exasperation at Judah’s Persistent Idolatry

2:20 “Indeed, 1  long ago you threw off my authority

and refused to be subject to me. 2 

You said, ‘I will not serve you.’ 3 

Instead, you gave yourself to other gods on every high hill

and under every green tree,

like a prostitute sprawls out before her lovers. 4 

Jeremiah 3:6

Context

3:6 When Josiah was king of Judah, the Lord said to me, “Jeremiah, you have no doubt seen what wayward Israel has done. 5  You have seen how she went up to every high hill and under every green tree to give herself like a prostitute to other gods. 6 

Jeremiah 3:13

Context

3:13 However, you must confess that you have done wrong, 7 

and that you have rebelled against the Lord your God.

You must confess 8  that you have given yourself to 9  foreign gods under every green tree,

and have not obeyed my commands,’ says the Lord.

1 tn Or “For.” The Hebrew particle (כִּי, ki) here introduces the evidence that they had no respect for him.

2 tn Heb “you broke your yoke…tore off your yoke ropes.” The metaphor is that of a recalcitrant ox or heifer which has broken free from its master.

3 tc The MT of this verse has two examples of the old second feminine singular perfect, שָׁבַרְתִּי (shavarti) and נִתַּקְתִּי (nittaqti), which the Masoretes mistook for first singulars leading to the proposal to read אֶעֱבוֹר (’eevor, “I will not transgress”) for אֶעֱבֹד (’eevod, “I will not serve”). The latter understanding of the forms is accepted in KJV but rejected by almost all modern English versions as being less appropriate to the context than the reading accepted in the translation given here.

4 tn Heb “you sprawled as a prostitute on….” The translation reflects the meaning of the metaphor.

5 tn “Have you seen…” The question is rhetorical and expects a positive answer.

6 tn Heb “she played the prostitute there.” This is a metaphor for Israel’s worship; she gave herself to the worship of other gods like a prostitute gives herself to her lovers. There seems no clear way to completely spell out the metaphor in the translation.

7 tn Heb “Only acknowledge your iniquity.”

8 tn The words “You must confess” are repeated to convey the connection. The Hebrew text has an introductory “that” in front of the second line and a coordinative “and” in front of the next two lines.

9 tc MT reads דְּרָכַיִךְ (dÿrakhayikh, “your ways”), but the BHS editors suggest דּוֹדַיִךְ (dodayikh, “your breasts”) as an example of orthographic confusion. While the proposal makes sense, it remains a conjectural emendation since it is not supported by any actual manuscripts or ancient versions.

tn Heb “scattered your ways with foreign [gods]” or “spread out your breasts to strangers.”



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