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Jeremiah 47:5

Context

47:5 The people of Gaza will shave their heads in mourning.

The people of Ashkelon will be struck dumb.

How long will you gash yourselves to show your sorrow, 1 

you who remain of Philistia’s power? 2 

Jeremiah 48:37

Context

48:37 For all of them will shave their heads in mourning.

They will all cut off their beards to show their sorrow.

They will all make gashes in their hands.

They will all put on sackcloth. 3 

1 sn Shaving one’s head and gashing one’s body were customs to show mourning or sadness for the dead (cf. Deut 14:1; Mic 1:16; Ezek 27:31; Jer 16:6; 48:37).

2 tn Or “you who are left alive on the Philistine plain.” Or “you who remain of the Anakim.” The translation follows the suggestion of several of the modern commentaries that the word עֵמֶק (’emeq) means “strength” or “power” here (see J. A. Thompson, Jeremiah [NICOT], 698; J. Bright, Jeremiah [AB], 310; and see also HALOT 803 s.v. II עֵמֶק). It is a rare homonym of the word that normally means “valley” that seems to be an inappropriate designation of the Philistine plain. Many of the modern English versions and commentaries follow the Greek version which reads here “remnant of the Anakim” (עֲנָקִים [’anaqim] instead of עִמְקָם [’imqam], a confusion of basically one letter). This emendation is followed by both BDB 771 s.v. עֵמֶק and KBL 716 s.v. עֵמֶק. The Anakim were generally associated with the southern region around Hebron but an enclave of them was known to have settled in Gaza, Gath, and Ekron, three of the Philistine cities (cf. Josh 11:22). However, the fact that this judgment is directed against the Philistines not the Anakim and that this homonym apparently appears also in Jer 49:4 makes the reading of “power” more likely here.

3 tn Heb “upon every loin [there is] sackcloth.” The word “all” is restored here before “loin” with a number of Hebrew mss and a number of versions. The words “in mourning” and “to show their sorrow” are not in the text. They have been supplied in the translation to give the average reader some idea of the significance of these acts.

sn The actions referred to here were all acts that were used to mourn the dead (cf. Isa 15:2-3).



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