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Jeremiah 22:18


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 

Jeremiah 34:5

34:5 You will die a peaceful death. They will burn incense at your burial just as they did at the burial of your ancestors, the former kings who preceded you. 3  They will mourn for you, saying, “Poor, poor master!” 4  Indeed, you have my own word on this. 5  I, the Lord, affirm it!’” 6 

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 tn Heb “And like the burning [of incense] for your fathers, the former kings who were before you, so will they burn [incense] for you.” The sentence has been reversed for easier style and the technical use of the terms interpreted.

sn For the custom referred to compare 2 Chr 16:14; 21:19.

4 sn The intent of this oracle may have been to contrast the fate of Zedekiah with that of Jehoiakim who was apparently executed, went unmourned, and was left unburied (contrast Jer 22:18-19).

5 tn Heb “For [or Indeed] I myself have spoken [this] word.”

6 tn Heb “Oracle of the Lord.”

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