Chapter 20

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1 Now Pashur the sonne of Immer the Priest, who was also chiefe gouernor in the house of the Lord, heard that Ieremiah prophecied these things.

2 Then Pashur smote Ieremiah the Prophet, and put him in the stockes that were in the high gate of Beniamin, which was by the house of the Lord.

3 And it came to passe on the morrow, that Pashur brought foorth Ieremiah out of the stockes. Then sayd Ieremiah vnto him, The Lord hath not called thy name Pashur, but Magor-missabib.

4 For thus sayth the Lord, Behold, I will make thee a terrour to thy selfe, and to all thy friends, and they shall fall by the sword of their enemies, and thine eyes shall behold it, and I will giue all Iudah into the hand of the king of Babylon, and hee shall cary them captiue into Babylon, and shall slay them with the sword.

5 Moreouer, I will deliuer all the strength of this city, and all the labours thereof, and all the precious things thereof, and all the treasures of the kings of Iudah will I giue into the hand of their enemies which shal spoile them, and take them and cary them to Babylon.

6 And thou Pashur, and all that dwell in thine house, shall goe into captiuitie, and thou shalt come to Babylon, and there thou shalt die, and shalt be buried there, thou and all thy friends to whom thou hast prophecied lies.

7 O Lord, thou hast deceiued me, and I was deceiued, thou art stronger then I, and hast preuailed: I am in derision daily, euery one mocketh me.

8 For since I spake I cryed out, I cried violence and spoyle; because the word of the Lord was made a reproch vnto me, and a derision daily?

9 Then I said; I will not make mention of him, nor speake any more in his name. But his word was in mine heart, as a burning fire shut vp in my bones, and I was weary with forbearing, and I could not stay.

10 For I heard the defaming of many, feare on euery side. Report, say they, and wee will report it: all my familiars watched for my halting, saying; Peraduenture he will be enticed: and we shall preuaile against him, and we shall take our reuenge on him.

11 But the Lord is with me as a mighty terrible one: therefore my persecutours shall stumble, and they shall not preuaile, they shall be greatly ashamed, for they shall not prosper, their euerlasting confusion shall neuer be forgotten.

12 But O Lord of hostes, that tryest the righteous, and seest the reines and the heart, let me see thy vengeance on them: for vnto thee haue I opened my cause.

13 Sing vnto the Lord, praise yee the Lord: for hee hath deliuered the soule of the poore from the hand of euill doers.

14 Cursed be the day wherein I was borne: let not the day wherein my mother bare mee, be blessed.

15 Cursed be the man who brought tidings to my father, saying: A man child is borne vnto thee, making him very glad.

16 And let that man be as the cities which the Lord ouerthrew and repented not: and let him heare the cry in the morning, and the shouting at noonetide,

17 Because he slew me not from the wombe: or that my mother might haue beene my graue, and her wombe to be alwaies great with me.

18 Wherefore came I forth out of the wombe to see labour and sorrow, that my daies should be consumed with shame?

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Commentary for Jeremiah 20

The doom of Pashur, who ill-treated the prophet. (1-6) Jeremiah complains of hard usage. (7-13) He regrets his ever having been born. (14-18)1-6 Pashur smote Jeremiah, and put him in the stocks. Jeremiah was silent till God put a word into his mouth. To confirm this, Pashur has a name given him, "Fear on every side." It speaks a man not only in distress, but in despair; not only in danger, but in fear on every side. The wicked are in great fear where no fear is, for God can make the most daring sinner a terror to himself. And those who will not hear of their faults from God's prophets, shall be made to hear them from their consciences. Miserable is the man thus made a terror to himself. His friends shall fail him. God lets him live miserably, that he may be a monument of Divine justice.

7-13 The prophet complains of the insult and injury he experienced. But ver. #7| may be read, Thou hast persuaded me, and I was persuaded. Thou wast stronger than I; and didst overpower me by the influence of thy Spirit upon me. So long as we see ourselves in the way of God, and of duty, it is weakness and folly, when we meet with difficulties and discouragements, to wish we had never set out in it. The prophet found the grace of God mighty in him to keep him to his business, notwithstanding the temptation he was in to throw it up. Whatever injuries are done to us, we must leave them to that God to whom vengeance belongs, and who has said, I will repay. So full was he of the comfort of God's presence, the Divine protection he was under, and the Divine promise he had to depend upon, that he stirred up himself and others to give God the glory. Let the people of God open their cause before Him, and he will enable them to see deliverance.

14-18 When grace has the victory, it is good to be ashamed of our folly, to admire the goodness of God, and be warned to guard our spirits another time. See how strong the temptation was, over which the prophet got the victory by Divine assistance! He is angry that his first breath was not his last. While we remember that these wishes are not recorded for us to utter the like, we may learn good lessons from them. See how much those who think they stand, ought to take heed lest they fall, and to pray daily, Lead us not into temptation. How frail, changeable, and sinful is man! How foolish and unnatural are the thoughts and wishes of our hearts, when we yield to discontent! Let us consider Him who endured the contradiction of sinners against himself, lest we should be at any time weary and faint in our minds under our lesser trials.

Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.

Discussion for Jeremiah 20

  • BSP
    Verse 11~Jeremiah had complete trust in Jehovah God and this helped him to be courageous and carry out his commission to preach.
  • Obbie Beal
    WOW, WOW, WOW! Jeremiah is not alone.... the day has come (2017) and it is our time,... we must stand or put our head in the sand... WOW, WOW, WOW!
  • A disciple
    Even though the LORD had foretold everything to Jeremiah, about how the people would NOT receive him nor hear his words, but would fight against him; yet still, when he actually begins to experience what God sees every day, it is hard! We wishfully [mis]-think that if we really were mature in the Spirit, and could speak perfectly as right from the Lord, that people would receive it as a blessing.
  • Bobby Wright
    I think that God was showing Jeremiah even in his on trials going to jail being beat
    that grace still protected him.
  • A disciple
    "Wherefore came I forth out of the womb to see labour and sorrow, that my days should be consumed with shame?" Since Cain murdered his brother; since the entire human race that once had the knowledge of God refused anymore to receive the striving of the Spirit of God; since the Nations have made the doctrine and spirit of the heathen their Natural Mind; the whole creation waits on God's vengeance.
  • BSP
    In verse 9 Jeremiah had reached his limit. He honestly expressed his feelings to Jehovah God. We should do the same by earnest prayer.

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