Jeremiah 29:7 MEANING

Jeremiah 29:7
(7) And seek the peace of the city . . .--This was, we may believe, the hardest command of all. To refrain from all curses and imprecations, even from such as came from the lips of those who hung their harps on the willows by the waters of Babylon (Psalms 137), to pray for the peace and prosperity of the city where they were eating the bread of captivity--this surely required an almost superhuman patience. Yet this was the prophet's counsel. It seems almost to follow--unless we apply Augustine's rule, Distingue tempora, and refer the psalm to a time prior to Jeremiah's letter, or nearer the day of vengeance--that those imprecations, natural as they seem, belonged to a lower stage of spiritual progress than that represented by the prophet. He was, to those impatient exiles, as our Lord was to the impatient disciples who sought to call down fire on the village of the Samaritans (Luke 9:54-56). So, we may remember, Christians living under Nero were told to pray for the Emperor (1 Timothy 2:2).

Verse 7. - Seek the peace of the city, etc. Interest yourselves in the "peace" or welfare of the city, whether Babylon or any other place where ye may be in exile, and pray for its welfare, for your own well-being is inseparable from it.

29:1-7 The written word of God is as truly given by inspiration of God as his spoken word. The zealous servant of the Lord will use every means to profit those who are far off, as well as those who are near him. The art of writing is very profitable for this end; and by the art of printing it is rendered most beneficial for circulating the knowledge of the word of God. God's sending to the captives by this letter would show that he had not forsaken them, though he was displeased, and corrected them. If they live in the fear of God, they may live comfortably in Babylon. In all conditions of life, it is our wisdom and duty not to throw away the comfort of what we may have, because we have not all we would have. They are directed to seek the good of the country where they were captives. While the king of Babylon protected them, they must live quiet and peaceable lives under him, in all godliness and honesty; patiently leaving it to God to work deliverance for them in due time.And seek the peace of the city,.... The prosperity and happiness of Babylon, or any other city in Chaldea, were they were placed: this they were to do by prayer and supplication to God, and by all other means that might be any ways conducive to the good of the state where they were:

whither I have caused you to be carried away captives; and as long as they continued so; for being under the protection of the magistrates of it, though Heathens, they owed them submission, and were under obligation to contribute to their peace and welfare:

and pray unto the Lord for it; the city, where they dwelt; for the continuance, safety, peace, and prosperity of it; and therefore much more ought the natives of a place to seek and pray for its good, and do all that in them lies to promote it; and still more should the saints and people of God pray for the peace of Jerusalem, or the church of God, where they are born, and brought up in a spiritual sense; see 1 Timothy 2:1;

for in the peace thereof shall ye have peace; which is an argument taken from self-interest; intimating, that while the city in which they were was in safety and prosperity, was in a flourishing condition, as to its health and trade, they would partake more or less with them of the same advantages; and on the other hand, should they be distressed with the sword, famine, or pestilence, or any grievous calamity, they would be involved in the same.

Courtesy of Open Bible