Jeremiah 42:5 MEANING

Jeremiah 42:5
(5, 6) The Lord be a true and faithful witness . . .--The emphatic adjuration implies that they are ready to accept the punishment which the righteous Judge will inflict in the event of their proving unfaithful to their promise. The name of the place where they had lately been staying may have reminded them of the history of Genesis 31:49 (though that refers to another Mizpah), in which we find the same formula.

Verse 5. - A true and faithful witness between us; rather, against us. If they broke their promise, Jehovah was to "witness against" them by punishing them.

42:1-6 To serve a turn, Jeremiah is sought out, and the captains ask for his assistance. In every difficult, doubtful case, we must look to God for direction; and we may still, in faith, pray to be guided by a spirit of wisdom in our hearts, and the leadings of Providence. We do not truly desire to know the mind of God, if we do not fully resolve to comply with it when we know it. Many promise to do what the Lord requires, while they hope to have their pride flattered, and their favourite lusts spared. Yet something betrays the state of their hearts.Then they said to Jeremiah, the Lord be a true and faithful witness between us,.... Which is the form of an oath; a solemn appeal to God, as a witness to what they were about to say, and to the sincerity of their hearts in it; who is true to his word, and faithful to his promises and threatenings; and who bears a true and faithful testimony, and will do what is just and right; and yet these people never intended to perform what they promised; which is a most shocking piece of atheism in a professing people; and who, at this very time, could not but observe the judgments of God upon their nation, city, and temple:

if we do not even according to all things for the which the Lord thy God shall send thee to us; they promise to do everything the Lord should signify by the prophet as his will; and, if they did not, wish the severest judgments of God might fall upon them.

Courtesy of Open Bible