Notes on the Bible, by Albert Barnes, , at sacred-texts.com
In Jer. 30-39, not all written at the same time, are gathered together whatsoever God had revealed to Jeremiah of happier import for the Jewish people. This subject is "the New covenant." In contrast then with the rolls of Jehoiakim and Zedekiah, we here have one containing the nation's hope. A considerable portion was written in the 10th year of Zedekiah, when famine and pestilence were busy in the city, its capture daily more imminent, and the prophet himself in prison. Yet in this sad pressure of earthly troubles Jeremiah could bid his countrymen look courageously onward to the fulfillment of those hopes, which had so constantly in his darkest hours comforted the heart and nerved the arm of the Jew. The scroll consists of three portions:
(1) "a triumphal hymn of Israel's salvation," Jer. 30-31;
(2) Jer. 32; and
(3) Jer. 33.
Write ... in a book - To be read and meditated upon by them in private. This makes it exceedingly probable that the date of these two chapters was also the 10th year of Zedekiah, immediately after the purchase of the field from Hanameel.
All the words - i. e., the scroll was to be a summary of whatever of hope and mercy had been contained in previous predictions.
Better, as in the margin. The prophet places his hearers in the center of Babylon, and describes it as convulsed with terror as the armies of Cyrus draw near. The voice of trembling is the war-cry of the advancing host: while fear and no peace implies that even among the exiles there is only alarm at the prospect of the city, where they had so long dwelt, being destroyed.
That day - i. e., the day of the capture of Babylon.
It is even the time of Jacob's trouble - Rather, and it is a time of trouble to Jacob, i. e., of anxiety to the Jews, for the usages of war were so brutal that they would be in danger when the enemy made their assault.
Bonds - See Jer 27:2 note.
Shall no more serve themselves - i. e., shall no more exact forced labor of him Jer 22:13.
David their king - See Jer 23:5-6; i. e., Messiah.
These two verses are considered by some very similar in style to the last 27 chapters of Isaiah. The contrast, however, between the full end made with the pagan, and the certainty that Israel shall never so perish, is one of Jeremiah's most common topics.
In measure - See the Jer 10:24 note.
Incurable - Mortal, fatal.
That thou mayest be bound up - Others put a stop after "cause," and translate, For binding thy wound, healing plaster thou hast none.
For the multitude ... - Or,
Because of the multitude of thine iniquity,
Because thy sins are strong.
Judah's lovers are the nations which once sought her alliance (see Jer 22:20; Jer 27:3).
Why criest thou because of thy breaking?
Because thy pain is grievous?
Because of the multitude of thine iniquity,
Because thy sins are strong,
I have done these things unto thee.
Therefore - i. e., Because thou hast undergone thy punishment and cried out in consciousness of thy guilt.
Restore health - Or, "apply a bandage" (Jer 8:22 note). For they called read "they call."
The prophet speaks of Judah as the type of the Church, with Immanuel as her king.
tents - The word suggests that a considerable portion of the people were still nomads.
The city ... the palace - Or, each city ... each palace. The heap means an artificial mount to keep the city out of the reach of inundations, and to increase the strength of the fortifications.
Shall remain after the manner thereof - Rather, shall be inhabited according to its rights, i. e., suitably.
Them - i. e., the city and palace. Render the last words, become few become mean, i. e., despised, lightly esteemed.
Translate, And his glorious one shall spring from himself, and his ruler shall go forth from his midst ... who is this that hath pledged his heart, i. e., hath staked his life, to dealt near unto Me? i. e., "Messiah shall be revealed to them out of their own midst." He can draw near unto God without fear of death, because being in the form of God, and Himself God, He can claim equality with God Phi 2:6.
This is the effect of Messiah's ministry. Men cannot become God's people, until there has been revealed one of themselves, a man, who can approach unto God, as being also God, and so can bridge over the gulf which separates the finite from the Infinite.
Compare the marginal reference. These verses would more appropriately be attached to the next chapter, for which they form a suitable introduction.