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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Jeremiah 46:2

 

 

To Egypt, concerning the army of Pharaoh Neco king of Egypt, which was by the Euphrates River at Carchemish, which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon defeated in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah:

Adam Clarke Commentary

Pharaoh-necho - This was the person who defeated the army of Josiah, in which engagement Josiah received a mortal wound, of which he died, greatly regretted, soon after at Megiddo. After this victory, he defeated the Babylonians, and took Carchemish; and, having fortified it, returned to his own country. Nabopolassar sent his son Nebuchadnezzar with an army against him, defeated him with immense slaughter near the river Euphrates, retook Carchemish, and subdued all the revolted provinces, according to the following prophecies.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/jeremiah-46.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Against … - i. e., relating to, concerning. So Jeremiah 48:1; Jeremiah 49:1; see the note at Jeremiah 46:13.

Pharaoh-necho - See 2 Kings 23:29 note.

In - (at)

d Carchemish - (The Gargamis of the inscriptions, now Jerabis, on the Euphrates, about 16 miles south of Birejik.)


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Bibliography
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/jeremiah-46.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Against Egypt,.... This is the title of the first prophecy against Egypt; which is the first mentioned, because first accomplished; and because the Jews placed great confidence in and much relied on the Egyptians for help:

against the army of Pharaohnecho king of Egypt; who is by HerodotusF17L. 2. sive Euterpe, c. 158. called Necos; he was the son and successor of Psammitichus, and was succeeded by his son Psammis; and he by Apries, the same with Pharaohhophra, Jeremiah 44:30; the Targum calls this king Pharaoh the lame:

which was by the river Euphrates in Carchemish; of which place See Gill on Isaiah 10:9; this being in the land of the king of Assyria, as appears from the same place. Pharaohnecho, in Josiah's time, came up against him, in order to take it from him; but whether he did or no is not certain; see 2 Kings 23:29; however, he appeared at the same place a second time, against the king of Babylon, into whose hands it was now very probably fallen, with the whole Assyrian monarchy; and here, in this second battle, his army was routed, as follows:

which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon smote in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah; when he took away from the king of Egypt all that belonged to him between the Nile and Euphrates, so that he came no more out of his land, 2 Kings 24:7. Kimchi and Abarbinel think there was but one expedition of Pharaohnecho; and that the siege of Carchemish continued to the fourth year of Jehoiakim; when he met with an entire overthrow from the king of Babylon, which God suffered as a judgment on him for killing Josiah. This, according to Bishop Usher, was in the year of the world 3397, and before Christ 607; and, according to the Universal History, in the year of the world 3396, and before Christ 608.


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Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/jeremiah-46.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

Against Egypt, against the army of b Pharaohnecho king of Egypt, who was by the river Euphrates in Carchemish, whom Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon smote in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah.

(b) Read (2 Kings 23:29) , (2 Kings 24:7) ; (2 Chronicles 35:20).

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Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/jeremiah-46.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

Inscription of the first prophecy.

Pharaoh-necho — He, when going against Carchemish (Cercusium, near the Euphrates), encountered Josiah, king of Judah (the ally of Assyria), at Megiddo, and slew him there (2 Kings 23:29; 2 Chronicles 35:20-24); but he was four years subsequently overcome at Carchemish, by Nebuchadnezzar, as is foretold here; and lost all the territory which had been subject to the Pharaohs west of the Euphrates, and between it and the Nile. The prediction would mitigate the Jews‘ grief for Josiah, and show his death was not to be unavenged (2 Kings 24:7). He is famed as having fitted out a fleet of discovery from the Red Sea, which doubled the Cape of Good Hope and returned to Egypt by the Mediterranean.


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This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/jeremiah-46.html. 1871-8.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

He then says that he had prophesied of the destruction of the Egyptian army which King Nebuchadnezzar overthrew in the fourth year of Jehoiakim Jeremiah had then foretold before this time what was to be. It might have been that before Pharaoh-necho prepared his army, Jeremiah predicted what would take place; but it is probable that this prophecy was announced at the time when Pharaoh-necho went forth against the Chaldeans, for he was fighting then for the Assyrians. As they were not equal to the Chaldeans they made a treaty with the Egyptians. They then had come for a subsidy to drive away the Babylonians, and thus to defend the Assyrians against their forces. But at first the expedition met with success; yet at last what had been predicted by the Prophet was fulfilled.

It is not known whether or not the design was to alleviate the sorrow of the people by this prophecy; and yet I am disposed to receive what the greater part of interpreters have held, that as at that time the people were in the greatest trouble, this prophecy was given in order that the faithful might know that God had not ceased to care for his people. But we must especially attend to the truth of history, for when Pharaoh-necho was induced, as it has been said, by the Assyrians, to lead his army to the Euphrates, the pious king Josiah met him, and he was then a confederate with the Babylonians, because there had been a friendly intercourse between the Chaldeans and the Jews since the reign of Hezekiah. As then Josiah wished to render service to a king who was his friend, he opposed the army of Pharaoh; but he was conquered and slain. Now the expedition of Pharaoh was fortunate and successful for a time, but when he began to boast of victory he was suddenly cast down; for King Nebuchadnezzar not only checked his audacity, but having routed his army, compelled him to return into Egypt, and occupied the whole country from the Euphrates to Palusium. That country had not yet been exposed to those continual changes which afterwards happened, that is, when those robbers who had succeeded Alexander the Great boasted that they were the kings of kings, and when every one strove to draw all things to himself. For hence it happened that now Egyptian kings, and then Asiatic kings, often shook that land as far as they could. This had not yet happened when Jeremiah prophesied, nor had Alexander been yet born, but it yet appears that these regions were even then subject to changes, so that there was nothing fixed or permanent connected with them. We must then bear in mind that the events of wars were dubious, so that, one while, the Egyptians forcibly seized a portion of Asia, and at another time the Assyrians diminished their power, and again the Chaldeans. Pharaoh-necho was then so repulsed that he never dared again to come forth, as sacred history testifies in 2 Kings 24:7.

Let us now come to the Prophecy of Jeremiah. He says that he prophesied against the army of Pharaoh-necho, when it was at Euphrates, that is when he fought there and thought that he would be a conqueror, as he had far and wide desolated a hostile land, and brought under his authority many cities. When therefore he had met with great successes, Jeremiah was then bidden to prophesy against his army, so that the Jews might know that the death of pious Josiah would not go unpunished, because God had purposed to destroy that great army by which Josiah had been killed, and so to break down and lay prostrate the power of Egypt, that King Pharaoh would hereafter remain as shut up in prison as it afterwards happened. The rest to-morrow.


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Bibliography
Calvin, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/jeremiah-46.html. 1840-57.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Jeremiah 46:2 Against Egypt, against the army of Pharaohnecho king of Egypt, which was by the river Euphrates in Carchemish, which Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon smote in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah.

Ver. 2. Against Egypt.] First, That the Jews might not rely on that broken reed, as they did to their ruin, because they would never be warned.

Against the army of Pharaohnecho.] Who had beaten Nebuchadnezzar Priscus at Carchemish, and gotten all the country from Egypt to Euphrates; but was afterwards himself beaten out again, by Nebuchadnessar II, surnamed Magnus, in the first year of his reign, which was the fourth year of Jehoiakim, who also was glad to become his tributary. (a) Now this overthrow of the Egyptian, who was driven out of all Syria, as far as Pelusium, by the Babylonian, is here foretold.


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/jeremiah-46.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Jeremiah 46:2. Pharaoh-necho This prince is remarkable for his attempt to join the Nile to the Red Sea, by cutting a canal from one to the other; though they are above one hundred and eighteen English miles asunder; but after the loss of one hundred and twenty thousand workmen, he was obliged to desist. His first military action was against the Medes and Babylonians, who, having by the capture of Nineveh destroyed the Assyrian empire, became formidable to the neighbouring states. Josiah opposed him in his march through his country; but was defeated, and received a wound in the battle, which proved mortal. Necho continued his march after this victory, defeated the Babylonians, took Carchemish, and, securing it with a strong garrison, returned into his own country. Nabopalassar, observing that all Syria and Palestine had revolted on account of the reduction of Carchemish, sent his son Nebuchadrezzar with an army against Necho, whom he vanquished near the river Euphrates, recovered Carchemish, and subdued the revolted provinces, according to this prophesy of Jeremiah, in the year of the world, 3367; before Christ 607. See Rollin's Ancient Hist. vol. 1: book 1 and Calmet.


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Bibliography
Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/jeremiah-46.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Pharah-necho was king of Egypt in Josiah’s time; it was by his army that Josiah was killed at Megiddo, 2 Kings 23:29; it was he that made Jehoiakim king of Judah, taking away Jehoahaz, 2 Kings 23:34; but though he prevailed at that time, and that was one time when he came out against Carchemish, 2 Chronicles 35:20, yet he was overthrown by Nebuchadnezzar in a battle with him afterwards, as appears from 2 Kings 24:7, and Jehoiakim was made tributary to Nebuchadnezzar, as we read, 2 Kings 24:1; and the king of Egypt was brought so low by that victory, that he stirred no more out of Egypt, for the king of Babylon had taken from him all from Nilus, the great river of Egypt, to Euphrates; and this, saith this verse, was in the fourth year of Jehoiakim. This prophecy must be before that time.

Carchemish appeareth, from Isaiah 10:9, to have been a place in Syria where the Egyptian army had been in Josiah’s time, and then went away conquerors, as appears from 2 Chronicles 35:20, &c.


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Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/jeremiah-46.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

2. Against Egypt — The particular caption of the passage immediately following. As there are two sections pertaining to Egypt (3-12 and 13-26) this title may relate to both.

Pharaoh-necho — Said by Manetho to have been the sixth king of the twenty-sixth dynasty. His date has been fixed from 611 to 595 B.C.

Carchemish — The site of this important ancient city is not determined beyond question. That it was on the Euphrates is settled by this passage. The common opinion is, that it was at the junction of the Chebar with the Euphrates, and identical with the Greek Circesium. Others, however, locate it higher up the Euphrates, about in latitude thirty-six. Professor Rawlinson favours this. The place is mentioned in the cuneiform inscriptions, and also in the Egyptian hieroglyphical sculptures. Circesium, which is the site commonly identified with “Carchemish,” was built on a narrow wedge-shaped plain in the fork between the two rivers. All that now remains of it is ruins.


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Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/jeremiah-46.html. 1874-1909.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

This is a title verse for the subsection dealing with Nebuchadnezzar"s defeat of Pharaoh Neco at Carchemish (lit. fort of Chemosh, the god of the Moabites), in northern Syria, in605 B.C. ( Jeremiah 46:1-12). The title describes the defeat as past, but undoubtedly Jeremiah gave his prediction before the battle.

Egypt controlled Canaan and Aram (Syria) during most of the second millennium B.C, until about1200 , when internal weakness resulted in her losing her grip. Assyria, then Babylonia, then Persia took over control of this region in turn. But Egypt was still a force to be reckoned with, even after she lost the upper hand. One particularly strong Egyptian Pharaoh was Shishak (945-924 B.C.), who invaded Canaan (cf. 1 Kings 14:25-26). In609 B.C, Pharaoh Neco II (ca610-594 B.C.) marched to Carchemish on the Euphrates River in northern Syria (modern Turkey). On the way, King Josiah opposed him, and Neco slew the Judean king (609 B.C, 2 Kings 23:29). Neco wanted to assist the Assyrians in defeating the young and threatening Neo-Babylonian Empire, but the Babylonians, led by Prince Nebuchadnezzar, won the battle in605 B.C. This is the victory that gave Babylonia sovereignty in the ancient Near East.


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Bibliography
Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/dcc/jeremiah-46.html. 2012.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Jeremiah 46:2. Against Egypt, against the army of Pharaoh-necho — Pharaoh- necho was king of Egypt in Josiah’s time, and it was by his army that Josiah was killed at Megiddo, as is related 2 Kings 23:29, where see the note. That army was then marching under the conduct of Necho against the Medes and Babylonians, who, having by the capture of Nineveh destroyed the Assyrian empire, had become formidable to the neighbouring states. Josiah opposed it in its march through the country, but was defeated, and received a wound in the battle which proved mortal. Necho continued his march after this victory, defeated the Babylonians, took Carchemish, and securing it with a strong garrison, returned into his own country. Nabopolassar, the king of Babylon, observing that all Syria and Palestine had revolted on account of the reduction of Carchemish by the Egyptians, sent his son Nebuchadnezzar with an army to retake that city, and recover the revolted provinces. Necho marched with a powerful army to oppose him; and it appears it was at the time when the Egyptian army lay along the banks of the Euphrates, waiting to oppose the entrance of Nebuchadnezzar into Syria, that this prophecy was delivered, namely, as is here said, in the fourth year of Jehoiakim. The two armies came to an engagement near the city of Carchemish, and the event of the battle proved very disastrous to the Egyptians, who were routed with prodigious slaughter, as is here foretold by the prophet in a very animated style, and with great poetic energy and liveliness of colouring.


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Bibliography
Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". Joseph Benson's Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/jeremiah-46.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Nechao. He slew Josias, and took all as far as Charcamis, 4 Kings xxiii. Four years after Nabopolasser associated his son, and sent him to conquer these countries, which he effected, 4 Kings xxiv. 7. (Josephus)


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Bibliography
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/jeremiah-46.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

Egypt. Comes first because most important in connection with Judah, as well as coming second to Babylon at that time (with which it corresponds in position in the Structure above). Judah was indeed, then subject to Egypt. The policy of Judah"s rulers was to lean on Egypt instead of heeding Jeremiah. These prophecies are designed to assure the nation that it could not rely on Gentile powers to thwart God"s word by Jeremiah.

Carchemish. Compare 2 Chronicles 35:20-24. The Gargamish of the Inscriptions, now known as Jerablus, or Membij, &c.

the fourth year of Jehoiakim. A critical era in the history of Egypt, Babylon, Judah, and the world. See App-86. Four years before, Pharaoh-necho, on his way to Carchemish, had defeated and slain Josiah at Megiddo, and afterward taken his son Shallum as a vassal to Egypt, and set up Jehoiakim (2 Kings 23:29-35).


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Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/jeremiah-46.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Against Egypt, against the army of Pharaoh-necho king of Egypt, which was by the river Euphrates in Carchemish, which Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon smote in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah.

Inscription of the first prophecy.

Pharaoh-necho. He, when going against Carchemish (Cerusium, near the Euphrates), encountered Josiah king of Judah (the ally of Assyria) at Megiddo, and killed him there (2 Kings 23:29; 2 Chronicles 35:20-24); but was four years subsequently overcome at Carchemish by Nebuchadnezzar, as is foretold here, and lost all the territory which had been subject to the Pharaohs west of the Euphrates, and between it and the Nile. The prediction would 'mitigate the Jews' grief for Josiah, and show his death was not to be unavenged (2 Kings 24:7). He is famed as having fitted out a fleet of discovery from the Red Sea, which doubled the Cape of Good Hope, and returned to Egypt by the Mediterranean.


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Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/jeremiah-46.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(2) Against Egypt, against the army of Pharaoh-necho.—The king of Egypt thus named was the last of its great native sovereigns. He was the sixth king of the twenty-sixth dynasty of Manetho, and succeeded his father Psammetichus in B.C. 610, and reigned for sixteen years. Herodotus (ii. 158, 159) relates as his chief achievements that he anticipated the Suez Canal by endeavouring to connect the Nile with the Red Sea, but was stopped by an oracle, and sent a fleet of Phœnician ships to circumnavigate Africa. One hundred and twenty thousand lives were said to have been sacrificed in the former enterprise. On desisting from it, he turned his attention to other plans of conquest, defeated the Syrians at Magdolus, near Pelusium, and took Cadytis, a great city of Syria, which Herodotus describes as not much less than Sardis. By some writers this has been identified with the capture of Jerusalem in 2 Chronicles 36:3, the name Cadytis being looked on as equivalent to Kadusha (=the holy city),and so anticipating the modern Arabic name of El-Khuds. Herodotus, however (iii. 5), describes it as being near the coast, and this has led to its being identified with Gaza, or Kedesh-Naphtali, or a Hittite city—Ketesh—on the Orontes, near which the great commercial and. military road turned off for Damascus and the Euphrates. In any case, it was in the course of this invasion, directed against the Babylonian Empire, then ruled by Nabopolassar, the father of Nebuchadnezzar, that he defeated and slew Josiah at Megiddo (2 Chronicles 35:20-24), deposed Jehoahaz, and appointed Jehoiakim (2 Chronicles 36:4). By some writers, accordingly (R. S. Poole, in Smith’s Dict. Bible, Art. Pharaoh-necho), Megiddo is identified with the Magdolus of Herodotus. His army advanced, and took the city of Carchemish, by some (Hitzig) identified with Circesium, an island formed by the confluence of the Chaboras and the Euphrates; by others (Rawlinson) with a Hittite city, now Jerablus, a corruption of the Greek Hierapolis, much higher up the Euphrates. (See Note on Isaiah 10:9). After the capture Necho appears to have returned to Egypt. Three years later (B.C. 606) Carchemish was taken by Nebuchadnezzar with the almost total defeat of Necho’s army, he himself having returned to Egypt, and it is this defeat of which Jeremiah now proceeds to speak as in a song of anticipated triumph at the downfall of the Egyptian oppressor.


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Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/jeremiah-46.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Against Egypt, against the army of Pharaohnecho king of Egypt, which was by the river Euphrates in Carchemish, which Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon smote in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah.
Against Egypt
14; 25:9,19; Ezekiel 29:1-32
Pharaoh-necho
2 Kings 23:29
Pharaoh-nechoh
2 Chronicles 35:20,21
Necho
Carchemish
Isaiah 10:9
in the
25:1; 36:1

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Jeremiah 46:2". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/jeremiah-46.html.

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