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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Jeremiah 51:31

 

 

One courier runs to meet another, And one messenger to meet another, To tell the king of Babylon That his city has been captured from end to end;

Adam Clarke Commentary

One post shall run to meet another - As the city was taken by surprise, in the manner already related, so now messengers, one after another, were dispatched to give the king information of what was done; viz., that the city was taken at one end. Herodotus tells us that the extreme parts of the city were taken, before those of the center knew any thing of the invasion. Herodot. lib. 1 c. 191.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:31". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/jeremiah-51.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

The royal palace was a strong fortification in the heart of the city. The messengers thus met one another.

At one end - Rather, from all sides, entirely, completely.


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Bibliography
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:31". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/jeremiah-51.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

One post shall run to meet another, and one messenger to meet another,.... That is, one post should be after another, and one messenger after another, post upon post, and messenger upon messenger, as fast as they could run; when one had been with his message, and delivered it, and returned, he meets another; or they met one another, coming from different places:

to show the king of Babylon his city is taken at one end; or, "at the end"F12מקצה "a fine", Montanus; "ab extremitate", Calvin, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, De Dieu, Schmidt. ; we render it "one end", as Kimchi does; at the end where Cyrus's army first landed, when they came up the channel of the river Euphrates they had drained. And so HerodotusF13L. 1. sive Clio, c. 191. says, that when the Babylonians, which inhabited the "extreme parts" of the city, were taken, they that were in the middle of it were not sensible of it, because of the greatness of the city; and the rather, because they were engaged that night in feasting and dancing. Nay, AristotleF14Politic. l. 3. c. 3. says, it was reported that one part of the city was taken three days before the other end knew it, it being more like a country than a city; which does not seem credible, nor is it consistent with the Scripture account of it; however, it was taken by surprise, and some parts of it before the king was aware of it; who very probably had his palace in the middle of it, whither these messengers ran one after another, or from different parts, to acquaint him with it.


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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
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Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:31". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/jeremiah-51.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

One post shall run to meet another, and one messenger to meet another, to show the king of Babylon that his city is taken at r [one] end,

(r) By turning the course of the river one side was made open and the reeds that grew in the water were destroyed which Cyrus did by the counsel of Gobria and Gabatha Belshazzar's captains.

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Bibliography
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:31". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/jeremiah-51.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

(See on Jeremiah 50:24).

One postOne courier after another shall announce the capture of the city. The couriers dispatched from the walls, where Cyrus enters, shall “meet” those sent by the king. Their confused running to and fro would result from the sudden panic at the entrance of Cyrus into the city, which he had so long besieged ineffectually; the Babylonians had laughed at his attempts and were feasting at the time without fear.

taken at one end — which was not known for a long time to the king and his courtiers feasting in the middle of the city; so great was its extent that, when the city was already three days in the enemy‘s hands, the fact was not known in some parts of the city [Aristotle, Politics, 3.2].


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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
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 51:31". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/jeremiah-51.html. 1871-8.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

One post shall run to meet another, and one messenger to meet another, to shew the king of Babylon that his city is taken at one end,

At one end — Cyrus entered the city at one end, by the channel of the river, which he had drained, and surprized Belshazzar in the midst of his feast.


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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliography
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:31". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/jeremiah-51.html. 1765.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

This also was fulfilled according to the testimony of heathen authors, as well as of Daniel. They do not indeed repeat these words, but according to the whole tenor of history we may easily conclude that messengers ran here and there, for the Babylonians never thought that the enemy could so suddenly penetrate into the city, for there was no entrance. We have seen how high the walls were, for there were no muskets then, and the walls could not have been beaten down. There were indeed battering-rams; but what was the breadth of the walls? even fifty feet, as already stated, so that four horses abreast could pass without coming into contact. There was then no battering-ram that could throw down walls so thick. As to the fords, the thing seemed incredible; so that they kept a feast in perfect security. In such an irruption, what our Prophet testifies here must have necessarily happened. But it is quite evident that he was the instrument of the Holy Spirit; for Cyrus was not as yet born when this prophecy was announced. We hence then know, that the holy man was guided from above, and that what he said was not produced in his own head, but was really celestial; for he could not have divined any such thing, nor was it through probable conjecture that he was able thus to speak and lead the Jews, as it were, into the very scene itself.

Nor is there a doubt but that this authority was afterwards confirmed when the fathers told their children, “So have we heard from the mouth of the Prophet what we now see with our eyes; and yet no man could have conjectured any such thing, nor have discovered it by reason or clearsightedness: hence Jeremiah must have necessarily been taught by the Spirit of God.” This, then, is the reason why God designed that the destruction of Babylon should be, as we see, so graphically described.

He then says, A runner ran to meet a runner, and then, a messenger to meet a messenger, to tell the king of Babylon that his city was taken at its extremity ? (93) Had this been said of a small city, it might have appeared ridiculous: why are these runners? one might say. But it has been sufficiently shown, that so extensive was that city, that runners, passing through many fields, might have come to the king, and convey the news that the city was taken at one of its extremities. And heathen writers cannot sufficiently eulogize the contrivance and skill of Cyrus, that, he thus took possession of so great a city; for he might have only secured one half of it, and Belshazzar might have retained the other half, and might have bravely contested with Cyrus and all his forces; and he would have no doubt overcome him, had it not been for the wonderful and unusual expedition of Cyrus. This haste, then, or expedition of Cyrus, is what the Prophet now sets forth, when he says that messengers ran to the king to tell him that the city was taken He now adds, respecting other things, what no one could have divined, —


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Bibliography
Calvin, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:31". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/jeremiah-51.html. 1840-57.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Jeremiah 51:31 One post shall run to meet another, and one messenger to meet another, to shew the king of Babylon that his city is taken at [one] end,

Ver. 31. One post shall run to meet another.] Observe how punctually all things were foretold in the several circumstances more than fifty years before.

At one end,] sc., Where Euphrates had run, till diverted and dried up by Cyrus. See on Jeremiah 50:38.


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:31". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/jeremiah-51.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

We have had occasion one and again to recite what we have in civil historians about the taking of Babylon by Cyrus, viz., that it was taken by surprise, by the Median emperor’s unexpected diverting the river Euphrates by divers channels which he cut; as also that Babylon was a very vast city, the greatness of which might admit of posts and messengers from one end of the city to another, to acquaint the king what was done at the other end of the city in which himself was resident; and it is said that the king of Babylon, when his city, was taken, did not know of his danger until the enemy had entered the city.


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Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:31". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/jeremiah-51.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

31. One post shall run… and one messenger — Indicative of haste and confusion.

To show the king — Who is in his royal palace. These messengers come from all directions and meet one another in the palace with the same dreadful news.


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Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:31". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/jeremiah-51.html. 1874-1909.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

King, feasting in his palace, (Herodotus i. 191.) or at Borsippe. (Berosus) He sent to make inquiries, (Calmet) or his subjects hastened to convey the doleful tidings, and thus met each other. (Haydock)


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Bibliography
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:31". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/jeremiah-51.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

post = runner.

at one end. Supply the Ellipsis by the word "each", instead of "one" = "at [each] end". This will accord with the history; for Herodotus says the Babylonians retired to the city, and "remained in their holds". Cyrus, having turned the waters of the Euphrates, entered the city, by the bed of the river, at each end (see Herod 1 191). Compare Daniel 5:3, Daniel 5:4, Daniel 5:23, Daniel 5:30. The Revised Version, "on every quarter", quite misses the point. This passage, therefore, belongs to the past fulfilment; while others still await a future fulfilment.


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Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:31". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/jeremiah-51.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

One post shall run to meet another, and one messenger to meet another, to shew the king of Babylon that his city is taken at one end, One post shall run to meet another ... to show the king of Babylon that his city is taken at one end - (note, Jeremiah 50:24, "Thou art also taken, O Babylon, and thou wast not aware").

One post - one courier after another shall announce the capture of the city. The couriers despatched from the walls who Cyrus enters shall "meet" those sent by the king. Their confused running to and fro would result from the sudden panic at the entrance of Cyrus into the city, which he had so long besieged ineffectually: the Babylonians had laughed at his attempts, and were feasting at the time without fear.

Taken at one end - which was not known for a long time to the king and his courtiers feasting in the middle of the city: so great was its extent that, when the city was already three days in the enemy's hands, the fact was not known in some parts of the city (Aristotle, 'Polemics,' 3: 2).


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These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:31". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/jeremiah-51.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(31) One post shall run to meet another.—The words exactly answer to the account of the capture of Babylon given in Herod. i. (see Note on Jeremiah 51:24). The history of Belshazzar’s feast (Daniel 5:1-30) must obviously have ended in a like result. No words could paint more vividly the panic of the surprised city.


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Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:31". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/jeremiah-51.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

One post shall run to meet another, and one messenger to meet another, to shew the king of Babylon that his city is taken at one end,
post
4:20; 50:24; 1 Samuel 4:12-18; 2 Samuel 18:19-31; 2 Chronicles 30:6; Esther 3:13-15; Esther 8:10,14; Job 9:25
to shew
50:43; Isaiah 21:3-9; 47:11-13; Daniel 5:2-5,30

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Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:31". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/jeremiah-51.html.

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