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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Jeremiah 51:64

 

 

and say, `Just so shall Babylon sink down and not rise again because of the calamity that I am going to bring upon her; and they will become exhausted.' " Thus far are the words of Jeremiah.

Adam Clarke Commentary

Thus shall Babylon sink, etc. - This is the emblem of its overthrow and irretrievable ruin. See Revelation 18:21, where we find that this is an emblem of the total ruin of mystical Babylon.

Herodotus relates a similar action of the Phocaeans, who, having resolved to leave their country, and never return to it again, μυδρον σιδηρεον κατεπονωσαν, και ωμοσαν μη πριν ες Φωκαιην ἡξειν, πριν η τον μυδρον τουτον αναφηναι· "threw a mass of iron into the sea, and swore that they would never return to Phocaea till that iron mass should rise and swim on the top." The story is this: The Phocaeans, being besieged by Harpagus, general of the Persians, demanded one day's truce to deliberate on the propositions he had made to them relative to their surrendering their city; and begged that in the mean while he would take off his army from the walls. Harpagus having consented, they carried their wives, children, and their most valuable effects, aboard their ships; then, throwing a mass of iron into the sea, bound themselves by an oath never to return till that iron should rise to the top and swim. See Herodotus, lib. 1 c. 165.

Horace refers to this in his epode Ad Populum Romanum, Epode 16 ver. 25: -

Sed juremus in haec: simul imis saxa renarint

Vadis levata, ne redire sit nefas.

"As the Phocaeans oft for freedom bled,

At length with imprecated curses fled."

Francis.

Thus far are the words of Jeremiah - It appears that the following chapter is not the work of this prophet: it is not his style. The author of it writes Jehoiachin; Jeremiah writes him always Jeconiah, or Coniah. It is merely historical, and is very similar to 2 Kings 24:18-25:30. The author, whoever he was, relates the capture of Jerusalem, the fate of Zedekiah, the pillage and burning of the city and the temple. He mentions also certain persons of distinction who were slain by the Chaldeans. He mentions the number of the captives that were carried to Babylon at three different times; and concludes with the deliverance of King Jehoiachin from prison in Babylon, in which he had been for thirty-seven years. It is very likely that the whole chapter has been compiled from some chronicle of that time, or it was designed as a preface to the Book of the Lamentations; and would stand with great propriety before it, as it contains the facts on which that inimitable poem is built. Were it allowable, I would remove it to that place.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:64". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/jeremiah-51.html. 1832.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And thou shall say,.... Not only use the above sign and ceremony, but explain the meaning of it to those of his friends who might accompany him; and what he said was in the name of the Lord, as the form and manner in which the following words are delivered show:

thus shall Babylon sink, and shall not rise from the evil that I will bring upon her; as this book, with the stone bound to it, does, and shall no more rise than that can; the evil of punishment brought on Babylon will sink her to such a degree, that she will never be able to bear up under it; but be so depressed by it as never to rise to her former state and grandeur any more:

and they shall be weary; the inhabitants of it, and have no strength to resist their enemies; or, rather, shall be so weak as not to be able to stand up under the weight and pressure upon them, but shall sink under it; or shall weary themselves in vain to preserve their city from ruin, or restore it when ruined; see Jeremiah 51:58;

thus far are the words of Jeremiah; that is, concerning the destruction of Babylon, as is said concerning Moab, Jeremiah 48:47; for what MaimonidesF13Moreh Nevochim, par. 2. c. 45. Vid. Kimchi in loc. says, that though Jeremiah lived some time after, yet ceased to prophesy; or that, when he had finished his prophecy concerning Babylon, he prophesied no more, is not true; for it is certain that many of his prophecies were delivered out after the date of this, though this is recorded last: or the sense may be, thus far are the prophetic words of Jeremiah; and so the Targum,

"hitherto is the prophecy of the words of Jeremiah;'

what follows in the next chapter being historical; for there is no necessity to conclude from hence that that was wrote by any other hand; either, as many have thought, by Ezra; or by the men of the great synagogue, as Abarbinel.


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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 51:64". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/jeremiah-51.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

And thou shalt say, Thus shall Babylon sink, and shall not rise from the evil that I will bring upon her: and they shall m be weary. Thus far [are] the words of Jeremiah.

(m) They will not be able to resist but will labour in vain.

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Bibliography
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:64". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/jeremiah-51.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

they shall be weary — The Babylonians shall be worn out, so as not to be able to recover their strength.

Thus far … Jeremiah — Hence it is to be inferred that the last chapter is not included in Jeremiah‘s writings but was added by some inspired man, mainly at 2 Kings 24:18-25:30 to explain and confirm what precedes [Calvin].


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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 51:64". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/jeremiah-51.html. 1871-8.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

And thou shalt say, Thus shall Babylon sink, and shall not rise from the evil that I will bring upon her: and they shall be weary. Thus far are the words of Jeremiah.

Weary — With that weight of judgment which shall be upon them.

The words — The prophetical words of Jeremiah; for the matter of the next chapter is historical, and the book of Lamentations is not prophetical.


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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 51:64". "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

The Conclusion follows, Thus far the words of Jeremiah We have said that the prophets, after having spoken in the Temple, or to the people, afterwards collected brief summaries, and that these contained the principal things: from these the prophetic books were made up. For Jeremiah did not write the volume as we have it at this day, except the chapters; and it appears evident that it was not written in the order in which he spoke. The order of time is not, then, everywhere observed; but the scribes were careful in this respect, that they collected the summaries affixed to the doors of the Temple; and so they added this conclusion, Thus far the words of Jeremiah But this, in my view, is not to be confined to the prophecies respecting the fall of Babylon; for I doubt not but that the scribe who had collected all his prophecies, added these words, that he had thus far transcribed the words of Jeremiah.

We hence conclude that the last chapter is not included in the prophetic book of Jeremiah, but that it contains history only as far as was necessary to understand what is here taught: for it appears evident that many parts of the prophecy could not be understood without the knowledge of this history. As to the book of Lamentations, we know that it was a work distinct from the prophecies of Jeremiah: there is, then, no wonder that it has been added, Thus far the words of Jeremiah


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Bibliography
Calvin, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:64". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/jeremiah-51.html. 1840-57.

James Nisbet's Church Pulpit Commentary

‘INTO THE BOTTOM, AS A STONE’

‘Thus shall Babylon sink.’

Jeremiah 51:64

I. In every age of the world Babylon has had its counterpart.—Babel’s tower cast its shadow over the primitive races of mankind. Over against Israel, Nineveh; over against Jerusalem, Babylon; over against the Church, Rome; over against the New Jerusalem, Babylon the Great; over against the Bride of the Lamb, the scarlet woman, riding upon the beast. Wherever God has built His Kingdom, the devil has counterfeited it with his travesty.

II. Jeremiah comforted his heart, amid the desolations that fell thick and heavily on his beloved fatherland, by anticipating the inevitable doom of the oppressor.—And his words, read amid the exiles of Babylon, as they hanged their harps upon the willows, inspired them with faith and hope. In the same way, throughout the persecutions of the empire, when paganism made ten awful efforts to stamp out Christianity, and afterwards, when the Roman Catholic Church endeavoured to extinguish the true light of the Gospel—the suffering children of God have turned to the Book of the Apocalypse to read the doom of that anti-Christian power, which under the guise of papalism or paganism has always set itself against God. Her doom is assured. As Seraiah cast a stone into the Euphrates, so a strong angel casts a great millstone into the sea, saying: ‘Thus, with a mighty fall, is Babylon, the great city, cast down, and shall be found no more.’ Then shall be heard the voice of a great multitude, as the voice of many waters, saying, ‘Hallelujah! for the Lord our God, the Almighty, reigneth.’

Illustrations

(1) ‘When we wish to preserve an archive safely, we deposit it in a record-office where it is kept in a dry place that no moisture may get to it. Seraiah throws his book-roll into the waters of the Euphrates, which must wash it away, dissolve and destroy it. But this was of no account. The main point was that he, Seraiah, as representative of the holy nation, had taken solemn stock of the word of God against Babylon, and as it were taken God at His word, and reminded Him of it. In this manner the matter was laid up in the most enduring and safest archive that could be imagined; it was made a case of honour with the omniscient and omnipotent God. Such matters can, however, neither be forgotten, nor remain in dead silence, nor be neglected. They must be brought to such an end as the honour of God requires.’

(2) ‘The main thought of the picture is that no dead or living wall can save Babylon, for the Lord, the Righteous Recompenser, has determined upon its fall. The dead wall of Babylon will not avail, because the Lord will send destroyers, as first expressed in Jeremiah 51:53. In the following verses the fulfilment of this declaration is exhibited: great noise is heard from Babylon (Jeremiah 51:54). Whence comes this? Hence, that the Lord has begun the work of destruction on Babylon—destroying both the great masses (Jeremiah 51:55) and the élite of the population. His justice requires this (Jeremiah 51:56). Substantially the same thought closes the discourse as began it, and both the beginning and conclusion appear as the verba ipsissima of Jehovah, so that in form also the end reverts to the beginning. The princes and wise men of Babylon may be designated as its living wall. They shall be made drunk with the cup of Jehovah’s wrath, and sleep an everlasting sleep (Jeremiah 51:57). The dead wall, with its lofty gates, shall be subjected to fire, so that it will be made manifest that the immense work, the fruit of the labour of many nations, was achieved in vain, to be consumed by fire (Jeremiah 51:58).’

(3) ‘We may assume that this journey of Zedekiah was the occasion of the prophecy against Babylon. For homage, if not the only object, was certainly one of the objects, of the journey, and it therefore involved a deep disgrace to the theocracy. How fitting it was that the prophet should make use of this journey to furnish the medal with an appropriate reverse. While the king of Judah, in view of all, was casting himself in homage before the throne of the Chaldean king, Seraiah was to cast a roll in the Euphrates, on which was recorded as a Divine decree the destruction of Babylon and deliverance of Israel.’

(4) ‘Israel was founded on everlasting foundations, even God’s word and promise. The sins of the people brought about that it was laid low in the dust, but not without hope of a better resurrection. Babylon, on the other hand, must perish for ever, for in it is the empire of evil come to its highest bloom. Jeremiah owns the nothingness of all worldly kingdoms, since they are all under this national order to serve only for a time. We are to be subject to them and seek their welfare for the sake of the souls of men, whom God is educating therein; a Christian, however, cannot be enthusiastic for them after the manner of the ancient heathen nor of ancient Israel, for here we have no abiding city, our citizenship is in heaven. The kingdoms of this world are no sanctuaries for us, and we supplicate their continuance only with the daily bread of the fourth petition. Jeremiah applies many words and figures to Babylon which he has already used in the judgments on other nations, thus to intimate that in Babylon all the heathenism of the world culminates, and that here also must be the greatest anguish. What, however, is here declared of Babylon must be fulfilled again on all earthly powers in so far as, treading in its footprints, they take flesh for their arm and regard the material of this world as power, whether they be called states or churches.’

(5) ‘God remembers His people. They, too, suffer from the results of their sins. And as they hear of all that has befallen greater nations than themselves they may well fear that their own fate will no less be irremediable and final. If the great kingdom of Babylon is to receive its death-wound, from which it must slowly bleed to death, what hope can there be for Israel, captive in Babylon, while Canaan lies waste? To such fears God speaks words of tender comfort and reassurance. “Fear not thou, neither be dismayed; I will make a full end of all the nations, but I will not make a full end of thee; I will not leave thee unpunished, but will correct thee in measure; I will save thee from afar.” Oh, blessed words! If we have become the children of God by faith in Jesus, if God has ever entered into covenant with our souls, if He has taken us to be His and to give us His best—then, though we suffer chastisement, we shall not be overwhelmed by it: though we are corrected, diminished, and brought low, God will not make a full end of us: though we are pruned, we shall not be cut down to the ground. We may look out on the irretrievable disasters which overtake the ungodly with a quiet mind, for God will keep whispering in our hearts, “Fear not, I will save thee from the land of thy captivity.”’


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Bibliography
Nisbet, James. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:64". Church Pulpit Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/cpc/jeremiah-51.html. 1876.

Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary

REFLECTIONS

HERE Reader! we arrive to the termination of Jeremiah's prophecy, and have seen how sure the word of the Lord is, in destruction to his enemies, and in grace and faithfulness to his people. And we who have lived to see, not only the whole accomplishment of the things predicted, but the introduction of that blessed era of his gospel, in whose kingdom all the great events of salvation to God's people are founded, and by whom all nations of the earth are blessed, may well bow down, with thanksgiving and praise, for this precious portion of the word of his grace. Blessed be the Lord for his servant's ministry! And blessed he the Lord for having such precious scriptures handed down to us, for our instruction! And blessed be the Lord, who teacheth us to profit by the ministry of his servants!

Farewell Jeremiah! thou faithful servant of the most High God! painful indeed were thine exercises, to have thy ministry so despised and scorned; and thy person treated with such indignity and suffering. But sure was thy reward: and Jesus, in whose name thou didst minister, did not leave thee without witness in the most perilous times. Oh! that the Lord Jesus, in all ages of his Church, would grant tokens to his faithful ones, as to Jeremiah, when opposed by false prophets: and to the Hananiahs and Pashurs of the present day, speak in his decision, that they may be Magor-missibibs in terror all around. Lord take thine own blessed cause, unto thine own Almighty arm; and in the ordination of thy ministers, as in the case of Jeremiah, make them as a defenced city, an iron pillar and brazen walls, that they may be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Yea, make them what thou wouldest have them to be, and make them more than conquerors, through thy grace helping them, that Jesus may be glorified in their instrumentality, and the souls of thy people made joyful through them, in the Lord our God.


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Bibliography
Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:64". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/pmc/jeremiah-51.html. 1828.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Jeremiah 51:64 And thou shalt say, Thus shall Babylon sink, and shall not rise from the evil that I will bring upon her: and they shall be weary. Thus far [are] the words of Jeremiah.

Ver. 64. Thus shall Babylon sink.] Ceremonies are to little purpose unless they have divine expositions annexed unto them.

And they shall be weary.] That seek either to save it or to restore it.

Thus far the words of Jeremiah,] sc., Concerning Babylon. See the like concerning Moab. [Jeremiah 48:47]


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:64". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/jeremiah-51.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

It hath been often said that Euphrates was that great river which ran by the walls of Babylon; into this Seraiah is commanded by Jeremiah to throw this roll of prophecy against Babylon, symbolically to teach the Jews, that according to the tenor of his prophecy the time should come, after some years, when Babylon should be destroyed never to rise again to any great view or degree of splendour, no more than that roll with the stone tied to it should rise from the bottom of Euphrates.

And they shall be weary; some read, though they weary themselves, that is, do what they can, or, (as it is here,) and they shall be weary with that weight of judgment which shall be upon them.

Thus far are the words of Jeremiah: either the words of Jeremiah relating to Babylon reach thus far, or all the words of Jeremiah remaining on sacred record (for it is thought that the next chapter was rather penned by some other holy man); or (which seemeth the best) the prophetical words of Jeremiah, for the matter of the next chapter is historical, and the Book of Lamentations is not prophetical, as to the main of it, though there be in it three or four prophetical passages, Lamentations 4:21,22, &c.


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Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:64". 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

64. Thus far are the words of Jeremiah — This implies that the following chapter does not belong to this body of prophecy, but constitutes an historical appendix added by another hand. “It is an instance of the scrupulous care taken by the Jews of the sacred writings committed to their keeping.” — Speaker’s Commentary.


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Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:64". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/jeremiah-51.html. 1874-1909.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Sink. The angel did the like; (Apocalypse xviii. 21.; Calmet) and the Phoceans, leaving their country, swore that they would return no more till a piece of red hot iron, which they threw into the sea, should swim. (Herodotus i. 165.) --- Thus, &c., was added by the compiler. Septuagint omit the sentence, as what relates to Babylon is place [in] chap. xxviii. in their copies. (Calmet) --- Yet Grabe puts it in a different character. (Haydock) --- Jeremias wrote a great deal, after the 4th year of Sedecias, ver. 59. (Calmet) --- He here finished his predictions against Babylon. (Worthington) --- This does not mean that he did not write the next chapter, (Menochius) as Cappel allows, (Houbigant) though this may still be doubted. (Haydock)

 


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Bibliography
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:64". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/jeremiah-51.html. 1859.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(64) They shall be weary.—The words are identical with those that had closed the great prophecy in Jeremiah 51:58. What was meant was probably that Seraiah was to repeat the last words of the prediction, and, as they passed his lips, was to fling the roll into the river. That submersion was typical of the end of the futile labour and weariness of the men of the doomed city.

Thus far are the words of Jeremiah.—The words are clearly of the nature of what we should call an editorial note by the compiler of Jeremiah’s prophecies, Baruch or another. He is careful to inform his readers that the narrative that follows in Jeremiah 52 was not written by Jeremiah.


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Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:64". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/jeremiah-51.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And thou shalt say, Thus shall Babylon sink, and shall not rise from the evil that I will bring upon her: and they shall be weary. Thus far are the words of Jeremiah.
Thus shall
42; 25:27; Nahum 1:8,9; Revelation 14:8; 18:2,21
they shall
58; Habakkuk 2:13; Psalms 76:12
Thus far
Job 31:40; Psalms 72:20

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Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Jeremiah 51:64". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/jeremiah-51.html.

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