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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Jeremiah 9:23

 

 

Thus says the LORD, "Let not a wise man boast of his wisdom, and let not the mighty man boast of his might, let not a rich man boast of his riches;

Adam Clarke Commentary

Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom - Because God is the Fountain of all good, neither wisdom, nor might, nor riches, nor prosperity can come but from or through him. Nothing can be more rational than that the Source of all our blessings should be acknowledged. Riches cannot deliver in the day of death; strength cannot avail against him; and as a shield against him, our wisdom is foolishness.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Jeremiah 9:23". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/jeremiah-9.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

To the end of Jeremiah 10 the prophet urges upon the people the practical conclusion to be drawn from God‘s righteous dealings with them. The three things on which men most pride themselves are shown in this verse to have proved vain.


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Bibliography
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Jeremiah 9:23". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/jeremiah-9.html. 1870.

Coffman's Commentaries on the Bible

"Thus saith Jehovah, Let not the wise man . glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches; But let him glory in this, that he hath understanding, and knoweth me, that I am Jehovah who exerciseth loving-kindness, justice, and righteousness, in the earth: for in those things I delight, saith Jehovah."

The knowledge of God and his way of salvation is greatly to be preferred above all the honors, power, riches, and achievements of mankind.

"Loving-kindness, justice, and righteousness ..." (Jeremiah 9:24). As Green noted, "These are covenant words." As we have repeatedly emphasized, it is impossible to understand God's punishment of the Jews apart from its relation to the Mosaic covenant which the Jews had possessed for many generations, and which they had so wantonly violated.

The only proper ground for anyone's glorying is in the right relationship with God; this is the thing that supremely matters.


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James Burton Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.

Bibliography
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on Jeremiah 9:23". "Coffman Commentaries on the Old and New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/jeremiah-9.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Thus saith the Lord, let not the wise man glory in his wisdom,.... Not in his natural wisdom, or knowledge of natural things: this is often but an appearance of wisdom, and is science falsely so called; and whatever is real of this kind is of God; and the best falls short of leading men to a true and saving knowledge of God; the foolishness of God is wiser than it; and it is made foolish, destroyed, and brought to nought by him: nor in evangelical wisdom and knowledge; not in that which is less common, or what fits men for public usefulness, as ministerial gifts; for such are received from above; are more for the use of others than a man's self; there is something better than these, which a man may not have, and yet have these, which is grace; those may fade, or be taken away; and a man have them, and be lost eternally: nor in that which is more general, speculative knowledge of Gospel truths; for if it is attended with conceit, it is little or nothing that a man knows; if he is proud of it, his knowledge is not sanctified; and it is no other than what the devils themselves have: nor in that which is more special; wisdom in the inward part, or a spiritual and saving knowledge of God in Christ; this a man has wholly of free grace, and should give the praise and glory of it to God, and not attribute it to himself:

neither let the mighty man glory in his might; not in his natural might or strength; this is of God, and is greater in some of the brutes than in men; and is what God can take away, and does often weaken it in the way by diseases, and at last destroys it by death; nor in moral strength, or in the power of free will; which is very weak and insufficient to do anything that is spiritually good: nor even in spiritual strength; this is from Christ; it is only through him strengthening his people that they do what they do; and all supplies and increase of it are from him; and therefore no room for glorying:

let not the rich man glory in his riches; these come of the hand of God, and are what he can take away at pleasure; they are very uncertain and precarious things; there is a better and more enduring substance; these cannot profit in a day of wrath, nor deliver from death, corporeal, spiritual, or eternal. And the intention of the words here is to show, that neither the wise man with all his art and cunning, nor the mighty man by his strength, nor the rich man through his riches, could save themselves from the destruction before prophesied of. The Targum paraphrases them thus,

"thus saith the Lord, let not Solomon the son of David the wise man praise (or please himself) in his wisdom; nor let Samson the son of Manoah the mighty man please himself in his might; nor let Ahab the son of Omri the rich man please himself in his riches.'


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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.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855

Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 9:23". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/jeremiah-9.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

Thus saith the LORD, Let not the r wise [man] glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty [man] glory in his might, let not the rich [man] glory in his riches:

(r) As none can save himself by his own labour, or any worldly means, he shows that it is vain to put our trust in it, but that we trust in the Lord, and rejoice in him, who only can deliver.

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Bibliography
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Jeremiah 9:23". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/jeremiah-9.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

wisdom — political sagacity; as if it could rescue from the impending calamities.

might — military prowess.


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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 9:23". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/jeremiah-9.html. 1871-8.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

This is a remarkable passage, and often found in the mouth of men, as other notable sentences, which are known as proverbial sayings: but yet few rightly consider how these words are connected with the previous context. Hence there are many who are satisfied with a simple explanation, as though it were a subject abruptly introduced, and as though the Prophet commenced something new; and they confine themselves to those words: and thus they misrepresent the meaning of the Prophet, or at least diminish much of the force of what is taught.

The Prophet no doubt has a regard to what has gone before. He saw, as I have often said, that he addressed the deaf; for the Jews were so swollen with false confidence, that the word of God was regarded worthless by them. As then some were proud for their riches, and others thought themselves more prudent than that they could by any means be taken, and others thought themselves so fortified by wealth and power, that they could easily resist any evil, — as then the minds of all were possessed with so much pride, the Prophet, in order to confirm what he had said, declares here that men foolishly gloried, while they set up their riches, or their strength, or their wisdom, in opposition to God; for all these things would vanish away like smoke.

We now then perceive why the Prophet forbids here any to glory except in God alone, and how the passage ought not to be deemed as abrupt, but connected with what he said, when he denounced destruction on the Jews, which yet they dreaded not, because they were filled with this ungodly and foolish conceit, — that they had more than a sufficient protection in their own strength, or riches, or wisdom. The rest to-morrow.


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Bibliography
Calvin, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 9:23". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/jeremiah-9.html. 1840-57.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Jeremiah 9:23 Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise [man] glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty [man] glory in his might, let not the rich [man] glory in his riches:

Ver. 23. Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom,] q.d., You bear yourselves bold upon your wisdom, wealth, strength, and other such seeming supports and deceitful foundations, as if these could save you from the evils threatened. But all these will prove like a shadow that declineth - delightful, but deceitful; as will well appear at the hour of death. Charles V, whom, of all men, the world judged most happy, cursed his honours, a little before his death, his victories, trophies, and riches, saying, Abite hinc, abite longe; get you far enough, for any good ye can now do me. Abi, perdita bestia, quae me totum perdidisti; begone, thou wretched creature, that hast utterly undone me, said Cornelius Agrippa, the magician, to his familiar spirit, when he lay dying. So may many say of their worldly wisdom, wealth, &c.

Let not the wise man glory.] Let not those of great parts be headstrong, or top heavy; let them not think to wind out by their wiles and shifts.

Let not the mighty man glory.] Fortitudo nostra est infirmitatis in veritate cognitio, et in humilitate confessio. (a)

Nor the rich man glory in his riches.] Since they avail not in the day of wrath. [Zephaniah 1:18] {See Trapp on "Zephaniah 1:18"}


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 9:23". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/jeremiah-9.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

The Jews did glory in the counsel of their wise men, the strength of the soldiers, and the wealth of their cities; but here God takes them off from their vain confidences, that neither their counsels and policy, Ecclesiastes 9:11, nor their forces and arms, Psalms 33:16,17, nor their wealth or riches, Proverbs 11:4 Ezekiel 7:19, should be able to deliver them from being either destroyed or carried captive by the Chaldeans. In these, or some of these, men are apt to put their confidences, and neglect God their only succour in distress; and therefore he puts them upon that in the next verse.


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Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Jeremiah 9:23". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/jeremiah-9.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

THE ONLY SAFETY, Jeremiah 9:23 to Jeremiah 26:23. In such a calamity, where is help and deliverance? Not in human wisdom, nor might, nor riches. Could these avail, this ruin had not come.


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Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Jeremiah 9:23". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/jeremiah-9.html. 1874-1909.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

The Lord commanded that the wise and strong and rich should not take pride in their wisdom and strength and wealth. One writer argued that Jeremiah ministered at a time when conventional wisdom was being challenged, and that this fact accounts for much of the opposition that he faced. [Note: Walter A. Brueggemann, "The Epistemological Crisis of Israel"s Two Histories ( Jeremiah 9:22-23)," in Israelite Wisdom: Theological and Literary Essays in Honor of Samuel Terrien, pp85-105.]


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Bibliography
Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on Jeremiah 9:23". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/dcc/jeremiah-9.html. 2012.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

Thus saith, &c. The lesson which follows is of universal application.

Let not. Note the Figure of speech Symploke, or Anaphora, for emphasis.

wisdom . . . might . . . riches. These are the three things which men boast of, and trust in. This was Jerusalem"s sin.

let not. Some codices, with six early printed editions (one in margin), Aramaean, Septuagint, Syriac, and Vulgate, read "neither let".


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Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Jeremiah 9:23". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/jeremiah-9.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches:

Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom - political sagacity; as if it could rescue from the impending calamities.

Might - military prowess.


Copyright Statement
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 9:23". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/jeremiah-9.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(23) Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom.—The long prophecy of judgment had reached its climax. Now there comes the conclusion of the whole matter—that the one way of salvation is to renounce all reliance on the wisdom, greatness, wealth of the world, and to glory only in knowing Jehovah. The “wise man” is, as before in Jeremiah 8:9, and Jeremiah 9:12, the scribe, or recognised teacher of the people


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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 9:23". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/jeremiah-9.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches:
wise
Job 5:12-14; Psalms 49:10-13,16-18; Ecclesiastes 2:13-16,19; 9:11; Isaiah 5:21; Isaiah 10:12,13; Ezekiel 28:2-9; Romans 1:22; 1 Corinthians 1:19-21,27-29; 3:18-20; James 3:14-16
neither
Deuteronomy 8:17; 1 Samuel 17:4-10,42; 1 Kings 20:10,11; Psalms 33:16,17; Isaiah 10:8; Isaiah 36:8,9; Ezekiel 29:9; Daniel 3:15; 4:30,31,37; 5:18-23; Amos 2:14-16; Acts 12:22,23
rich
Job 31:24,25; Psalms 49:6-9; 52:6,7; 62:10; Proverbs 11:4; Ezekiel 7:19; Zephaniah 1:18; Mark 10:24; Luke 12:19,20; 1 Timothy 6:10

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Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Jeremiah 9:23". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/jeremiah-9.html.

Commentary by J.C.Philpot on select texts of the Bible

Jeremiah 9:23

"Thus says the Lord, Let not the wise man glory in his Wisdom of Solomon , neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches; but let him that glories glory in this—that he understands and knows me." Jeremiah 9:23-24

So we are allowed to glory. But in what and in whom? Not in ourselves; that is forever disannulled. The Lord has purposed to pour contempt upon all human glory, that none should glory in himself, whatever he be or whatever he has. But when a man has a view of the Son of God in his beauty, in his suitability, in his heavenly grace and divine glory, then he can and may glory in the Lord. He can say, "O what a Lord there is above! How glorious is he in his excellency, in his suitability, and in his blessedness; how glorious his Wisdom of Solomon , his righteousness, his sanctification, and his redemption. Let my whole glory be there; let me not take to myself a single atom of it. If I am wise, let me give him the glory of being my wisdom; if righteous, let me give him the glory of being my righteousness; if I have any fruit of the Spirit, let me give him the glory of being my sanctification; if I am redeemed from death and hell, let the glory of my redemption be his." This is doing as God would have us to do, glorying in his dear Son.

And the Lord will bring all his people to this spot sooner or later. He will give them such views of the effects of the fall, of the misery of sin, and of their own helplessness; and will give them such gracious views of his dear Song of Solomon , as shall wean them from glorying in the creature and make them glory in the Lord as all their salvation and all their desire. It may be by a long course of severe discipline, but the Lord will eventually bring all his people there; for he has determined to glorify his dear Song of Solomon , and when we can thus glorify him, then we have the mind of Christ, and are doing the will of God.


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Bibliography
Philpot, Joseph Charles. "Commentary on Jeremiah 9:23". Commentary by J.C.Philpot on select texts of the Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jcp/jeremiah-9.html.

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