Jeremiah (Notes on Chapter 8)

I get the sense that the first three verses of chapter 8 might fit better with the sentiments of chapter 7. In the previous chapter it was the people desecrating the Lord’s Temple; now the invading army (Nebuchadnezzar) would desecrate the dead already buried (8:1-3). From prose to poetry (remainder of the chapter), the Lord asked rhetorical questions with obvious answers, but Jerusalem’s behavior had these rhetorical questions not answered in the obvious way at all! In fact, due to their spiritual dullness, they held fast to deceit (8:4-6), and what wisdom they thought they had resulted in their punishment (8:7-12). In their spiritual stupidity (10:8, ESV) the people of Judah/Jerusalem refused to hear the Lord; now they are waking up to the realization that from Dan (northern part of Israel) Babylon is coming. What the Lord warned about time and again is now realized—and it is too late (8:13-17)! Jeremiah feels the anguish of this, but notes that it was not because of anything except their own-doing or, perhaps, we might say “un-doing”! There is no ointment to apply to this wound (8:18-22).

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