5 “For Israel and Judah will not be forsaken#tn Heb “widowed” (cf. BDB 48 s.v. אַלְמָן, an adjective occurring only here but related to the common word for “widow”). It is commonly translated as has been done here.sn The verses from v. 5 to v. 19 all speak of the Lord in the third person. The prophet who is the spokesman for the Lord (50:1) thus is speaking. However, the message is still from God because this was all what he spoke “through the prophet Jeremiah.”by their God, the Lord who rules over all.#tn Heb “Yahweh of armies.” For an explanation of this rendering see the study note on 2:19.For the land of Babylonia is#tn Or “all, though their land was…” The majority of the modern English versions understand the land here to refer to the land of Israel and Judah (the text reads “their land” and Israel and Judah are the nearest antecedents). In this case the particle כִּי (ki) is concessive (cf. BDB 473 s.v. כִּי 2.c[b]). Many of the modern commentaries understand the referent to be the land of the Chaldeans/Babylonians. However, most of them feel that the line is connected as a causal statement to 51:2-4 and see the line as either textually or logically out of place. However, it need not be viewed as logically out of place. It is parallel to the preceding and gives a second reason why they are to be destroyed. It also forms an excellent transition to the next lines where the exiles and other foreigners are urged to flee and not get caught up in the destruction which is coming “because of her sin.” It might be helpful to note that both the adjective “widowed” and the suffix on “their God” are masculine singular, looking at Israel and Judah as one entity. The “their” then goes back not to Israel and Judah of the preceding lines but to the “them” in v. 4. This makes for a better connection with the following and understands the particle כִּי in its dominant usage not an extremely rare one (see the comment in BDB 473 s.v. כִּי 2.c[b]). This interpretation is also reflected in RSV. full of guiltagainst the Holy One of Israel.#sn See the note on the phrase “the Holy One of Israel” in 50:29.

Read Jeremiah 51

1996 - 2007 by Biblical Studies Press, LLC