Jeremiah 37:20 MEANING

Jeremiah 37:20
(20) That thou cause me not to return to the house of Jonathan the scribe . . .--The petition shows the cruelty with which the prophet had been treated. Half-starved, and thrust into a foul and f?tid dungeon, he felt that to return to it would be death.

37:11-21 There are times when it is the wisdom of good men to retire, to enter into their chambers, and to shut the doors, Isa 26:20. Jeremiah was seized as a deserter, and committed to prison. But it is no new thing for the best friends of the church to be belied, as in the interests of her worst enemies. When thus falsely accused, we may deny the charge, and commit our cause to Him who judges righteously. Jeremiah obtained mercy of the Lord to be faithful, and would not, to obtain mercy of man, be unfaithful to God or to his prince; he tells the king the whole truth. When Jeremiah delivered God's message, he spake with boldness; but when he made his own request, he spake submissively. A lion in God's cause must be a lamb in his own. And God gave Jeremiah favour in the eyes of the king. The Lord God can make even the cells of a prison become pastures to his people, and will raise up friends to provide for them, so that in the days of famine they shall be satisfied.Therefore hear now, one pray thee, O my lord the king,.... When the prophet spoke in the name of the Lord, and the words of the Lord, it was with great boldness and majesty; but when he spoke for himself, and on his own behalf, it was with great submission, as it became a subject to his king; and whom he owns as his sovereign lord, though a wicked prince, and whose destruction he knew was at hand:

let my supplication be accepted before thee; or, "fall before thee": see Jeremiah 36:7; which was as follows:

that thou cause me not to return to the house of Jonathan the scribe; but that he might be discharged from his confinement; or however be removed into another prison, not so uncomfortable and disagreeable as this man's house or prison was; and which perhaps was still the worse through his cruel and ill natured carriage to him; and which all together endangered his life: wherefore he adds,

lest I die there; for though he had continued there many days, yet the place was so exceedingly noisome, that he thought he could not long continue there, was he remanded back to it.

Courtesy of Open Bible