Jeremiah 42:10 MEANING

Jeremiah 42:10
(10) Then will I build you, and not pull you down . . .--We note the characteristic recurrence of the formulae with which Jeremiah's work as a prophet had begun (Jeremiah 1:10). The word for "repent" does not imply regret for the past, as men repent of their sin, but, as in Jeremiah 18:8; Jeremiah 26:3, a change of purpose from what had been the mind of judgment to one of mercy. The prophet's counsel is, as it had been all along, that the people should accept the punishment which God had inflicted on them, that they should stay where they were and as they were, and not in terror or suspicion seek safety in plans of their own devising.

Verse 10. - Build you, and not pull you down, etc. Some of Jeremiah's favourite phrases (see on Jeremiah 24:6). I repent me. And yet in 1 Samuel 15:29 we read that "Israel's Trust... is not a man that he should repent." The key to the discrepancy may be found in Psalm 18:25, 26, "With the pious thou showest thyself pious... and with the froward thou showest thyself froward." There is no change in the nature or purpose of God, but only in his conduct towards man. The term "repent" is, therefore, only used analogically.

42:7-22 If we would know the mind of the Lord in doubtful cases, we must wait as well as pray. God is ever ready to return in mercy to those he has afflicted; and he never rejects any who rely on his promises. He has declared enough to silence even the causeless fears of his people, which discourge them in the way of duty. Whatever loss or suffering we may fear from obedience, is provided against in God's word; and he will protect and deliver all who trust in him and serve him. It is folly to quit our place, especially to quit a holy land, because we meet with trouble in it. And the evils we think to escape by sin, we certainly bring upon ourselves. We may apply this to the common troubles of life; and those who think to avoid them by changing their place, will find that the grievances common to men will meet them wherever they go. Sinners who dissemble with God in solemn professions especially should be rebuked with sharpness; for their actions speak more plainly than words. We know not what is good for ourselves; and what we are most fond of, and have our hearts most set upon, often proves hurtful, and sometimes fatal.If ye will still abide in this land,.... In the land of Judea, their native country, where they had always lived, and where they continued when their brethren were carried captive; and yet they thought of going out of it, which the Lord knew; and therefore to encourage them to abide in it, and not think of departing into Egypt; that if they would take up their residence in it, and determine to continue there, he thus promises them:

then will I build you, and not pull you down: and I will plant you,

and not pluck you up; that is, they should be firm and stable, happy and prosperous; and abound with all kind of blessings, and increase in numbers, wealth, and riches. The metaphors are taken from building houses, and planting fields and vineyards:

for I repent me of the evil that I have done unto you; not that he had done any unjust thing to them; or that he changed his mind concerning them; but that he had compassion on them, and would change his way and course of providence towards them, according to his unchangeable will.

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