10:2 Thus saith the LORD, Learn not the way of the nations, and be not dismayed at the a signs of heaven; for the nations are dismayed at them.
(a) God forbids his people to give credit or fear
the constellations and conjunctions of stars and planets which have no power
of themselves but are governed by him, and their secret motions and influences
are not known to man and therefore there can be no certain judgment of it, (Deuteronomy
10:3 For the b
customs of the people [are] vain: for [one] cutteth a tree out of the forest,
the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe.
(b) Meaning not only in the observation of the
stars, but their laws and ceremonies by which they confirm their idolatry,
which is forbidden, (Deuteronomy
10:4 They deck it c
with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it
may not move.
(c) The prophets use thus plainly and simply to
set forth the vile absurdity of the idolaters that men might learn to be
ashamed of that to which their corrupt nature is most subject, (Isaiah
10:6 Forasmuch as [there is]
none like thee, O LORD; d thou [art]
great, and thy name [is] great in might.
(d) He teaches the people to lift up their eyes
to God, who has all power and therefore ought only to be feared: and in this
he shows them not only the evil that they ought to hate: but the good which
they ought to follow, (Revelation
10:8 But they are altogether
senseless and foolish: the stock [is] a e
doctrine of vanities.
(e) Because the people thought that to have
images was a means to serve God, and to bring them to the knowledge of him, he
shows that nothing more displeases God, nor brings man into greater errors and
ignorance of God: and therefore he calls them the doctrine of vanity, the work
of errors, (Jeremiah
2:18) calls them the teachers of lies: contrary to that wicked opinion,
that they are the books of the lay people.
10:9 Silver beaten into plates is brought from
Tarshish, and gold f from Uphaz, the
work of the craftsman, and of the hands of the goldsmith: blue and purple [is]
their clothing: they [are] all the work of skilful [men].
(f) Where they found the best gold; showing that
they thought nothing too dear for their idols, some read Ophir as in (1 Kings
10:11 Thus shall ye say to
them, The gods g that have not made the
heavens and the earth, [even] they shall perish from the earth, and from under
(g) This declares that all that has been spoken
of idols in this chapter, was to arm the Jews when they would be in Chaldea
among the idolaters, and now with one sentence he instructs them both how to
protest their own religion against the idolaters and how to answer them to
their shame who would exhort them to idolatry, and therefore he writes this
sentence in the Chaldean tongue for a memorial while all the rest of his
writing is in Hebrew.
Every man is h senseless in [his]
knowledge: every goldsmith is confounded by the graven image: for his molten
image [is] falsehood, and [there is] no breath in them.
(h) The more man thinks to do anything well by
his own wisdom, and not as God instructs him, the more he proves himself to be
a vile beast.
10:16 The i
portion of Jacob [is] not like them: for he [is] the former of all [things]; and
Israel [is] the rod of his inheritance: The LORD of hosts [is] his name.
(i) By these words, portion and rod, he signifies
their inheritance, meaning that God would be all sufficient for them: and that
their happiness consisted in him alone, and therefore they ought to renounce
all other help and comfort as of idols, etc. (Deuteronomy
Gather up thy wares out of the land, O inhabitant of the fortress.
(k) The prophet wills the Jews to prepare
themselves for this captivity, showing that it was now at hand that they would
feel the things of which he had told them.
10:19 Woe is me for my
hurt! my wound is grievous: but I said, Truly this l
[is] a grief, and I must bear it.
(l) It is my just plague, and therefore I will
take it patiently: by which he teaches the people how to behave themselves
10:20 m My
tabernacle is laid waste, and all my cords are broken: my children are gone from
me, and they [are] not: [there is] none to stretch forth my tent any more, and
to set up my curtains.
(m) He shows how Jerusalem will lament.
10:21 For the shepherds n
have become senseless, and have not sought the LORD: therefore they shall not
prosper, and all their flocks shall be scattered.
(n) The governors and ministers.
10:22 Behold, the sound of a rumour is come, and a
great commotion from the o north
country, to make the cities of Judah desolate, [and] a den of dragons.
(o) Read (Jeremiah
10:23 O LORD, I know that p
the way of man [is] not in himself: [it is] not in man that walketh to direct
(p) He speaks this because Nebuchadnezzar
purposed to have made war against the Moabites and Ammonites, but hearing of
Zedekiah's rebellion he turned his power to go against Jerusalem, (Ezekiel
21:21) therefore the prophet says that this was the Lord's direction.
10:24 O LORD, correct me, but with q
judgment; not in thy anger, lest thou bring me to nothing.
(q) Considering that God had revealed to him the
certainty of their captivity (Jeremiah
7:16) he only prays that he would punish them with mercy which Isaiah
calls in measure, (Isaiah
27:8) measuring his rods by their infirmity (1 Corinthians
10:13) for here by judgment is meant not only the punishment but also the
merciful moderation of the same as in (Jeremiah
10:25 Pour out r
thy fury upon the nations that know thee not, and upon the families that call
not on thy name: for they have eaten up Jacob, and devoured him, and consumed
him, and have made his habitation desolate.
(r) As God cannot only be known and glorified by
his mercy that he uses toward his Church, but also by his justice in punishing
his enemies, he prays that this glory may fully appear both in the one and the