Jeremiah 41 Bible Commentary

John Wesley’s Explanatory Notes

(Read all of Jeremiah 41)

Verse 1

[1] Now it came to pass in the seventh month, that Ishmael the son of Nethaniah the son of Elishama, of the seed royal, and the princes of the king, even ten men with him, came unto Gedaliah the son of Ahikam to Mizpah; and there they did eat bread together in Mizpah.

Now — Three months after the city was taken.

Ishmael — The same Ishmael that came to Gedaliah, verse 8,9, to whom he sware protection; only here we are told he was of the royal blood, which might both raise his spirits, as having a more legal pretence to the government, and rendered him a fitter instrument, for Baalis the king or queen of the Ammonites to make use of.

The princes — Some of the princes, who had escaped the army of the king of Babylon.

Verse 3

[3] Ishmael also slew all the Jews that were with him, even with Gedaliah, at Mizpah, and the Chaldeans that were found there, and the men of war.

Slew — All those who were about the court of Gedaliah.

Verse 4

[4] And it came to pass the second day after he had slain Gedaliah, and no man knew it,

No man — No man who lived at any distance from Mizpah.

Verse 5

[5] That there came certain from Shechem, from Shiloh, and from Samaria, even fourscore men, having their beards shaven, and their clothes rent, and having cut themselves, with offerings and incense in their hand, to bring them to the house of the LORD.

There came men — Who possibly had not heard of the temple being burnt.

Cut themselves — With all indications of mourning used in those countries.

Verse 8

[8] But ten men were found among them that said unto Ishmael, Slay us not: for we have treasures in the field, of wheat, and of barley, and of oil, and of honey. So he forbare, and slew them not among their brethren.

He forebare — His covetousness prevailed over his cruelty.