14 Why are we sitting here? Gather together! Let us flee to the fortified cities and perish there! For the Lord our God has doomed us to perish and given us poisoned water to drink, because we have sinned against him. 15 We hoped for peace but no good has come, for a time of healing but there is only terror. 16 The snorting of the enemy's horses is heard from Dan; at the neighing of their stallions the whole land trembles. They have come to devour the land and everything in it, the city and all who live there. 17 "See, I will send venomous snakes among you, vipers that cannot be charmed, and they will bite you," declares the Lord.
18 You who are my Comforter in sorrow, my heart is faint within me. 19 Listen to the cry of my people from a land far away: "Is the Lord not in Zion? Is her King no longer there?" "Why have they aroused my anger with their images, with their worthless foreign idols?" 20 "The harvest is past, the summer has ended, and we are not saved." 21 Since my people are crushed, I am crushed; I mourn, and horror grips me. 22 Is there no balm in Gilead? Is there no physician there? Why then is there no healing for the wound of my people?
14 Why do we sit still? assemble yourselves, and let us enter into the defenced cities, and let us be silent there: for the Lord our God hath put us to silence, and given us water of gall
18 When I would comfort myself against sorrow, my heart is faint in me. 19 Behold the voice of the cry of the daughter of my people because of them that dwell in a far country: Is not the Lord in Zion? is not her king in her? Why have they provoked me to anger with their graven images, and with strange vanities? 20 The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved. 21 For the hurt of the daughter of my people am I hurt; I am black; astonishment hath taken hold on me. 22 Is there no balm in Gilead; is there no physician there? why then is not the health of the daughter of my people recovered
14 Why do we sit still? Gather together; let us go into the fortified cities and perish there, for the Lord our God has doomed us to perish and has given us poisoned water to drink, because we have sinned against the Lord. 15 We looked for peace, but no good came; for a time of healing, but behold, terror. 16 "The snorting of their horses is heard from Dan; at the sound of the neighing of their stallions the whole land quakes. They come and devour the land and all that fills it, the city and those who dwell in it. 17 For behold, I am sending among you serpents, adders that cannot be charmed, and they shall bite you," declares the Lord.
18 My joy is gone; grief is upon me;
14 So why are we sitting here, doing nothing? Let's get organized. Let's go to the big city and at least die fighting. We've gotten God's ultimatum: We're damned if we do and damned if we don't - damned because of our sin against him. 15 We hoped things would turn out for the best, but it didn't happen that way. We were waiting around for healing - and terror showed up! 16 From Dan at the northern borders we hear the hooves of horses, Horses galloping, horses neighing. The ground shudders and quakes. They're going to swallow up the whole country. Towns and people alike - fodder for war. 17 "'What's more, I'm dispatching poisonous snakes among you, Snakes that can't be charmed, snakes that will bite you and kill you.'" God's Decree! Advancing from One Evil to the Next
18 I drown in grief. I'm heartsick. 19 Oh, listen! Please listen! It's the cry of my dear people reverberating through the country. Is God no longer in Zion? Has the King gone away? Can you tell me why they flaunt their plaything-gods, their silly, imported no-gods before me? 20 The crops are in, the summer is over, but for us nothing's changed. We're still waiting to be rescued. 21 For my dear broken people, I'm heartbroken. I weep, seized by grief. 22 Are there no healing ointments in Gilead? Isn't there a doctor in the house? So why can't something be done to heal and save my dear, dear people?
14 "Why do we sit still? Assemble yourselves, And let us enter the fortified cities, And let us be silent there. For the Lord our God has put us to silence And given us water of gall to drink, Because we have sinned against the Lord. 15 "We looked for peace, but no good came; And for a time of health, and there was trouble! 16 The snorting of His horses was heard from Dan. The whole land trembled at the sound of the neighing of His strong ones; For they have come and devoured the land and all that is in it, The city and those who dwell in it." 17 "For behold, I will send serpents among you, Vipers which cannot be charmed, And they shall bite you," says the Lord.
18 I would comfort myself in sorrow; My heart is faint in me. 19 Listen! The voice, The cry of the daughter of my people From a far country: "Is not the Lord in Zion? Is not her King in her?" "Why have they provoked Me to anger With their carved images-- With foreign idols?" 20 "The harvest is past, The summer is ended, And we are not saved!" 21 For the hurt of the daughter of my people I am hurt. I am mourning; Astonishment has taken hold of me. 22 Is there no balm in Gilead, Is there no physician there? Why then is there no recovery For the health of the daughter of my people?
14 "Then the people will say, 'Why should we wait here to die? Come, let's go to the fortified towns and die there. For the Lord our God has decreed our destruction and has given us a cup of poison to drink because we sinned against the Lord . 15 We hoped for peace, but no peace came. We hoped for a time of healing, but found only terror.' 16 "The snorting of the enemies' warhorses can be heard all the way from the land of Dan in the north! The neighing of their stallions makes the whole land tremble. They are coming to devour the land and everything in it- cities and people alike. 17 I will send these enemy troops among you like poisonous snakes you cannot charm. They will bite you, and you will die. I, the Lord, have spoken!"
18 My grief is beyond healing; my heart is broken. 19 Listen to the weeping of my people; it can be heard all across the land. "Has the Lord abandoned Jerusalem? " the people ask. "Is her King no longer there?" "Oh, why have they provoked my anger with their carved idols and their worthless foreign gods?" says the Lord . 20 "The harvest is finished, and the summer is gone," the people cry, "yet we are not saved!" 21 I hurt with the hurt of my people. I mourn and am overcome with grief. 22 Is there no medicine in Gilead? Is there no physician there? Why is there no healing for the wounds of my people?
Matthew Henry's Commentary on Jeremiah 8:14-22
Commentary on Jeremiah 8:14-22
(Read Jeremiah 8:14-22)
At length they begin to see the hand of God lifted up. And when God appears against us, every thing that is against us appears formidable. As salvation only can be found in the Lord, so the present moment should be seized. Is there no medicine proper for a sick and dying kingdom? Is there no skilful, faithful hand to apply the medicine? Yes, God is able to help and to heal them. If sinners die of their wounds, their blood is upon their own heads. The blood of Christ is balm in Gilead, his Spirit is the Physician there, all-sufficient; so that the people may be healed, but will not. Thus men die unpardoned and unchanged, for they will not come to Christ to be saved.