Study 31 From the Book of Jeremiah is: Jeremiah 48
Within Jeremiah’s lifetime, Moab was in league with the Chaldeans against Judah during Jehoiakim’s reign (2 Ki. 24:2; cf. Je. 12; and later, in Zedekiah’s reign discussed with other nations a possible revolt against Babylon (27:1-11).
- The chapter may be divided into five sections: verses 1-10, verses 11-20, verses 21-27, verses 28-39, verses 40-47. What heading would you give to each of these sections to sum up its contents?
- What reason for the judgment is given in verse 11? What warning should we take for ourselves? Cf. Dt. 8:11-18; Is. 47: 8-11; Am. 6:1-7; Zp. 1:12. What other reasons for the judgment are set forth in this chapter.
- All the numerous places-names refer to Moabite territory. Some have not been identified, including ‘madmen’ (verse 2; the lxx reads ‘Yet you, i.e., Moab, shall be brought to silence’).
- Verses 7, 13. ‘Chemosh’: the god of Moab. ‘Bethel, their confidence’: see Am. 5:5; 10-13 for false worship at Bethel. Bethel means ‘house of God’, and there may be present also an allusion to false trust in the Temple; see Je. 7:1-15.
- Verses 11, 12. An illustration from the treatment of the juice of grapes. It is left in a vessel until a sediment called ‘lees’ has formed at the bottom; then the liquid is poured into another vessel, and so repeatedly, until the liquid is clear. Moab had experienced no such purifying process, and so retained its original unrefined character.
- Verse 26. ‘Make him drunk’ : i.e., stagger with shock and despairing grief. Cf. 13:13; 25:16.