34:1 The word which came to Jeremiah from the LORD, when a Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and all his army, and all the kingdoms of the earth of his dominion, and all the people, fought against Jerusalem, and against all its cities, saying,
(a) Who commonly by Jeremiah was called Nebuchadrezzar and by others Nebuchadnezzar. 34:5 [But] thou shalt die in b peace: and with the burnings of thy fathers, the former kings who were before thee, so shall they burn [incense] for thee; and they will lament thee, [saying], Ah c lord! for I have pronounced the word, saith the LORD.
(b) Not of any violent death. 34:8 [This is] the word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD, after king Zedekiah had made a covenant with all the people who [were] at Jerusalem, d to proclaim liberty to them;
(c) The Jews will lament for you their lord and king.
(d) When the enemy was at hand and they saw themselves in danger, they would seem holy, and so began some kind of reformation: but soon after they uttered their hypocrisy. 34:9 That every man should release his male e servant, and every man his female servant, [being] a Hebrew man or woman; that none should retain them in service, [that is], a Jew his brother.
34:15 And ye had now turned, and had done right in my sight, in proclaiming liberty every man to his neighbour; and ye had made a covenant before me in f the house which is called by my name:
(e) According to the law, ( Exodus 21:2 ; Deuteronomy 15:12 ).
(f) Meaning in the temple to declare that it was a most solemn and straight covenant made in the name of the Lord. 34:17 Therefore thus saith the LORD; Ye have not hearkened to me, in proclaiming liberty, every one to his brother, and every man to his neighbour: behold, I proclaim a liberty for you, saith the LORD, to g the sword, to the pestilence, and to the famine; and I will make you to be removed into all the kingdoms of the earth.
(g) That is, I give the sword liberty to destroy you. 34:18 And I will give the men that have transgressed my covenant, who have not performed the words of the covenant which they had made before me, when they h cut the calf in two, and passed between the parts of it,
34:21 And Zedekiah king of Judah and his princes I will give into the hand of their enemies, and into the hand of them that seek their life, and into the hand of the king of Babylons army, which i are gone up from you.
(h) Concerning the manner of solemn covenant which the ancients used by passing between the two parts of a beast, to signify that the transgressor of the same covenant should be so divided in pieces, read ( Genesis 15:10 ).
(i) To fight against the Egyptians, as in ( Jeremiah 37:11 ).