The word of the Lord that came to Jeremiah the prophet against
As the former prophecies were against the Egyptians, the friends and allies of the Jews, in whom they trusted; this is against the Philistines, the near neighbours of the Jews, and their implacable enemies: the time of this prophecy was, before Pharaoh smote Gaza;
one of the five cities of the Philistines, a very strong and fortified place, as its name signifies; (See Gill on Acts 8:26). The Jews, in their chronicle, say F20 this was fulfilled in the eighth year of Zedekiah, when Pharaoh came out of Egypt, while the Chaldeans were besieging Jerusalem; which they hearing of, broke up the siege, and went forth to meet him; upon which he went to Gaza, and destroyed that, and returned to Egypt again. Both Jarchi and Kimchi make mention of this, but say it was in the tenth year of Zedekiah; and which, no doubt, is the truest reading, since the Chaldean army did not come up against Jerusalem until the ninth year of his reign. But it is more likely that this Pharaoh was Pharaohnecho, and that he fell upon Gaza, and smote it, either when he came to Carchemish, or when he returned from thence, after he had slain Josiah. Now this prophecy was delivered out before anything of this kind happened, and when the Philistines were in the utmost peace, and in no fear or expectation of destruction; and the smiting of this single city by the king of Egypt is foretold, as the forerunner and pledge of a greater destruction of the land by the king of Babylon, next mentioned.
F20 Seder Olam Rabba, c. 26. p. 75.