And I will give them an heart to know me, that I [am]
God, gracious and merciful, slow to anger, abundant in goodness and truth, pardoning iniquity, transgression, and sin; the unchangeable Jehovah; the everlasting I AM; a covenant keeping God; faithful and true to his promises; able and willing to perform them; and does all things well and wisely; and was their Lord and God. This knowledge designs not the first knowledge of the Lord, but an increase of it; and not head knowledge, but heart knowledge; a knowledge of God, joined with love and affection to him, high esteem, and approbation of him; and including communion with him, and an open profession and acknowledgment of him: and it is an appropriating knowledge also; a knowing him for themselves, and as their own; and such a knowledge or heart to know the Lord is a pure gift of his, and without which none can have it: and it may be observed, that in captivity it was given them; afflictions were the means of it; and happy it is when hereby men come to have a knowledge of God, and to be better acquainted with him, ( Psalms 92:12 ) ; and they shall be my people, and I will be their God;
that is, it shall appear that they are so, by the above blessings of grace and goodness bestowed upon them; the Lord hereby owning them for his people, and they hereby coming to know that he is their God: for,
or "when" F5 they shall return unto me with their whole heart;
affectionately, sincerely, and unfeignedly. It supposes that they had backslidden from God, his ways and worship; but now should return by sincere repentance to him, and to his worship, and obedience to his commands; so the Targum,
``for they shall return to my worship with their whole heart;''all this will have an entire accomplishment in the latter day, when the Jews will be converted and turn to the Lord, and fear him and his goodness.