Jeremiah 5:4

4 I thought, “These are only the poor; they are foolish, for they do not know the way of the LORD, the requirements of their God.

Jeremiah 5:4 in Other Translations

KJV
4 Therefore I said, Surely these are poor; they are foolish: for they know not the way of the LORD, nor the judgment of their God.
ESV
4 Then I said, "These are only the poor; they have no sense; for they do not know the way of the LORD, the justice of their God.
NLT
4 Then I said, “But what can we expect from the poor? They are ignorant. They don’t know the ways of the LORD . They don’t understand God’s laws.
MSG
4 Then I said to myself, "Well, these are just poor people. They don't know any better. They were never taught anything about God. They never went to prayer meetings. I'll find some people from the best families.
CSB
4 Then I thought: They are just the poor; they have played the fool. For they don't understand the way of the Lord, the justice of their God.

Jeremiah 5:4 Meaning and Commentary

Jeremiah 5:4

Then I said, surely these are poor, they are foolish
The prophet, observing that reproofs and corrections in providence had no effect upon the people, he thought within himself that surely the reason must be, because these people are poor, and in low circumstances in the world, and are so busy in their worldly employments to get bread for their families, that they were not at leisure to attend unto divine things; nor of capacity to receive instruction and correction by providences; therefore it is they were so foolish, stupid, and infatuated: for they know not the way of the Lord, nor the judgment of their God;
either the way which God takes in the salvation of the sons of men, and in justifying of them, which is revealed in his word; or that which he prescribes them to walk in, in his law, even the way of truth and righteousness, and for failure of which he judges and condemns them; but of these things they were ignorant; see ( John 7:48 John 7:49 ) , not that this is observed in excuse for them, but in order to introduce what follows; and to show that this depravity, stupidity, and ignorance, obtained among all sort of people, high and low, rich and poor.

Jeremiah 5:4 In-Context

2 Although they say, ‘As surely as the LORD lives,’ still they are swearing falsely.”
3 LORD, do not your eyes look for truth? You struck them, but they felt no pain; you crushed them, but they refused correction. They made their faces harder than stone and refused to repent.
4 I thought, “These are only the poor; they are foolish, for they do not know the way of the LORD, the requirements of their God.
5 So I will go to the leaders and speak to them; surely they know the way of the LORD, the requirements of their God.” But with one accord they too had broken off the yoke and torn off the bonds.
6 Therefore a lion from the forest will attack them, a wolf from the desert will ravage them, a leopard will lie in wait near their towns to tear to pieces any who venture out, for their rebellion is great and their backslidings many.

Cross References 2

  • 1. S ver 21; S Jeremiah 4:22
  • 2. S Proverbs 10:21; S Isaiah 1:3; Jeremiah 8:7