Jeremiah 22:3-5

3 This is what the LORD says: Do what is just and right. Rescue from the hand of the oppressor the one who has been robbed. Do no wrong or violence to the foreigner, the fatherless or the widow, and do not shed innocent blood in this place.
4 For if you are careful to carry out these commands, then kings who sit on David’s throne will come through the gates of this palace, riding in chariots and on horses, accompanied by their officials and their people.
5 But if you do not obey these commands, declares the LORD, I swear by myself that this palace will become a ruin.’ ”

Jeremiah 22:3-5 Meaning and Commentary

INTRODUCTION TO JEREMIAH 22

This chapter is a prophecy of what should befall the sons of Josiah, Jehoahaz or Shallum; Jehoiakim and Jeconiah. It begins with an exhortation to the then reigning prince, Jehoiakim, his family and court, to do justice, relieve the oppressed, and refrain from doing injury to any; with a promise of prosperity upon so doing, Jer 22:1-4; but, on the contrary behaviour, the king's family, however precious they had been in the sight of the Lord, should be destroyed, by persons described as fit for such work, which would occasion others to inquire the cause of such destruction; when it would be told them, it was for their apostasy from the Lord, their breaking covenant with him, and their idolatry, Jer 22:5-9; then of Shallum, who was then carried captive, it is predicted that he should never return more, which was matter of greater lamentation than the death of his father Josiah, Jer 22:10-12; next Jehoiakim, the present king on the throne, is reproved, and a woe denounced upon him for his injustice, luxury, covetousness, rapine, and murders, Jer 22:13-17; and it is particularly threatened that he should die unlamented, and have no burial, Jer 22:18,19; and then the people of the land are called upon to mourning and lamentation, their kings one after another being carried captive, Jer 22:20-23; also Jeconiah the king's son, and who succeeded him, is threatened with rejection from the Lord, and a delivery of him up into the hand of the king of Babylon, with exile in a strange country, and death there, and that without children; so that Solomon's line should cease in him, Jer 22:24-30.

Jeremiah 22:3-5 In-Context

1 This is what the LORD says: “Go down to the palace of the king of Judah and proclaim this message there:
2 ‘Hear the word of the LORD to you, king of Judah, you who sit on David’s throne—you, your officials and your people who come through these gates.
3 This is what the LORD says: Do what is just and right. Rescue from the hand of the oppressor the one who has been robbed. Do no wrong or violence to the foreigner, the fatherless or the widow, and do not shed innocent blood in this place.
4 For if you are careful to carry out these commands, then kings who sit on David’s throne will come through the gates of this palace, riding in chariots and on horses, accompanied by their officials and their people.
5 But if you do not obey these commands, declares the LORD, I swear by myself that this palace will become a ruin.’ ”
6 For this is what the LORD says about the palace of the king of Judah: “Though you are like Gilead to me, like the summit of Lebanon, I will surely make you like a wasteland, like towns not inhabited.
7 I will send destroyers against you, each man with his weapons, and they will cut up your fine cedar beams and throw them into the fire.

Cross References 7

  • 1. S Leviticus 25:17; Isaiah 56:1; Jeremiah 5:1; Ezekiel 33:14; Ezekiel 45:9; Hosea 12:6; Amos 5:24; Micah 6:8; Zechariah 7:9
  • 2. Psalms 72:4; Jeremiah 21:12
  • 3. S Exodus 22:22; S Isaiah 1:17; Jeremiah 5:28
  • 4. S Jeremiah 7:6
  • 5. S Jeremiah 17:25
  • 6. S Jeremiah 17:27
  • 7. S Genesis 22:16; Hebrews 6:13