Jeremiah 9:23-24

23 This is what the LORD says: “Let not the wise boast of their wisdom or the strong boast of their strength or the rich boast of their riches,
24 but let the one who boasts boast about this: that they have the understanding to know me, that I am the LORD, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight,” declares the LORD.

Jeremiah 9:23-24 Meaning and Commentary

INTRODUCTION TO JEREMIAH 9

This chapter is a continuation of the judgments of God upon the Jews for their sins and transgressions herein mentioned; illustrated by the lamentation of the prophet; by calling for the mourning women, and upon other women that had lost their husbands or children, with an intimation that none of any rank and class should escape. The prophet is introduced mourning over the destruction of his people, Jer 9:1, and as uneasy at his stay with them, because of their uncleanness, treachery, lying, unfaithfulness, and deceit, Jer 9:2-6, wherefore the Lord threatens to melt and try them; and for their deceitfulness particularly to visit them, and avenge himself on them, Jer 9:7-9, the destruction is described by the desolation of the mountains and habitations of the wilderness; they being so burnt up, that there were neither grass upon them, nor beasts nor birds to be seen or heard about them; and of Jerusalem, and the cities of Judah, so that there was no inhabitant in them, Jer 9:10,11, upon which a wise man is inquired after, to give the true reason of all this, Jer 9:12 but none appearing, the Lord gives it himself; which were their disobedience to his law, and their worship of idols, following the imagination of their own hearts, Jer 9:13,14 wherefore they are threatened to be fed with wormwood and gall; to be scattered among the nations, and a sword sent after them to their utter consumption, Jer 9:15,16, hence, for the certainty of it, mourning women are ordered to be called for in haste, to assist them in their mourning, on account of their distress, Jer 9:17-19, and such as were mothers of children are bid to teach their daughters and neighbours lamentation, because of the children and young men cut off by death, and for the carcasses of men that should fall as dung in the field, and as the handful after the harvestman, Jer 9:20-22, and it is suggested that none should escape; not the wise man by any art or cunning he was master of; nor the strong man by his strength; nor the rich man by his riches; and therefore ought not either of them to glory in these things, but in the Lord, as exercising lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth, Jer 9:23,24, and the chapter is concluded with a strong asseveration, that the wicked, both circumcised and uncircumcised, should be punished, Jer 9:25,26.

Jeremiah 9:23-24 In-Context

21 Death has climbed in through our windows and has entered our fortresses; it has removed the children from the streets and the young men from the public squares.
22 Say, “This is what the LORD declares: “ ‘Dead bodies will lie like dung on the open field, like cut grain behind the reaper, with no one to gather them.’ ”
23 This is what the LORD says: “Let not the wise boast of their wisdom or the strong boast of their strength or the rich boast of their riches,
24 but let the one who boasts boast about this: that they have the understanding to know me, that I am the LORD, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight,” declares the LORD.
25 “The days are coming,” declares the LORD, “when I will punish all who are circumcised only in the flesh—
26 Egypt, Judah, Edom, Ammon, Moab and all who live in the wilderness in distant places. For all these nations are really uncircumcised, and even the whole house of Israel is uncircumcised in heart.”

Cross References 8

  • 1. S Job 4:12; S Ecclesiastes 9:11
  • 2. S 1 Kings 20:11
  • 3. Psalms 62:10; S Proverbs 11:28; Jeremiah 48:7; Jeremiah 49:4; Ezekiel 28:4-5
  • 4. S Psalms 34:2; 1 Corinthians 1:31*; Galatians 6:14
  • 5. S Psalms 36:10
  • 6. 2 Corinthians 10:17*
  • 7. Psalms 51:1; Micah 7:18
  • 8. Psalms 36:6
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