Jeremiah 9:2

2 O that I had in the desert a traveler's lodging place, that I might leave my people and go away from them! For they are all adulterers, a band of traitors.

Jeremiah 9:2 Meaning and Commentary

Jeremiah 9:2

Oh that I had in the wilderness a lodging place of wayfaring
Such as travellers take up with in a desert, when they are benighted, and cannot reach a town or village. This the prophet chose, partly that he might have an opportunity to give vent to his grief, being alone; for which reason he did not desire to be in cities and populous places, where he might be amused and diverted while his people were in distress: and partly to show his sympathy, not being able to bear the sight of their misery; and also some degree of indignation at their impieties, which had brought ruin upon them; on account of which it was more eligible to dwell with the wild beasts of the desert than with them in his native country: wherefore it follows, that I might leave my people, and go from them;
which of itself was not desirable; no man chooses to leave his country, his own people, and his father's house, and go into distant lands and strange countries; and especially into a wilderness, where there is neither suitable food nor agreeable company: wherefore this shows, that there must be something very bad, and very provoking, to lead him to take such a step as this: the reason follows, for they be all adulterers;
either in a literal or figurative sense; the latter seems rather intended; for though corporeal fornication and adultery might greatly prevail among them, yet not to such a height as that "all" of them were guilty; whereas idolatry did generally obtain among them: an assembly of treacherous men; not a few only, but in general they were apostates from God and from true religion, and treacherous to one another. The Septuagint calls them "a synod"; and Joseph Kimchi interprets it "a kingdom"; deriving the word from (rue) , as it signifies to have rule and dominion; denoting, that the kingdom in general was false and perfidious.

Jeremiah 9:2 In-Context

1 O that my head were a spring of water, and my eyes a fountain of tears, so that I might weep day and night for the slain of my poor people!
2 O that I had in the desert a traveler's lodging place, that I might leave my people and go away from them! For they are all adulterers, a band of traitors.
3 They bend their tongues like bows; they have grown strong in the land for falsehood, and not for truth; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they do not know me, says the Lord.
4 Beware of your neighbors, and put no trust in any of your kin; for all your kin are supplanters, and every neighbor goes around like a slanderer.
5 They all deceive their neighbors, and no one speaks the truth; they have taught their tongues to speak lies; they commit iniquity and are too weary to repent.

Footnotes 1

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.