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Jeremiah 17:1 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— The sin of Judah is written with a pen of iron, [and] with the point of a diamond: it is graven upon the tablet of their heart, and upon the horns of your altars;
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— The sin of Judah [is] written with a pen of iron, [and] with the point of a diamond: [it is] graven upon the table of their heart, and upon the horns of your altars;
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— The sin of Judah is written down with an iron stylus; With a diamond point it is engraved upon the tablet of their heart And on the horns of their altars,
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— The sin of Judah [is] written with a pen of iron, [and] with the point of a diamond: [it is] graven upon the table of their heart, and upon the horns of your altars;
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— The sin of Judah is written with a style of iron, with the point of a diamond, engraven upon the tablet of their heart, and upon the horns of your altars;
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— The sin of Judah, is written, With a stylus of iron, With the point of a diamond: It is engraved, Upon the tablet of their heart, And upon the horns of your altars;
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— The sin of Judah is written with a pen of iron, With the point of a diamond, Graven on the tablet of their heart, And on the horns of your altars,
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— The sin of Juda is written with a pen of iron, with the point of a diamond, it is graven upon the table of their heart, upon the horns of their altars.
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— The sinne of Iudah [is] written with a pen of yron, [and] with the point of a diamond; [it] is grauen vpon the table of their heart, and vpon the hornes of your altars:
Brenton Greek Septuagint (LXX, Restored Names)
— [Absent from Manuscript]
Full Hebrew Names / Holy Name KJV (2008) [2] [3]
— The sin of Yehudah [is] written with a pen of iron, [and] with the point of a diamond: [it is] graven upon the table of their heart, and upon the horns of your altars;

Strong's Numbers & Hebrew NamesHebrew Old TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
The sin 2403
{2403} Prime
From H2398; an offence (sometimes habitual sinfulness), and its penalty, occasion, sacrifice, or expiation; also (concretely) an offender.
of Yh יְהוּדָה 3063
{3063} Prime
From H3034; celebrated; Jehudah (or Judah), the name of five Israelites; also of the tribe descended from the first, and of its territory.
[is] written 3789
{3789} Prime
A primitive root; to grave; by implication to write (describe, inscribe, prescribe, subscribe).
<8803> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Participle Passive (See H8815)
Count - 1415
with a pen 5842
{5842} Prime
From H5860 (contracted) in the sense of swooping, that is, side long stroke; a stylus or marking stick.
of iron, 1270
{1270} Prime
Perhaps from the root of H1269; iron (as cutting); by extension an iron implement.
[and] with the point 6856
{6856} Prime
From H6852 (in the denominative sense (from H6833) of scratching); properly a claw, that is, (human) nail; also the point of a style (or pen, tipped with adamant).
of a diamond: 8068
{8068} Prime
From H8104 in the original sense of pricking; a thorn; also (from its keenness for scratching) a gem, probably the diamond.
[it is] graven 2790
{2790} Prime
A primitive root; to scratch, that is, (by implication) to engrave, plough; hence (from the use of tools) to fabricate (of any material); figuratively to devise (in a bad sense); hence (from the idea of secrecy) to be silent, to let alone; hence (by implication) to be deaf (as an accompaniment of dumbness).
<8803> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Participle Passive (See H8815)
Count - 1415
upon x5921
(5921) Complement
Properly the same as H5920 used as a preposition (in the singular or plural, often with prefix, or as conjugation with a particle following); above, over, upon, or against (yet always in this last relation with a downward aspect) in a great variety of applications.
the table 3871
{3871} Prime
From a primitive root; probably meaning to glisten; a tablet (as polished), of stone, wood or metal.
of their heart, 3820
{3820} Prime
A form of H3824; the heart; also used (figuratively) very widely for the feelings, the will and even the intellect; likewise for the centre of anything.
and upon the horns 7161
{7161} Prime
From H7160; a horn (as projecting); by implication a flask, cornet; by resemblance an elephant's tooth (that is, ivory), a corner (of the altar), a peak (of a mountain), a ray (of light); figuratively power.
of your altars; 4196
{4196} Prime
From H2076; an altar.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Jeremiah 17:1

_ _ Jeremiah 17:1-27. The Jews’ inveterate love of idolatry.

_ _ The Septuagint omits the first four verses, but other Greek versions have them.

_ _ The first of the four clauses relates to the third, the second to the fourth, by alternate parallelism. The sense is: They are as keen after idols as if their propensity was “graven with an iron pen (Job 19:24) on their hearts,” or as if it were sanctioned by a law “inscribed with a diamond point” on their altars. The names of their gods used to be written on “the horns of the altars” (Acts 17:23). As the clause “on their hearts” refers to their inward propensity, so “on ... altars,” the outward exhibition of it. Others refer “on the horns of ... altars” to their staining them with the blood of victims, in imitation of the Levitical precept (Exodus 29:12; Leviticus 4:7, Leviticus 4:18), but “written ... graven,” would thus be inappropriate.

_ _ table of ... heart — which God intended to be inscribed very differently, namely, with His truths (Proverbs 3:3; 2 Corinthians 3:3).

_ _ your — Though “their” preceded, He directly addresses them to charge the guilt home to them in particular.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

Jeremiah 17:1-4

_ _ The people had asked (Jeremiah 16:10), What is our iniquity, and what is our sin? as if they could not be charged with any thing worth speaking of, for which God should enter into judgment with them; their challenge was answered there, but here we have a further reply to it, in which,

_ _ I. The indictment is fully proved upon the prisoners, both the fact and the fault; their sin is too plain to be denied and too bad to be excused, and they have nothing to plead either in extenuation of the crime or in arrest and mitigation of the judgment. 1. They cannot plead, Not guilty, for their sins are upon record in the book of God's omniscience and their own conscience; nay, and they are obvious to the eye and observation of the world, Jeremiah 17:1, Jeremiah 17:2. They are written before God in the most legible and indelible characters, and sealed among his treasures, never to be forgotten, Deuteronomy 32:34. They are written there with a pen of iron and with the point of a diamond; what is so written will not be worn out by time, but is, as Job speaks, graven in the rock for ever. Note, The sin of sinners is never forgotten till it is forgiven. It is ever before God, till by repentance it comes to be ever before us. It is graven upon the table of their heart; their own consciences witness against them, and are instead of a thousand witnesses. What is graven on the heart, though it may be covered and closed up for a time, yet, being graven, it cannot be erased, but will be produced in evidence when the books shall be opened. Nay, we need not appeal to the tables of the heart, perhaps they will not own the convictions of their consciences. We need go no further, for proof of the charge, than the horns of their altars, on which the blood of their idolatrous sacrifices was sprinkled, and perhaps the names of the idols to whose honour they were erected were inscribed. Their neighbours will witness against them, and all the creatures they have abused by using them in the service of their lusts. To complete the evidence, their own children shall be witnesses against them; they will tell truth when their fathers dissemble and prevaricate; they remember the altars and the groves to which their parents took them when they were little, v. 2. It appears that they were full of them, and acquainted with them betimes, they talked of them so frequently, so familiarly, and with so much delight. 2. They cannot plead that they repent, or are brought to a better mind. No, as the guilt of their sin is undeniable, so their inclination to sin is invincible and incurable. In this sense many understand Jeremiah 17:1, Jeremiah 17:2. Their sin is deeply engraven as with a pen of iron in the tables of their hearts. They have a rooted affection to it; it is woven into their very nature; their sin is dear to them, as that is dear to us of which we say, It is engraven on our hearts. The bias of their minds is still as strong as ever towards their idols, and they are not wrought upon either by the word or rod of God to forget them and abate their affection to them. It is written upon the horns of their altars, for they have given up their names to their idols and resolve to abide by what they have done; they have bound themselves, as with cords, to the horns of their altars. And Jeremiah 17:2 may be read fully to this sense: As they remember their children, so remember they their altars and their groves; they are as fond of them and take as much pleasure in them as men do in their own children, and are as loth to part with them; they will live and die with their idols, and can no more forget them than a woman can forget her sucking child.

_ _ II. The indictment being thus fully proved, the judgment is affirmed and the sentence ratified, Jeremiah 17:3, Jeremiah 17:4. Forasmuch as they are thus wedded to their sins, and will not part with them, 1. They shall be made to part with their treasures, and those shall be given into the hands of strangers. Jerusalem is God's mountain in the field; it was built on a hill in the midst of a plain. All the treasures of that wealthy city will God give to the spoil. Or, My mountains with the fields, thy wealth and all thy treasures will I expose to spoil; both the products of the country and the stores of the city shall be seized by the Chaldeans. Justly are men stripped of that which they have served their idols with and have made the food and the fuel of their lusts. My mountain (so the whole land was, Psalms 78:54, Deuteronomy 11:11) you have turned into your high places for sin, have worshipped your idols upon the high hills (Jeremiah 17:2), and now they shall be give for a spoil in all your borders. What we make for a sin God will make for a spoil; for what comfort can we expect in that wherewith God is dishonoured? 2. They shall be made to part with their inheritance, and shall be carried captives into a strange land (Jeremiah 17:4): Thou, even thyself (or thou thyself and those that are in thee, all the inhabitants), shall discontinue from thy heritage that I gave thee. God owns that it was their heritage, and that he gave it to them; they had an unquestionable title to it, which was an aggravation of their folly in throwing themselves out of the possession of it. It is through thyself (so some read it), through thy own default, that thou art disseised. Thou shalt discontinue, or intermit, the occupation of thy land. The law appointed them to let their land rest (it is the word here used) one year in seven, Exodus 23:11. They did not observe that law, and now God would compel them to let it rest (the land shall enjoy her sabbaths, Leviticus 26:34); and yet it shall be not rest to them; they shall serve their enemies in a land they know not. Observe, (1.) Sin works a discontinuance of our comforts and deprives us of the enjoyment of that which God has given us. Yet, (2.) A discontinuance of the possession is not a defeasance of the right, but it is intimated that upon their repentance they shall recover possession again. For the present, you have kindled a fire in my anger, which burns so fiercely that it seems as if it would burn for ever; and so it will unless you repent, for it is the anger of an everlasting God fastening upon the immortal souls, and who knows the power of that anger?

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Jeremiah 17:1

Graven — Nor is it a thing done in secret, but it is engraven upon the horns of their altars. God's altar was four — square, and at each corner there was a rising part made of brass, these were called the horns of the altar. Now their sin is said to be engraven upon the horns of the altar, because the blood of the sacrifices which they offered to idols was sprinkled there, or because their altars had some inscription upon them, declaring to what idol that altar was consecrated.

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

Jeremiah 17:1

The sin of Judah [is] (a) written with a pen of iron, [and] with the point of a diamond: [it is] graven upon the (b) tablet of their heart, and upon the horns of your (c) altars;

(a) The remembrance of their contempt of God cannot pass, although for a time he defers the punishment, for it will be revealed to men and angels.

(b) Instead of the law of God, they have written idolatry and all abomination in their heart.

(c) Your sins appear in all the altars that you have erected to idols.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance

Job 19:23-24 Oh that my words were now written! oh that they were printed in a book! ... That they were graven with an iron pen and lead in the rock for ever!

Heb. nail


Proverbs 3:3 Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart:
Proverbs 7:3 Bind them upon thy fingers, write them upon the table of thine heart.
2 Corinthians 3:3 [Forasmuch as ye are] manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart.

and upon:

Leviticus 4:17-18 And the priest shall dip his finger [in some] of the blood, and sprinkle [it] seven times before the LORD, [even] before the vail. ... And he shall put [some] of the blood upon the horns of the altar which [is] before the LORD, that [is] in the tabernacle of the congregation, and shall pour out all the blood at the bottom of the altar of the burnt offering, which [is at] the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
Leviticus 4:25 And the priest shall take of the blood of the sin offering with his finger, and put [it] upon the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and shall pour out his blood at the bottom of the altar of burnt offering.
Hosea 12:11 [Is there] iniquity [in] Gilead? surely they are vanity: they sacrifice bullocks in Gilgal; yea, their altars [are] as heaps in the furrows of the fields.
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Lv 4:17, 25. Jb 19:23. Pv 3:3; 7:3. Ho 12:11. 2Co 3:3.

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In its form we seek visions of truth. The bible a complex yet factual account. Notice the extremities between 2corimthisn 3:30 and Jeremiah 17:1. It compels that the law is written in our hearts and as epistles of Christ we know truths.
- Lil (2/4/2013 12:16:17 AM)
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