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Jeremiah 3:20 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— Surely as a wife treacherously departeth from her husband, so have ye dealt treacherously with me, O house of Israel, saith Jehovah.
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— Surely [as] a wife treacherously departeth from her husband, so have ye dealt treacherously with me, O house of Israel, saith the LORD.
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— “Surely, as a woman treacherously departs from her lover, So you have dealt treacherously with Me, O house of Israel,” declares the LORD.
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— Surely [as] a wife treacherously departeth from her husband, so have ye dealt treacherously with me, O house of Israel, saith the LORD.
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— Surely [as] a woman treacherously departeth from her companion, so have ye dealt treacherously with me, O house of Israel, saith Jehovah.
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— But indeed, [as] a wife goeth treacherously from her husband, so, have ye acted treacherously with me, O house of Israel, Declareth Yahweh.
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— But—a woman hath deceived her friend, So ye have dealt treacherously with Me, O house of Israel, an affirmation of Jehovah.
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— But as a woman that despiseth her lover, so hath the house of Israel despised me, saith the Lord.
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— Surely [as] a wife treacherously departeth from her husband: so haue you dealt treacherously with mee, O house of Israel, saith the LORD.
Brenton Greek Septuagint (LXX, Restored Names)
— But as a wife acts treacherously against her husband, so has the house of Israel dealt treacherously against me, saith the Lord.
Full Hebrew Names / Holy Name KJV (2008) [2] [3]
— Surely [as] a wife treacherously departeth from her husband, so have ye dealt treacherously with me, O house of Yisrael, saith Yahweh.

Strong's Numbers & Hebrew NamesHebrew Old TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
Surely 403
{0403} Prime
From H3559 (compare H3651); firmly; figuratively surely; also (adversely) but.
[as] a wife 802
{0802} Prime
The first form is the feminine of H0376 or H0582; the second form is an irregular plural; a woman (used in the same wide sense as H0582).
treacherously y898
[0898] Standard
A primitive root; to cover (with a garment); figuratively to act covertly; by implication to pillage.
<8804> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Perfect (See H8816)
Count - 12562
departeth x898
(0898) Complement
A primitive root; to cover (with a garment); figuratively to act covertly; by implication to pillage.
from her husband, y7453
[7453] Standard
From H7462; an associate (more or less close).
(4480) Complement
For H4482; properly a part of; hence (prepositionally), from or out of in many senses.
(1167) Complement
From H1166; a master; hence a husband, or (figuratively) owner (often used with another noun in modifications of this latter sense.
so x3651
(3651) Complement
From H3559; properly set upright; hence (figuratively as adjective) just; but usually (as adverb or conjugation) rightly or so (in various applications to manner, time and relation; often with other particles).
have ye dealt treacherously 898
{0898} Prime
A primitive root; to cover (with a garment); figuratively to act covertly; by implication to pillage.
<8804> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Perfect (See H8816)
Count - 12562
with me, O house 1004
{1004} Prime
Probably from H1129 abbreviated; a house (in the greatest variation of applications, especially family, etc.).
of Yi$rl יִשׂרָאֵל, 3478
{3478} Prime
From H8280 and H0410; he will rule as God; Jisrael, a symbolical name of Jacob; also (typically) of his posterity.
saith 5002
{5002} Prime
From H5001; an oracle.
<8803> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Participle Passive (See H8815)
Count - 1415
Yhw יָהוֶה. 3068
{3068} Prime
From H1961; (the) self Existent or eternal; Jehovah, Jewish national name of God.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Jeremiah 3:20

_ _ Surely — rather, “But.”

_ _ husband — literally, “friend.”

Matthew Henry's Commentary

Jeremiah 3:20-25

_ _ Here is, I. The charge God exhibits against Israel for their treacherous departures from him, Jeremiah 3:20. As an adulterous wife elopes from her husband, so have they gone a whoring from God. They were joined to God by a marriage-covenant, but they broke that covenant, they dealt treacherously with God, who had always dealt kindly and faithfully with them. Treacherous dealing with men like ourselves is bad enough, but to deal treacherously with God is to deal treasonably.

_ _ II. Their conviction and confession of the truth of this charge, Jeremiah 3:21. When God reproved them for their apostasy, there were some among them, even such as God would take and bring to Zion, whose voice was heard upon the high places weeping and praying, humbling themselves before the God of their fathers, lamenting their calamities, and their sins, the procuring cause of them; for this is that which they lament, for this they bemoan themselves, that they have perverted their way and forgotten the Lord their God. Note, 1. Sin is the perverting of our way, it is turning aside to crooked ways and perverting that which is right. 2. Forgetting the Lord our God is at the bottom of all sin. If men would remember God, his eye upon them and their obligation to him, they would not transgress as they do. 3. By sin we embarrass ourselves, and bring ourselves into trouble, for that also is the perverting of our way, Lamentations 3:9. 4. Prayers and tears well become those whose consciences tell them that they have perverted their way and forgotten their God. When the foolishness of man perverts his way his heart is apt to fret against the Lord (Proverbs 19:3), whereas it should be melted and poured out before him.

_ _ III. The invitation God gives them to return to him (Jeremiah 3:22): Return, you backsliding children. He calls them children in tenderness and compassion to them, foolish and froward as children, yet his sons, whom though he corrects he will not disinherit; for, though they are refractory children (so some render it), yet they are children. God bears with such children, and so much parents. When they are convinced of sin (Jeremiah 3:21), and humbled for that, then they are prepared and then they are invited to return, as Christ invites those to him that are weary and heavy-laden. The promise to those that return is, “I will heal your backslidings; I will comfort you under the grief you are in for your backslidings, deliver you out of the troubles you have brought yourselves into by your backslidings, and cure you of your refractoriness and tendency to backslide.” God will heal our backslidings by his pardoning mercy, his quieting peace, and his renewing grace.

_ _ IV. The ready consent they give to this invitation, and their cheerful compliance with it: Behold, we come unto thee. This is an echo to God's call; as a voice returned from broken walls, so this from broken hearts. God says, Return; they answer, Behold, we come. It is an immediate speedy answer, without delay, not, “We will come hereafter,” but, “We do come now; we need not take time to consider of it;” not, “We come towards thee,” but, “We come to thee, we will make a thorough turn of it.” Observe how unanimous they are: We come, one and all. 1. They come devoting themselves to God as theirs: “Thou art the Lord our God; we take thee to be ours, we give up ourselves to thee to be thine; whither shall we go but to thee? It is our sin and folly that we have gone from thee.” It is very comfortable, in our returns to God after our backslidings, to look up to him as ours in covenant. 2. They come disclaiming all expectations of relief and succour but from God only: “In vain is salvation hoped for from the hills and from the multitude of the mountains; we now see our folly in relying upon creature-confidences, and will never so deceive ourselves any more.” They worshipped their idols upon hills and mountains (Jeremiah 3:6), and they had a multitude of idols upon their mountains, which they had sought unto and put a confidence in; but now they will have no more to do with them. In vain do we look for any thing that is good from them, while from God we may look for every thing that is good, even salvation itself. Therefore, 3. They come depending upon God only as their God: In the Lord our God is the salvation of Israel. He is the Lord, and he only can save; he can save when all other succours and saviours fail; and he is our God, and will in his own way and time work salvation for us. It is very applicable to the great salvation from sin, which Jesus Christ wrought out for us; that is the salvation of the Lord, his great salvation. 4. They come justifying God in their troubles and judging themselves for their sins, Jeremiah 3:24, Jeremiah 3:25. (1.) They impute all the calamities they had been under to their idols, which had not only done them no good, but had done them abundance of mischief, all the mischief that had been done them: Shame (the idol, that shameful thing) has devoured the labour of our fathers. Note, [1.] True penitents have learned to call sin shame; even the beloved sin which has been as an idol to them, which they have been most pleased with and proud of, even that they shall call a scandalous thing, shall put contempt upon it and be ashamed of it. [2.] True penitents have learned to call sin death and ruin, and to charge upon it all the mischiefs they suffer: “It has devoured all those good things which our fathers laboured for and left to us; we have found from our youth that our idolatry has been the destruction of our prosperity.” Children often throw away upon their lusts that which their fathers took a great deal of pains for; and it is well if at length they are brought (as these here) to see the folly of it, and to call those vices their shame which have wasted their estates and devoured the labour of their fathers. Of the labour of their fathers, which their idols had devoured, they mention particularly their flocks and their herds, their sons and their daughters. First, their idolatries had provoked God to bring these desolating judgments upon them, which had ruined their country and families, and made their estates a prey and their children captives to the conquering enemy. They had procured these things to themselves. Or, rather, Secondly, These had been sacrificed to their idols, had been separated unto that shame (Hosea 9:10), and they had devoured them without mercy; they did eat the fat of their sacrifices (Deuteronomy 32:38), even their human sacrifices. (2.) They take to themselves the shame of their sin and folly (Jeremiah 3:25): “We lie down in our shame, being unable to bear up under it; our confusion covers us, that is, both our penal and our penitential shame. Sin has laid us under such rebukes of God's providence, and such reproaches of our own consciences, as surround us and fill us with shame. For we have sinned, and shame came in with sin and still attends upon it. We are sinners by descent; guilt and corruption are entailed upon us: We and our fathers have sinned. We were sinners betimes; we began early in a course of sin: We have sinned from our youth; we have continued in sin, have sinned even unto this day, though often called to repent and forsake our sins. That which is the malignity of sin, the worst thing in it, is the affront we have put upon God by it: We have not obeyed the voice of the Lord our God, forbidding us to sin and commanding us, when we have sinned, to repent.” Now all this seems to be the language of the penitents of the house of Israel (Jeremiah 3:20), of the ten tribes, either of those that were in captivity or those of them that remained in their own land. And the prophet takes notice of their repentance to provoke the men of Judah to a holy emulation. David used it as an argument with the elders of Judah that it would be a shame for those that were his bone and his flesh to be the last in bringing the king back, when the men of Israel appeared forward in it, 2 Samuel 19:11, 2 Samuel 19:12. So the prophet excites Judah to repent because Israel did: and well it were if the zeal of others less likely would provoke us to strive to get before them and go beyond them in that which is good.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

[[no comment]]

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

Jeremiah 3:20

Surely [as] a wife treacherously departeth from her (t) husband, so have ye dealt treacherously with me, O house of Israel, saith the LORD.

(t) The Hebrew word signifies a friend or companion, and here may be taken for a husband, as it is used also in (Hosea 3:1).

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance
Heb. friend,
Hosea 3:1 Then said the LORD unto me, Go yet, love a woman beloved of [her] friend, yet an adulteress, according to the love of the LORD toward the children of Israel, who look to other gods, and love flagons of wine.

so have:

Jeremiah 3:1-2 They say, If a man put away his wife, and she go from him, and become another man's, shall he return unto her again? shall not that land be greatly polluted? but thou hast played the harlot with many lovers; yet return again to me, saith the LORD. ... Lift up thine eyes unto the high places, and see where thou hast not been lien with. In the ways hast thou sat for them, as the Arabian in the wilderness; and thou hast polluted the land with thy whoredoms and with thy wickedness.
Jeremiah 3:8-10 And I saw, when for all the causes whereby backsliding Israel committed adultery I had put her away, and given her a bill of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah feared not, but went and played the harlot also. ... And yet for all this her treacherous sister Judah hath not turned unto me with her whole heart, but feignedly, saith the LORD.
Jeremiah 5:11 For the house of Israel and the house of Judah have dealt very treacherously against me, saith the LORD.
Isaiah 48:8 Yea, thou heardest not; yea, thou knewest not; yea, from that time [that] thine ear was not opened: for I knew that thou wouldest deal very treacherously, and wast called a transgressor from the womb.
Ezekiel 16:15-52 But thou didst trust in thine own beauty, and playedst the harlot because of thy renown, and pouredst out thy fornications on every one that passed by; his it was. ... Thou also, which hast judged thy sisters, bear thine own shame for thy sins that thou hast committed more abominable than they: they are more righteous than thou: yea, be thou confounded also, and bear thy shame, in that thou hast justified thy sisters.
Hosea 5:7 They have dealt treacherously against the LORD: for they have begotten strange children: now shall a month devour them with their portions.
Hosea 6:7 But they like men have transgressed the covenant: there have they dealt treacherously against me.
Malachi 2:11 Judah hath dealt treacherously, and an abomination is committed in Israel and in Jerusalem; for Judah hath profaned the holiness of the LORD which he loved, and hath married the daughter of a strange god.
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Is 48:8. Jr 3:1, 8; 5:11. Ezk 16:15. Ho 3:1; 5:7; 6:7. Mal 2:11.

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