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The Complete Jewish Bible with Rashi Commentary
   

Yirmiyahu - Jeremiah - Chapter 8

Yirmiyahu - Jeremiah - Chapter 8

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Rashi's Commentary:

Chapter 8

1. At that time, says the Lord, they will take out the bones of the kings of Judah and the bones of his princes and the bones of the priests and the bones of the prophets and the bones of the inhabitants of Jerusalem, from their graves.   א. בָּעֵת הַהִיא נְאֻם יְהֹוָה יוֹצִיאוּ אֶת עַצְמוֹת מַלְכֵי יְהוּדָה וְאֶת עַצְמוֹת שָׂרָיו וְאֶת עַצְמוֹת הַכֹּהֲנִים וְאֵת | עַצְמוֹת הַנְּבִיאִים וְאֵת עַצְמוֹת יוֹשְׁבֵי יְרוּשָׁלִָם מִקִּבְרֵיהֶם:
2. And spread them before the sun and before the moon and before the entire host of the heavens, which they loved and which they worshipped and which they followed, and which they sought and to which they prostrated themselves; they shall neither be gathered nor be buried; they shall be for dung on the surface of the earth.   ב. וּשְׁטָחוּם לַשֶּׁמֶשׁ וְלַיָּרֵחַ וּלְכֹל | צְבָא הַשָּׁמַיִם אֲשֶׁר אֲהֵבוּם וַאֲשֶׁר עֲבָדוּם וַאֲשֶׁר הָלְכוּ אַחֲרֵיהֶם וַאֲשֶׁר דְּרָשׁוּם וַאֲשֶׁר הִשְׁתַּחֲווּ לָהֶם לֹא יֵאָסְפוּ וְלֹא יִקָּבֵרוּ לְדֹמֶן עַל פְּנֵי הָאֲדָמָה יִהְיוּ:
And spread them before the sun: And the Chaldeans shall dwell when they besiege the city, in the graves of the princes, that were as beautiful as palaces.  
for dung: For fertilizer.  
3. And death shall be preferable to life for all the residue that remain of this evil family, which remain in all the places whither I have cast them out, says the Lord of Hosts.   ג. וְנִבְחַר מָוֶת מֵחַיִּים לְכֹל הַשְּׁאֵרִית הַנִּשְׁאָרִים מִן הַמִּשְׁפָּחָה הָרָעָה הַזֹּאת בְּכָל הַמְּקֹמוֹת הַנִּשְׁאָרִים אֲשֶׁר הִדַּחְתִּים שָׁם נְאֻם יְהֹוָה צְבָאוֹת:
And death shall be preferable to life: Although they see the dead being subjected to disgrace, the distress of the living is worse than that, and they will choose death.  
4. And you shall say to them; so says the Lord: Shall they fall and not rise, if he repents, will He not return?   ד. וְאָמַרְתָּ אֲלֵיהֶם כֹּה אָמַר יְהֹוָה הֲיִפְּלוּ וְלֹא יָקוּמוּ אִם יָשׁוּב וְלֹא יָשׁוּב:
Shall they fall and not rise: Is it good for them to cast themselves into a fall from which there is no rising?  
if he repents, will He not return?: If they wish to repent of their wickedness, will the Holy One, blessed be He, not return from His decree? Another explanation: If they repent, the repentance will not be permanent, for they will quickly return to their wickedness, and in this manner Jonathan rendered it: If to repent, it is revealed before Me that they will not repent.  
5. Why has this people, Jerusalem, slid back a perpetual backsliding? They have held on to deceit, they refuse to repent.   ה. מַדּוּעַ שׁוֹבְבָה הָעָם הַזֶּה יְרוּשָׁלִַם מְשֻׁבָה נִצַּחַת הֶחֱזִיקוּ בַּתַּרְמִית מֵאֲנוּ לָשׁוּב:
a perpetual backsliding: Heb. משבה נצחת, a perpetual backsliding, like נצח, perpetual.  
They have held: Heb. החזיקו.  
to deceit: Heb. בתרמית.  
6. I hearkened and heard, they do not speak properly; no man regrets his wickedness, saying, "What have I done?" Each one turns away in his course, as a frightening horse into battle.   ו. הִקְשַׁבְתִּי וָאֶשְׁמָע לוֹא כֵן יְדַבֵּרוּ אֵין אִישׁ נִחַם עַל רָעָתוֹ לֵאמֹר מֶה עָשִׂיתִי כֻּלֹּה שָׁב בִּמְרוּצָתָם כְּסוּס שׁוֹטֵף בַּמִּלְחָמָה:
not… properly: Heb. לא כן, not right, cf. (Num. 27:7)"The daughters of Zelaphehad speak justly (כּן).  
Each one turns away in his course: [lit. in their course.] In the first way. They sin and repeatedly sin. מרוצתם is korse in O.F.  
like a frightening: effaye in French.  
7. Even the stork in the heaven knows her seasons, and the turtledoves and the crane and the swallow await the time of their coming, but My people do not know the ordinance of the Lord.   ז. גַּם חֲסִידָה בַשָּׁמַיִם יָדְעָה מוֹעֲדֶיהָ וְתוֹר וְסִיס וְעָגוּר שָׁמְרוּ אֶת עֵת בֹּאָנָה וְעַמִּי לֹא יָדְעוּ אֵת מִשְׁפַּט יְהֹוָה:
Even the stork: (Cigogne in French).  
her seasons: The time they pass to the islands of the sea because of the cold, and the time of their return.  
await: Heb. שמרו.  
and the turtledove and the crane and the swallow: Jonathan renders: ושפנינא וכורכיא וּסנוּניתא. כּורכיא is (grue in French), a crane. סנוּניתא is (hirondelle in French), a swallow.  
8. How do you say, "We are wise, and the Law of the Lord is with us"? Verily, behold it is in vain, he made a false scribes' pen.   ח. אֵיכָה תֹאמְרוּ חֲכָמִים אֲנַחְנוּ וְתוֹרַת יְהֹוָה אִתָּנוּ אָכֵן הִנֵּה לַשֶּׁקֶר עָשָׂה עֵט שֶׁקֶר סֹפְרִים:
Verily, behold it is in vain: Behold your wisdom is in vain within you to heal you lightly.  
he made a false scribes’ pen: i.e., your prophet.  
9. Wise men were ashamed, they were broken and caught; behold they rejected the word of the Lord, now what wisdom have they?   ט. הֹבִישׁוּ חֲכָמִים חַתּוּ וַיִּלָּכֵדוּ הִנֵּה בִדְבַר יְהֹוָה מָאָסוּ וְחָכְמַת מֶה לָהֶם:
Wise men were ashamed: i.e., wise men like you. And what is the shame? Behold, they rejected the word of the Lord, now what wisdom have they?  
10. Therefore, I will give their wives to others, their fields to those who possess them for from the smallest to the greatest, they all commit robbery, from prophet to priest, they all deal falsely.   י. לָכֵן אֶתֵּן אֶת נְשֵׁיהֶם לַאֲחֵרִים שְׂדוֹתֵיהֶם לְיוֹרְשִׁים כִּי מִקָּטֹן וְעַד גָּדוֹל כֻּלֹּה בֹּצֵעַ בָּצַע מִנָּבִיא וְעַד כֹּהֵן כֻּלֹּה עֹשֶׂה שָׁקֶר:
11. And they healed the breach of My people easily, saying, "Peace, peace," but there is no peace.   יא. וַיְרַפּוּ אֶת שֶׁבֶר בַּת עַמִּי עַל נְקַלָּה לֵאמֹר שָׁלוֹם | שָׁלוֹם וְאֵין שָׁלוֹם:
And they healed: Heb. וירפו, similar to וירפאו.  
12. They shall be put to shame since they have committed abomination. Neither are they ashamed nor do they know to feel disgrace. They will, therefore, fall among the slain; at the time I have visited upon them, they will stumble, says the Lord.   יב. הֹבִשׁוּ כִּי תוֹעֵבָה עָשׂוּ גַּם בּוֹשׁ לֹא יֵבשׁוּ וְהִכָּלֵם לֹא יָדָעוּ לָכֵן יִפְּלוּ בַנֹּפְלִים בְּעֵת פְּקֻדָּתָם יִכָּשְׁלוּ אָמַר יְהֹוָה:
They shall be put to shame: Shame and embarrassment shall come upon them.  
Neither are they ashamed: They are not ashamed of their evil deeds to take heart to repent.  
13. I will utterly consume them, says the Lord. There shall be no grapes on the vine, nor figs on the fig tree; even the leaves will be withered, for what I gave them they transgressed.   יג. אָסֹף אֲסִיפֵם נְאֻם יְהֹוָה אֵין עֲנָבִים בַּגֶּפֶן וְאֵין תְּאֵנִים בַּתְּאֵנָה וְהֶעָלֶה נָבֵל וָאֶתֵּן לָהֶם יַעַבְרוּם:
I will utterly consume them: This is an expression of destruction. Comp. (Zeph. 1:2) “I will utterly consume (אסף אסף) everything from upon the face of the earth.”  
There shall be no grapes on the vine: Nothing will be left over.  
even the leaves will be withered: Heb. נבל, an expression of withering (fleirit in French). Comp. (Isa. 34:4) “and as a withered fig (וּכנבלת) from a fig tree.” Also (ibid. 1:30), “like an elm whose leaves are wilting (נבלת).”  
for what I gave them they transgressed: All this shall befall them because I gave them statutes and they transgressed them.  
14. Why do we sit still? Gather together, and let us go to the fortified cities, and there let us sit in silence, for the Lord our God has silenced us, and has given us poisoned water to drink because we have sinned against the Lord.   יד. עַל מָה אֲנַחְנוּ ישְׁבִים הֵאָסְפוּ וְנָבוֹא אֶל עָרֵי הַמִּבְצָר וְנִדְּמָה שָּׁם כִּי יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵינוּ הֲדִמָּנוּ וַיַּשְׁקֵנוּ מֵי רֹאשׁ כִּי חָטָאנוּ לַיהֹוָה:
and there let us sit in silence: And let us be silent there. Let us sit there silent and mournful.  
poisoned water: Jonathan renders: the cup of the curse, like the venom of serpents. The venom of the serpents is the poison that is in his teeth.  
15. We hoped for peace, but no good came; for a time of healing, but behold, terror.   טו. קַוֵּה לְשָׁלוֹם וְאֵין טוֹב לְעֵת מַרְפֵּה וְהִנֵּה בְעָתָה:
16. From Dan is heard the snorting of their horses, at the sound of the neighing of their stallions the whole land quakes; they come and devour the land and its produce, the city and those that dwell therein.   טז. מִדָּן נִשְׁמַע נַחְרַת סוּסָיו מִקּוֹל מִצְהֲלוֹת אַבִּירָיו רָעֲשָׁה כָּל הָאָרֶץ וַיָּבוֹאוּ וַיֹּאכְלוּ אֶרֶץ וּמְלוֹאָהּ עִיר וְישְׁבֵי בָהּ:
From Dan is heard: Because they worshipped the calf that was in Dan.  
the snorting of their horses: The sneezing of his nostrils.  
the neighing of their stallions: The neighing of joy of his horses, and we find elsewhere that horses are called אבּירים (Jud. 5:22) by reason of the prancings, “the prancings of their mighty ones (אבּיריו) ,” an expression of (Nahum 3:2) “a prancing horse.” And Jonathan renders: from the sound of the steps of their mighty ones.  
17. For behold, I am sending you serpents, adders which cannot be charmed, and they shall bite you, says the Lord.   יז. כִּי הִנְנִי מְשַׁלֵּחַ בָּכֶם נְחָשִׁים צִפְעֹנִים אֲשֶׁר אֵין לָהֶם לָחַשׁ וְנִשְּׁכוּ אֶתְכֶם נְאֻם יְהֹוָה:
serpents, adders: After seventy years, the snake becomes a צפע, which shuts its ear so that it will not hear the voice of the charmer who charms him, as it is stated (Psalms 58:5), “Like a deaf asp that shuts up its ear.” That is the meaning of “that cannot be charmed.”  
18. Were I to suppress my grief, my heart is sick within me.   יח. מַבְלִיגִיתִי עֲלֵי יָגוֹן עָלַי לִבִּי דַוָּי:
Were I to suppress my grief: Heb. מבליגיתי, my suppression, and it is a noun, (mes estenimenc in O.F.). That is to say, if I said, I will suppress and keep in my grief.  
my heart is sick within me: From the voice of the prophecies that are revealed to me of the coming retributions.  
19. Hark the voice from a distant land, the cry of the daughter of My people; is the Lord not in Zion? Is not her King therein? Why have they provoked Me with their graven images, with their strange vanities?   יט. הִנֵּה קוֹל שַׁוְעַת בַּת עַמִּי מֵאֶרֶץ מַרְחַקִּים הַיהֹוָה אֵין בְּצִיּוֹן אִם מַלְכָּהּ אֵין בָּהּ מַדּוּעַ הִכְעִסוּנִי בִּפְסִלֵיהֶם בְּהַבְלֵי נֵכָר:
Hark the voice… the cry of the daughter of My people: I hear that eventually they will cry from a distant land, but why is all this necessary? Is not the Lord in Zion? If they return to Him, He will allow Himself to be found by them.  
20. The harvest is past, the summer is ended; and we are not saved.   כ. עָבַר קָצִיר כָּלָה קָיִץ וַאֲנַחְנוּ לוֹא נוֹשָׁעְנוּ:
The harvest is past, the summer is ended: We looked forward to the aid of Egypt, but it did not come. We said, “Let the harvest pass, and they will be free, and they will come.” Now behold, the time of harvest has passed in Iyar, and the summer season in Tammuz, and they have not come.  
21. For the wound of the daughter of my people, I am wounded (with grief); I mourn, (and) dismay has taken hold of me.   כא. עַל שֶׁבֶר בַּת עַמִּי הָשְׁבַּרְתִּי קָדַרְתִּי שַׁמָּה הֶחֱזִקָתְנִי:
I mourn: lit. I am darkened, an expression of blackness and darkness.  
dismay: Heb. שמה, wonder.  
has taken hold of me: Has held me.  
22. Is there no balm in Gilead? Is there no physician there? Why then, has the health of the daughter of my people not been restored?   כב. הַצֳּרִי אֵין בְּגִלְעָד אִם רֹפֵא אֵין שָׁם כִּי מַדּוּעַ לֹא עָלְתָה אֲרֻכַת בַּת עַמִּי:
Is there no balm in Gilead: For balm comes from there, as it is said (infra 46: 11) “Go up to Gilead and take balm.” That is to say, Did they not have any righteous men from whom to learn so that they should improve their ways?  
the health of: lit. the cure of, (emplatre in O. F.), plaster, dressing.  
23. O that my head were (full of) waters and my eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for the slain of the daughter of my people.   כג. מִי יִתֵּן רֹאשִׁי מַיִם וְעֵינִי מְקוֹר דִּמְעָה וְאֶבְכֶּה יוֹמָם וָלַיְלָה אֵת חַלְלֵי בַת עַמִּי:
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