Jer 7.1-34 is a call to repentance by Yehovah through Jeremiah. He rebukes them for their confidence in the Temple and tells them they will be destroyed. However, if they repent God will allow them to stay in the land. False Prophets have been telling them the opposite of what Jeremiah and others were saying. They said God would never destroy Judah because his Temple was there. Jeremiah is told to refute these false prophecies.
v 1…The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying (he would be threatened for this prophecy-Jer 26.2),
v 2…Stand in the gate of the Lord’s house (probably the southern gate of the Temple as the people came up to worship-Jer 19.1-15. Eli’s sons sinned in the gate to the Mishkan, and God destroyed Shiloh. Now Jeremiah stands in the gate communicating this message. This prophecy will also allude to Yeshua’s generation also) and proclaim (publish) there this word and say, “Hear the word of the Lord (Yehovah) all you Judah who enter by these gates to worship the Lord!”
v 3…Thus says the Lord of hosts (Yehovah Tzavaot-usually when this is used Yehovah is talking from a military position of power), the God of Israel, “Amend your ways and your deeds, and I will let you dwell in this place (the land, Jerusalem and the Temple Mount).
v 4…Do not trust in deceptive words, saying, ‘This is the Temple of the Lord, the Temple of the Lord, the Temple of the Lord (said three times to show extra emphasis on the fact that they believed Jerusalem won’t be destroyed because the sanctuary is there, God’s throne).’
v 5…For if you truly amend your ways and your deeds, if you truly practice justice between a man and his neighbor (live according to the Torah-Luke 6.31),
v 6…If you do not oppress the alien, the orphan or the widow, and do not shed innocent blood in this place (Judah and Jerusalem), nor walk (follow) after other gods to your own ruin (provoking Yehovah to anger),
v 7…Then I will let you dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers forever and ever.
v 8…Behold (take note),you are trusting in deceptive words to no avail (the words of the false prophets and teachers which brought only problems).
v 9…Will you steal, murder, and commit adultery, and sear falsely, and offer sacrifices to Baal, and walk (follow) after other gods that you have not known (and never proved themselves as real),
v 10…Then come and stand before me in this house, which is called by my name, and say, ‘We are delivered!’-that you may do all these abominations (they thought Jeremiah was being extreme and their actions would have no consequences)?
v 11….Has this house, which is called by my name, become a den of robbers in your sight (was it built to be a meeting place of thieves; later in Herod’s Temple, Yeshua would drive out the moneychangers in the Royal Stoa right above where Jeremiah is standing in these passages)? Behold, I, even I, have seen it (that the Temple is a den of robbers).
v 12…But go now to my place which was in Shilah (the Mishkan was there-Deut 12.11; Josh 18.1), where I made my name dwell at the first (Yehovah calls them to remember Eli’s sons; they got out of hand and were immoral. They ate meat meant for the people and God, did whatever they wanted to do, just like the people of Judah. The people think they can’t be defeated in battle either. The Mishkan was at Shiloh and the ark was brought to a battle, but the ark was taken by the Philistines and Shiloh was destroyed), and see what I did to it because of the wickedness of my people Israel (1 Sam 4.1-6).
v 13…And now, because you have done all these things” declare the Lord, “and I spoke to you, rising up early (diligent) and speaking, but you did not hear, and I called you but you did not answer (stubborn),
v 14…Therefore, I will do to the house (Temple) which is called by my name, in which you trust, and to the place which I gave you and your fathers as I did to Shiloh.
v 15…And I cast you out of my sight, as I cast out all your brothers, all the offspring of Ephraim (Israel or the ten tribes).
v 16…As for you (Jeremiah), do not pray for this people, and do not lift up cry or prayer for them, and do not intercede with me; for I do not hear you.
v 17…Do you not see what they are doing in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem (this would convince Jeremiah because he saw it too).
v 18…The children gather wood and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead dough to make cakes (a round disk like the moon; the whole family was involved in idol worship-Jer 44.17-19) for the queen of heaven (corresponds to the Babylonian and Assyrian false gods of the moon. Nimrod dies and his wife was Semiramis, the prototype of all female deities in the Babylonian Mystery religions. They have a son named Tammuz-Ezek 8.14. In other cultures the “queen of heaven” was seen as Asherah, Diana, Minerva, Athena, Artemis, Venus, Aphrodite and Juno for instance. The “mother” or “mother and child” motif was seen everywhere and this theme carries over into Catholicism where Mary is called the “queen of heaven” and is often pictured as holding her son “Jesus.” We believe that a statue of “Mary” will be alongside of the Abomination of Desolation in the Temple, which we believe is a crucifix. The so-called “apparitions of Mary” are setting this scenario up. When people read about idols in the Catholic Church they get upset at the Catholics and things get out of perspective. Paganism is present everywhere in the world, it is across the board. The idea is to identify it, deal with it and get it out of our lives) and they pour out libations to other gods (not just to the queen of heaven) in order to spite me.
v 19…Do they spite me?” declares the Lord, “Is it not themselves they spite, to their own shame (because the consequences are going to fall on their head).”
v 20…Therefore thus says the Lord God, “Behold, my anger (Hebrew here is “aphi” meaning “my nose” because when one gets angry their nostrils flare) and my wrath will be poured out on this place (Judah, Jerusalem, Temple), on man and on beast and on the trees of the field and on the fruit of the ground; and it will burn and not be quenched.”
v 21…Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, “Add your burnt offerings to your sacrifices and eat flesh (normally you did not eat the Korban Olah but he disregarded their offerings anyway so, go ahead and eat them, too, it doesn’t matter now. It will be the only advantage they when they make their offerings).
v 22…For I did not speak to your fathers, or command them in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, concerning burnt offerings and sacrifices (not in the Ten Commandments of Sinai).
v 23…But this is what I commanded them saying, ‘Obey my voice, and I will be your God; and you will be my people; and you will walk (follow) in all the way which I commanded you, that it may be well with you.’
v 24…”Yet they did not obey (the Torah) or incline their ear (hear and obey), but walked in their own counsels and in the stubbornness of their evil heart, and went backward and not forward (in a spiritual sense-Ezek 1.14; Heb 10.38. Spiritual movement in spiritual space was not related to measurable distances as in physical movement. “Near” means “similar to” and “far” means “different of opposite”).
v 25…Since the day that your fathers came out of the land of Egypt until this day (the First Temple period), I have sent you all my servants the prophets, daily rising early and sending them (meaning he had a diligent and watchful care over them-Luke 11.49; Matt 20.1; Luke 13.6-9; Matt 21.35; Jer 25.4, 44.4).
v 26…Yet they they did not listen to me or incline their ear, but stiffened their necks, they did evil more than their fathers (each generation got worse than the previous one).
v 27…And you shall speak all these words to them, but they will not listen to you (Jeremiah won’t be listened to either); and you shall call to them, but they will not answer you.
v 28…And you shall say to them, ‘This is the nation that did not obey the voice of the Lord their God or accept correction; truth has perished and has been cut off from their mouth (mouth is used and not “heart” because they make a profession with their mouth to be devoted to God, but they were lying).
v 29…Cut off your hair and cast it away (hair was seen as a crown in the Nazarite Vow in Num 6.5. It is also called the “consecration” in Num 6.7. The long hair of the daughter of Jerusalem was seen as a virgin consecrated to Yehovah. Cutting her hair off is alluding to the loss of her consecration to the Lord as in the Nazarite who cuts off their hair), take up a lamentation on the bare heights (where their idolatry would often take place); for the Lord (Yehovah) has rejected and forsaken the generation of his wrath (that sinful generation that provoked him; they will be given up into the hands of their enemies).
v 30…For the sons of Judah have done that which is evil in my sight,” declares the Lord, “they have set their detestable things (idols) in the house (Temple which is called by my name to defile it (like the Asherah by Manasseh and the altars he had set up in the Temple-2 Kings 21.5-7).
v 31…And (in addition to the desecration of the Temple) they have built the high places in Tophet (to Moloch and Baal), which is in the valley of the son of Hinnom (where the word “Gehenna” comes from), to burn their sons and daughters in the fire (this is the place of future judgment0Joel 3.12, Isa 66.24; Matt 25.31-46; Luke 17.34-36; Rev 14.14-20; Ezek 34.17; Jer 19.1-15. The name “Tophet” means a ‘spitting out” and an object of disgust. The word is used because of the worship there), which I did not command them and it did not come into my mind.
v 32…Therefore, behold, days are coming,” declares the Lord, “when it will no more be called Tophet (in the time of Jeremiah and in the First Century, and later at the end of the birth-pains) or the valley of the son of Himmon (Ben Hinnom or “Gei Hinnom” where we get Gehenna) but the valley of the Slaughter (and a picture of “hell”-Jer 19.6), for they will bury in Tophet (Isa 66.24; Joel 3.12-14; Isa 30.33; Matt 25.31-46 on future Yom Ha Din Yom Kippur) because there is no other place (to put them because there will be so many slain).
v 33…And the dead bodies of this people will be food for the birds of the sky, and for the beasts of the earth; and no one will frighten them away (this is an idiom for a “great slaughter” and the name of an eschatological meal called the “feast of Leviathan” where the unrighteous are killed and their dead bodies will be for food for the animals and birds-Ezek 29.1-7, 32.1-8; Luke 17.37; Matt 24.28; Rev 19.17; Job 41.4; Rev 14.14-20; Isa 66.24).
v 34…Then I will make to cease from the cities of Judah and from the streets of Jerusalem the voice of joy and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride; for the land will become a ruin (devastation will be all over Judah, not just Jerusalem. No expressions of joy will be seen and the land will be desolate with no people in it).