Jeremiah 50

Study the Inner Meaning

English: Basic English Bible         

← Jeremiah 49   Jeremiah 51 →

1 The word which the Lord said about Babylon, about the land of the Chaldaeans, by Jeremiah the prophet.

2 Give it out among the nations, make it public, and let the flag be lifted up; give the word and keep nothing back; say, Babylon is taken, Bel is put to shame, Merodach is broken, her images are put to shame, her gods are broken.

3 For out of the north a nation is coming up against her, which will make her land waste and unpeopled: they are in flight, man and beast are gone.

4 In those days and in that time, says the Lord, the children of Israel will come, they and the children of Judah together; they will go on their way weeping and making prayer to the Lord their God.

5 They will be questioning about the way to Zion, with their faces turned in its direction, saying, Come, and be united to the Lord in an eternal agreement which will be kept in mind for ever.

6 My people have been wandering sheep: their keepers have made them go out of the right way, turning them loose on the mountains: they have gone from mountain to hill, having no memory of their resting-place.

7 They have been attacked by all those who came across them: and their attackers said, We are doing no wrong, because they have done evil against the Lord in whom is righteousness, against the Lord, the hope of their fathers.

8 Go in flight out of Babylon, go out of the land of the Chaldaeans, and be like he-goats before the flocks.

9 For see, I am moving and sending up against Babylon a band of great nations from the north country: and they will put their armies in position against her; and from there she will be taken: their arrows will be like those of an expert man of war; not one will come back without getting its mark.

10 And the wealth of Chaldaea will come into the hands of her attackers: all those who take her wealth will have enough, says the Lord.

11 Because you are glad, because you are lifted up with pride, you wasters of my heritage, because you are playing like a young cow put out to grass, and you make a noise like strong horses;

12 Your mother will be put to shame; she who gave you birth will be looked down on: see, she will be the last of the nations, a waste place, a dry and unwatered land.

13 Because of the wrath of the Lord no one will be living in it, and it will be quite unpeopled: everyone who goes by Babylon will be overcome with wonder, and make sounds of fear at all her punishments.

14 Put your armies in position against Babylon on every side, all you bowmen; let loose your arrows at her, not keeping any back: for she has done evil against the Lord.

15 Give a loud cry against her on every side; she has given herself up, her supports are overturned, her walls are broken down: for it is the payment taken by the Lord; give her payment; as she has done, so do to her.

16 Let the planter of seed be cut off from Babylon, and everyone using the curved blade at the time of the grain-cutting: for fear of the cruel sword, everyone will be turned to his people, everyone will go in flight to his land.

17 Israel is a wandering sheep; the lions have been driving him away: first he was attacked by the king of Assyria, and now his bones have been broken by Nebuchadrezzar, king of Babylon.

18 So this is what the Lord of armies, the God of Israel, has said: See, I will send punishment on the king of Babylon and on his land, as I have given punishment to the king of Assyria.

19 And I will make Israel come back to his resting-place, and he will get his food on Carmel and Bashan, and have his desire in full measure on the hills of Ephraim and in Gilead.

20 In those days and in that time, says the Lord, when the evil-doing of Israel is looked for, there will be nothing; and in Judah no sins will be seen: for I will have forgiveness for those whom I will keep safe.

21 Go up against the land of Merathaim, even against it, and against the people of Pekod; put them to death and send destruction after them, says the Lord, and do everything I have given you orders to do.

22 There is a sound of war in the land and of great destruction.

23 How is the hammer of all the earth cut in two and broken! how has Babylon become a waste among the nations!

24 I have put a net for you, and you have been taken, O Babylon, without your knowledge: you have been uncovered and taken because you were fighting against the Lord.

25 From his store-house the Lord has taken the instruments of his wrath: for the Lord, the Lord of armies, has a work to do in the land of the Chaldaeans.

26 Come up against her one and all, let her store-houses be broken open: make her into a mass of stones, give her to the curse, till there is nothing of her to be seen.

27 Put all her oxen to the sword; let them go down to death: sorrow is theirs, for their day has come, the time of their punishment.

28 The voice of those who are in flight, who have got away safe from the land of Babylon, to give news in Zion of punishment from the Lord our God, even payment for his Temple.

29 Send for the archers to come together against Babylon, all the bowmen; put up your tents against her on every side; let no one get away: give her the reward of her work; as she has done, so do to her: for she has been uplifted in pride against the Lord, against the Holy One of Israel.

30 For this cause her young men will be falling in her streets, and all her men of war will be cut off in that day, says the Lord.

31 See, I am against you, O pride, says the Lord, the Lord of armies, for your day has come, the time when I will send punishment on you.

32 And pride will go with uncertain steps and have a fall, and there will be no one to come to his help: and I will put a fire in his towns, burning up everything round about him.

33 This is what the Lord of armies has said: The children of Israel and the children of Judah are crushed down together: all those who took them prisoner keep them in a tight grip; they will not let them go.

34 Their saviour is strong; the Lord of armies is his name: he will certainly take up their cause, so that he may give rest to the earth and trouble to the people of Babylon.

35 A sword is on the Chaldaeans, says the Lord, and on the people of Babylon, and on her rulers and on her wise men.

36 A sword is on the men of pride, and they will become foolish: a sword is on her men of war, and they will be broken.

37 A sword is on all the mixed people in her, and they will become like women: a sword is on her store-houses, and they will be taken by her attackers.

38 A sword is on her waters, drying them up; for it is a land of images, and their minds are fixed on false gods.

39 For this reason the beasts of the waste land with the wolves will make their holes there and the ostriches will be living in it: never again will men be living there, it will be unpeopled from generation to generation.

40 As when Sodom and Gomorrah and their neighbouring towns were overturned by God, says the Lord, so no man will be living in it, and no son of man will have a resting-place there.

41 See, a people is coming from the north; a great nation and a number of kings will be put in motion from the inmost parts of the earth.

42 Bows and spears are in their hands; they are cruel and have no mercy; their voice is like the thunder of the sea, and they go on horses; everyone in his place like men going to the fight, against you, O daughter of Babylon.

43 The king of Babylon has had news of them, and his hands have become feeble: trouble has come on him and pain like the pain of a woman in childbirth.

44 See, he will come up like a lion from the thick growth of Jordan against the resting-place of Teman: but I will suddenly make them go in flight from her; and I will put over her the man of my selection: for who is like me? and who will put forward his cause against me? and what keeper of sheep will keep his place before me?

45 So give ear to the decision of the Lord which he has made against Babylon, and to his purposes designed against the land of the Chaldaeans; Truly, they will be pulled away by the smallest of the flock; truly, he will make waste their fields with them.

46 At the cry, Babylon is taken! the earth is shaking, and the cry comes to the ears of the nations.

← Jeremiah 49   Jeremiah 51 →
   Study the Inner Meaning
From Swedenborg's Works

Main explanations:

Arcana Coelestia 1368

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 116


Other references to this chapter:

Arcana Coelestia 289, 468, 583, 1186, 1326, 1813, 2025, ...

Apocalypse Revealed 52, 173, 241, 281, 298, 299, 336, ...

A Brief Exposition of New Church Doctrine 120

The Lord 4, 34, 38, 39, 40, 53

Sacred Scripture 51, 79

Heaven and Hell 365

The Last Judgment 54

True Christian Religion 45, 83, 93, 158, 188, 294, 637, ...


References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 131, 275, 278, 304, 328, 355, 357, ...

The White Horse - Appendix 1

Marriage 45, 83, 93

Scriptural Confirmations 4, 19, 51, 98

Other New Christian Commentary

  Stories and their meanings:


Hop to Similar Bible Verses

Genesis 8:1

Numbers 32:1, 4

Deuteronomy 41, 33:27

2 Samuel 1:22

2 Kings 17:6

2 Chronicles 6:39, 7:14

Ezra 2:1

Job 15:25, 19:25

Psalms 22:5, 79:7, 85:3, 103:12, 119:176, 137:8

Proverbs 16:18, 22:23, 23:11

Isaiah 1:3, 2:12, 10:12, 21, 13:5, 33:24, 34:6, 7, 43:25, 44:22, 25, 27, 46:1, 11, 48:14, 15, 20, 51:22, 53:6, 59:18, 63:4

Jeremiah 3:18, 6:22, 23, 10:11, 15, 16, 12:5, 14:8, 18:16, 19:8, 21:7, 23:1, 3, 25:12, 14, 27:7, 29:12, 13, 30:20, 31:9, 23, 34, 32:40, 33:8, 12, 15, 16, 40:2, 3, 46:21, 48:15, 26, 49:17, 18, 19, 22, 24, 26, ...

Lamentations 1:9, 3:58, 4:22

Ezekiel 34:5, 6, 13

Daniel 5:5, 6, 23

Hosea 3:5, 11:10

Amos 4:11

Micah 7:14

Nahum 1:2, 3:13

Habakkuk 1:15, 2:8

Zephaniah 15, 3:12

Zechariah 1:15, 2:11, 3:9, 11:5

Matthew 7:2, 9:36, 10:6, 18:12

1 Peter 2:25

Revelation 16:12, 18:2, 4, 6, 8, 9

Word/Phrase Explanations

the Word
In general, we tend to be very aware of how knowing what's true leads to doing what is good. That starts as children, with parents...

Word
'Word,' as in Psalms 119:6-17, stands for doctrine in general. 'The Word,' as in Psalms 147:18, signifies divine good united with divine truth. 'Word,' as...

the Lord
The Bible refers to the Lord in many different ways, which from the text seem indistinguishable and interchangeable. Understood in the internal sense, though, there...

lord
The Lord, in the simplest terms, is love itself expressed as wisdom itself. In philosophic terms, love is the Lord's substance and wisdom is His...

babylon
Babylon was an ancient city built on the Euphrates river in what is now southern Iraq. It once was the capital of a great empire...

land
'Lands' of different nations are used in the Word to signify the different kinds of love prevalent in the inhabitants.

Jeremiah
Jeremiah, in the Book of Jeremiah 1:1 and what follows, represents the Lord. (Arcana Coelestia 2838 [2]). In Jeremiah 13:7, he signifies the state of...

prophet
The idea of a "prophet" is very closely tied to the idea of the Bible itself, since the Bible was largely written by prophets. At...

lifted
The idea of "lifting" is used in a number of different ways in the Bible. In general, it means connecting with a higher spiritual state...

say
As with many common verbs, the meaning of “to say” in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Who is speaking? Who is hearing? What...

Bel
Bel (Isa. 46:1) signifies the profanation of truth.

Put
'To put' has reference to order, arrangement, application, and influx.

images
'Images' denote things fashioned from man’s own intelligence.

North
'North' signifies people who are in obscurity regarding truth. North,' in Isaiah 14:31, signifies hell. The North,' as in Jeremiah 3:12, signifies people who are...

nation
'Nations' signify people who are in the good of love and charity from the Lord. Two nations in the womb,' as in Genesis 25:23, signify...

beast
"Beasts" represent the affection for doing good things, a true desire to do them from the heart. In the negative sense, "beasts" stand for the...

days
The expression 'even to this day' or 'today' sometimes appears in the Word, as in Genesis 19:37-38, 22:14, 26:33, 32:32, 35:20, and 47:26. In a...

time
Time is an aspect of the physical world, but according to Swedenborg is not an aspect of the spiritual world. The same is true of...

children
A child is a young boy or girl in the care of parents, older than a suckling or an infant, but not yet an adolescent....

israel
'Israel,' in Jeremiah 23:8, signifies the spiritual natural church. The children of Israel dispersed all the literal sense of the Word by falsities. 'The children...

come
Coming (Gen. 41:14) denotes communication by influx.

Judah
City of Judah,' as in Isaiah 40:9, signifies the doctrine of love towards the Lord and love towards our neighbor in its whole extent.

god
The Lord is love itself, expressed in the form of wisdom itself. Love, then, is His essence, His inmost. Wisdom - the loving understanding of...

Way
In John 14:6, 'the way is doctrine,' 'the truth' is every thing pertaining to doctrine, and 'the life' is the essential good which is the...

Zion
Zion, in 1 Kings 8:1 and Revelation 14:1 signifies heaven and the church where the Lord alone is worshipped. (Apocalypse Revealed 612). Zion, in the...

faces
“The eyes are the windows of the soul.” That’s a sentiment with roots somewhere in murky antiquity, but one that has become hopelessly cliché because...

turned
Swedenborg says that the Lord is the sun of heaven, and like the natural sun of our world shines on everyone, good or evil. What...

eternal
In many cases, the use of “eternity” in the Bible is pretty literal, simple meaning forever. This is especially true when the text is referring...

mountain
'Hills' signify the good of charity.

mountains
In Isaiah 40:12 'to weigh the mountains in a balance, and the hills in scales,' signifies that the celestial aspects of love and charity are...

hill
The Writings tell us that the Lord's love is the sun of heaven, and it is natural for us to look above ourselves to the...

righteousness
The word "righteous" has taken on a bit of negative shading in modern language. That may be because we hear it most often as part...

fathers
Father in the Word means what is most interior, and in those things that are following the Lord's order, it means what is good. In...

Go out
To go out to meet, as in Genesis 14:17, signifies to submit themselves. To go out, as in Genesis 28:10, signifies to live more remotely....

before
In most cases, the meaning of "before" is pretty straightforward, both as a way of assessing relative time, and in its use meaning "in someone's...

see
The symbolic meaning of "seeing" is "understanding," which is obvious enough that it has become part of common language (think about it; you might see...

great
The word "great" is used in the Bible to represent a state with a strong degree of love and affection, of the desire for good;...

country
Generally in the Bible a "country" means a political subdivision ruled by a king, or sometimes a tribe with a territory ruled by a king...

arrows
'Shafts' or 'arrows' signify truths and spiritual truth.

back
Everyone knows the phrase "the natural order of things." It means that everything is in its proper place, occupying the niche it is meant to...

wealth
'Wealth' signifies scientific knowledge, as seen in several passages in the Word.

Enough
'Sufficiency' relates to the reception of good, because good is the spiritual nourishment of the soul, as natural food is the nourishment of the body.

Glad
To make glad signifies influx and reception from joy of heart.

heritage
In Biblical times, possessions passed from fathers to sons, a patriarchal system that would not be accepted in today's society – but one that is...

mother
Father, son, mother, and daughter, as in Luke 12:51, 53: By father against son, and by son against the father, is understood evil against truth,...

goes
In the physical world, the places we inhabit and the distances between them are physical realities, and we have to get our physical bodies through...

side
'Side' signifies good or spiritual love.

give
Like other common verbs, the meaning of "give" in the Bible is affected by context: who is giving what to whom? In general, though, giving...

to
'To jubilate' or 'make a joyful noise' signifies worship from the delight of good.

Cut off
To be cut off, as in Genesis 41:36, signifies to perish.

sword
A 'sword,' in the Word, signifies the truth of faith combating and the vastation of truth. In an opposite sense, it signifies falsity combating and...

first
'The first and the last' signifies that the Lord is the only God.

armies
Armies of the heavens and the sands of the sea ('Jeremiah 33:15-22') signify the knowledges of truth and good in the spiritual and natural ma{ign21}

punishment
Punishment' is the consummation of evil, because after punishment, reformation succeeds. This is why it says in Deuteronomy 25:3, 'that no more than forty stripes...

Carmel
'Sharon, Bashan, and Carmel' signify the church regarding the knowledges of good and truth from the natural sense of the Word.

Full
'To satiate' relates to the extent of a person's will, for good or evil.

measure
'To measure' signifies knowing and exploring the quality of something.

Ephraim
Ephraim was the second son born to Joseph in Egypt and was, along with his older brother Manasseh, elevated by Jacob to the same status...

Gilead
Mount Gilead, as in Genesis 31:21, 23, as a boundary, in a spiritual sense, signifies the first good, which is that of things pertaining to...

sins
In the Word three terms are used to mean bad things that are done. These three are transgression, iniquity, and sin, and they are here...

Go up
To go up and to go down: in the Word, mention is made of going up and going down when speaking of going from one...

after
According to Swedenborg, time and space don’t exist in spiritual reality; they are purely natural things that exist only on the physical plane. This means...

war
War in the Word represents the combat of temptation when what is good is assaulted by what is evil or false. The evil that attacks...

broken
To “break” something creates an image that is much different from “attacking,” “destroying,” or “shattering.” It is less emotional, less violent in its intent; it...

knowledge
Throughout the Word, a distinction is made between wisdom, intelligence, and knowledge. 'Wisdom' means from good, 'intelligence' is from truth, and 'knowledge' is in a...

uncovered
'Unclothed' signifies being deprived of the truths of faith.

Instruments
Instruments of music,' according to correspondences, signify the pleasant and delightful affection of spiritual and celestial things. Therefore, also in many of the Psalms of...

open
To open,' as in Revelation 9, signifies communication and conjunction.

Oxen
'Oxen' or 'calves' signify the affections of the natural mind.

down
"Down" is used many different ways in natural language, and its spiritual meaning in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Phrases like "bowing down,"...

voice
In Genesis 27:22, 'voice' relates to truth, and 'hand,' to good.

flight
'The voice of wings,' as in Revelation 9:9, signifies rationalizations, because 'to fly' signifies perceiving and instructing.

Temple
'A temple' represents heaven and the church. The sacred place where the ark was, represents the inmost, or third heaven, and the church among people...

falling
Like other common verbs, the meaning of "fall" is highly dependent on context in regular language, and is highly dependent on context in a spiritual...

streets
Swedenborg tell us that in terms of measurement, height relates to the desire for good and breadth relates to the knowledge of truth. Following that,...

fire
Just as natural fire can be both comforting in keeping you warm or scary in burning down your house, so fire in the spiritual sense...

Round about
'Round about' denotes the things most distant from the middle, or from good and truth.

saviour
The Lord from the essential divine, through the divine human, is the savior. The Lord became the savior by His spiritual temptations, or combats.

name
It's easy to see that names are important in the Bible. Jehovah changed Abram and Sarai to Abraham and Sarah, changed Jacob to Israel and...

wise
At its heart, wisdom is love's imperative desire to take form. That's a tricky statement, but think of it this way: If you love someone,...

women
'Women,' as in Genesis 45:19, signify the affections of truth. But in Genesis 31:50, 'women' signify affections of not genuine truth, so not of the...

Waters
'Waters,' 'rivers,' and 'depths,' as in Psalm 78:15-16, signify truths from the Lord.

generation
To “generate” something is to create it, and that idea underpins the meaning of a “generation” of people – it is a group that was...

Gomorrah
'Sodom' signifies the evil of self-love, and 'Gomorrah,' the falsity derived from it.

man
The relationship between men and women is deep and nuanced, and one entire book of the Writings – Conjugial Love or Love in Marriage –...

Son
'A son,' as in Genesis 5:28, signifies the rise of a new church. 'Son,' as in Genesis 24:3, signifies the Lord’s rationality regarding good. 'A...

son of man
The Lord, in some places, calls Himself 'the son of God,' at other times, 'the son of man (ἄνθρωπος).' This is always according to the...

people
The Bible generally uses two different terms for large groups: “people” and “nation.” When it uses the term “nation,” it is talking about a group...

kings
The human mind is composed of two parts, a will and an understanding, a seat of loves and affections, and a seat of wisdom and...

Motion
'Motion' signifies change of state. Motion of the earth,' as in Isaiah 9:5, signifies the perversion of the church by the falsifications of truth.

thunder
When the Lord speaks through the heaven, it descends into the lower spheres and is heard as thunder. As He speaks through the whole of...

sea
'The sea and the waves roaring' means heresy and controversies in the church and individual.

horses
'A horse' signifies knowledges or understanding of the Word. In an opposite sense it signifies the understanding of the Word falsified by reasonings, and likewise...

hands
Scientists believe that one of the most crucial developments in the evolution of humans was bipedalism – walking on two legs. That left our hands...

Pain
'Pain' signifies repugnant things arising from interior falsities, because what is repugnant is painful.

a
A help-meet for him,' or 'a help as before him,' as mentioned in Genesis 2:18, signifies proprium, or what is one's own. However, whereas the...

lion
'A lion' signifies the good of celestial love and the truth from that good.

jordan
The land of Jordan,' as in Psalm 42:6, signifies what is lowly, consequently, what is distant from the celestial, as the external parts of a...

Flock
A flock, as in Genesis 26, denotes interior or rational good. A flock signifies those who are in spiritual good. A flock signifies natural interior...


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