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Commentary On Jeremiah And Lamentations Volume 1 by Jean Calvin

Jeremiah 4:18

18. Thy way and thy doings have procured these things unto thee; this is thy wickedness, because it is bitter, because it reacheth unto thine heart.

18. Via tua et actiones tuae fecerunt hoc tibi; haec malitia tua, quoniam amarum, quoniam pertigit ad cor tuum (vel, quamvis amarum sit, et quamvis pertigerit ad cor tuum.)

As I have just said, the Prophet confirms what he had declared, -- that the Jews would not have to suffer, according to what is commonly said, an adverse fortune, but would be summoned by God to judgment, in order that being touched with the fear of God, they might repent, or at least, though destroyed as to the flesh, they might yet, being humbled, obtain pardon and be saved as to the Spirit.

He therefore says, that their deeds had done this for them; as though he had said, |There is no reason for you to blame God, or your adverse fortune, as ye are wont to do, and as all the heathens also do; for your own deeds have procured for you these calamities. Thus God will perform his office of a judge; and whatever may happen to you is to be ascribed to your own wickedness.| And to the same purpose is what he adds, This is thy wickedness. In short, the Prophet shews, that the Jews in vain transferred their calamities to this or that cause, for the whole blame was in themselves; they procured for themselves their own ruin by their impiety and evil deeds.

In the second clause of the verse, ky mr ky ng, ki mer, ki nego, etc., the Prophet intimates, that however bitter might be to them what they were to endure, and however it might penetrate into the inmost heart, it was yet to be ascribed to themselves. For hypocrites are wont in their lamentations to cast the blame on God, or at least to complain of fortune. The Prophet anticipates these evasions, by shewing that however bitter might be what the Jews had to endure, and that though God should pierce them through and penetrate to their very bowels and hearts, yet they themselves were the authors of all their calamities. He then adds --

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