15. Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore they shall fall among them that fall: at the time that I visit them they shall be cast down, saith the Lord
15. An confusi sunt (vel, an puduit eos,) quia abominationem patrarunt? etiam non puduit eos (hoc est, nihil prorsus in ipsis fuit pudoris) etiam erubescere nescierunt: propterea cadent inter cadentes, in tempore visitationis eorum ruent, inquit Jehova.
Jeremiah turns now his discourse to the whole people. In the last verse he reproved only the priests and the prophets; he now speaks more generally, and says, that they had put off all shame. |Behold,| he says, |they are sufficiently proved guilty, their wickedness is manifest, and yet there is no shame. Their disgrace is visible to heaven and earth; angels and all mortals are witnesses of their corruption; but they have such a meretricious front that they are touched by no sense of shame.| He means, in these words, that the wickedness of the people was past all remedy; for they had arrived to that degree of stupor, of which Paul speaks, when he calls those apelgekotas, who were obstinate in their vices, who saw no difference between right and wrong, between white and black. (Ephesians 4:19.)
This, then, is what the Prophet means when he says, Have they been ashamed? But a question is much more emphatical, than if it was a simple reprobation or affirmation. They have not been even ashamed, he says. In their very shame, they knew not what it was to be touched by any shamefacedness. This may be classed with those reproofs, by which they had not been subdued; as though he had said, |Efforts having been made to expose their effrontery, in not humbling themselves under the hand of God; they shall therefore fall among the fallen;| that is, |I will dispute no longer with them, nor contend in words, but will execute on them my judgment.| Fall, then, shall they among the fallen; as though he had said, |I have more than sufficiently denounced war on them: had they been healable it would have availed to their conversion, that they had been so often warned; and still more, that I have so sharply stimulated them to come to me: but I will now no more employ words, on the contrary, I will execute my vengeance, so that the calamity which they have derived may devour them.|
They shall wholly fall, he says, in the day of their visitation From this second clause we understand more clearly what it is or what he means when he speaks of falling among the fallen, which is, that they should wholly fall, when God would come as it were with a drawn sword to destroy them, having been wearied with giving them so many warnings.