10. Thus saith the LORD unto this people, Thus have they loved to wander, they have not refrained their feet, therefore the LORD doth not accept them; he will now remember their iniquity, and visit their sins.
10. Sic dicit Jehovah.ad populum hunc (vel, de populo hoc; l utrunque significat,) Sicut dilexerunt ad va gandum (hoc est, sicut amarunt vagari,) pedes suos non cohibuerunt, ideo Jehova non placuit sibi in illis; nunc recordabitur iniquitatum eorum, et visitabit peccata ipsorum.
The Prophet goes on with the same subject; but he reproves the Jews more severely and shews what their sins were. He says then that they were given to inconstancy; but by saying, |to wander,| lnv lenuo, which means to move here and there, he no doubt mentions this inconstancy as a contrast to that quiemess and rest, of which Isaiah speaks, when he says,
|Behold the Lord hath commanded, In returning and in confidence shall be your strength, in quietness and tranquillity.| (Isaiah 30:15)
He then wished the Jews to adopt different counsels, and not to run here and there when any danger was at hand, but to wait until he, according to his promise, came to their aid. Hence Jeremiah now accuses them of inconstancy, because they would not rely on God's help and remain firm in their purpose, but run here and there for vain helps; besides a diabolical frenzy led them after idols, as Isaiah says in another place,
|Thou hast wearied thyself in thy ways and without profit,| (Isaiah 47:13)
This fact is often mentioned by the prophets, -- that they were like roving strumpets who seek paramours everywhere; for their confederacies with the Egyptians and the Chaldeans cost them much, and yet they spared no expenses. They might have waited quietly for the aid of God, which had been promised; but they did not.
We now then perceive the meaning of the Prophet when he says, that they loved to wander, or to move here and there, and that they restrained not their feet At the first view, indeed, this seems to have been but a small offense; but if we consider its source, that they distrusted God and his power, and placed their safety in the Egyptians, or the Chaldeans, it will appear to have been a shameful and an intolerable sacrilege. Unbelief, then, is here condemned; for the Jews looked around for foreign aids, and made no account of God.
Now this passage, is worthy of being especially noticed, for unbelief is here painted to the life. It is indeed true that even the children of God are not so tranquil in their minds that they never fear, that they are never solicitous or anxious, that they dread no danger; but yet, though the faithful are disturbed by many inquietudes, cares, anxieties, and fears, still God ever preserves them; and the firmness of their faith within continues, though it may happen that they are apparently not only shaken, but even stagger and fall. But God gives to the unbelieving their just reward, who derogate from his power, while they place their safety on men or on idols, for they never find where they may safely stand. They therefore weary themselves without any advantage. On this account he says, Therefore Jehovah will not be pleased with them, that is, God will not give them courage: nay, he says, he will now remember their iniquities and visit their sins In short, he teaches us, that so grievous was the wickedness of that people, that there was no place for the mercy of God. He afterwards adds --