Jeremiah 34

* Zedekiah's death at Babylon foretold. (1-7) The Jews reproved

for compelling their poor brethren to return to unlawful

bondage. (8-22)

1-7 Zedekiah is told that the city shall be taken, and that he

shall die a captive, but he shall die a natural death. It is

better to live and die penitent in a prison, than to live and

die impenitent in a palace.
8-22 A Jew should not be held in servitude above seven years.

This law they and their fathers had broken. And when there was

some hope that the siege was raised, they forced the servants

they had released into their services again. Those who think to

cheat God by dissembled repentance and partial reformation, put

the greatest cheat upon their own souls. This shows that liberty

to sin, is really only liberty to have the sorest judgments. It

is just with God to disappoint expectations of mercy, when we

disappoint the expectations of duty. And when reformation

springs only from terror, it is seldom lasting. Solemn vows thus

entered into, profane the ordinances of God; and the most

forward to bind themselves by appeals to God, are commonly most

ready to break them. Let us look to our hearts, that our

repentance may be real, and take care that the law of God

regulates our conduct.

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