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An Ethiopian Official Rescues Jeremiah from the Cistern

An Ethiopian, Ebed Melech,[a] a court official in the royal palace, heard that Jeremiah had been put[b] in the cistern. While the king was holding court[c] at the Benjamin Gate,

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Footnotes

  1. Jeremiah 38:7 sn This individual, Ebed Melech, is mentioned only here. Later he will be promised deliverance from destruction when the city falls because he had shown trust in God (see Jer 39:16-18).
  2. Jeremiah 38:7 tn Heb “Ebed Melech, the Cushite, a man, an eunuch/official, and he was [= who was; a circumstantial clause] in the house of the king, heard that they had put Jeremiah…” The passive construction “Jeremiah had been put” was chosen to avoid the indefinite subject “they” or the addition of “the officials.” For the translation of סָרִיס (saris) as “official” here rather than “eunuch,” see the translator’s note on 29:2 and see also the usage in 34:19. For the translation of “Cushite” as Ethiopian, see the study note on 13:23.
  3. Jeremiah 38:7 tn Heb “And the king was sitting in the Benjamin Gate.” This clause is circumstantial to the following clause, thus signifying, “while the king was…” Most commentators agree that the reference to sitting in the gate here likely refers to the same kind of judicial context that has been posited for 26:10 (see the translator’s note there for further references). Hence the translation renders “sitting” with the more technical “holding court” to better reflect the probable situation.

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