Eating One’s Young? – Jeremiah 19

Question

I am confused about Jeremiah 19:9 — ” I will make them eat the flesh of their sons and daughters, and they will eat one another’s flesh because their enemies will press the siege so hard against them to destroy them.” I realize the context of the passage is a prophecy of coming judgment on Judah. But why would God say that he would “make” his people practice cannibalism? It seems clear to me that cannibalism would be immoral for anyone to do, whether the person was Jewish or Gentile.

3 months

Answers

  1. As you point out the verse is quite gruesome. The simple explanation is that there is a Divine measure-for-measure that is taking place because the people offered their children as offerings to idols. However, the threat is really reinforcing the original threat that was made in the Admonition in the Book of Deuteronomy, 28:53. That the privations that the Jewish People would experience through their laxity and ignoring God would be so severe that they would end up acting in the most cruel and selfish way known to Mankind.

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