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Verse 17

Matthew 2:17. Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy The words of Jeremiah here referred to (Jeremiah 31:15, where see the notes) were primarily meant of the Jews carried captive by Nebuchadnezzar, Ramah being the place where they were assembled to be led away to Babylon. But, as this cruel execution here related by the evangelist, extended itself to all the neighbouring places, and in particular to this same Ramah, a town of Benjamin, which lay near to Bethlehem, the prophet’s words are, with great propriety, applied to this melancholy event likewise, and are represented as receiving a second accomplishment in the bloody slaughter of these infants. And when it is considered that the Jews who were carried captive were not slain, but lived many of them to return again, as the Prophet Jeremiah foretold, to their own border, it must be allowed, that the prediction was much more literally fulfilled on this latter than on the former occasion. This application of the prophecy by the evangelist affords a sure proof that a passage of Scripture, whether prophetical, historical, or poetical, may, in the language of the New Testament, be said to be fulfilled, when an event happens to which it may with great propriety be accommodated.

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