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Jeremiah 25

15This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, said to me: “Take from my hand this cup filled with the wine of my wrath and make all the nations to whom I send you drink it. 16When they drink it, they will stagger and go mad because of the sword I will send among them.” 17So I took the cup from the Lord’s hand and made all the nations to whom he sent me drink it:

28But if they refuse to take the cup from your hand and drink, tell them, ‘This is what the Lord Almighty says: You must drink it!

Does Jeremiah literally visit the nations and hand them the cup of God's wrath?

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Jeremiah 25:

17So I took the cup from the Lord’s hand and made all the nations to whom he sent me drink it: 18Jerusalem and the towns of Judah, its kings and officials, to make them a ruin and an object of horror and scorn, a curse c —as they are today; 19Pharaoh king of Egypt, his attendants, his officials and all his people, 20and all the foreign people there; all the kings of Uz; all the kings of the Philistines (those of Ashkelon, Gaza, Ekron, and the people left at Ashdod); 21Edom, Moab and Ammon; 22 all the kings of Tyre and Sidon; the kings of the coastlands across the sea; 23Dedan, Tema, Buz and all who are in distant places; 24 all the kings of Arabia and all the kings of the foreign people who live in the wilderness; 25all the kings of Zimri, Elam and Media; 26and all the kings of the north, near and far, one after the other—all the kingdoms on the face of the earth. And after all of them, the king of Sheshak will drink it too.

Logistically speaking, this was impossible for Jeremiah to literally accomplish all these running around.

Does Jeremiah literally visit the nations and hand them the cup of God's wrath?

No. The whole passage was partly a vision and partly symbolic.

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God was talking about his wrath, and destructive sword. The Bible contains many visions and symbols, but you can understand it by context and other parts. And I personally read jw.org, for Bible understanding.

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That the 'cup of wrath" is metaphoric is beyond dispute. Further, Jeremiah almost certainly received this message in a highly symbolic vision. The question here about Jer 25, was this an enacted parable or not?

First, we have numerous enacted parables by various prophets, including Jeremiah such as:

  • Jer 13:1-11 - the Linen waist cloth
  • Jer 18:1-10 - the potter
  • Eze 4:1-8 - Jerusalem's siege, sinfulness etc
  • Eze 5:1-4 - Jerusalem's sinfulness
  • 1 Kings 22:11 - horns to illustrate destruction of Arameans

Now, it would have been physically impossible for the prophet Jeremiah to visit all the capitals of the countries listed in Jer 25 to deliver the divine message. However, that is not even necessary. It is entirely possible that Jeremiah simply convened a meeting the international envoys/ambassadors in a room in Jerusalem to deliver this message to each nation's representative. [Compare Isa 39.]

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