Matthew 2:17

ESV Then was fulfilled what was spoken by the prophet Jeremiah:
NIV Then what was said through the prophet Jeremiah was fulfilled:
NASB Then what had been spoken through Jeremiah the prophet was fulfilled:
CSB Then what was spoken through Jeremiah the prophet was fulfilled:
NLT Herod’s brutal action fulfilled what God had spoken through the prophet Jeremiah:
KJV Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying,

What does Matthew 2:17 mean?

Matthew has described Herod's brutal act of killing every boy in and around Bethlehem who was two years old and younger. His goal was to eliminate the one son whom wise men had described as a the "king of the Jews." Since Herod did not know which one might be the long-promised Messiah, he killed them all (Matthew 2:16).

Bethlehem was a small town, and scholars suggest the number of boys killed may have been somewhere between 10 and 30. This was not a large city, and there would not have been an extremely large number of families. Most, however, likely had one or two children in this age range. The grieving in Bethlehem would have been intense, and Matthew will quote from Jeremiah 31:15 in the following verse to connect the event to a specific moment in Israel's history.
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