Verse 14. "Cursed be the day wherein I was born" - If we take these words literally, and suppose them to be in their proper place, they are utterly inconsistent with that state of confidence in which he exulted a few minutes before. If they are the language of Jeremiah, they must have been spoken on a prior occasion, when probably he had given way to a passionate hastiness. They might well comport with the state he was in ver. 9. I really believe these verses have got out of their proper place, which I conjecture to be between the eighth and ninth verses. There they will come in very properly; and might have been a part of his complaint in those moments when he had purposed to flee from God as did Jonah, and prophesy no more in his name. Transpositions in this prophet are frequent; therefore place these five verses after the eighth, and let the chapter end with the thirteenth, and the whole will form a piece of exquisite poetry, where the state of despair and the hasty resolutions he had formed while under its influence, and the state of confidence to which he was raised by the succouring influence of God, will appear to be both illustrative of each other, and are touched with a delicacy and fervour which even a cold heart must admire. See Job iii. 3, and the notes there. The two passages are very similar.
Verse 15. "A man child is born" - Borun is to thee a knave child. - Old MS. Bible. This is the old English word for man or servant; and is so used by Wiclif, Rev. xii. 6.
Verse 16. "And let him hear the cry" - Let him be in continual alarms.
Verse 18. "Wherefore came I forth" - It would have been well had I never been born, as I have neither comfort in my life, nor comfort in my work.