The LORD said also unto me in the days of Josiah the king, Hast thou seen that which backsliding Israel hath done? she is gone up upon every high mountain and under every green tree, and there hath played the harlot.
The Lord said also unto me, in the days of Josiah the king,.... For in his time Jeremiah began to prophesy, even in the thirteenth year of his reign, Jeremiah 1:2:
Hast thou seen that which backsliding Israel hath done? the ten tribes; that is, hast thou not heard? or dost thou not know the idolatry of the ten tribes, which was the cause of their captivity? as Kimchi explains it; for the facts, or the idolatrous actions of the ten tribes, were not done in Josiah's and Jeremiah's time; for they were carried captive in the sixth year of Hezekiah, ninety years or more before Jeremiah began to prophesy, and their idolatry was before their captivity, and therefore could not be properly seen by him; only it had been heard of by him, it was known by him, it was notorious enough, being well attested:
she is gone upon every high mountain, and under every green tree; that is, she did so, when in her own land, before she was carried captive, as Jarchi observes; for this respects not what she did in Josiah's and Jeremiah's time, or when in captivity, but before, which was the reason of it:
and there hath played the harlot: or committed idolatry, which was usually done in such places; so the Targum,
"and worshipped idols of wood.''