26:1 The Lord spoke to Jeremiah 2 at the beginning of the reign 3 of Josiah’s son, King Jehoiakim of Judah. 26:2 The Lord said, “Go stand in the courtyard of the Lord’s temple. 4 Speak out to all the people who are coming from the towns of Judah to worship in the Lord’s temple. Tell them everything I command you to tell them. Do not leave out a single word! 26:3 Maybe they will pay attention and each of them will stop living the evil way they do. 5 If they do that, then I will forgo destroying them 6 as I had intended to do because of the wicked things they have been doing. 7 26:4 Tell them that the Lord says, 8 ‘You must obey me! You must live according to the way I have instructed you in my laws. 9 26:5 You must pay attention to the exhortations of my servants the prophets. I have sent them to you over and over again. 10 But you have not paid any attention to them. 26:6 If you do not obey me, 11 then I will do to this temple what I did to Shiloh. 12 And I will make this city an example to be used in curses by people from all the nations on the earth.’”
26:7 The priests, the prophets, and all the people heard Jeremiah say these things in the Lord’s temple. 26:8 Jeremiah had just barely finished saying all the Lord had commanded him to say to all the people. All at once some 13 of the priests, the prophets, and the people grabbed him and shouted, “You deserve to die! 14 26:9 How dare you claim the Lord’s authority to prophesy such things! How dare you claim his authority to prophesy that this temple will become like Shiloh and that this city will become an uninhabited ruin!” 15 Then all the people crowded around Jeremiah.
26:10 However, some of the officials 16 of Judah heard about what was happening 17 and they rushed up to the Lord’s temple from the royal palace. They set up court 18 at the entrance of the New Gate of the Lord’s temple. 19 26:11 Then the priests and the prophets made their charges before the officials and all the people. They said, 20 “This man should be condemned to die 21 because he prophesied against this city. You have heard him do so 22 with your own ears.”
26:12 Then Jeremiah made his defense before all the officials and all the people. 23 “The Lord sent me to prophesy everything you have heard me say against this temple and against this city. 26:13 But correct the way you have been living and do what is right. 24 Obey the Lord your God. If you do, the Lord will forgo destroying you as he threatened he would. 25 26:14 As to my case, I am in your power. 26 Do to me what you deem fair and proper. 26:15 But you should take careful note of this: If you put me to death, you will bring on yourselves and this city and those who live in it the guilt of murdering an innocent man. For the Lord has sent me to speak all this where you can hear it. That is the truth!” 27
26:16 Then the officials and all the people rendered their verdict to the priests and the prophets. They said, 28 “This man should not be condemned to die. 29 For he has spoken to us under the authority of the Lord our God.” 30 26:17 Then some of the elders of Judah 31 stepped forward and spoke to all the people gathered there. They said, 26:18 “Micah from Moresheth 32 prophesied during the time Hezekiah was king of Judah. 33 He told all the people of Judah,
‘The Lord who rules over all 34 says,
“Zion 35 will become a plowed field.
Jerusalem 36 will become a pile of rubble.
The temple mount will become a mere wooded ridge.”’ 37
26:19 King Hezekiah and all the people of Judah did not put him to death, did they? Did not Hezekiah show reverence for the Lord and seek the Lord’s favor? 38 Did not 39 the Lord forgo destroying them 40 as he threatened he would? But we are on the verge of bringing great disaster on ourselves.” 41
26:20 Now there was another man 42 who prophesied as the Lord’s representative 43 against this city and this land just as Jeremiah did. His name was Uriah son of Shemaiah from Kiriath Jearim. 44 26:21 When the king and all his bodyguards 45 and officials heard what he was prophesying, 46 the king sought to have him executed. But Uriah found out about it and fled to Egypt out of fear. 47 26:22 However, King Jehoiakim sent some men to Egypt, including Elnathan son of Achbor, 48 26:23 and they brought Uriah back from there. 49 They took him to King Jehoiakim, who had him executed and had his body thrown into the burial place of the common people. 50
27:1 The Lord spoke to Jeremiah 53 early in the reign of Josiah’s son, King Zedekiah of Judah. 54 27:2 The Lord told me, 55 “Make a yoke 56 out of leather straps and wooden crossbars and put it on your neck. 27:3 Use it to send messages to the kings of Edom, Moab, Ammon, Tyre, 57 and Sidon. 58 Send them through 59 the envoys who have come to Jerusalem 60 to King Zedekiah of Judah. 27:4 Charge them to give their masters a message from me. Tell them, ‘The Lord God of Israel who rules over all 61 says to give your masters this message. 62 27:5 “I made the earth and the people and animals on it by my mighty power and great strength, 63 and I give it to whomever I see fit. 64 27:6 I have at this time placed all these nations of yours under the power 65 of my servant, 66 King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. I have even made all the wild animals subject to him. 67 27:7 All nations must serve him and his son and grandson 68 until the time comes for his own nation to fall. 69 Then many nations and great kings will in turn subjugate Babylon. 70 27:8 But suppose a nation or a kingdom will not be subject to King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. Suppose it will not submit to the yoke of servitude to 71 him. I, the Lord, affirm that 72 I will punish that nation. I will use the king of Babylon to punish it 73 with war, 74 starvation, and disease until I have destroyed it. 75 27:9 So do not listen to your prophets or to those who claim to predict the future by divination, 76 by dreams, by consulting the dead, 77 or by practicing magic. They keep telling you, ‘You do not need to be 78 subject to the king of Babylon.’ 27:10 Do not listen to them, 79 because their prophecies are lies. 80 Listening to them will only cause you 81 to be taken far away from your native land. I will drive you out of your country and you will die in exile. 82 27:11 Things will go better for the nation that submits to the yoke of servitude to 83 the king of Babylon and is subject to him. I will leave that nation 84 in its native land. Its people can continue to farm it and live in it. I, the Lord, affirm it!”’” 85
27:12 I told King Zedekiah of Judah the same thing. I said, 86 “Submit 87 to the yoke of servitude to 88 the king of Babylon. Be subject to him and his people. Then you will continue to live. 27:13 There is no reason why you and your people should die in war 89 or from starvation or disease! 90 That’s what the Lord says will happen to any nation 91 that will not be subject to the king of Babylon. 27:14 Do not listen to the prophets who are telling you that you do not need to serve 92 the king of Babylon. For they are prophesying lies to you. 27:15 For I, the Lord, affirm 93 that I did not send them. They are prophesying lies to you. If you 94 listen to them, I will drive you and the prophets who are prophesying lies out of the land and you will all die in exile.” 95
27:16 I also told the priests and all the people, “The Lord says, ‘Do not listen to what your prophets are saying. They are prophesying to you that 96 the valuable articles taken from the Lord’s temple will be brought back from Babylon very soon. 97 But they are prophesying a lie to you. 27:17 Do not listen to them. Be subject to the king of Babylon. Then you 98 will continue to live. Why should this city be made a pile of rubble?’” 99 27:18 I also told them, 100 “If they are really prophets and the Lord is speaking to them, 101 let them pray earnestly to the Lord who rules over all. 102 Let them plead with him not to let the valuable articles that are still left in the Lord’s temple, in the royal palace, and in Jerusalem be taken away 103 to Babylon. 27:19 For the Lord who rules over all 104 has already spoken about the two bronze pillars, 105 the large bronze basin called ‘The Sea,’ 106 and the movable bronze stands. 107 He has already spoken about the rest of the valuable articles that are left in this city. 27:20 He has already spoken about these things that King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon did not take away when he carried Jehoiakim’s son King Jeconiah of Judah and the nobles of Judah and Jerusalem away as captives. 108 27:21 Indeed, the Lord God of Israel who rules over all 109 has already spoken 110 about the valuable articles that are left in the Lord’s temple, in the royal palace of Judah, and in Jerusalem. 27:22 He has said, ‘They will be carried off to Babylon. They will remain there until it is time for me to show consideration for them again. 111 Then I will bring them back and restore them to this place.’ I, the Lord, affirm this!” 112
28:1 The following events occurred in that same year, early in the reign of King Zedekiah of Judah. To be more precise, it was the fifth month of the fourth year of his reign. 113 The prophet Hananiah son of Azzur, who was from Gibeon, spoke to Jeremiah 114 in the Lord’s temple in the presence of the priests and all the people. 115 28:2 “The Lord God of Israel who rules over all 116 says, ‘I will break the yoke of servitude 117 to the king of Babylon. 28:3 Before two years are over, I will bring back to this place everything that King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon took from it and carried away to Babylon. 28:4 I will also bring back to this place Jehoiakim’s son King Jeconiah of Judah and all the exiles who were taken to Babylon.’ Indeed, the Lord affirms, 118 ‘I will break the yoke of servitude to the king of Babylon.’”
28:5 Then the prophet Jeremiah responded to the prophet Hananiah in the presence of the priests and all the people who were standing in the Lord’s temple. 28:6 The prophet Jeremiah said, “Amen! May the Lord do all this! May the Lord make your prophecy come true! May he bring back to this place from Babylon all the valuable articles taken from the Lord’s temple and the people who were carried into exile. 28:7 But listen to what I say to you and to all these people. 119 28:8 From earliest times, the prophets who preceded you and me invariably 120 prophesied war, disaster, 121 and plagues against many countries and great kingdoms. 28:9 So if a prophet prophesied 122 peace and prosperity, it was only known that the Lord truly sent him when what he prophesied came true.”
28:10 The prophet Hananiah then took the yoke off the prophet Jeremiah’s neck and broke it. 28:11 Then he spoke up in the presence of all the people. “The Lord says, ‘In the same way I will break the yoke of servitude of all the nations to King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon 123 before two years are over.’” After he heard this, the prophet Jeremiah departed and went on his way. 124
28:12 But shortly after the prophet Hananiah had broken the yoke off the prophet Jeremiah’s neck, the Lord spoke to Jeremiah. 28:13 “Go and tell Hananiah that the Lord says, 125 ‘You have indeed broken the wooden yoke. But you have 126 only succeeded in replacing it with an iron one! 127 28:14 For the Lord God of Israel who rules over all 128 says, “I have put an irresistible yoke of servitude on all these nations 129 so they will serve King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. And they will indeed serve him. I have even given him control over the wild animals.”’” 130 28:15 Then the prophet Jeremiah told the prophet Hananiah, “Listen, Hananiah! The Lord did not send you! You are making these people trust in a lie! 131 28:16 So the Lord says, ‘I will most assuredly remove 132 you from the face of the earth. You will die this very year because you have counseled rebellion against the Lord.’” 133
29:1 The prophet Jeremiah sent a letter to the exiles Nebuchadnezzar had carried off from Jerusalem 135 to Babylon. It was addressed to the elders who were left among the exiles, to the priests, to the prophets, and to all the other people who were exiled in Babylon. 136 29:2 He sent it after King Jeconiah, the queen mother, the palace officials, 137 the leaders of Judah and Jerusalem, the craftsmen, and the metal workers had been exiled from Jerusalem. 138 29:3 He sent it with Elasah son of Shaphan 139 and Gemariah son of Hilkiah. 140 King Zedekiah of Judah had sent these men to Babylon to King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. 141 The letter said:
29:4 “The Lord God of Israel who rules over all 142 says to all those he sent 143 into exile to Babylon from Jerusalem, 144 29:5 ‘Build houses and settle down. Plant gardens and eat what they produce. 29:6 Marry and have sons and daughters. Find wives for your sons and allow your daughters get married so that they too can have sons and daughters. Grow in number; do not dwindle away. 29:7 Work to see that the city where I sent you as exiles enjoys peace and prosperity. Pray to the Lord for it. For as it prospers you will prosper.’
29:8 “For the Lord God of Israel who rules over all 145 says, ‘Do not let the prophets or those among you who claim to be able to predict the future by divination 146 deceive you. And do not pay any attention to the dreams that you are encouraging them to dream. 29:9 They are prophesying lies to you and claiming my authority to do so. 147 But I did not send them. I, the Lord, affirm it!’ 148
29:10 “For the Lord says, ‘Only when the seventy years of Babylonian rule 149 are over will I again take up consideration for you. 150 Then I will fulfill my gracious promise to you and restore 151 you to your homeland. 152 29:11 For I know what I have planned for you,’ says the Lord. 153 ‘I have plans to prosper you, not to harm you. I have plans to give you 154 a future filled with hope. 155 29:12 When you call out to me and come to me in prayer, 156 I will hear your prayers. 157 29:13 When you seek me in prayer and worship, you will find me available to you. If you seek me with all your heart and soul, 158 29:14 I will make myself available to you,’ 159 says the Lord. 160 ‘Then I will reverse your plight 161 and will regather you from all the nations and all the places where I have exiled you,’ says the Lord. 162 ‘I will bring you back to the place from which I exiled you.’
29:15 “You say, ‘The Lord has raised up prophets of good news 163 for us here in Babylon.’ 29:16 But just listen to what the Lord has to say about 164 the king who occupies David’s throne and all your fellow countrymen who are still living in this city of Jerusalem 165 and were not carried off into exile with you. 29:17 The Lord who rules over all 166 says, ‘I will bring war, 167 starvation, and disease on them. I will treat them like figs that are so rotten 168 they cannot be eaten. 29:18 I will chase after them with war, 169 starvation, and disease. I will make all the kingdoms of the earth horrified at what happens to them. I will make them examples of those who are cursed, objects of horror, hissing scorn, and ridicule among all the nations where I exile them. 29:19 For they have not paid attention to what I said to them through my servants the prophets whom I sent to them over and over again,’ 170 says the Lord. 171 ‘And you exiles 172 have not paid any attention to them either,’ says the Lord. 173 29:20 ‘So pay attention to what I, the Lord, have said, 174 all you exiles whom I have sent to Babylon from Jerusalem.’
29:21 “The Lord God of Israel who rules over all 175 also has something to say about Ahab son of Kolaiah and Zedekiah son of Maaseiah, who are prophesying lies to you and claiming my authority to do so. 176 ‘I will hand them over to King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon and he will execute them before your very eyes. 29:22 And all the exiles of Judah who are in Babylon will use them as examples when they put a curse on anyone. They will say, “May the Lord treat you like Zedekiah and Ahab whom the king of Babylon roasted to death in the fire!” 177 29:23 This will happen to them because they have done what is shameful 178 in Israel. They have committed adultery with their neighbors’ wives and have spoken lies while claiming my authority. 179 They have spoken words that I did not command them to speak. I know what they have done. I have been a witness to it,’ says the Lord.” 180
29:24 The Lord told Jeremiah, “Tell 181 Shemaiah the Nehelamite 182 29:25 that the Lord God of Israel who rules over all 183 has a message for him. 184 Tell him, 185 ‘On your own initiative 186 you sent a letter 187 to the priest Zephaniah son of Maaseiah 188 and to all the other priests and to all the people in Jerusalem. 189 In your letter you said to Zephaniah, 190 29:26 “The Lord has made you priest in place of Jehoiada. 191 He has put you in charge in the Lord’s temple of controlling 192 any lunatic 193 who pretends to be a prophet. 194 And it is your duty to put any such person in the stocks 195 with an iron collar around his neck. 196 29:27 You should have reprimanded Jeremiah from Anathoth who is pretending to be a prophet among you! 197 29:28 For he has even sent a message to us here in Babylon. He wrote and told us, 198 “You will be there a long time. Build houses and settle down. Plant gardens and eat what they produce.”’” 199
29:29 Zephaniah the priest read that letter to the prophet Jeremiah. 200 29:30 Then the Lord spoke to Jeremiah. 29:31 “Send a message to all the exiles in Babylon. Tell them, ‘The Lord has spoken about Shemaiah the Nehelamite. “Shemaiah has spoken to you as a prophet even though I did not send him. He is making you trust in a lie. 201 29:32 Because he has done this,” 202 the Lord says, “I will punish Shemaiah the Nehelamite and his whole family. There will not be any of them left to experience the good things that I will do for my people. I, the Lord, affirm it! For he counseled rebellion against the Lord.”’” 203
30:1 The Lord spoke to Jeremiah. 204 30:2 “The Lord God of Israel says, 205 ‘Write everything that I am about to tell you in a scroll. 206 30:3 For I, the Lord, affirm 207 that the time will come when I will reverse the plight 208 of my people, Israel and Judah,’ says the Lord. ‘I will bring them back to the land I gave their ancestors 209 and they will take possession of it once again.’” 210
“You hear cries of panic and of terror;
there is no peace in sight. 213
Have you ever seen a man give birth to a baby?
Why then do I see all these strong men
grabbing their stomachs in pain like 215 a woman giving birth?
And why do their faces
turn so deathly pale?
There has never been any like it.
It is a time of trouble for the descendants of Jacob,
but some of them will be rescued out of it. 217
says the Lord who rules over all, 219
“I will rescue you from foreign subjugation. 220
I will deliver you from captivity. 221
Foreigners will then no longer subjugate them.
and to the Davidic ruler whom I will raise up as king over them. 223
30:10 So I, the Lord, tell you not to be afraid,
you descendants of Jacob, my servants. 224
Do not be terrified, people of Israel.
For I will rescue you and your descendants
from a faraway land where you are captives. 225
The descendants of Jacob will return to their land and enjoy peace.
They will be secure and no one will terrify them. 226
I will be with you and will rescue you.
I will completely destroy all the nations where I scattered you.
But I will not completely destroy you.
I will indeed discipline you, but only in due measure.
I will not allow you to go entirely unpunished.” 228
“Your injuries are incurable;
your wounds are severe. 231
30:13 There is no one to plead your cause.
There are no remedies for your wounds. 232
There is no healing for you.
They no longer have any concern for you.
For I have attacked you like an enemy would.
I have chastened you cruelly.
For your wickedness is so great
and your sin is so much. 234
30:15 Why do you complain about your injuries,
that your pain is incurable?
I have done all this to you
because your wickedness is so great
and your sin is so much.
All your enemies will go into exile.
Those who plundered you will be plundered.
I will cause those who pillaged you to be pillaged. 236
I will heal your wounds.
I, the Lord, affirm it! 238
For you have been called an outcast,
Zion, whom no one cares for.”
30:18 The Lord says,
“I will restore the ruined houses of the descendants of Jacob.
I will show compassion on their ruined homes. 239
Every city will be rebuilt on its former ruins. 240
Every fortified dwelling will occupy its traditional site. 241
and the sounds of laughter and merriment.
I will increase their number and they will not dwindle away. 243
I will bring them honor and they will no longer be despised.
30:20 The descendants of Jacob will enjoy their former privileges.
Their community will be reestablished in my favor 244
and I will punish all who try to oppress them.
30:21 One of their own people will be their leader.
Their ruler will come from their own number. 245
I will invite him to approach me, and he will do so. 246
For no one would dare approach me on his own. 247
I, the Lord, affirm it! 248
30:22 Then you will again be my people
and I will be your God. 249
30:23 Just watch! The wrath of the Lord
will come like a storm.
Like a raging storm it will rage down
on the heads of those who are wicked.
30:24 The anger of the Lord will not turn back
until he has fully carried out his intended purposes.
In days to come you will come to understand this. 250
and they will be my people.
I, the Lord, affirm it!” 252
31:2 The Lord says,
“The people of Israel who survived
death at the hands of the enemy 253
will find favor in the wilderness
as they journey to find rest for themselves.
31:3 In a far-off land the Lord will manifest himself to them.
He will say to them, ‘I have loved you with an everlasting love.
That is why I have continued to be faithful to you. 254
so that you will once again be built up.
Once again you will take up the tambourine
and join in the happy throng of dancers. 256
31:5 Once again you will plant vineyards
on the hills of Samaria. 257
Those who plant them
will once again enjoy their fruit. 258
31:6 Yes, a time is coming
when watchmen 259 will call out on the mountains of Ephraim,
“Come! Let us go to Zion
to worship the Lord our God!”’” 260
“Sing for joy for the descendants of Jacob.
Utter glad shouts for that foremost of the nations. 262
Make your praises heard. 263
Then say, ‘Lord, rescue your people.
Deliver those of Israel who remain alive.’ 264
I will gather them in from the distant parts of the earth.
Blind and lame people will come with them,
so will pregnant women and women about to give birth.
A vast throng of people will come back here.
31:9 They will come back shedding tears of contrition.
I will bring them back praying prayers of repentance. 266
I will lead them besides streams of water,
along smooth paths where they will never stumble. 267
I will do this because I am Israel’s father;
Ephraim 268 is my firstborn son.’”
31:10 Hear what the Lord has to say, O nations.
Proclaim it in the faraway lands along the sea.
Say, “The one who scattered Israel will regather them.
He will watch over his people like a shepherd watches over his flock.”
31:11 For the Lord will rescue the descendants of Jacob.
31:12 They will come and shout for joy on Mount Zion.
They will be radiant with joy 271 over the good things the Lord provides,
the grain, the fresh wine, the olive oil,
the young sheep and calves he has given to them.
They will be like a well-watered garden
and will not grow faint or weary any more.
Young men and old men will rejoice. 273
I will turn their grief into gladness.
I will give them comfort and joy in place of their sorrow.
My people will be filled to the full with the good things I provide.”
31:15 The Lord says,
“A sound is heard in Ramah, 275
a sound of crying in bitter grief.
It is the sound of Rachel weeping for her children
and refusing to be comforted, because her children are gone.” 276
“Stop crying! Do not shed any more tears! 278
For your heartfelt repentance 279 will be rewarded.
Your children will return from the land of the enemy.
I, the Lord, affirm it! 280
Your children will return to their own territory.
I, the Lord, affirm it! 282
‘We were like a calf untrained to the yoke. 285
You disciplined us and we learned from it. 286
Let us come back to you and we will do so, 287
for you are the Lord our God.
31:19 For after we turned away from you we repented.
We are ashamed and humiliated
because of the disgraceful things we did previously.’ 290
31:20 Indeed, the people of Israel are my dear children.
They are the children I take delight in. 291
For even though I must often rebuke them,
I still remember them with fondness.
So I am deeply moved with pity for them 292
and will surely have compassion on them.
I, the Lord, affirm it! 293
the road you took when you were carried off. 296
Mark off in your minds the landmarks.
Make a mental note of telltale signs marking the way back.
Return, my dear children of Israel.
Return to these cities of yours.
you who were once like an unfaithful daughter? 298
something as unique as a woman protecting a man!’” 301
“I will restore the people of Judah to their land and to their towns.
‘May the Lord bless you, you holy mountain,
the place where righteousness dwells.’ 305
31:24 The land of Judah will be inhabited by people who live in its towns
as well as by farmers and shepherds with their flocks. 306
31:25 I will fully satisfy the needs of those who are weary
and fully refresh the souls of those who are faint. 307
31:26 Then they will say, ‘Under these conditions I can enjoy sweet sleep
when I wake up and look around.’” 308
31:27 “Indeed, a time is coming,” 309 says the Lord, 310 “when I will cause people and animals to sprout up in the lands of Israel and Judah. 311 31:28 In the past I saw to it that they were uprooted and torn down, that they were destroyed and demolished. But now I will see to it that they are built up and firmly planted. 312 I, the Lord, affirm it!” 313
31:29 “When that time comes, people will no longer say, ‘The parents have eaten sour grapes, but the children’s teeth have grown numb.’ 314 31:30 Rather, each person will die for his own sins. The teeth of the person who eats the sour grapes will themselves grow numb. 315
31:31 “Indeed, a time is coming,” says the Lord, 316 “when I will make a new covenant 317 with the people of Israel and Judah. 318 31:32 It will not be like the old 319 covenant that I made with their ancestors 320 when I delivered them 321 from Egypt. For they violated that covenant, even though I was like a faithful husband to them,” 322 says the Lord. 323 31:33 “But I will make a new covenant with the whole nation of Israel 324 after I plant them back in the land,” 325 says the Lord. 326 “I will 327 put my law within them 328 and write it on their hearts and minds. 329 I will be their God and they will be my people. 330
31:34 “People will no longer need to teach their neighbors and relatives to know me. 331 For all of them, from the least important to the most important, will know me,” 332 says the Lord. “For 333 I will forgive their sin and will no longer call to mind the wrong they have done.”
31:35 The Lord has made a promise to Israel.
He promises it as the one who fixed the sun to give light by day
and the moon and stars to give light by night.
He promises it as the one who stirs up the sea so that its waves roll.
He promises it as the one who is known as the Lord who rules over all. 334
cease forever to be a nation in my sight.
That could only happen if the fixed ordering of the heavenly lights
were to cease to operate before me.” 336
31:37 The Lord says, “I will not reject all the descendants of Israel
because of all that they have done. 337
That could only happen if the heavens above could be measured
or the foundations of the earth below could all be explored,” 338
says the Lord. 339
31:38 “Indeed a time is coming,” 340 says the Lord, 341 “when the city of Jerusalem 342 will be rebuilt as my special city. 343 It will be built from the Tower of Hananel westward to the Corner Gate. 344 31:39 The boundary line will extend beyond that, straight west from there to the Hill of Gareb and then turn southward to Goah. 345 31:40 The whole valley where dead bodies and sacrificial ashes are thrown 346 and all the terraced fields 347 out to the Kidron Valley 348 on the east as far north 349 as the Horse Gate 350 will be included within this city that is sacred to the Lord. 351 The city will never again be torn down or destroyed.”
32:2 Now at that time, 353 the armies of the king of Babylon were besieging Jerusalem. 354 The prophet Jeremiah was confined in the courtyard of the guardhouse 355 attached to the royal palace of Judah. 32:3 For King Zedekiah 356 had confined Jeremiah there after he had reproved him for prophesying as he did. He had asked Jeremiah, “Why do you keep prophesying these things? Why do you keep saying that the Lord says, ‘I will hand this city over to the king of Babylon? I will let him capture it. 357 32:4 King Zedekiah of Judah will not escape from the Babylonians. 358 He will certainly be handed over to the king of Babylon. He must answer personally to the king of Babylon and confront him face to face. 359 32:5 Zedekiah will be carried off to Babylon and will remain there until I have fully dealt with him. 360 I, the Lord, affirm it! 361 Even if you 362 continue to fight against the Babylonians, 363 you cannot win.’”
32:6 So now, Jeremiah said, “The Lord told me, 364 32:7 ‘Hanamel, the son of your uncle Shallum, will come to you soon. He will say to you, “Buy my field at Anathoth because you are entitled 365 as my closest relative to buy it.”’ 366 32:8 Now it happened just as the Lord had said! My cousin Hanamel 367 came to me in the courtyard of the guardhouse. He said to me, ‘Buy my field which is at Anathoth in the territory of the tribe of Benjamin. Buy it for yourself since you are entitled as my closest relative to take possession of it for yourself.’ When this happened, I recognized that the Lord had indeed spoken to me. 32:9 So I bought the field at Anathoth from my cousin Hanamel. I weighed out seven ounces of silver and gave it to him to pay for it. 368 32:10 I signed the deed of purchase, 369 sealed it, and had some men serve as witnesses to the purchase. 370 I weighed out the silver for him on a scale. 32:11 There were two copies of the deed of purchase. One was sealed and contained the order of transfer and the conditions of purchase. 371 The other was left unsealed. 32:12 I took both copies of the deed of purchase 372 and gave them to Baruch son of Neriah, the son of Mahseiah. I gave them to him in the presence 373 of my cousin 374 Hanamel, the witnesses who had signed the deed of purchase, and all the Judeans who were housed in the courtyard of the guardhouse. 32:13 In the presence of all these people I instructed Baruch, 32:14 ‘The Lord God of Israel who rules over all 375 says, “Take these documents, both the sealed copy of the deed of purchase and the unsealed copy. Put them in a clay jar so that they may be preserved for a long time to come.”’ 376 32:15 For the Lord God of Israel who rules over all 377 says, “Houses, fields, and vineyards will again be bought in this land.”’ 378
32:16 “After I had given the copies of the deed of purchase to Baruch son of Neriah, I prayed to the Lord, 32:17 ‘Oh, Lord God, 379 you did indeed 380 make heaven and earth by your mighty power and great strength. 381 Nothing is too hard for you! 32:18 You show unfailing love to thousands. 382 But you also punish children for the sins of their parents. 383 You are the great and powerful God who is known as the Lord who rules over all. 384 32:19 You plan great things and you do mighty deeds. 385 You see everything people do. 386 You reward each of them for the way they live and for the things they do. 387 32:20 You did miracles and amazing deeds in the land of Egypt which have had lasting effect. By this means you gained both in Israel and among humankind a renown that lasts to this day. 388 32:21 You used your mighty power and your great strength to perform miracles and amazing deeds and to bring great terror on the Egyptians. By this means you brought your people Israel out of the land of Egypt. 389 32:22 You kept the promise that you swore on oath to their ancestors. 390 You gave them a land flowing with milk and honey. 391 32:23 But when they came in and took possession of it, they did not obey you or live as you had instructed them. They did not do anything that you commanded them to do. 392 So you brought all this disaster on them. 32:24 Even now siege ramps have been built up around the city 393 in order to capture it. War, 394 starvation, and disease are sure to make the city fall into the hands of the Babylonians 395 who are attacking it. 396 Lord, 397 you threatened that this would happen. Now you can see that it is already taking place. 398 32:25 The city is sure to fall into the hands of the Babylonians. 399 Yet, in spite of this, 400 you, Lord God, 401 have said to me, “Buy that field with silver and have the transaction legally witnessed.”’” 402
32:26 The Lord answered Jeremiah. 403 32:27 “I am the Lord, the God of all humankind. There is, indeed, nothing too difficult for me. 404 32:28 Therefore I, the Lord, say: 405 ‘I will indeed hand 406 this city over to King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon and the Babylonian army. 407 They will capture it. 32:29 The Babylonian soldiers 408 that are attacking this city will break into it and set it on fire. They will burn it down along with the houses where people have made me angry by offering sacrifices to the god Baal and by pouring out drink offerings to other gods on their rooftops. 409 32:30 This will happen because the people of Israel and Judah have repeatedly done what displeases me 410 from their earliest history until now 411 and because they 412 have repeatedly made me angry by the things they have done. 413 I, the Lord, affirm it! 414 32:31 This will happen because 415 the people of this city have aroused my anger and my wrath since the time they built it until now. 416 They have made me so angry that I am determined to remove 417 it from my sight. 32:32 I am determined to do so because the people of Israel and Judah have made me angry with all their wickedness – they, their kings, their officials, their priests, their prophets, and especially the people of Judah and the citizens of Jerusalem 418 have done this wickedness. 419 32:33 They have turned away from me instead of turning to me. 420 I tried over and over again 421 to instruct them, but they did not listen and respond to correction. 422 32:34 They set up their disgusting idols in the temple which I have claimed for my own 423 and defiled it. 32:35 They built places of worship for the god Baal in the Valley of Ben Hinnom so that they could sacrifice their sons and daughters to the god Molech. 424 Such a disgusting practice was not something I commanded them to do! It never even entered my mind to command them to do such a thing! So Judah is certainly liable for punishment.’ 425
32:36 “You and your people 426 are right in saying, ‘War, 427 starvation, and disease are sure to make this city fall into the hands of the king of Babylon.’ 428 But now I, the Lord God of Israel, have something further to say about this city: 429 32:37 ‘I will certainly regather my people from all the countries where I will have exiled 430 them in my anger, fury, and great wrath. I will bring them back to this place and allow them to live here in safety. 32:38 They will be my people, and I will be their God. 431 32:39 I will give them a single-minded purpose to live in a way that always shows respect for me. They will want to do that for 432 their own good and the good of the children who descend from them. 32:40 I will make a lasting covenant 433 with them that I will never stop doing good to them. 434 I will fill their hearts and minds with respect for me so that 435 they will never again turn 436 away from me. 32:41 I will take delight in doing good to them. I will faithfully and wholeheartedly plant them 437 firmly in the land.’
32:42 “For I, the Lord, say: 438 ‘I will surely bring on these people all the good fortune that I am hereby promising them. I will be just as sure to do that as I have been in bringing all this great disaster on them. 439 32:43 You and your people 440 are saying that this land will become desolate, uninhabited by either people or animals. You are saying that it will be handed over to the Babylonians. 441 But fields 442 will again be bought in this land. 443 32:44 Fields will again be bought with silver, and deeds of purchase signed, sealed, and witnessed. This will happen in the territory of Benjamin, the villages surrounding Jerusalem, the towns in Judah, the southern hill country, the western foothills, and southern Judah. 444 For I will restore them to their land. 445 I, the Lord, affirm it!’” 446
33:1 The Lord spoke 447 to Jeremiah a second time while he was still confined in the courtyard of the guardhouse. 448 33:2 “I, the Lord, do these things. I, the Lord, form the plan to bring them about. 449 I am known as the Lord. I say to you, 33:3 ‘Call on me in prayer and I will answer you. I will show you great and mysterious 450 things which you still do not know about.’ 33:4 For I, the Lord God of Israel, have something more to say about the houses in this city and the royal buildings which have been torn down for defenses against the siege ramps and military incursions of the Babylonians: 451 33:5 ‘The defenders of the city will go out and fight with the Babylonians. 452 But they will only fill those houses and buildings with the dead bodies of the people that I will kill in my anger and my wrath. 453 That will happen because I have decided to turn my back on 454 this city on account of the wicked things they have done. 455 33:6 But I will most surely 456 heal the wounds of this city and restore it and its people to health. 457 I will show them abundant 458 peace and security. 33:7 I will restore Judah and Israel 459 and will rebuild them as they were in days of old. 460 33:8 I will purify them from all the sin that they committed against me. I will forgive all their sins which they committed in rebelling against me. 461 33:9 All the nations will hear about all the good things which I will do to them. This city will bring me fame, honor, and praise before them for the joy that I bring it. The nations will tremble in awe at all the peace and prosperity that I will provide for it.’ 462
33:10 “I, the Lord, say: 463 ‘You and your people are saying 464 about this place, “It lies in ruins. There are no people or animals in it.” That is true. The towns of Judah and the streets of Jerusalem 465 will soon be desolate, uninhabited either by people or by animals. But happy sounds will again be heard in these places. 33:11 Once again there will be sounds 466 of joy and gladness and the glad celebrations of brides and grooms. 467 Once again people will bring their thank offerings to the temple of the Lord and will say, “Give thanks to the Lord who rules over all. For the Lord is good and his unfailing love lasts forever.” 468 For I, the Lord, affirm 469 that I will restore the land to what it was 470 in days of old.’ 471
33:12 “I, the Lord who rules over all, say: 472 ‘This place will indeed lie in ruins. There will be no people or animals in it. But there will again be in it and in its towns sheepfolds where shepherds can rest their sheep. 33:13 I, the Lord, say that shepherds will once again count their sheep as they pass into the fold. 473 They will do this in all the towns in the southern hill country, the western foothills, the southern hill country, the territory of Benjamin, the villages surrounding Jerusalem, and the towns of Judah.’ 474
33:14 “I, the Lord, affirm: 475 ‘The time will certainly come when I will fulfill my gracious promise concerning the nations of Israel and Judah. 476 33:15 In those days and at that time I will raise up for them a righteous descendant 477 of David.
“‘He will do what is just and right in the land. 33:16 Under his rule Judah will enjoy safety 478 and Jerusalem 479 will live in security. At that time Jerusalem will be called “The Lord has provided us with justice.” 480 33:17 For I, the Lord, promise: “David will never lack a successor to occupy 481 the throne over the nation of Israel. 482 33:18 Nor will the Levitical priests ever lack someone to stand before me and continually offer up burnt offerings, sacrifice cereal offerings, and offer the other sacrifices.”’” 483
33:19 The Lord spoke further to Jeremiah. 484 33:20 “I, Lord, make the following promise: 485 ‘I have made a covenant with the day 486 and with the night that they will always come at their proper times. Only if you people 487 could break that covenant 33:21 could my covenant with my servant David and my covenant with the Levites ever be broken. So David will by all means always have a descendant to occupy his throne as king and the Levites will by all means always have priests who will minister before me. 488 33:22 I will make the children who follow one another in the line of my servant David very numerous. I will also make the Levites who minister before me very numerous. I will make them all as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sands which are on the seashore.’” 489
33:23 The Lord spoke still further to Jeremiah. 490 33:24 “You have surely noticed what these people are saying, haven’t you? They are saying, 491 ‘The Lord has rejected the two families of Israel and Judah 492 that he chose.’ So they have little regard that my people will ever again be a nation. 493 33:25 But I, the Lord, make the following promise: 494 I have made a covenant governing the coming of day and night. I have established the fixed laws governing heaven and earth. 33:26 Just as surely as I have done this, so surely will I never reject the descendants of Jacob. Nor will I ever refuse to choose one of my servant David’s descendants to rule over the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Indeed, 495 I will restore them 496 and show mercy to them.”
34:1 The Lord spoke to Jeremiah while King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon was attacking Jerusalem 497 and the towns around it with a large army. This army consisted of troops from his own army and from the kingdoms and peoples of the lands under his dominion. 498 34:2 The Lord God of Israel told Jeremiah 499 to go and give King Zedekiah of Judah a message. He told Jeremiah 500 to tell him, “The Lord says, ‘I am going to 501 hand this city over to the king of Babylon and he will burn it down. 34:3 You yourself will not escape his clutches, but will certainly be captured and handed over to him. You must confront the king of Babylon face to face and answer to him personally. 502 Then you must go to Babylon. 34:4 However, listen to what I, the Lord, promise you, King Zedekiah of Judah. I, the Lord, promise that 503 you will not die in battle or be executed. 504 34:5 You will die a peaceful death. They will burn incense at your burial just as they did at the burial of your ancestors, the former kings who preceded you. 505 They will mourn for you, saying, “Poor, poor master!” 506 Indeed, you have my own word on this. 507 I, the Lord, affirm it!’” 508
34:6 The prophet Jeremiah told all this to King Zedekiah of Judah in Jerusalem. 34:7 He did this while the army of the king of Babylon was attacking Jerusalem and the cities of Lachish and Azekah. He was attacking these cities because they were the only fortified cities of Judah which were still holding out. 509
34:8 The Lord spoke to Jeremiah after King Zedekiah had made a covenant 510 with all the people in Jerusalem 511 to grant their slaves their freedom. 34:9 Everyone was supposed to free their male and female Hebrew slaves. No one was supposed to keep a fellow Judean enslaved. 512 34:10 All the people and their leaders had agreed to this. They had agreed to free their male and female slaves and not keep them enslaved any longer. They originally complied with the covenant and freed them. 513 34:11 But later 514 they had changed their minds. They had taken back their male and female slaves that they had freed and forced them to be slaves again. 515 34:12 That was when the Lord spoke to Jeremiah, 516 34:13 “The Lord God of Israel has a message for you. 517 ‘I made a covenant with your ancestors 518 when I brought them out of Egypt where they had been slaves. 519 It stipulated, 520 34:14 “Every seven years each of you must free any fellow Hebrews who have sold themselves to you. After they have served you for six years, you shall set them free.” 521 But your ancestors did not obey me or pay any attention to me. 34:15 Recently, however, you yourselves 522 showed a change of heart and did what is pleasing to me. You granted your fellow countrymen their freedom and you made a covenant to that effect in my presence in the house that I have claimed for my own. 523 34:16 But then you turned right around 524 and showed that you did not honor me. 525 Each of you took back your male and female slaves whom you had freed as they desired, and you forced them to be your slaves again. 526 34:17 So I, the Lord, say: “You have not really obeyed me and granted freedom to your neighbor and fellow countryman. 527 Therefore, I will grant you freedom, the freedom 528 to die in war, or by starvation or disease. I, the Lord, affirm it! 529 I will make all the kingdoms of the earth horrified at what happens to you. 530 34:18 I will punish those people who have violated their covenant with me. I will make them like the calf they cut in two and passed between its pieces. 531 I will do so because they did not keep the terms of the covenant they made in my presence. 532 34:19 I will punish the leaders of Judah and Jerusalem, the court officials, 533 the priests, and all the other people of the land who passed between the pieces of the calf. 534 34:20 I will hand them over to their enemies who want to kill them. Their dead bodies will become food for the birds and the wild animals. 535 34:21 I will also hand King Zedekiah of Judah and his officials over to their enemies who want to kill them. I will hand them over to the army of the king of Babylon, even though they have temporarily withdrawn from attacking you. 536 34:22 For I, the Lord, affirm that 537 I will soon give the order and bring them back to this city. They will fight against it and capture it and burn it down. I will also make the towns of Judah desolate so that there will be no one living in them.”’”
35:1 The Lord spoke to Jeremiah when Jehoiakim 538 son of Josiah was ruling over Judah. 539 35:2 “Go to the Rechabite community. 540 Invite them to come into one of the side rooms 541 of the Lord’s temple and offer them some wine to drink.” 35:3 So I went and got Jaazaniah son of Jeremiah the grandson of Habazziniah, his brothers, all his sons, and all the rest of the Rechabite community. 35:4 I took them to the Lord’s temple. I took them into the room where the disciples of the prophet Hanan son of Igdaliah stayed. 542 That room was next to the one where the temple officers stayed and above the room where Maaseiah son of Shallum, one of the doorkeepers 543 of the temple, stayed. 35:5 Then I set cups and pitchers full of wine in front of the members of the Rechabite community and said to them, “Have some wine.” 544 35:6 But they answered, “We do not drink wine because our ancestor Jonadab son of Rechab commanded us not to. He told us, ‘You and your children must never drink wine. 35:7 Do not build houses. Do not plant crops. Do not plant a vineyard or own one. 545 Live in tents all your lives. If you do these things you will 546 live a long time in the land that you wander about on.’ 547 35:8 We and our wives and our sons and daughters have obeyed everything our ancestor Jonadab commanded us. We have never drunk wine. 548 35:9 We have not built any houses to live in. We do not own any vineyards, fields, or crops. 35:10 We have lived in tents. We have obeyed our ancestor Jonadab and done exactly as he commanded us. 549 35:11 But when King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon invaded the land we said, ‘Let’s get up and go to Jerusalem 550 to get away from the Babylonian 551 and Aramean armies.’ That is why we are staying here in Jerusalem.”
35:12 Then the Lord spoke to Jeremiah. 35:13 The Lord God of Israel who rules over all 552 told him, “Go and speak to the people of Judah and the citizens of Jerusalem. Tell them, 553 ‘I, the Lord, say: 554 “You must learn a lesson from this 555 about obeying what I say! 556 35:14 Jonadab son of Rechab ordered his descendants not to drink wine. His orders have been carried out. 557 To this day his descendants have drunk no wine because they have obeyed what their ancestor commanded them. But I 558 have spoken to you over and over again, 559 but you have not obeyed me! 35:15 I sent all my servants the prophets to warn you over and over again. They said, “Every one of you, stop doing the evil things you have been doing and do what is right. 560 Do not pay allegiance to other gods 561 and worship them. Then you can continue to live in this land that I gave to you and your ancestors.” But you did not pay any attention or listen to me. 35:16 Yes, 562 the descendants of Jonadab son of Rechab have carried out the orders that their ancestor gave them. But you people 563 have not obeyed me! 35:17 So I, the Lord, the God who rules over all, the God of Israel, say: 564 “I will soon bring on Judah and all the citizens of Jerusalem all the disaster that I threatened to bring on them. I will do this because I spoke to them but they did not listen. I called out to them but they did not answer.”’”
35:18 Then Jeremiah spoke to the Rechabite community, “The Lord God of Israel who rules over all 565 says, ‘You have obeyed the orders of your ancestor Jonadab. You have followed all his instructions. You have done exactly as he commanded you.’ 35:19 So the Lord God of Israel who rules over all says, ‘Jonadab son of Rechab will never lack a male descendant to serve me.’” 566
36:1 The Lord spoke to Jeremiah in the fourth year 567 that Jehoiakim son of Josiah was ruling over Judah. 568 36:2 “Get a scroll. 569 Write on it everything I have told you to say 570 about Israel, Judah, and all the other nations since I began to speak to you in the reign of Josiah until now. 571 36:3 Perhaps when the people of Judah hear about all the disaster I intend to bring on them, they will all stop doing the evil things they have been doing. 572 If they do, I will forgive their sins and the wicked things they have done.” 573
36:4 So Jeremiah summoned Baruch son of Neriah. Then Jeremiah dictated to Baruch everything the Lord had told him to say and Baruch wrote it all down in a scroll. 574 36:5 Then Jeremiah told Baruch, “I am no longer allowed to go 575 into the Lord’s temple. 36:6 So you go there the next time all the people of Judah come in from their towns to fast 576 in the Lord’s temple. Read out loud where all of them can hear you what I told you the Lord said, which you wrote in the scroll. 577 36:7 Perhaps then they will ask the Lord for mercy and will all stop doing the evil things they have been doing. 578 For the Lord has threatened to bring great anger and wrath against these people.” 579
36:8 So Baruch son of Neriah did exactly what the prophet Jeremiah had told him to do. He read what the Lord had said from the scroll in the temple of the Lord. 580 36:9 All the people living in Jerusalem 581 and all the people who came into Jerusalem from the towns of Judah came to observe a fast before the Lord. The fast took place in the ninth month of the fifth year that Jehoiakim son of Josiah was ruling over Judah. 582 36:10 At that time Baruch went into the temple of the Lord. He stood in the entrance of the room of Gemariah the son of Shaphan who had been the royal secretary. 583 That room was in the upper court 584 near the entrance of the New Gate. 585 There, where all the people could hear him, he read from the scroll what Jeremiah had said. 586
36:11 Micaiah, who was the son of Gemariah and the grandson of Shaphan, heard Baruch read from the scroll everything the Lord had said. 587 36:12 He went down to the chamber of the royal secretary in the king’s palace and found all the court officials in session there. Elishama 588 the royal secretary, Delaiah son of Shemaiah, Elnathan son of Achbor, 589 Gemariah son of Shaphan, Zedekiah son of Hananiah, and all the other officials were seated there. 36:13 Micaiah told them everything he had heard Baruch read from the scroll in the hearing of the people. 590 36:14 All the officials sent Jehudi, who was the son of Nethaniah and the grandson of Cushi, to Baruch. They ordered him to tell Baruch, “Come here and bring with you 591 the scroll you read in the hearing of the people.” 592 So Baruch son of Neriah went to them, carrying the scroll in his hand. 593 36:15 They said to him, “Please sit down and read it to us.” So Baruch sat down and read it to them. 594 36:16 When they had heard it all, 595 they expressed their alarm to one another. 596 Then they said to Baruch, “We must certainly give the king a report about everything you have read!” 597 36:17 Then they asked Baruch, “How did you come to write all these words? Do they actually come from Jeremiah’s mouth?” 598 36:18 Baruch answered, “Yes, they came from his own mouth. He dictated all these words to me and I wrote them down in ink on this scroll.” 599 36:19 Then the officials said to Baruch, “You and Jeremiah must go and hide. You must not let anyone know where you are.” 600
36:20 The officials put the scroll in the room of Elishama, the royal secretary, for safekeeping. 601 Then they went to the court and reported everything 602 to the king. 603 36:21 The king sent Jehudi to get the scroll. He went and got it from the room of Elishama, the royal secretary. Then he himself 604 read it to the king and all the officials who were standing around him. 36:22 Since it was the ninth month of the year, the king was sitting in his winter quarters. 605 A fire was burning in the firepot in front of him. 606 36:23 As soon as Jehudi had read three or four columns 607 of the scroll, the king 608 would cut them off with a penknife 609 and throw them on the fire in the firepot. He kept doing so until the whole scroll was burned up in the fire. 610 36:24 Neither he nor any of his attendants showed any alarm when they heard all that had been read. Nor did they tear their clothes to show any grief or sorrow. 611 36:25 The king did not even listen to Elnathan, Delaiah, and Gemariah, who had urged him not to burn the scroll. 612 36:26 He also ordered Jerahmeel, who was one of the royal princes, 613 Seraiah son of Azriel, and Shelemiah son of Abdeel to arrest the scribe Baruch and the prophet Jeremiah. However, the Lord hid them.
36:27 The Lord spoke to Jeremiah after Jehoiakim had burned the scroll containing what Jeremiah had spoken and Baruch had written down. 614 36:28 “Get another 615 scroll and write on it everything 616 that was written on the original scroll 617 that King Jehoiakim of Judah burned. 36:29 Tell King Jehoiakim of Judah, ‘The Lord says, “You burned the scroll. You asked 618 Jeremiah, ‘How dare you write in this scroll that the king of Babylon will certainly come and destroy this land and wipe out all the people and animals on it?’” 619 36:30 So the Lord says concerning King Jehoiakim of Judah, “None of his line will occupy the throne of David. 620 His dead body will be thrown out to be exposed to scorching heat by day and frost by night. 621 36:31 I will punish him and his descendants and the officials who serve him for the wicked things they have done. 622 I will bring on them, the citizens of Jerusalem, 623 and the people of Judah all the disaster that I threatened to do to them. I will punish them because I threatened them but they still paid no heed.”’” 624 36:32 Then Jeremiah got another scroll and gave it to the scribe Baruch son of Neriah. As Jeremiah dictated, Baruch wrote on this scroll everything that had been on the scroll that King Jehoiakim of Judah burned in the fire. They also added on this scroll several other messages of the same kind. 625
37:1 Zedekiah son of Josiah succeeded Jeconiah 626 son of Jehoiakim as king. He was elevated to the throne of the land of Judah by King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. 627 37:2 Neither he nor the officials who served him nor the people of Judah paid any attention to what the Lord said through the prophet Jeremiah. 628
37:3 King Zedekiah sent 629 Jehucal 630 son of Shelemiah and the priest Zephaniah 631 son of Maaseiah to the prophet Jeremiah. He told them to say, “Please pray to the Lord our God on our behalf.” 37:4 (Now Jeremiah had not yet been put in prison. 632 So he was still free to come and go among the people as he pleased. 633 37:5 At that time the Babylonian forces 634 had temporarily given up their siege against Jerusalem. 635 They had had it under siege, but withdrew when they heard that the army of Pharaoh had set out from Egypt. 636 ) 37:6 The Lord gave the prophet Jeremiah a message for them. He told him to tell them, 637 37:7 “The Lord God of Israel says, ‘Give a message to the king of Judah who sent you to ask me to help him. 638 Tell him, “The army of Pharaoh that was on its way to help you will go back home to Egypt. 639 37:8 Then the Babylonian forces 640 will return. They will attack the city and will capture it and burn it down. 37:9 Moreover, I, the Lord, warn you not to deceive yourselves into thinking that the Babylonian forces 641 will go away and leave you alone. For they will not go away. 642 37:10 For even if you were to defeat all the Babylonian forces 643 fighting against you so badly that only wounded men were left lying in their tents, they would get up and burn this city down.”’” 644
37:11 The following events also occurred 645 while the Babylonian forces 646 had temporarily withdrawn from Jerusalem 647 because the army of Pharaoh was coming. 37:12 Jeremiah started to leave Jerusalem to go to the territory of Benjamin. He wanted to make sure he got his share of the property that was being divided up among his family there. 648 37:13 But he only got as far as the Benjamin Gate. 649 There an officer in charge of the guards named Irijah, 650 who was the son of Shelemiah and the grandson of Hananiah, stopped him. He seized Jeremiah and said, 651 “You are deserting to the Babylonians!” 652 37:14 Jeremiah answered, “That’s a lie! I am not deserting to the Babylonians.” 653 But Irijah would not listen to him. Irijah put Jeremiah under arrest and took him to the officials. 37:15 The officials were very angry 654 at Jeremiah. They had him flogged and put in prison in the house of Jonathan, the royal secretary, which they had converted into a place for confining prisoners. 655
37:16 So 656 Jeremiah was put in prison in a cell in the dungeon in Jonathan’s house. 657 He 658 was kept there for a long time. 37:17 Then King Zedekiah had him brought to the palace. There he questioned him privately and asked him, 659 “Is there any message from the Lord?” Jeremiah answered, “Yes, there is.” Then he announced, 660 “You will be handed over to the king of Babylon.” 661 37:18 Then Jeremiah asked King Zedekiah, “What crime have I committed against you, or the officials who serve you, or the people of Judah? What have I done to make you people throw me into prison? 662 37:19 Where now are the prophets who prophesied to you that 663 the king of Babylon would not attack you or this land? 37:20 But now please listen, your royal Majesty, 664 and grant my plea for mercy. 665 Do not send me back to the house of Jonathan, the royal secretary. If you do, I will die there.” 666 37:21 Then King Zedekiah ordered that Jeremiah be committed to the courtyard of the guardhouse. He also ordered that a loaf of bread 667 be given to him every day from the baker’s street until all the bread in the city was gone. So Jeremiah was kept 668 in the courtyard of the guardhouse.
38:1 Now Shephatiah son of Mattan, Gedaliah son of Pashhur, Jehucal 669 son of Shelemiah, and Pashhur 670 son of Malkijah had heard 671 the things that Jeremiah had been telling the people. They had heard him say, 38:2 “The Lord says, ‘Those who stay in this city will die in battle or of starvation or disease. 672 Those who leave the city and surrender to the Babylonians 673 will live. They will escape with their lives.’” 674 38:3 They had also heard him say, 675 “The Lord says, ‘This city will certainly be handed over to the army of the king of Babylon. They will capture it.’” 676 38:4 So these officials said to the king, “This man must be put to death. For he is demoralizing 677 the soldiers who are left in the city as well as all the other people there by these things he is saying. 678 This 679 man is not seeking to help these people but is trying to harm them.” 680 38:5 King Zedekiah said to them, “Very well, you can do what you want with him. 681 For I cannot do anything to stop you.” 682 38:6 So the officials 683 took Jeremiah and put him in the cistern 684 of Malkijah, one of the royal princes, 685 that was in the courtyard of the guardhouse. There was no water in the cistern, only mud. So when they lowered Jeremiah into the cistern with ropes he sank in the mud. 686
38:7 An Ethiopian, Ebed Melech, 687 a court official in the royal palace, heard that Jeremiah had been put 688 in the cistern. While the king was holding court 689 at the Benjamin Gate, 38:8 Ebed Melech departed the palace and went to speak to the king. He said to him, 38:9 “Your royal Majesty, those men have been very wicked in all that they have done to the prophet Jeremiah. They have thrown him into a cistern and he is sure to die of starvation there because there is no food left in the city. 690 38:10 Then the king gave Ebed Melech the Ethiopian the following order: “Take thirty 691 men with you from here and go pull the prophet Jeremiah out of the cistern before he dies.” 38:11 So Ebed Melech took the men with him and went to a room under the treasure room in the palace. 692 He got some worn-out clothes and old rags 693 from there and let them down by ropes to Jeremiah in the cistern. 38:12 Ebed Melech 694 called down to Jeremiah, “Put these rags and worn-out clothes under your armpits to pad the ropes. 695 Jeremiah did as Ebed Melech instructed. 696 38:13 So they pulled Jeremiah up from the cistern with ropes. Jeremiah, however, still remained confined 697 to the courtyard of the guardhouse.
38:14 Some time later 698 Zedekiah sent and had Jeremiah brought to him at the third entrance 699 of the Lord’s temple. The king said to Jeremiah, “I would like to ask you a question. Do not hide anything from me when you answer.” 700 38:15 Jeremiah said to Zedekiah, “If I answer you, you will certainly kill me. 701 If I give you advice, you will not listen to me.” 38:16 So King Zedekiah made a secret promise to Jeremiah and sealed it with an oath. He promised, 702 “As surely as the Lord lives who has given us life and breath, 703 I promise you this: I will not kill you or hand you over to those men who want to kill you.” 704
38:17 Then Jeremiah said to Zedekiah, “The Lord, the God who rules over all, the God of Israel, 705 says, ‘You must surrender to the officers of the king of Babylon. If you do, your life will be spared 706 and this city will not be burned down. Indeed, you and your whole family will be spared. 38:18 But if you do not surrender to the officers of the king of Babylon, this city will be handed over to the Babylonians 707 and they will burn it down. You yourself will not escape from them.’” 708 38:19 Then King Zedekiah said to Jeremiah, “I am afraid of the Judeans who have deserted to the Babylonians. 709 The Babylonians might hand me over to them and they will torture me.” 710 38:20 Then Jeremiah answered, “You will not be handed over to them. Please obey the Lord by doing what I have been telling you. 711 Then all will go well with you and your life will be spared. 712 38:21 But if you refuse to surrender, the Lord has shown me a vision of what will happen. Here is what I saw: 38:22 All the women who are left in the royal palace of Judah will be led out to the officers of the king of Babylon. They will taunt you saying, 713
‘Your trusted friends misled you;
they have gotten the best of you.
Now that your feet are stuck in the mud,
they have turned their backs on you.’ 714
38:23 “All your wives and your children will be turned over to the Babylonians. 715 You yourself will not escape from them but will be captured by the 716 king of Babylon. This city will be burned down.” 717
38:24 Then Zedekiah told Jeremiah, “Do not let anyone know about the conversation we have had. 718 If you do, you will die. 719 38:25 The officials may hear that I have talked with you. They may come to you and say, ‘Tell us what you said to the king and what the king said to you. 720 Do not hide anything from us. If you do, we will kill you.’ 721 38:26 If they do this, tell 722 them, ‘I was pleading with the king not to send me back to die in the dungeon of Jonathan’s house.’” 723 38:27 All the officials did indeed come and question Jeremiah. 724 He told them exactly what the king had instructed him to say. 725 They stopped questioning him any further because no one had actually heard their conversation. 726 38:28 So Jeremiah remained confined 727 in the courtyard of the guardhouse until the day Jerusalem 728 was captured.
39:1 King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon came against Jerusalem with his whole army and laid siege to it. The siege began in the tenth month of the ninth year that Zedekiah ruled over Judah. 731 39:2 It lasted until the ninth day of the fourth month of Zedekiah’s eleventh year. 732 On that day they broke through the city walls. 39:3 Then Nergal-Sharezer of Samgar, Nebo-Sarsekim, who was a chief officer, Nergal-Sharezer, who was a high official, 733 and all the other officers of the king of Babylon came and set up quarters 734 in the Middle Gate. 735 39:4 When King Zedekiah of Judah and all his soldiers saw them, they tried to escape. They departed from the city during the night. They took a path through the king’s garden and passed out through the gate between the two walls. 736 Then they headed for the Jordan Valley. 737 39:5 But the Babylonian 738 army chased after them. They caught up with Zedekiah in the plains of Jericho 739 and captured him. 740 They took him to King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon at Riblah 741 in the territory of Hamath and Nebuchadnezzar passed sentence on him there. 39:6 There at Riblah the king of Babylon had Zedekiah’s sons put to death while Zedekiah was forced to watch. The king of Babylon also had all the nobles of Judah put to death. 39:7 Then he had Zedekiah’s eyes put out and had him bound in chains 742 to be led off to Babylon. 39:8 The Babylonians 743 burned down the royal palace, the temple of the Lord, and the people’s homes, 744 and they tore down the wall of Jerusalem. 745 39:9 Then Nebuzaradan, the captain of the royal guard, 746 took captive the rest of the people who were left in the city. He carried them off to Babylon along with the people who had deserted to him. 747 39:10 But he 748 left behind in the land of Judah some of the poor people who owned nothing. He gave them fields and vineyards at that time.
39:11 Now King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon had issued orders concerning Jeremiah. He had passed them on through Nebuzaradan, the captain of his royal guard, 749 39:12 “Find Jeremiah 750 and look out for him. 751 Do not do anything to harm him, 752 but do with him whatever he tells you.” 39:13 So Nebuzaradan, the captain of the royal guard, Nebushazban, who was a chief officer, Nergal-Sharezer, who was a high official, 753 and all the other officers of the king of Babylon 39:14 sent and had Jeremiah brought from the courtyard of the guardhouse. They turned him over to Gedaliah, 754 the son of Ahikam and the grandson of Shaphan, to take him home with him. 755 But Jeremiah stayed among the people. 756
39:15 757 Now the Lord had spoken to Jeremiah while he was still confined in the courtyard of the guardhouse, 758 39:16 “Go 759 and tell Ebed-Melech the Ethiopian, ‘The Lord God of Israel who rules over all says, “I will carry out against this city what I promised. It will mean disaster and not good fortune for it. 760 When that disaster happens, you will be there to see it. 761 39:17 But I will rescue you when it happens. 762 I, the Lord, affirm it! 763 You will not be handed over to those whom you fear. 764 39:18 I will certainly save you. You will not fall victim to violence. 765 You will escape with your life 766 because you trust in me. I, the Lord, affirm it!”’” 767
40:1 The Lord spoke to Jeremiah 768 after Nebuzaradan the captain of the royal guard had set him free at Ramah. 769 He had taken him there in chains 770 along with all the people from Jerusalem 771 and Judah who were being carried off to exile to Babylon. 40:2 The captain of the royal guard took Jeremiah aside and said to him, “The Lord your God threatened this place with this disaster. 40:3 Now he has brought it about. The Lord has done just as he threatened to do. This disaster has happened because you people sinned against the Lord and did not obey him. 772 40:4 But now, Jeremiah, today I will set you free 773 from the chains on your wrists. If you would like to come to Babylon with me, come along and I will take care of you. 774 But if you prefer not to come to Babylon with me, you are not required to do so. 775 You are free to go anywhere in the land you want to go. 776 Go wherever you choose.” 777 40:5 Before Jeremiah could turn to leave, the captain of the guard added, “Go back 778 to Gedaliah, the son of Ahikam and grandson of Shaphan, whom the king of Babylon appointed to govern 779 the towns of Judah. Go back and live with him 780 among the people. Or go wherever else you choose.” Then the captain of the guard gave Jeremiah some food and a present and let him go. 40:6 So Jeremiah went to Gedaliah son of Ahikam at Mizpah 781 and lived there with him. He stayed there to live among the people who had been left in the land of Judah. 782
40:7 Now some of the officers of the Judean army and their troops had been hiding in the countryside. They heard that the king of Babylon had appointed Gedaliah son of Ahikam to govern 783 the country. They also heard that he had been put in charge over the men, women, and children from the poorer classes of the land who had not been carried off into exile in Babylon. 784 40:8 So 785 all these officers and their troops came to Gedaliah at Mizpah. The officers who came were Ishmael son of Nethaniah, Johanan and Jonathan the sons of Kareah, Seraiah son of Tanhumeth, the sons of Ephai the Netophathite, and Jezaniah son of the Maacathite. 786 40:9 Gedaliah, the son of Ahikam and grandson of Shaphan, took an oath so as to give them and their troops some assurance of safety. 787 “Do not be afraid to submit to the Babylonians. 788 Settle down in the land and submit to the king of Babylon. Then things will go well for you. 40:10 I for my part will stay at Mizpah to represent you before the Babylonians 789 whenever they come to us. You for your part go ahead and harvest the wine, the dates, the figs, 790 and the olive oil, and store them in jars. Go ahead and settle down in the towns that you have taken over.” 791 40:11 Moreover, all the Judeans who were in Moab, Ammon, Edom, and all the other countries heard what had happened. They heard that the king of Babylon had allowed some people to stay in Judah and that he had appointed Gedaliah, the son of Ahikam and grandson of Shaphan, to govern them. 40:12 So all these Judeans returned to the land of Judah from the places where they had been scattered. They came to Gedaliah at Mizpah. Thus they harvested a large amount of wine and dates and figs. 792
40:13 Johanan and all the officers of the troops that had been hiding in the open country came to Gedaliah at Mizpah. 40:14 They said to him, “Are you at all aware 793 that King Baalis of Ammon has sent Ishmael son of Nethaniah to kill you?” But Gedaliah son of Ahikam would not believe them. 40:15 Then Johanan son of Kareah spoke privately to Gedaliah there at Mizpah, “Let me go and kill Ishmael the son of Nethaniah before anyone knows about it. Otherwise he will kill you 794 and all the Judeans who have rallied around you will be scattered. Then what remains of Judah will disappear.” 40:16 But Gedaliah son of Ahikam said to Johanan son of Kareah, “Do not do that 795 because what you are saying about Ishmael is not true.” 796
41:1 But in the seventh month 797 Ishmael, the son of Nethaniah and grandson of Elishama who was a member of the royal family and had been one of Zedekiah’s chief officers, came with ten of his men to Gedaliah son of Ahikam at Mizpah. While they were eating a meal together with him there at Mizpah, 41:2 Ishmael son of Nethaniah and the ten men who were with him stood up, pulled out their swords, and killed Gedaliah, the son of Ahikam and grandson of Shaphan. Thus Ishmael killed the man that the king of Babylon had appointed to govern the country. 41:3 Ishmael also killed all the Judeans 798 who were with Gedaliah at Mizpah and the Babylonian 799 soldiers who happened to be there. 800
41:4 On the day after Gedaliah had been murdered, before anyone even knew about it, 41:5 eighty men arrived from Shechem, Shiloh, and Samaria. 801 They had shaved off their beards, torn their clothes, and cut themselves to show they were mourning. 802 They were carrying grain offerings and incense to present at the temple of the Lord in Jerusalem. 803 41:6 Ishmael son of Nethaniah went out from Mizpah to meet them. He was pretending to cry 804 as he walked along. When he met them, he said to them, “Come with me to meet Gedaliah son of Ahikam.” 805 41:7 But as soon as they were inside the city, Ishmael son of Nethaniah and the men who were with him slaughtered them and threw their bodies 806 in a cistern. 41:8 But there were ten men among them who said 807 to Ishmael, “Do not kill us. For we will give you the stores of wheat, barley, olive oil, and honey we have hidden in a field. 808 So he spared their lives and did not kill 809 them along with the rest. 810 41:9 Now the cistern where Ishmael threw all the dead bodies of those he had killed was a large one 811 that King Asa had constructed as part of his defenses against King Baasha of Israel. 812 Ishmael son of Nethaniah filled it with dead bodies. 813 41:10 Then Ishmael took captive all the people who were still left alive in Mizpah. This included the royal princesses 814 and all the rest of the people in Mizpah that Nebuzaradan, the captain of the royal guard, had put under the authority of Gedaliah son of Ahikam. Ishmael son of Nethaniah took all these people captive and set out to cross over to the Ammonites.
41:11 Johanan son of Kareah and all the army officers who were with him heard about all the atrocities 815 that Ishmael son of Nethaniah had committed. 41:12 So they took all their troops and went to fight against Ishmael son of Nethaniah. They caught up with him near the large pool 816 at Gibeon. 41:13 When all the people that Ishmael had taken captive saw 817 Johanan son of Kareah and all the army officers with him, they were glad. 41:14 All those people that Ishmael had taken captive from Mizpah turned and went over to Johanan son of Kareah. 41:15 But Ishmael son of Nethaniah managed to escape from Johanan along with eight of his men, and he went on over to Ammon.
41:16 Johanan son of Kareah and all the army officers who were with him led off all the people who had been left alive at Mizpah. They had rescued them from Ishmael son of Nethaniah after he killed Gedaliah son of Ahikam. They led off the men, women, children, soldiers, and court officials whom they had brought away from Gibeon. 41:17 They set out to go to Egypt to get away from the Babylonians, 818 but stopped at Geruth Kimham 819 near Bethlehem. 820 41:18 They were afraid of what the Babylonians might do 821 because Ishmael son of Nethaniah had killed Gedaliah son of Ahikam, whom the king of Babylon had appointed to govern the country.
42:1 Then all the army officers, including Johanan son of Kareah and Jezaniah son of Hoshaiah 822 and all the people of every class, 823 went to the prophet Jeremiah. 42:2 They said to him, “Please grant our request 824 and pray to the Lord your God for all those of us who are still left alive here. 825 For, as you yourself can see, there are only a few of us left out of the many there were before. 826 42:3 Pray that the Lord your God will tell us where we should go and what we should do.” 42:4 The prophet Jeremiah answered them, “Agreed! 827 I will indeed pray to the Lord your God as you have asked. I will tell you everything the Lord replies in response to you. 828 I will not keep anything back from you.” 42:5 They answered Jeremiah, “May the Lord be a true and faithful witness against us if we do not do just as 829 the Lord sends you to tell us to do. 42:6 We will obey what the Lord our God to whom we are sending you tells us to do. It does not matter whether we like what he tells us or not. We will obey what he tells us to do so that things will go well for us.” 830
42:7 Ten days later the Lord spoke to Jeremiah. 42:8 So Jeremiah summoned Johanan son of Kareah and all the army officers who were with him and all the people of every class. 831 42:9 Then Jeremiah said to them, “You sent me to the Lord God of Israel to make your request known to him. Here is what he says to you: 832 42:10 ‘If you will just stay 833 in this land, I will build you up. I will not tear you down. I will firmly plant you. 834 I will not uproot you. For I am filled with sorrow because of the disaster that I have brought on you. 42:11 Do not be afraid of the king of Babylon whom you now fear. 835 Do not be afraid of him because I will be with you to save you and to rescue you from his power. I, the Lord, affirm it! 836 42:12 I will have compassion on you so that he in turn will have mercy on you and allow you to return to your land.’
42:13 “You must not disobey the Lord your God by saying, ‘We will not stay in this land.’ 42:14 You must not say, ‘No, we will not stay. Instead we will go and live in the land of Egypt where we will not face war, 837 or hear the enemy’s trumpet calls, 838 or starve for lack of food.’ 839 42:15 If you people who remain in Judah do that, then listen to what the Lord says. The Lord God of Israel who rules over all 840 says, ‘If you are so determined 841 to go to Egypt that you go and settle there, 42:16 the wars you fear will catch up with you there in the land of Egypt. The starvation you are worried about will follow you there to 842 Egypt. You will die there. 843 42:17 All the people who are determined to go and settle in Egypt will die from war, starvation, or disease. No one will survive or escape the disaster I will bring on them.’ 42:18 For 844 the Lord God of Israel who rules over all 845 says, ‘If you go to Egypt, I will pour out my wrath on you just as I poured out my anger and wrath on the citizens of Jerusalem. 846 You will become an object of horror and ridicule, an example of those who have been cursed and that people use in pronouncing a curse. 847 You will never see this place again.’ 848
42:19 “The Lord has told you people who remain in Judah, ‘Do not go to Egypt.’ Be very sure of this: I warn you 849 here and now. 850 42:20 You are making a fatal mistake. 851 For you sent me to the Lord your God and asked me, ‘Pray to the Lord our God for us. Tell us what the Lord our God says and we will do it.’ 852 42:21 This day 853 I have told you what he said. 854 But you do not want to obey the Lord by doing what he sent me to tell you. 855 42:22 So now be very sure of this: You will die from war, starvation, or disease in the place where you want to go and live.”
43:1 Jeremiah finished telling all the people all these things the Lord their God had sent him to tell them. 856 43:2 Then Azariah 857 son of Hoshaiah, Johanan son of Kareah, and other arrogant men said to Jeremiah, “You are telling a lie! The Lord our God did not send you to tell us, ‘You must not go to Egypt and settle there.’ 43:3 But Baruch son of Neriah is stirring you up against us. 858 He wants to hand us over 859 to the Babylonians 860 so that they will kill us or carry us off into exile in Babylon.” 43:4 So Johanan son of Kareah, all the army officers, and all the rest of the people did not obey the Lord’s command to stay in the land. 43:5 Instead Johanan son of Kareah and all the army officers led off all the Judean remnant who had come back to live in the land of Judah from all the nations where they had been scattered. 861 43:6 They also led off all the men, women, children, and royal princesses 862 that Nebuzaradan, the captain of the royal guard, had left with Gedaliah, 863 the son of Ahikam and grandson of Shaphan. This included the prophet Jeremiah and Baruch son of Neriah. 43:7 They went on to Egypt 864 because they refused to obey the Lord, and came to Tahpanhes. 865
43:8 At Tahpanhes the Lord spoke to Jeremiah. 866 43:9 “Take some large stones 867 and bury them in the mortar of the clay pavement 868 at the entrance of Pharaoh’s residence 869 here in Tahpanhes. Do it while the people of Judah present there are watching. 870 43:10 Then tell them, 871 ‘The Lord God of Israel who rules over all 872 says, “I will bring 873 my servant 874 King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. I will set his throne over these stones which I 875 have buried. He will pitch his royal tent 876 over them. 43:11 He will come and attack Egypt. Those who are destined to die of disease will die of disease. Those who are destined to be carried off into exile will be carried off into exile. Those who are destined to die in war will die in war. 877 43:12 He will set fire 878 to the temples of the gods of Egypt. He will burn their gods or carry them off as captives. 879 He will pick Egypt clean like a shepherd picks the lice from his clothing. 880 He will leave there unharmed. 881 43:13 He will demolish the sacred pillars in the temple of the sun 882 in Egypt and will burn down the temples of the gods of Egypt.”’”
44:1 The Lord spoke to Jeremiah concerning 883 all the Judeans who were living in the land of Egypt, those in Migdol, Tahpanhes, Memphis, and in the region of southern Egypt. 884 44:2 “The Lord God of Israel who rules over all 885 says, ‘You have seen all the disaster I brought on Jerusalem 886 and all the towns of Judah. Indeed, they now lie in ruins and are deserted. 887 44:3 This happened because of the wickedness the people living there did. 888 They made me angry 889 by worshiping and offering sacrifice to 890 other gods whom neither they nor you nor your ancestors 891 previously knew. 892 44:4 I sent my servants the prophets to you people over and over 893 again warning you not to do this disgusting thing I hate. 894 44:5 But the people of Jerusalem and Judah 895 would not listen or pay any attention. They would not stop the wickedness they were doing nor quit sacrificing to other gods. 896 44:6 So my anger and my wrath were poured out and burned like a fire through the towns of Judah and the streets of Jerusalem. That is why they have become the desolate ruins that they are today.’
44:7 “So now the Lord, the God who rules over all, the God of Israel, 897 asks, ‘Why will you do such great harm to yourselves? Why should every man, woman, child, and baby of yours be destroyed from the midst of Judah? Why should you leave yourselves without a remnant? 44:8 That is what will result from your making me angry by what you are doing. 898 You are making me angry by sacrificing to other gods here in the land of Egypt where you live. You will be destroyed for doing that! You will become an example used in curses 899 and an object of ridicule among all the nations of the earth. 900 44:9 Have you forgotten all the wicked things that have been done in the towns of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem by your ancestors, by the kings of Judah and their 901 wives, by you and your wives? 44:10 To this day your people 902 have shown no contrition! They have not revered me nor followed the laws and statutes I commanded 903 you and your ancestors.’
44:11 “Because of this, the Lord God of Israel who rules over all says, ‘I am determined to bring disaster on you, 904 even to the point of destroying all the Judeans here. 905 44:12 I will see to it that all the Judean remnant that was determined to go 906 and live in the land of Egypt will be destroyed. Here in the land of Egypt they will fall in battle 907 or perish from starvation. People of every class 908 will die in war or from starvation. They will become an object of horror and ridicule, an example of those who have been cursed and that people use in pronouncing a curse. 909 44:13 I will punish those who live in the land of Egypt with war, starvation, and disease just as I punished Jerusalem. 44:14 None of the Judean remnant who have come to live in the land of Egypt will escape or survive to return to the land of Judah. Though they long to return and live there, none of them shall return except a few fugitives.’” 910
44:15 Then all the men who were aware that their wives were sacrificing to other gods, as well as all their wives, answered Jeremiah. There was a great crowd of them representing all the people who lived in northern and southern Egypt. 911 They answered, 44:16 “We will not listen to what you claim the Lord has spoken to us! 912 44:17 Instead we will do everything we vowed we would do. 913 We will sacrifice and pour out drink offerings to the goddess called the Queen of Heaven 914 just as we and our ancestors, our kings, and our leaders previously did in the towns of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem. For then we had plenty of food, were well-off, and had no troubles. 915 44:18 But ever since we stopped sacrificing and pouring out drink offerings to the Queen of Heaven, we have been in great need. Our people have died in wars or of starvation.” 916 44:19 The women added, 917 “We did indeed sacrifice and pour out drink offerings to the Queen of Heaven. But it was with the full knowledge and approval of our husbands that we made cakes in her image and poured out drink offerings to her.” 918
44:20 Then Jeremiah replied to all the people, both men and women, who responded to him in this way. 919 44:21 “The Lord did indeed remember and call to mind what you did! He remembered the sacrifices you and your ancestors, your kings, your leaders, and all the rest of the people of the land offered to other gods 920 in the towns of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem. 921 44:22 Finally the Lord could no longer endure your wicked deeds and the disgusting things you did. That is why your land has become the desolate, uninhabited ruin that it is today. That is why it has become a proverbial example used in curses. 922 44:23 You have sacrificed to other gods! You have sinned against the Lord! You have not obeyed the Lord! You have not followed his laws, his statutes, and his decrees! That is why this disaster that is evident to this day has happened to you.” 923
44:24 Then Jeremiah spoke to all the people, particularly to all the women. 924 “Listen to what the Lord has to say all you people of Judah who are in Egypt. 44:25 The Lord God of Israel who rules over all says, ‘You women 925 have confirmed by your actions what you vowed with your lips! You said, “We will certainly carry out our vows to sacrifice and pour out drink offerings to the Queen of Heaven.” Well, then fulfill your vows! Carry them out!’ 926 44:26 But 927 listen to what the Lord has to say, all you people of Judah who are living in the land of Egypt. The Lord says, ‘I hereby swear by my own great name that none of the people of Judah who are living anywhere in Egypt will ever again invoke my name in their oaths! Never again will any of them use it in an oath saying, “As surely as the Lord God lives….” 928 44:27 I will indeed 929 see to it that disaster, not prosperity, happens to them. 930 All the people of Judah who are in the land of Egypt will die in war or from starvation until not one of them is left. 44:28 Some who survive in battle will return to the land of Judah from the land of Egypt. But they will be very few indeed! 931 Then the Judean remnant who have come to live in the land of Egypt will know whose word proves true, 932 mine or theirs.’ 44:29 Moreover the Lord says, 933 ‘I will make something happen to prove that I will punish you in this place. I will do it so that you will know that my threats to bring disaster on you will prove true. 934 44:30 I, the Lord, promise that 935 I will hand Pharaoh Hophra 936 king of Egypt over to his enemies who are seeking to kill him. I will do that just as surely as I handed King Zedekiah of Judah over to King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, his enemy who was seeking to kill him.’”
45:1 The prophet Jeremiah spoke to Baruch son of Neriah while he was writing down in a scroll the words that Jeremiah spoke to him. 937 This happened in the fourth year that Jehoiakim son of Josiah was ruling over Judah. 938 45:2 “The Lord God of Israel has a message for you, Baruch. 45:3 ‘You have said, “I feel so hopeless! 939 For the Lord has added sorrow to my suffering. 940 I am worn out from groaning. I can’t find any rest.”’”
45:4 The Lord told Jeremiah, 941 “Tell Baruch, 942 ‘The Lord says, “I am about to tear down what I have built and to uproot what I have planted. I will do this throughout the whole earth. 943 45:5 Are you looking for great things for yourself? Do not look for such things. For I, the Lord, affirm 944 that I am about to bring disaster on all humanity. 945 But I will allow you to escape with your life 946 wherever you go.”’”
46:2 He spoke about Egypt and the army of Pharaoh Necho king of Egypt which was encamped along the Euphrates River at Carchemish. Now this was the army that King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon defeated in the fourth year that Jehoiakim son of Josiah was ruling 949 over Judah. 950
Prepare to march into battle!
46:4 Harness the horses to the chariots!
Mount your horses!
Put on your helmets and take your positions!
Sharpen you spears!
Put on your armor!
“The soldiers 954 are terrified.
They are retreating.
They have been defeated.
They are overcome with terror; 955
they desert quickly
without looking back.
46:6 But even the swiftest cannot get away.
Even the strongest cannot escape. 956
There in the north by the Euphrates River
they stumble and fall in defeat. 957
46:7 “Who is this that rises like the Nile,
like its streams 958 turbulent at flood stage?
46:8 Egypt rises like the Nile,
like its streams turbulent at flood stage.
Egypt says, ‘I will arise and cover the earth.
I will destroy cities and the people who inhabit them.’
Drive furiously, you charioteers!
Let the soldiers march out into battle,
those from Ethiopia and Libya who carry shields,
It is the day when he will pay back his enemies. 963
His sword will devour them until its appetite is satisfied!
It will drink their blood until it is full! 964
For the Lord God who rules over all 965 will offer them up as a sacrifice
in the land of the north by the Euphrates River.
you dear poor people of Egypt. 967
But it will prove useless no matter how much medicine you use; 968
there will be no healing for you.
your cries of distress will echo throughout the earth.
In the panic of their flight one soldier will trip over another
and both of them will fall down defeated.” 970
46:14 “Make an announcement throughout Egypt.
Proclaim it in Migdol, Memphis, and Tahpanhes. 972
‘Take your positions and prepare to do battle.
For the enemy army is destroying all the nations around you.’ 973
They will not stand because I, the Lord, will thrust 976 them down.
They will fall over one another in their hurry to flee. 978
They will say, ‘Get up!
Let’s go back to our own people.
Let’s go back to our homelands
because the enemy is coming to destroy us.’ 979
He has let the most opportune moment pass by.’ 981
I swear as surely as I live that 983 a conqueror is coming.
He will be as imposing as Mount Tabor is among the mountains,
as Mount Carmel is against the backdrop of the sea. 984
46:19 Pack your bags for exile,
you inhabitants of poor dear Egypt. 985
For Memphis will be laid waste.
It will lie in ruins 986 and be uninhabited.
46:20 Egypt is like a beautiful young cow.
But northern armies will attack her like swarms of stinging flies. 987
will prove to be like pampered, 989 well-fed calves.
For they too will turn and run away.
They will not stand their ground
when 990 the time for them to be destroyed comes,
the time for them to be punished.
as the enemy comes marching up in force.
They will come against her with axes
as if they were woodsmen chopping down trees.
46:23 The population of Egypt is like a vast, impenetrable forest.
But I, the Lord, affirm 992 that the enemy will cut them down.
For those who chop them down will be more numerous than locusts.
They will be too numerous to count. 993
She will be handed over to the people from the north.”
46:25 The Lord God of Israel who rules over all 995 says, “I will punish Amon, the god of Thebes. 996 I will punish Egypt, its gods, and its kings. I will punish Pharaoh and all who trust in him. 997 46:26 I will hand them over to Nebuchadnezzar and his troops, who want to kill them. But later on, people will live in Egypt again as they did in former times. I, the Lord, affirm it!” 998
do not be terrified, people of Israel.
For I will rescue you and your descendants
from the faraway lands where you are captives. 1001
The descendants of Jacob will return to their land and enjoy peace.
They will be secure and no one will terrify them.
you descendants of Jacob, my servant,
for I am with you.
Though I completely destroy all the nations where I scatter you,
I will not completely destroy you.
I will indeed discipline you but only in due measure.
I will not allow you to go entirely unpunished.” 1003
They will be like an overflowing stream.
They will overwhelm the whole country and everything in it like a flood.
They will overwhelm the cities and their inhabitants.
People will cry out in alarm.
Everyone living in the country will cry out in pain.
47:3 Fathers will hear the hoofbeats of the enemies’ horses,
the clatter of their chariots and the rumbling of their wheels.
They will not turn back to save their children
because they will be paralyzed with fear. 1007
47:4 For the time has come
to destroy all the Philistines.
The time has come to destroy all the help
For I, the Lord, will 1010 destroy the Philistines,
that remnant that came from the island of Crete. 1011
47:5 The people of Gaza will shave their heads in mourning.
The people of Ashkelon will be struck dumb.
How long will you gash yourselves to show your sorrow, 1012
you who remain of Philistia’s power? 1013
how long will it be before you stop killing? 1015
Go back into your sheath!
Stay there and rest!’ 1016
when I, the Lord, have 1018 given it orders?
I have ordered it to attack
the people of Ashkelon and the seacoast. 1019
“Sure to be judged is Nebo! Indeed, 1022 it will be destroyed!
Kiriathaim 1023 will suffer disgrace. It will be captured!
48:2 People will not praise Moab any more.
saying, ‘Come, let’s put an end to that nation!’
City of Madmen, you will also be destroyed. 1029
A destructive army will march against you. 1030
48:3 Cries of anguish will arise in Horonaim,
‘Oh, the ruin and great destruction!’
48:4 “Moab will be crushed.
Her children will cry out in distress. 1031
48:5 Indeed they will climb the slopes of Luhith,
weeping continually as they go. 1032
For on the road down to Horonaim
they will hear the cries of distress over the destruction. 1033
48:6 They will hear, ‘Run! Save yourselves!
Even if you must be like a lonely shrub in the desert!’ 1034
48:7 “Moab, you trust in the things you do and in your riches.
So you too will be conquered.
along with his priests and his officials.
48:8 The destroyer will come against every town.
Not one town will escape.
The towns in the valley will be destroyed.
The cities on the high plain will be laid waste. 1037
I, the Lord, have spoken! 1038
48:9 Set up a gravestone for Moab,
for it will certainly be laid in ruins! 1039
Its cities will be laid waste
and become uninhabited.”
48:10 A curse on anyone who is lax in doing the Lord’s work!
A curse on anyone who keeps from carrying out his destruction! 1040
48:11 “From its earliest days Moab has lived undisturbed.
It has never been taken into exile.
Its people are like wine allowed to settle undisturbed on its dregs,
never poured out from one jar to another.
They are like wine which tastes like it always did,
whose aroma has remained unchanged. 1041
48:12 But the time is coming when I will send
men against Moab who will empty it out.
They will empty the towns of their people,
then will lay those towns in ruins. 1042
I, the Lord, affirm it! 1043
48:13 The people of Moab will be disappointed by their god Chemosh.
They will be as disappointed as the people of Israel were
when they put their trust in the calf god at Bethel. 1044
48:14 How can you men of Moab say, ‘We are heroes,
men who are mighty in battle?’
48:15 Moab will be destroyed. Its towns will be invaded.
Its finest young men will be slaughtered. 1045
48:16 Moab’s destruction is at hand.
Disaster will come on it quickly.
48:17 Mourn for that nation, all you nations living around it,
all of you nations that know of its fame. 1048
Mourn and say, ‘Alas, its powerful influence has been broken!
Its glory and power have been done away!’ 1049
48:18 Come down from your place of honor;
For the one who will destroy Moab will attack you;
he will destroy your fortifications.
stand by the road and watch.
Question the man who is fleeing and the woman who is escaping.
Ask them, ‘What has happened?’
48:20 They will answer, ‘Moab is disgraced, for it has fallen!
Wail and cry out in mourning!
Announce along the Arnon River
that Moab has been destroyed.’
48:21 “Judgment will come on the cities on the high plain: 1053 on Holon, Jahzah, and Mephaath, 48:22 on Dibon, Nebo, and Beth Diblathaim, 48:23 on Kiriathaim, Beth Gamul, and Beth Meon, 48:24 on Kerioth and Bozrah. It will come on all the towns of Moab, both far and near. 48:25 Moab’s might will be crushed. Its power will be broken. 1054 I, the Lord, affirm it! 1055
48:26 “Moab has vaunted itself against me.
So make him drunk with the wine of my wrath 1056
until he splashes 1057 around in his own vomit,
until others treat him as a laughingstock.
48:27 For did not you people of Moab laugh at the people of Israel?
Did you think that they were nothing but thieves, 1058
that you shook your head in contempt 1059
every time you talked about them? 1060
48:28 Leave your towns, you inhabitants of Moab.
Go and live in the cliffs.
Be like a dove that makes its nest
high on the sides of a ravine. 1061
48:29 I have heard how proud the people of Moab are,
I know how haughty they are.
I have heard how arrogant, proud, and haughty they are,
what a high opinion they have of themselves. 1062
But their pride is ill-founded.
Their boastings will prove to be false. 1064
48:31 So I will weep with sorrow for Moab.
I will cry out in sadness for all of Moab.
I will moan 1065 for the people of Kir Heres.
48:32 I will weep for the grapevines of Sibmah
just like the town of Jazer weeps over them. 1066
Their branches once spread as far as the Dead Sea. 1067
They reached as far as the town of Jazer. 1068
The destroyer will ravage
her fig, date, 1069 and grape crops.
48:33 Joy and gladness will disappear
from the fruitful land of Moab. 1070
I will stop the flow of wine from the winepresses.
No one will stomp on the grapes there and shout for joy. 1071
The shouts there will be shouts of soldiers,
not the shouts of those making wine. 1072
48:34 Cries of anguish raised from Heshbon and Elealeh
will be sounded as far as Jahaz. 1073
They will be sounded from Zoar as far as Horonaim and Eglath Shelishiyah.
For even the waters of Nimrim will be dried up.
48:35 I will put an end in Moab
to those who make offerings at her places of worship. 1074
I will put an end to those who sacrifice to other gods.
I, the Lord, affirm it! 1075
48:36 So my heart moans for Moab
like a flute playing a funeral song.
Yes, like a flute playing a funeral song,
my heart moans for the people of Kir Heres.
For the wealth they have gained will perish.
48:37 For all of them will shave their heads in mourning.
They will all cut off their beards to show their sorrow.
They will all make gashes in their hands.
They will all put on sackcloth. 1076
48:38 On all the housetops in Moab
and in all its public squares
there will be nothing but mourning.
For I will break Moab like an unwanted jar.
I, the Lord, affirm it! 1077
48:39 Oh, how shattered Moab will be!
Oh, how her people will wail!
Oh, how she will turn away 1078 in shame!
Moab will become an object of ridicule,
a terrifying sight to all the nations that surround her.”
48:40 For the Lord says,
“Look! Like an eagle with outspread wings
a nation will swoop down on Moab. 1079
Her fortresses will be taken.
At that time the soldiers of Moab will be frightened
like a woman in labor. 1081
because she has vaunted herself against the Lord.
for the people who live in Moab. 1084
I, the Lord, affirm it! 1085
48:44 Anyone who flees at the sound of terror
will fall into a pit.
Anyone who climbs out of the pit
will be caught in a trap. 1086
For the time is coming
when I will punish the people of Moab. 1087
I, the Lord, affirm it! 1088
48:45 In the shadows of the walls of Heshbon
those trying to escape will stand helpless.
For a fire will burst forth from Heshbon.
Flames will shoot out from the former territory of Sihon.
They will burn the foreheads of the people of Moab,
the skulls of those war-loving people. 1089
You people who worship Chemosh will be destroyed.
Your sons will be taken away captive.
Your daughters will be carried away into exile. 1091
48:47 Yet in days to come
I will reverse Moab’s ill fortune.” 1092
says the Lord. 1093
The judgment against Moab ends here.
“Do you think there are not any people of the nation of Israel remaining?
Do you think there are not any of them remaining to reinherit their land?
Is that why you people who worship the god Milcom 1095
have taken possession of the territory of Gad and live in his cities? 1096
49:2 Because you did that,
I, the Lord, affirm that 1097 a time is coming
when I will make Rabbah, the capital city of Ammon,
hear the sound of the battle cry.
It will become a mound covered with ruins. 1098
Its villages will be burned to the ground. 1099
Then Israel will take back its land
from those who took their land from them.
I, the Lord, affirm it! 1100
49:3 Wail, you people in Heshbon, because Ai in Ammon is destroyed.
Cry out in anguish, you people in the villages surrounding 1101 Rabbah.
Put on sackcloth and cry out in mourning.
Run about covered with gashes. 1102
For your god Milcom will go into exile
along with his priests and officials. 1103
49:4 Why do you brag about your great power?
who trust in your riches and say,
‘Who would dare to attack us?’
49:5 I will bring terror on you from every side,”
says the Lord God who rules over all. 1106
“You will be scattered in every direction. 1107
No one will gather the fugitives back together.
49:6 Yet in days to come
I will reverse Ammon’s ill fortune.” 1108
says the Lord. 1109
“Is wisdom no longer to be found in Teman? 1112
Can Edom’s counselors not give her any good advice? 1113
Has all of their wisdom turned bad? 1114
you people who live in Dedan. 1116
For I will bring disaster on the descendants of Esau.
I have decided it is time for me to punish them. 1117
49:9 If grape pickers came to pick your grapes,
would they not leave a few grapes behind? 1118
If robbers came at night,
would they not pillage only what they needed? 1119
49:10 But I will strip everything away from Esau’s descendants.
I will uncover their hiding places so they cannot hide.
Their children, relatives, and neighbors will all be destroyed.
Not one of them will be left!
49:11 Leave your orphans behind and I will keep them alive.
Your widows too can depend on me.” 1120
49:12 For the Lord says, “If even those who did not deserve to drink from the cup of my wrath must drink from it, do you think you will go unpunished? You will not go unpunished, but must certainly drink from the cup of my wrath. 1121 49:13 For I solemnly swear,” 1122 says the Lord, “that Bozrah 1123 will become a pile of ruins. It will become an object of horror and ridicule, an example to be used in curses. 1124 All the towns around it will lie in ruins forever.”
A messenger has been sent among the nations to say,
‘Gather your armies and march out against her!
Prepare to do battle with her!’” 1126
“I will certainly make you small among nations.
I will make you despised by all humankind.
and the arrogance of your heart have deceived you.
You may make your home in the clefts of the rocks;
you may occupy the highest places in the hills. 1129
But even if you made your home where the eagles nest,
I would bring you down from there,”
says the Lord.
49:17 “Edom will become an object of horror.
All who pass by it will be filled with horror;
they will hiss out their scorn
because of all the disasters that have happened to it. 1130
49:18 Edom will be destroyed like Sodom and Gomorrah
and the towns that were around them.
No one will live there.
No human being will settle in it,”
says the Lord.
scatters the sheep in the pastureland around it. 1132
So too I will chase the Edomites off their land. 1133
Then I will appoint over it whomever I choose. 1134
For there is no one like me, and there is no one who can call me to account. 1135
49:20 So listen to what I, the Lord, have planned against Edom,
Their little ones will be dragged off.
I will completely destroy their land because of what they have done. 1140
Their cries of anguish will be heard all the way to the Gulf of Aqaba. 1142
49:22 Look! Like an eagle with outspread wings,
a nation will soar up and swoop down on Bozrah.
At that time the soldiers of Edom will be as fearful
as a woman in labor.” 1143
“The people of Hamath and Arpad 1146 will be dismayed
because they have heard bad news.
Their courage will melt away because of worry.
Their hearts will not be able to rest. 1147
49:24 The people of Damascus will lose heart and turn to flee.
Panic will grip them.
Pain and anguish will seize them
like a woman in labor.
49:26 For her young men will fall in her city squares.
All her soldiers will be destroyed at that time,”
says the Lord who rules over all. 1151
49:27 “I will set fire to the walls of Damascus;
it will burn up the palaces of Ben Hadad.” 1152
“Army of Babylon, 1155 go and attack Kedar.
Lay waste those who live in the eastern desert. 1156
49:29 Their tents and their flocks will be taken away.
Their tent curtains, equipment, and camels will be carried off.
People will shout 1157 to them,
‘Terror is all around you!’” 1158
Take up refuge in remote places. 1161
For King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon has laid out plans to attack you.
He has formed his strategy on how to defeat you.” 1162
a nation that lives in peace and security.
They have no gates or walls to protect them. 1165
They live all alone.
49:32 Their camels will be taken as plunder.
Their vast herds will be taken as spoil.
I will scatter to the four winds
those desert peoples who cut their hair short at the temples. 1166
I will bring disaster against them
from every direction,” says the Lord. 1167
49:33 “Hazor will become a permanent wasteland,
a place where only jackals live. 1168
No one will live there.
No human being will settle in it.” 1169
49:35 The Lord who rules over all said,
“I will kill all the archers of Elam,
who are the chief source of her military might. 1172
49:36 I will cause enemies to blow through Elam from every direction
like the winds blowing in from the four quarters of heaven.
I will scatter the people of Elam to the four winds.
There will not be any nation where the refugees of Elam will not go. 1173
49:37 I will make the people of Elam terrified of their enemies,
who are seeking to kill them.
I will vent my fierce anger
“I will send armies chasing after them 1176
until I have completely destroyed them.
49:39 “Yet in days to come
I will reverse Elam’s ill fortune.” 1180
says the Lord. 1181
Signal for people to pay attention! 1185
Declare the news! Do not hide it! Say:
‘Babylon will be captured.
Bel 1186 will be put to shame.
Marduk will be dismayed.
Babylon’s idols will be put to shame.
It will lay her land waste.
People and animals will flee out of it.
No one will inhabit it.’
“the people of Israel and Judah will return to the land together.
They will come back with tears of repentance
as they seek the Lord their God. 1191
50:5 They will ask the way to Zion;
they will turn their faces toward it.
They will come 1192 and bind themselves to the Lord
in a lasting covenant that will never be forgotten. 1193
50:6 “My people have been lost sheep.
Their shepherds 1194 have allow them to go astray.
They have wandered around in the mountains.
They have roamed from one mountain and hill to another. 1195
They have forgotten their resting place.
50:7 All who encountered them devoured them.
Their enemies who did this said, ‘We are not liable for punishment!
For those people have sinned against the Lord, their true pasture. 1196
Leave the land of Babylonia! 1200
Be the first to depart! 1201
Be like the male goats that lead the herd.
50:9 For I will rouse into action and bring against Babylon
a host of mighty nations 1202 from the land of the north.
They will set up their battle lines against her.
They will come from the north and capture her. 1203
Their arrows will be like a skilled soldier 1204
who does not return from the battle empty-handed. 1205
Those who plunder it will take all they want,”
says the Lord. 1207
That made you happy and glad.
You frolic about like calves in a pasture. 1210
Your joyous sounds are like the neighs of a stallion. 1211
50:12 But Babylonia will be put to great shame.
The land where you were born 1212 will be disgraced.
Indeed, 1213 Babylonia will become the least important of all nations.
It will become a dry and barren desert.
It will be totally desolate.
All who pass by will be filled with horror and will hiss out their scorn
because of all the disasters that have happened to it. 1215
50:14 “Take up your battle positions all around Babylon,
all you soldiers who are armed with bows. 1216
For she has sinned against the Lord.
50:15 Shout the battle cry from all around the city.
She will throw up her hands in surrender. 1219
Her towers 1220 will fall.
Her walls will be torn down.
Because I, the Lord, am wreaking revenge, 1221
take out your vengeance on her!
Do to her as she has done!
50:16 Kill all the farmers who sow the seed in the land of Babylon.
Kill all those who wield the sickle at harvest time. 1222
Let all the foreigners return to their own people.
Let them hurry back to their own lands
to escape destruction by that enemy army. 1223
50:17 “The people of Israel are like scattered sheep
which lions have chased away.
First the king of Assyria devoured them. 1224
Now last of all King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon has gnawed their bones. 1225
‘I will punish the king of Babylon and his land
just as I punished the king of Assyria.
50:19 But I will restore the flock of Israel to their own pasture.
They will graze on Mount Carmel and the land of Bashan.
They will eat until they are full 1227
on the hills of Ephraim and the land of Gilead. 1228
50:20 When that time comes,
no guilt will be found in Israel.
No sin will be found in Judah. 1229
For I will forgive those of them I have allowed to survive. 1230
I, the Lord, affirm it!’” 1231
“Attack 1233 the land of Merathaim
and the people who live in Pekod! 1234
Pursue, kill, and completely destroy them! 1235
Do just as I have commanded you! 1236
There is the sound of great destruction.
50:23 Babylon hammered the whole world to pieces.
But see how that ‘hammer’ has been broken and shattered! 1238
See what an object of horror
Babylon has become among the nations!
50:24 I set a trap for you, Babylon;
you were caught before you knew it.
You fought against me.
So you were found and captured. 1239
I have brought out the weapons for carrying out my wrath. 1241
For I, the Lord God who rules over all, 1242
have work to carry out in the land of Babylonia. 1243
Open up the places where she stores her grain!
Do not leave anyone alive! 1247
Let them be slaughtered! 1249
the time for them to be punished.”
50:28 Listen! Fugitives and refugees are coming from the land of Babylon.
They are coming to Zion to declare there
how the Lord our God is getting revenge,
getting revenge for what they have done to his temple. 1252
Summon against her all who draw the bow!
Set up camp all around the city!
Do not allow anyone to escape!
Pay her back for what she has done.
Do to her what she has done to others.
For she has proudly defied me, 1254
the Holy One of Israel. 1255
50:30 So her young men will fall in her city squares.
All her soldiers will be destroyed at that time,”
says the Lord. 1256
says the Lord God who rules over all. 1258
the time when I will punish you. 1261
50:32 You will stumble and fall, you proud city;
no one will help you get up.
I will set fire to your towns;
it will burn up everything that surrounds you.” 1262
“The people of Israel are oppressed.
So too are the people of Judah. 1264
All those who took them captive are holding them prisoners.
They refuse to set them free.
He is known as the Lord who rules over all. 1266
He will strongly 1267 champion their cause.
As a result 1268 he will bring peace and rest to the earth,
“They will come against the people who inhabit Babylonia,
against her leaders and her men of wisdom.
they will be shown to be fools! 1274
Destructive forces will come against her soldiers;
they will be filled with terror! 1275
Destructive forces will come against all the foreign troops within her; 1277
they will be as frightened as women! 1278
Destructive forces will come against her treasures;
they will be taken away as plunder!
50:38 A drought will come upon her land;
her rivers and canals will be dried up. 1279
All of this will happen because her land is filled with idols. 1280
50:39 Therefore desert creatures and jackals will live there.
But no people will ever live there again.
No one will dwell there for all time to come. 1285
50:40 I will destroy Babylonia just like I did
Sodom and Gomorrah and the neighboring towns.
No one will live there. 1286
No human being will settle in it,”
says the Lord. 1287
50:41 “Look! An army is about to come from the north.
A mighty nation and many kings 1288 are stirring into action
in faraway parts of the earth.
50:42 Its soldiers are armed with bows and spears.
They are cruel and show no mercy.
They sound like the roaring sea
as they ride forth on their horses.
Lined up in formation like men going into battle,
they are coming against you, fair Babylon! 1289
when he hears news of their coming. 1291
Anguish will grip him,
agony like that of a woman giving birth to a baby. 1292
50:44 “A lion coming up from the thick undergrowth along the Jordan
scatters the sheep in the pastureland around it.
So too I will chase the Babylonians off of their land.
Then I will appoint over it whomever I choose.
For there is no one like me.
There is no one who can call me to account.
There is no ruler that can stand up against me.
50:45 So listen to what I, the Lord, have planned against Babylon,
what I intend to do to the people who inhabit the land of Babylonia. 1293
Their little ones will be dragged off.
I will completely destroy their land because of what they have done.
50:46 The people of the earth will quake when they hear Babylon has been captured.
Her cries of anguish will be heard by the other nations.” 1294
51:1 The Lord says,
“I will cause a destructive wind 1295 to blow
They will winnow her and strip her land bare. 1299
This will happen when 1300 they come against her from every direction,
when it is time to destroy her. 1301
51:3 Do not give her archers time to string their bows
or to put on their coats of armor. 1302
Do not spare any of her young men.
Completely destroy 1303 her whole army.
mortally wounded in the streets of her cities. 1306
by their God, the Lord who rules over all. 1308
For the land of Babylonia is 1309 full of guilt
against the Holy One of Israel. 1310
Flee to save your lives.
Do not let yourselves be killed because of her sins.
For it is time for the Lord to wreak his revenge.
51:7 Babylonia had been a gold cup in the Lord’s hand.
She had made the whole world drunk.
The nations had drunk from the wine of her wrath. 1314
So they have all gone mad. 1315
Cry out in mourning over it!
Get medicine for her wounds!
Perhaps she can be healed!
‘We tried to heal her, but she could not be healed.
Let’s leave Babylonia 1318 and each go back to his own country.
For judgment on her will be vast in its proportions.
It will be like it is piled up to heaven, stacked up into the clouds.’ 1319
‘The Lord has brought about a great deliverance for us! 1321
Come on, let’s go and proclaim in Zion
what the Lord our God has done!’
Fill your quivers! 1323
For he intends to destroy Babylonia.
For that is how the Lord will get his revenge –
how he will get his revenge for the Babylonians’ destruction of his temple. 1326
Bring more guards! 1328
Post them all around the city! 1329
Put men in ambush! 1330
For the Lord will do what he has planned.
He will do what he said he would do to the people of Babylon. 1331
the time of your end has come.
You who are rich in plundered treasure,
it is time for your lives to be cut off. 1333
‘I will fill your land with enemy soldiers.
They will swarm over it like locusts. 1336
They will raise up shouts of victory over it.’
He is the one who by his wisdom fixed the world in place,
by his understanding he spread out the heavens.
51:16 When his voice thunders, the waters in the heavens roar.
He makes the clouds rise from the far-off horizons.
He makes the lightning flash out in the midst of the rain.
He unleashes the wind from the places where he stores it.
51:17 All idolaters will prove to be stupid and ignorant.
Every goldsmith will be disgraced by the idol he made.
For the image he forges is merely a sham.
There is no breath in any of those idols.
51:18 They are worthless, objects to be ridiculed.
When the time comes to punish them, they will be destroyed.
51:19 The Lord, who is the portion of the descendants of Jacob, is not like them.
For he is the one who created everything,
including the people of Israel whom he claims as his own. 1338
He is known as the Lord who rules over all. 1339
my weapon for battle.
I used you to smash nations. 1342
I used you to destroy kingdoms.
I used you to smash chariots and their drivers.
51:22 I used you to smash men and women.
I used you to smash old men and young men.
I used you to smash young men and young women.
51:23 I used you to smash shepherds and their flocks.
I used you to smash farmers and their teams of oxen.
I used you to smash governors and leaders.” 1344
51:24 “But I will repay Babylon
and all who live in Babylonia
for all the wicked things they did in Zion
right before the eyes of you Judeans,” 1345
says the Lord. 1346
You are like a destructive mountain that destroys all the earth.
I will unleash my power against you; 1349
I will roll you off the cliffs and make you like a burned-out mountain. 1350
51:26 No one will use any of your stones as a cornerstone.
No one will use any of them in the foundation of his house.
For you will lie desolate forever,” 1351
says the Lord. 1352
51:27 “Raise up battle flags throughout the lands.
Sound the trumpets calling the nations to do battle.
Prepare the nations to do battle against Babylonia. 1353
Call for these kingdoms to attack her:
Ararat, Minni, and Ashkenaz. 1354
Appoint a commander to lead the attack. 1355
Prepare the kings of the Medes.
Prepare their governors and all their leaders. 1359
Prepare all the countries they rule to do battle against her. 1360
For the Lord will carry out his plan.
He plans to make the land of Babylonia 1362
a wasteland where no one lives. 1363
51:30 The soldiers of Babylonia will stop fighting.
They will remain in their fortified cities.
They will lose their strength to do battle. 1364
They will be as frightened as women. 1365
The houses in her cities will be set on fire.
The gates of her cities will be broken down. 1366
51:31 One runner after another will come to the king of Babylon.
One messenger after another will come bringing news. 1367
They will bring news to the king of Babylon
that his whole city has been captured. 1368
51:32 They will report that the fords have been captured,
the reed marshes have been burned,
the soldiers are terrified. 1369
51:33 For the Lord God of Israel who rules over all says,
‘Fair Babylon 1370 will be like a threshing floor
which has been trampled flat for harvest.
The time for her to be cut down and harvested
will come very soon.’ 1371
51:34 “King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon
devoured me and drove my people out.
Like a monster from the deep he swallowed me.
He filled his belly with my riches.
He made me an empty dish.
He completely cleaned me out.” 1372
51:35 The person who lives in Zion says,
“May Babylon pay for the violence done to me and to my relatives.”
“May those living in Babylonia pay for the bloodshed of my people.” 1373
51:36 Therefore the Lord says,
“I will stand up for your cause.
I will pay the Babylonians back for what they have done to you. 1374
I will dry up their sea.
I will make their springs run dry. 1375
51:37 Babylon will become a heap of ruins.
Jackals will make their home there. 1376
It will become an object of horror and of hissing scorn,
a place where no one lives. 1377
51:38 The Babylonians are all like lions roaring for prey.
They are like lion cubs growling for something to eat. 1378
I will set out a banquet for them.
I will make them drunk
so that they will pass out, 1380
they will fall asleep forever,
they will never wake up,” 1381
says the Lord. 1382
51:40 “I will lead them off to be slaughtered
like lambs, rams, and male goats.” 1383
See how the pride of the whole earth has been taken!
See what an object of horror
Babylon has become among the nations! 1385
51:42 The sea has swept over Babylon.
51:43 The towns of Babylonia have become heaps of ruins.
She has become a dry and barren desert.
No one lives in those towns any more.
No one even passes through them. 1388
51:44 I will punish the god Bel in Babylon.
I will make him spit out what he has swallowed.
The nations will not come streaming to him any longer.
Indeed, the walls of Babylon will fall.” 1389
51:45 “Get out of Babylon, my people!
Flee to save your lives
from the fierce anger of the Lord! 1390
51:46 Do not lose your courage or become afraid
because of the reports that are heard in the land.
For a report will come in one year.
Another report will follow it in the next.
There will be violence in the land
with ruler fighting against ruler.”
when I will punish the idols of Babylon.
Her whole land will be put to shame.
All her mortally wounded will collapse in her midst. 1392
51:48 Then heaven and earth and all that is in them
will sing for joy over Babylon.
For destroyers from the north will attack it,”
says the Lord. 1393
because of the Israelites she has killed, 1395
just as the earth’s mortally wounded fell
because of Babylon. 1396
go, do not delay. 1398
Remember the Lord in a faraway land.
Think about Jerusalem. 1399
Our faces show our disgrace. 1402
For foreigners have invaded
the holy rooms 1403 in the Lord’s temple.’
“when I will punish her idols.
Throughout her land the mortally wounded will groan.
and fortifies her elevated stronghold, 1407
I will send destroyers against her,” 1408
says the Lord. 1409
51:54 Cries of anguish will come from Babylon,
the sound of great destruction from the land of the Babylonians.
51:55 For the Lord is ready to destroy Babylon,
and put an end to her loud noise.
They will make a deafening noise. 1412
Her warriors will be captured;
their bows will be broken. 1414
For the Lord is a God who punishes; 1415
he pays back in full. 1416
51:57 “I will make her officials and wise men drunk,
along with her governors, leaders, 1417 and warriors.
They will fall asleep forever and never wake up,” 1418
says the King whose name is the Lord who rules over all. 1419
Her high gates will be set on fire.
The peoples strive for what does not satisfy. 1423
The nations grow weary trying to get what will be destroyed.” 1424
51:59 This is the order Jeremiah the prophet gave to Seraiah son of Neriah, son of Mahseiah, when he went to King Zedekiah of Judah in Babylon during the fourth year of his reign. 1425 (Seraiah was a quartermaster.) 1426 51:60 Jeremiah recorded 1427 on one scroll all the judgments 1428 that would come upon Babylon – all these prophecies 1429 written about Babylon. 51:61 Then Jeremiah said to Seraiah, “When you arrive in Babylon, make sure 1430 you read aloud all these prophecies. 1431 51:62 Then say, ‘O Lord, you have announced that you will destroy this place so that no people or animals live in it any longer. Certainly it will lie desolate forever!’ 51:63 When you finish reading this scroll aloud, tie a stone to it and throw it into the middle of the Euphrates River. 1432 51:64 Then say, ‘In the same way Babylon will sink and never rise again because of the judgments 1433 I am ready to bring upon her; they will grow faint.’”
The prophecies of Jeremiah end here. 1434
52:1 1435 Zedekiah was twenty-one years old when he became king, and he ruled in Jerusalem 1436 for eleven years. His mother’s name was Hamutal 1437 daughter of Jeremiah, from Libnah. 52:2 He did what displeased the Lord 1438 just as Jehoiakim had done.
52:3 What follows is a record of what happened to Jerusalem and Judah because of the Lord’s anger when he drove them out of his sight. 1439 Zedekiah rebelled against the king of Babylon. 52:4 King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon came against Jerusalem with his whole army and set up camp outside it. 1440 They built siege ramps all around it. He arrived on the tenth day of the tenth month in the ninth year that Zedekiah ruled over Judah. 1441 52:5 The city remained under siege until Zedekiah’s eleventh year. 52:6 By the ninth day of the fourth month 1442 the famine in the city was so severe the residents 1443 had no food. 52:7 They broke through the city walls, and all the soldiers tried to escape. They left the city during the night. They went through the gate between the two walls that is near the king’s garden. 1444 (The Babylonians had the city surrounded.) Then they headed for the Jordan Valley. 1445 52:8 But the Babylonian army chased after the king. They caught up with Zedekiah in the plains of Jericho, 1446 and his entire army deserted him. 52:9 They captured him and brought him up to the king of Babylon at Riblah 1447 in the territory of Hamath and he passed sentence on him there. 52:10 The king of Babylon had Zedekiah’s sons put to death while Zedekiah was forced to watch. He also had all the nobles of Judah put to death there at Riblah. 52:11 He had Zedekiah’s eyes put out and had him bound in chains. 1448 Then the king of Babylon had him led off to Babylon and he was imprisoned there until the day he died.
52:12 On the tenth 1449 day of the fifth month, 1450 in the nineteenth year of King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, Nebuzaradan, the captain of the royal guard 1451 who served 1452 the king of Babylon, arrived in Jerusalem. 52:13 He burned down the Lord’s temple, the royal palace, and all the houses in Jerusalem, including every large house. 52:14 The whole Babylonian army that came with the captain of the royal guard tore down the walls that surrounded Jerusalem. 52:15 Nebuzaradan, the captain of the royal guard, took into exile some of the poor, 1453 the rest of the people who remained in the city, those who had deserted to him, and the rest of the craftsmen. 52:16 But he 1454 left behind some of the poor 1455 and gave them fields and vineyards.
52:17 The Babylonians broke the two bronze pillars in the temple of the Lord, as well as the movable stands and the large bronze basin called the “The Sea.” 1456 They took all the bronze to Babylon. 52:18 They also took the pots, shovels, 1457 trimming shears, 1458 basins, pans, and all the bronze utensils used by the priests. 1459 52:19 The captain of the royal guard took the gold and silver bowls, censers, 1460 basins, pots, lampstands, pans, and vessels. 1461 52:20 The bronze of the items that King Solomon made for the Lord’s temple (including the two pillars, the large bronze basin called “The Sea,” the twelve bronze bulls under “The Sea,” and the movable stands 1462 ) was too heavy to be weighed. 52:21 Each of the pillars was about 27 feet 1463 high, about 18 feet 1464 in circumference, three inches 1465 thick, and hollow. 52:22 The bronze top of one pillar was about seven and one-half feet 1466 high and had bronze latticework and pomegranate-shaped ornaments all around it. The second pillar with its pomegranate-shaped ornaments was like it. 52:23 There were ninety-six pomegranate-shaped ornaments on the sides; in all there were one hundred pomegranate-shaped ornaments over the latticework that went around it.
52:24 The captain of the royal guard took Seraiah the chief priest, Zephaniah the priest who was second in rank, and the three doorkeepers. 1467 52:25 From the city he took an official who was in charge of the soldiers, seven of the king’s advisers who were discovered in the city, an official army secretary who drafted citizens 1468 for military service, and sixty citizens who were discovered in the middle of the city. 52:26 Nebuzaradan, the captain of the royal guard, took them and brought them to the king of Babylon at Riblah. 52:27 The king of Babylon ordered them to be executed 1469 at Riblah in the territory of Hamath.
So Judah was taken into exile away from its land. 52:28 Here is the official record of the number of people 1470 Nebuchadnezzar carried into exile: In the seventh year, 1471 3,023 Jews; 52:29 in Nebuchadnezzar’s eighteenth year, 1472 832 people from Jerusalem; 52:30 in Nebuchadnezzar’s twenty-third year, 1473 Nebuzaradan, the captain of the royal guard, carried into exile 745 Judeans. In all 4,600 people went into exile.
52:31 In the thirty-seventh year of the exile of King Jehoiachin of Judah, on the twenty-fifth 1474 day of the twelfth month, 1475 Evil-Merodach, in the first year of his reign, pardoned 1476 King Jehoiachin of Judah and released him from prison. 52:32 He spoke kindly to him and gave him a more prestigious position than 1477 the other kings who were with him in Babylon. 52:33 Jehoiachin 1478 took off his prison clothes and ate daily in the king’s presence for the rest of his life. 52:34 He was given daily provisions by the king of Babylon for the rest of his life until the day he died.
1 sn Beginning with Jer 26 up to Jer 45 the book narrates in third person style incidents in the life of Jeremiah and prophecies (or sermons) he gave in obedience to the
2 tn The words “to Jeremiah” are not in the Hebrew text. They are added by the Old Latin (not the Vulgate) and the Syriac versions. They are implicit, however, to the narrative style which speaks of Jeremiah in the third person (cf. vv. 7, 12). They have been supplied in the translation for clarity.
3 tn It is often thought that the term here is equivalent to a technical term in Akkadian (reshsharruti) which refers to the part of the year remaining from the death or deposing of the previous king until the beginning of the calendar year when the new king officially ascended the throne. In this case it would refer to the part of the year between September, 609
4 sn It is generally agreed that the incident recorded in this chapter relates to the temple message that Jeremiah gave in 7:1-15. The message there is summarized here in vv. 3-6. The primary interest here is in the response to that message.
5 tn Heb “will turn from his wicked way.”
7 tn Heb “because of the wickedness of their deeds.”
8 tn Heb “thus says the
9 tn Heb “by walking in my law which I set before you.”
sn Examples of those laws are found in Jer 7:5-6, 9. The law was summarized or epitomized in the ten commandments which are called the “words of the covenant” in Exod 34:28, but it contained much more. However, when Israel is taken to task by God, it often relates to their failure to live up to the standards of the ten commandments (Heb “the ten words”; see Hos 4:1-3; Jer 7:9).
11 tn 26:4-6 are all one long sentence containing a long condition with subordinate clauses (vv. 4-5) and a compound consequence in v. 6: Heb “If you will not obey me by walking in my law…by paying attention to the words of the prophets which…and you did not pay heed, then I will make…and I will make…” The sentence has been broken down in conformity to contemporary English style but an attempt has been made to reflect all the subordinations in the English translation.
13 tn The translation again represents an attempt to break up a long complex Hebrew sentence into equivalent English ones that conform more to contemporary English style: Heb “And as soon as Jeremiah finished saying all that…the priests…grabbed him and said…” The word “some” has been supplied in the translation, because obviously it was not all the priests, the prophets, and all the people, but only some of them. There is, of course, rhetorical intent here to show that all were implicated, although all may not have actually participated. (This is a common figure called synecdoche where all is put for a part – all for all kinds or representatives of all kinds. See E. W. Bullinger, Figures of Speech, 614-19, and compare usage in Acts 10:12; Matt 3:5.)
15 tn Heb “Why have you prophesied in the
sn They are questioning his right to claim the
16 sn These officials of Judah were officials from the royal court. They may have included some of the officials mentioned in Jer 36:12-25. They would have been concerned about any possible “illegal” proceedings going on in the temple.
17 tn Heb “these things.”
18 tn Heb “they sat” or “they took their seats.” However, the context is one of judicial trial.
sn The gateway or gate complex of an ancient Near Eastern city was often used for court assemblies (cf. Deut 21:19; 22:15; Ruth 4:1; Isa 29:21). Here the gate of the temple was used for the convening of a court to try Jeremiah for the charge of being a false prophet.
19 tn The translation follows many Hebrew
sn The location of the New Gate is uncertain. It is mentioned again in Jer 36:10 where it is connected with the upper (i.e., inner) court of the temple. Some equate it with the Upper Gate that Jotham rebuilt during his reign (2 Kgs 15:35; Jotham reigned from 750-735
20 tn Heb “the priests and prophets said to the leaders and the people….” The long sentence has been broken up to conform better with contemporary English style and the situational context is reflected in “laid their charges.”
21 tn Heb “a sentence of death to this man.”
22 tn Heb “it.”
23 tn Heb “Jeremiah said to all the leaders and all the people….” See the note on the word “said” in the preceding verse.
26 tn Heb “And I, behold I am in your hand.” Hand is quite commonly used for “power” or “control” in biblical contexts.
27 tn Heb “For in truth the
28 tn Heb “Then the officials and all the people said to the priests and the prophets…”
30 tn Heb “For in the name of the
sn The priests and false prophets claimed that they were speaking in the
31 tn Heb “elders of the land.”
sn The elders were important land-owning citizens, separate from the “heads” or leaders of the tribes, the officers and the judges. They were very influential in both the judicial, political, and religious proceedings of the cities and the state. (See, e.g., Josh 24:1; 2 Sam 19:11; 2 Kgs 23:1 for elders of Israel/Judah, and Deut 21:1-9; Ruth 4:1-2 for elders of the cities.)
32 sn Micah from Moresheth was a contemporary of Isaiah (compare Mic 1:1 with Isa 1:1) from the country town of Moresheth in the hill country southwest of Jerusalem. The prophecy referred to is found in Mic 3:12. This is the only time in the OT where an OT prophet is quoted verbatim and identified.
33 sn Hezekiah was co-regent with his father Ahaz from 729-715
34 tn Heb “Yahweh of armies.”
sn For an explanation of this title for God see the study note on 2:19.
35 sn Zion was first of all the citadel that David captured (2 Sam 5:6-10), then the city of David and the enclosed temple area, then the whole city of Jerusalem. It is often in poetic parallelism with Jerusalem as it is here (see, e.g., Ps 76:2; Amos 1:2).
37 sn There is irony involved in this statement. The text reads literally “high places of a forest/thicket.” The “high places” were the illicit places of worship that Jerusalem was supposed to replace. Because of their sin, Jerusalem would be like one of the pagan places of worship with no place left sacrosanct. It would even be overgrown with trees and bushes. So much for its inviolability!
38 tn This Hebrew idiom (חָלָה פָּנִים, khalah panim) is often explained in terms of “stroking” or “patting the face” of someone, seeking to gain his favor. It is never used in a literal sense and is found in contexts of prayer (Exod 32:11; Ps 119:158), worship (Zech 8:21-22), humble submission (2 Chr 3:12), or amendment of behavior (Dan 9:13). All were true to one extent or another of Hezekiah.
39 tn The he interrogative (הַ)with the negative governs all three of the verbs, the perfect and the two vav (ו) consecutive imperfects that follow it. The next clause has disjunctive word order and introduces a contrast. The question expects a positive answer.
42 sn This is a brief parenthetical narrative about an otherwise unknown prophet who was executed for saying the same things Jeremiah did. It is put here to show the real danger that Jeremiah faced for saying what he did. There is nothing in the narrative here to show any involvement by Jehoiakim. This was a “lynch mob” instigated by the priests and false prophets which was stymied by the royal officials supported by some of the elders of Judah. Since it is disjunctive or parenthetical it is unclear whether this incident happened before or after that in the main narrative being reported.
44 tn Heb “Now also a man was prophesying in the name of the
45 tn Heb “all his mighty men/soldiers.” It is unlikely that this included all the army. It more likely was the palace guards or royal bodyguards (see 2 Sam 23 where the same word is used of David’s elite corps).
46 tn Heb “his words.”
47 tn Heb “But Uriah heard and feared and fled and entered Egypt.”
48 sn Elnathan son of Achbor was one of the officials who urged Jeremiah and Baruch to hide after they heard Jeremiah’s prophecies read before them (Jer 36:11-19). He was also one of the officials who urged Jehoiakim not to burn the scroll containing Jeremiah’s prophecies (Jer 36:25). He may have been Jehoiakim’s father-in-law (2 Kgs 24:6, 8).
49 tn Heb “from Egypt.”
sn A standard part of international treaties at this time was a stipulation of mutual extradition of political prisoners. Jehoiakim was a vassal of Pharaoh Necho (see 2 Kgs 23:34-35) and undoubtedly had such a treaty with him.
50 sn The burial place of the common people was the public burial grounds, distinct from the family tombs, where poor people without any distinction were buried. It was in the Kidron Valley east of Jerusalem (2 Kgs 23:6). The intent of reporting this is to show the ruthlessness of Jehoiakim.
51 sn Ahikam son of Shaphan was an official during the reign of Jehoiakim’s father, Josiah (2 Kgs 22:12, 14). He was also the father of Gedaliah who became governor of Judah after the fall of Jerusalem (Jer 40:5). The particle at the beginning of the verse is meant to contrast the actions of this man with the actions of Jehoiakim. The impression created by this verse is that it took more than just the royal officials’ opinion and the elders’ warnings to keep the priests and prophets from swaying popular opinion to put Jeremiah to death.
52 tn Heb “Nevertheless, the hand of Ahikam son of Shaphan was with Jeremiah so that he would not be given (even more literally, ‘so as not to give him’) into the hand of the people to kill him.” “Hand” is often used for “aid,” “support,” “influence,” “power,” “control.”
53 sn The names of Jeremiah and of Nebuchadnezzar are spelled differently in the Hebrew of chapter 27-29. That and other literary features show that these three chapters are all closely related. The events of these three chapters all take place within the space of one year (cf. 28:1; 29:17).
54 tc The reading here is based on a few Hebrew
sn If the text of 28:1 is correct, the date here would be sometime in the fourth year of Zedekiah which would be 594/3
55 tn There is some disjunction in the narrative of this chapter. The introduction in v. 1 presents this as a third person narrative. But the rest of the passage reports the narrative in first person. Thus the text reads here “Thus the
56 sn The yoke is a common biblical symbol of political servitude (see, e.g., Deut 28:48; 1 Kgs 12:4, 9, 10). From the context of 1 Kgs 12 it is clear that it applied to taxation and the provision of conscript labor. In international political contexts it involved the payment of heavy tribute which was often conscripted from the citizens (see, e.g., 2 Kgs 15:19-20; 23:34-35) and the furnishing of military contingents for the sovereign’s armies (see, e.g., 2 Kgs 24:2). Jeremiah’s message here combines both a symbolic action (the wearing of a yoke) and words of explanation as in Jer 19:1-13. (See Isa 20:1-6 for an example outside of Jeremiah.) The casting off of the yoke has been used earlier in Jer 2:20, 5:5 to refer to Israel’s failure to remain spiritually “subject” or faithful to God.
58 sn The nations of Edom, Moab, and Ammon were east of Judah. They were sometimes allies and sometimes enemies. The nations of Tyre and Sidon were on the sea coast north and west of Judah. They are best known for their maritime trade during the reign of Solomon. They were more commonly allies of Israel and Judah than enemies.
59 tn Heb “send by means of them” [i.e., the straps and crossbars made into a yoke] to…through.” The text is broken up in conformity with contemporary English style. Many English versions ignore the suffix on the end of “send” and find some support for this on the basis of its absence in the Lucianic Greek text. However, it is probably functioning metonymically here for the message which they see symbolized before them and is now explained clearly to them.
61 tn Heb “Yahweh of armies, the God of Israel.”
sn See study notes on 2:19 and 7:3 for the significance of this title.
62 tn Heb “Give them a charge to their masters saying, ‘Thus says Yahweh of armies, the God of Israel, “Thus you shall say unto your masters…”’” The sentence is broken up in conformity with contemporary English style.
65 tn Heb “have given…into the hand of.”
67 tn Heb “I have given…to him to serve him.” The verb “give” in this syntactical situation is functioning like the Hiphil stem, i.e., as a causative. See Dan 1:9 for parallel usage. For the usage of “serve” meaning “be subject to” compare 2 Sam 22:44 and BDB 713 s.v. עָבַד 3.
sn This statement is rhetorical, emphasizing the totality of Nebuchadnezzar’s dominion. Neither here nor in Dan 2:38 is it to be understood literally.
68 sn This is a figure that emphasizes that they will serve for a long time but not for an unlimited duration. The kingdom of Babylon lasted a relatively short time by ancient standards. It lasted from 605
69 tn Heb “until the time of his land, even his, comes.” The independent pronoun is placed here for emphasis on the possessive pronoun. The word “time” is used by substitution for the things that are done in it (compare in the NT John 2:4; 7:30; 8:20 “his hour had not yet come”).
sn See Jer 25:12-14, 16.
70 tn Heb “him.” This is a good example of the figure of substitution where the person is put for his descendants or the nation or subject he rules. (See Gen 28:13-14 for another good example and Acts 22:7 in the NT.)
72 tn Heb “oracle of the
73 tn Heb “The nation and/or the kingdom which will not serve him, Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, and which will not put its neck in the yoke of the king of Babylon, by sword, starvation, and disease I will punish [or more literally, “visit upon”] that nation, oracle of the
74 tn Heb “with/by the sword.”
75 tc The verb translated “destroy” (תָּמַם, tamam) is usually intransitive in the stem of the verb used here. It is found in a transitive sense elsewhere only in Ps 64:7. BDB 1070 s.v. תָּמַם 7 emends both texts. In this case they recommend תִּתִּי (titi): “until I give them into his hand.” That reading is suggested by the texts of the Syriac and Targumic translations (see BHS fn c). The Greek translation supports reading the verb “destroy” but treats it as though it were intransitive “until they are destroyed by his hand” (reading תֻּמָּם [tummam]). The MT here is accepted as the more difficult reading and support is seen in the transitive use of the verb in Ps 64:7.
tn Heb “I will punish that nation until I have destroyed them [i.e., its people] by his hand.” “Hand” here refers to agency. Hence, “I will use him.”
76 sn Various means of divination are alluded to in the OT. For example, Ezek 21:26-27 alludes to throwing down arrows to see which way they fall and consulting the shape of the liver of slaughtered animals. Gen 44:5 alludes to reading the future through pouring liquid in a cup. The means alluded to in this verse were all classified as pagan and prohibited as illegitimate in Deut 18:10-14. The
79 tn The words “Don’t listen to them” have been repeated from v. 9a to pick up the causal connection between v. 9a and v. 10 that is formally introduced by a causal particle in v. 10 in the original text.
80 tn Heb “they are prophesying a lie.”
81 tn Heb “lies will result in your being taken far…” (לְמַעַן [lÿma’an] + infinitive). This is a rather clear case of the particle לְמַעַן introducing result (contra BDB 775 s.v. מַעַן note 1. There is no irony in this statement; it is a bold prediction).
82 tn The words “out of your country” are not in the text but are implicit in the meaning of the verb. The words “in exile” are also not in the text but are implicit in the context. These words have been supplied in the translation for clarity.
84 tn The words “Things will go better for” are not in the text. They are supplied contextually as a means of breaking up the awkward syntax of the original which reads “The nation which brings its neck under the yoke of the king of Babylon and subjects itself to him, I will leave it…”
85 tn Heb “oracle of the
86 tn Heb “I spoke to Zedekiah…according to all these words, saying.”
89 tn Heb “with/by the sword.”
90 tn Heb “Why should you and your people die…?” The rhetorical question expects the answer made explicit in the translation, “There is no reason!”
91 tn Heb “…disease according to what the
93 tn Heb “oracle of the
94 sn The verbs are again plural referring to the king and his royal advisers.
95 tn Heb “…drive you out and you will perish, you and the prophets who are prophesying lies.”
96 tn Heb “don’t listen to the words of the prophets who are prophesying to you….” The sentence has been broken up for the sake of English style and one level of embedded quotes has been eliminated to ease complexity.
97 sn This refers to the valuable articles of the temple treasury which were carried off by Nebuchadnezzar four years earlier when he carried off Jeconiah, his family, some of his nobles, and some of the cream of Judean society (2 Kgs 24:10-16, especially v. 13 and see also vv. 19-20 in the verses following).
98 tn The imperative with vav (ו) here and in v. 12 after another imperative are a good example of the use of the imperative to introduce a consequence. (See GKC 324-25 §110.f and see Gen 42:18. This is a common verb in this idiom.)
99 tn According to E. W. Bullinger (Figures of Speech, 954) both this question and the one in v. 13 are examples of rhetorical questions of prohibition / “don’t let this city be made a pile of rubble.”
100 tn The words “I also told them” are not in the text, but it is obvious from the fact that the
101 tn Heb “the word of the
102 tn Heb “Yahweh of armies.”
sn For the significance of this title see the study note on 2:19.
103 tn Heb “…speaking to them, let them entreat the
105 tn The words “two bronze” are not in the text. They have been supplied in the translation to help identify the referent.
sn The two bronze pillars are the two free-standing pillars at the entrance of the temple (Jakin and Boaz) described in 1 Kgs 7:15-22.
106 tn The words “the large bronze basin called” are not in the text. They have been supplied in the translation to help identify the referent.
sn “The Sea” refers to the large basin that was mounted on twelve bronze bulls. It stood in front of the temple and contained water for the priests to bathe themselves (2 Chr 4:6; cf. Exod 30:17-21). It is described in 1 Kgs 7:23-26.
107 tn The words “movable bronze” are not in the text. They have been supplied in the translation to help identify the referent. See the study note for further reference.
sn The bronze stands are the movable bronze stands described in 1 Kgs 7:27-37. They were the stands for the bronze basins described in 1 Kgs 7:38-39. According to 2 Chr 4:6 the latter were used to wash the burnt offerings. The priests would have been very concerned especially about the big bronze basin and the movable stands and their basins because they involved their ritual purification apart from which they would have had no sanctity. These articles (or furnishings in this case) were broken up and the bronze carried away to Babylon along with all the other bronze, silver, and gold furnishings when the temple and the city were destroyed in 587
108 tn 27:19-20 are all one long sentence in Hebrew. It has been broken up for the sake of English style. Some of the sentences still violate contemporary English style (e.g., v. 20) but breaking them down any further would lose the focus. For further discussion see the study note on v. 21.
110 sn Some of the flavor of the repetitive nature of Hebrew narrative is apparent in vv. 19-21. In the Hebrew original vv. 19-20 are all one long sentence with complex coordination and subordinations. I.e., all the objects in v. 19 are all objects of the one verb “has spoken about” and the description in v. 20 is one long relative or descriptive clause. The introductory “For the
111 tn This verb is a little difficult to render here. The word is used in the sense of taking note of something and acting according to what is noticed. It is the word that has been translated several times throughout Jeremiah as “punish [someone].” It is also used in the opposite of sense of taking note and “show consideration for” (or “care for;” see, e.g., Ruth 1:6). Here the nuance is positive and is further clarified by the actions that follow, bringing them back and restoring them.
112 tn Heb “oracle of the
113 tc The original text is unusually full here and deemed by many scholars to be corrupt: Heb “And it happened in that year in the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah king of Judah, in the fourth year, in the fifth month Hananiah…said to…” Many scholars see a contradiction between “in the fourth year” and “in the beginning of the reign.” These scholars point to the fact that the Greek version does not have “in that year” and “in the beginning of the reign of”; it merely reads “in the fourth year of Zedekiah king of Judah, in the fifth month.” These scholars generally also regard the heading at 27:1 to be unoriginal and interpret the heading in the MT here as a faulty harmonization of the original (that in the Greek version) with the erroneous one in the Hebrew of 27:1. However, it is just as possible that the Greek version in both places is an attempt to harmonize the data of 27:1 and 28:1. I.e., it left out both the heading at 27:1, and “in that year” and “at the beginning of the reign of” in the heading here because it thought the data was contradictory. However, it is just as likely that there is really no contradiction here. I.e., the term “beginning of the reign” can include the fourth year. E. H. Merrill has argued that the term here refers not to the accession year (see the translator’s note on 26:1) but to the early years in general (“The ‘Accession Year’ and Davidic Chronology,” JANESCU 19 : 105-6, and cf. note 18 for bibliography on Akkadian parallels). Hence the phrase has been translated both here and in 27:1 “early in the reign of…” For other attempts at harmonization see the discussion in G. L. Keown, P. J. Scalise, T. G. Smothers, Jeremiah 26-52 (WBC), 41, n. 1a.
sn The dating here is very full and precise. “In that same year” ties the events here in with the messages that Jeremiah delivered to the envoys, the king and his court, and the priests and people while wearing the yoke symbolizing servitude to Nebuchadnezzar. The text wants to show that the events here transpired shortly after those in Jer 27 and that Jeremiah is still wearing the yoke. The supplying of the precise month is important because the end of the chapter will show that Jeremiah’s prophecy regarding Hananiah was fulfilled two months later. Hence Jeremiah is the true prophet and Hananiah and the others (27:16) are false. The supplying of the year is perhaps significant because the author states in 51:59 that Zedekiah went to Babylon that same year, probably to pledge his loyalty. The suggestion lies ready to hand that the events of this chapter and the preceding one lead to his dismissal of the false prophet Hananiah’s advice and the acceptance of Jeremiah’s.
114 tn Heb “to me.” The rest of the chapter is all in third person narrative (see vv. 5, 6, 10, 11, 12, 15). Hence, many explain the first person here as a misunderstanding of the abbreviation “to Jeremiah” (אֶל יִרְמִיָּה [’el yirmiyyah] = אֵלַי, [’elay]). It is just as likely that there is a similar kind of disjunction here that was found in 27:1-2 only in the opposite direction. There what started out as a third person report was really a first person report. Here what starts out as a first person report is really a third person report. The text betrays both the hands of the narrator, probably Baruch, and the reportee, Jeremiah, who dictated a synopsis of his messages and his stories to Baruch to write down (Jer 36:4, 32).
115 tn Heb “And it happened in that year in the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah king of Judah, in the fourth year, in the fifth month, Hananiah son of Azzur the prophet who was from Gibeon said to me in…” The sentence has been broken up in conformity with contemporary English style and the flavor given in modern equivalent terms.
117 sn See the study note on 27:2 for this figure. Hananiah is given the same title “the prophet” as Jeremiah throughout the chapter and claims to speak with the same authority (compare v. 2a with 27:21a). He even speaks like the true prophet; the verb form “I will break” is in the “prophetic perfect” emphasizing certitude. His message here is a contradiction of Jeremiah’s message recorded in the preceding chapter (compare especially v. 3 with 27:16, 19-22 and v. 4 with 22:24-28). The people and the priests are thus confronted with a choice of whom to believe. Who is the “true” prophet and who is the “false” one? Only fulfillment of their prophecies will prove which is which (see Deut 18:21-22).
118 tn Heb “Oracle of the
sn Notice again that the “false” prophet uses the same formula and claims the same source for his message as the true prophet has (cf. 27:22).
119 tn Heb “Listen to this word/message which I am about to speak in your ears and the ears of all these people.”
120 tn The word “invariably” is not in the text but is implicit in the context and in the tense of the Hebrew verb. It is supplied in the translation for clarity and to help bring out the contrast in the next verse.
121 tc Many Hebrew
122 tn The verbs in this verse are to be interpreted as iterative imperfects in past time rather than as futures because of the explicit contrast that is drawn in the two verses by the emphatic syntactical construction of the two verses. Both verses begin with a casus pendens construction to throw the two verses into contrast: Heb “The prophets who were before me and you from ancient times, they prophesied…The prophet who prophesied peace, when the word of that prophet came true, that prophet was known that the
123 tn Heb “I will break the yoke of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon from upon the necks of all the nations.”
124 tn Heb “Then the prophet Jeremiah went his way.”
125 tn Heb “Hananiah, ‘Thus says the
126 tn The Greek version reads “I have made/put” rather than “you have made/put.” This is the easier reading and is therefore rejected.
127 tn Heb “the yoke bars of wood you have broken, but you have made in its stead yoke bars of iron.”
sn This whole incident (and the preceding one in Jer 28) is symbolic. Jeremiah’s wearing of the yoke was symbolic of the
129 tn Heb “An iron yoke I have put on the necks of all these nations.”
131 tn Or “You are giving these people false assurances.”
132 sn There is a play on words here in Hebrew between “did not send you” and “will…remove you.” The two verbs are from the same root word in Hebrew. The first is the simple active and the second is the intensive.
133 sn In giving people false assurances of restoration when the
134 sn Comparison with Jer 28:1 shows that this whole incident took place in the space of two months. Hananiah had prophesied that the captivity would be over before two years had past. However, before two months were past, Hananiah himself died in fulfillment of Jeremiah’s prophecy of his death. His death was a validation of Jeremiah as a true prophet. The subsequent events of 588
136 tn Jer 29:1-3 are all one long sentence in Hebrew containing a parenthetical insertion. The text reads “These are the words of the letter which the prophet Jeremiah sent to the elders…people whom Nebuchadnezzar had exiled from Jerusalem to Babylon after King Jeconiah…had gone from Jerusalem by the hand of Elasah…whom Zedekiah sent…saying, ‘Thus says the
137 tn This term is often mistakenly understood to refer to a “eunuch.” It is clear, however, in Gen 39:1 that “eunuchs” could be married. On the other hand it is clear from Isa 59:3-5 that some who bore this title could not have children. In this period, it is possible that the persons who bore this title were high officials like the rab saris who was a high official in the Babylonian court (cf. Jer 39:3, 13; 52:25). For further references see HALOT 727 s.v. סָרִיס 1.c.
139 sn Elasah son of Shaphan may have been the brother of Ahikam, who supported Jeremiah when the priests and the prophets in Jerusalem sought to kill Jeremiah for preaching that the temple and the city would be destroyed (cf. 26:24).
140 sn This individual is not the same as the Gemariah mentioned in 36:10, 11, 12, 25 who was one of the officials who sought to have the first scroll of Jeremiah’s prophecies preserved. He may, however, have been a son or grandson of the High Priest who discovered the book of the law during the reign of Josiah (cf., e.g., 2 Kgs 22:8, 10) which was so instrumental in Josiah’s reforms.
141 sn It is unclear whether this incident preceded or followed those in the preceding chapter. It is known from 52:59 that Zedekiah himself had made a trip to Babylon in the same year mentioned in 28:1 and that Jeremiah had used that occasion to address a prophecy of disaster to Babylon. It is not impossible that Jeremiah sent two such disparate messages at the same time (see Jer 25:8-11, 12-14, 17-18, 26).
142 tn Heb “Yahweh of armies, the God of Israel.”
sn See study notes on 2:19 and 7:3 for the explanation of this title.
143 tn Heb “I sent.” This sentence exhibits a rapid switch in person, here from the third person to the first. Such switches are common to Hebrew poetry and prophecy (cf. GKC 462 §144.p). Contemporary English, however, does not exhibit such rapid switches and it creates confusion for the careful reader. Such switches have regularly been avoided in the translation.
sn Elsewhere Nebuchadnezzar is seen as the one who carried them into exile (cf. 27:20; 29:1). Here and in v. 14 the
145 tn Heb “Yahweh of armies, the God of Israel.”
sn See study notes on 2:19 and 7:3 for the explanation of this title.
147 tn Heb “prophesying lies to you in my name.”
sn For the significance of “in my name” see the study notes on 14:14 and 23:27.
148 tn Heb “Oracle of the
151 tn Verse 10 is all one long sentence in the Hebrew original: “According to the fullness of Babylon seventy years I will take thought of you and I will establish my gracious word to you by bringing you back to this place.” The sentence has been broken up to conform better to contemporary English style.
sn See Jer 27:22 for this promise.
153 tn Heb “Oracle of the
154 tn Heb “I know the plans that I am planning for you, oracle of the
155 tn Or “the future you hope for”; Heb “a future and a hope.” This is a good example of hendiadys where two formally coordinated nouns (adjectives, verbs) convey a single idea where one of the terms functions as a qualifier of the other. For this figure see E. W. Bullinger, Figures of Speech, 658-72. This example is discussed on p. 661.
156 tn Heb “come and pray to me.” This is an example of verbal hendiadys where two verb formally joined by “and” convey a main concept with the second verb functioning as an adverbial qualifier.
157 tn Or “You will call out to me and come to me in prayer and I will hear your prayers.” The verbs are vav consecutive perfects and can be taken either as unconditional futures or as contingent futures. See GKC 337 §112.kk and 494 §159.g and compare the usage in Gen 44:22 for the use of the vav consecutive perfects in contingent futures. The conditional clause in the middle of 29:13 and the deuteronomic theology reflected in both Deut 30:1-5 and 1 Kgs 8:46-48 suggest that the verbs are continent futures here. For the same demand for wholehearted seeking in these contexts which presuppose exile see especially Deut 30:2, 1 Kgs 8:48.
158 tn Or “If you wholeheartedly seek me”; Heb “You will seek me and find [me] because you will seek me with all your heart.” The translation attempts to reflect the theological nuances of “seeking” and “finding” and the psychological significance of “heart” which refers more to intellectual and volitional concerns in the OT than to emotional ones.
159 tn Heb “I will let myself be found by you.” For this nuance of the verb see BDB 594 s.v. מָצָא Niph.1.f and compare the usage in Isa 65:1; 2 Chr 15:2. The Greek version already noted that nuance when it translated the phrase “I will manifest myself to you.”
160 tn Heb “Oracle of the
161 tn Heb “restore your fortune.” Alternately, “I will bring you back from exile.” This idiom occurs twenty-six times in the OT and in several cases it is clearly not referring to return from exile but restoration of fortunes (e.g., Job 42:10; Hos 6:11–7:1; Jer 33:11). It is often followed as here by “regather” or “bring back” (e.g., Jer 30:3; Ezek 29:14) so it is often misunderstood as “bringing back the exiles.” The versions (LXX, Vulg., Tg., Pesh.) often translate the idiom as “to go away into captivity,” deriving the noun from שְׁבִי (shÿvi, “captivity”). However, the use of this expression in Old Aramaic documents of Sefire parallels the biblical idiom: “the gods restored the fortunes of the house of my father again” (J. A. Fitzmyer, The Aramaic Inscriptions of Sefire [BibOr], 100-101, 119-20). The idiom means “to turn someone's fortune, bring about change” or “to reestablish as it was” (HALOT 1386 s.v. 3.c). In Ezek 16:53 it is paralleled by the expression “to restore the situation which prevailed earlier.” This amounts to restitutio in integrum, which is applicable to the circumstances surrounding the return of the exiles.
162 tn Heb “Oracle of the
163 tn The words “of good news” are not in the text but are implicit from the context. They are supplied in the translation for clarity.
164 tn Heb “But thus says the
sn Jeremiah answers their claims that the
165 tn The words “of Jerusalem” are not in the text but are supplied in the translation to identify the referent and avoid the possible confusion that “this city” refers to Babylon.
167 tn Heb “the sword.”
168 tn The meaning of this word is somewhat uncertain. It occurs only here in the Hebrew Bible. BDB 1045 s.v. שֹׁעָר relates it to the noun “horrible thing” (translated “something shocking”) in Jer 5:30; 23:14 and defines it as “horrid, disgusting.” HALOT 1495 s.v. שֹׁעָר relates it to the same noun and define it as “rotten; corrupt.” That nuance is accepted here.
sn Compare Jer 24:8-10 in its context for the figure here.
169 tn Heb “with the sword.”
171 tn Heb “Oracle of the
172 tn The word “exiles” is not in the text. It is supplied in the translation to clarify the referent of “you.”
173 tn Heb “Oracle of the
174 tn Heb “pay attention to the word of the
175 tn Heb “Yahweh of armies, the God of Israel.”
sn See study notes on 2:19 and 7:3 for the explanation of this title.
177 sn Being roasted to death in the fire appears to have been a common method of execution in Babylon. See Dan 3:6, 19-21. The famous law code of the Babylonian king Hammurabi also mandated this method of execution for various crimes a thousand years earlier. There is a satirical play on words involving their fate, “roasted them to death” (קָלָם, qalam), and the fact that that fate would become a common topic of curse (קְלָלָה, qÿlalah) pronounced on others in Babylon.
178 tn It is commonly assumed that this word is explained by the two verbal actions that follow. The word (נְבָלָה, nÿvalah) is rather commonly used of sins of unchastity (cf., e.g., Gen 34:7; Judg 19:23; 2 Sam 13:12) which would fit the reference to adultery. However, the word is singular and not likely to cover both actions that follow. The word is also used of the greedy act of Achan (Josh 7:15) which threatened Israel with destruction and the churlish behavior of Nabal (1 Sam 25:25) which threatened him and his household with destruction. The word is also used of foolish talk in Isa 9:17 (9:16 HT) and Isa 32:6. It is possible that this refers to a separate act, one that would have brought the death penalty from Nebuchadnezzar, i.e., the preaching of rebellion in conformity with the message of the false prophets in Jerusalem and other nations (cf. 27:9, 13). Hence it is possible that the translation should read: “This will happen because of their vile conduct. They have propagated rebellion. They have committed adultery with their neighbors’ wives. They have spoken words that I did not command them to speak. They have spoken lies while claiming my authority.”
180 tn Heb “Oracle of the
181 tn The words “The
182 tn It is unclear whether this is a family name or a place name. The word occurs nowhere else in the Hebrew Bible.
183 tn Heb “Yahweh of armies, the God of Israel.”
sn See study notes on 2:19 and 7:3 for the explanation of this title.
184 tn Heb “Tell Shemaiah the Nehelamite, ‘Thus says Yahweh of armies the God of Israel….” The indirect quotation is used in the translation to avoid the complexity of embedding a quotation within a quotation.
185 sn Jer 29:24-32 are concerned with Jeremiah’s interaction with a false prophet named Shemaiah. The narrative in this section is not in strict chronological order and is somewhat elliptical. It begins with a report of a message that Jeremiah appears to have delivered directly to Shemaiah and refers to a letter that Shemaiah sent to the priest Zephaniah encouraging him to reprimand Jeremiah for what Shemaiah considered treasonous words in his letter to the exiles (vv. 24-28; compare v. 28 with v. 5). However, Jeremiah is in Jerusalem and Shemaiah is in Babylon. The address must then be part of a second letter Jeremiah sent to Babylon. Following this the narrative refers to Zephaniah reading Shemaiah’s letter to Jeremiah and Jeremiah sending a further letter to the captives in Babylon (vv. 29-32). This is probably not a third letter but part of the same letter in which Jeremiah reprimands Shemaiah for sending his letter to Zephaniah (vv. 25-28; the same letter referred to in v. 29). The order of events thus is: Jeremiah sent a letter to the captives counseling them to settle down in Babylon (vv. 1-23). Shemaiah sent a letter to Zephaniah asking him to reprimand Jeremiah (vv. 26-28). After Zephaniah read that letter to Jeremiah (v. 29), Jeremiah wrote a further letter to Babylon reprimanding him (vv. 25-28, 31) and pronouncing judgment on him (v. 32). The elliptical nature of the narrative is reflected in the fact that vv. 25-27 are part of a long causal sentence which sets forth an accusation but has no corresponding main clause or announcement of judgment. This kind of construction involves a rhetorical figure (called aposiopesis) where what is begun is not finished for various rhetorical reasons. Here the sentence that is broken off is part of an announcement of judgment which is not picked up until v. 32 after a further (though related) accusation (v. 31b).
187 tn Heb “letters.” Though GKC 397 §124.b, n. 1 denies it, this is probably a case of the plural of extension. For a similar usage see Isa 37:14 where the plural “letters” is referred to later as an “it.” Even if there were other “letters,” the focus is on the letter to Zephaniah.
188 sn According to Jer 52:24 and 2 Kgs 25:18 Zephaniah son of Maaseiah was second in command to the high priest. He was the high ranking priest who was sent along with a civic official to inquire of the
190 tn The words “In your letter you said to Zephaniah” are not in the text: Heb “you sent a letter to…, saying.” The sentence has been broken up to conform better to contemporary English style and these words have been supplied in the translation to make the transition to the address to Zephaniah in vv. 26-28.
191 tn Heb “in place of Jehoiada the priest.” The word “the priest” is unnecessary to the English sentence.
192 tc Heb “The
193 sn The Hebrew term translated lunatic applies to anyone who exhibits irrational behavior. It was used for example of David who drooled and scratched on the city gate to convince Achish not to arrest him as a politically dangerous threat (1 Sam 21:14). It was often used contemptuously of the prophets by those who wanted to play down the significance of their words (2 Kgs 9:11; Hos 9:7 and here).
194 tn The verb here is a good example of what IBHS 431 §26.2f calls the estimative-declarative reflexive where a person presents himself in a certain light. For examples of this usage see 2 Sam 13:5; Prov 13:7.
196 tn This word only occurs here in the Hebrew Bible. All the lexicons are agreed as seeing it referring to a collar placed around the neck. The basis for this definition are the cognate languages (see, e.g., HALOT 958-59 s.v. צִינֹק for the most complete discussion).
197 tn Heb “So why have you not reprimanded Jeremiah…?” The rhetorical question functions as an emphatic assertion made explicit in the translation.
198 tn Heb “For he has sent to us in Babylon, saying….” The quote, however, is part of the earlier letter.
200 tn Heb “in the ears of Jeremiah the prophet.”
201 tn Or “is giving you false assurances.”
202 tn Heb “Therefore.”
203 sn Compare the same charge against Hananiah in Jer 28:16 and see the note there. In this case, the false prophesy of Shemaiah is not given but it likely had the same tenor since he wants Jeremiah reprimanded for saying that the exile will be long and the people are to settle down in Babylon.
206 tn Heb “Write all the words which I speak to you in a scroll.” The verb “which I speak” is the instantaneous use of the perfect tense (cf. GKC 311-12 §106.i or IBHS 488-89 §30.5.1d). The words that the
sn Reference is made here to the so-called “Book of Consolation” which is the most extended treatment of the theme of hope or deliverance in the book. Jeremiah was called to be a prophet both of judgment (of tearing down and destroying) and of deliverance (of replanting and rebuilding; see Jer 1:10). Jeremiah lamented that he had to predominantly pronounce judgment but he has periodically woven in prophecies of hope after judgment in 3:14-18; 16:14-15; 23:3-8; 24:4-7; 29:10-14, 32. The oracles of hope contained in these chapters are undated but reference is made in them to the restoration of both Israel which had gone into exile in Assyria in 722
207 tn Heb “Oracle of the
209 tn Heb “fathers.”
210 sn As the nations of Israel and Judah were united in their sin and suffered the same fate – that of exile and dispersion – (cf. Jer 3:8; 5:11; 11:10, 17) so they will ultimately be regathered from the nations and rejoined under one king, a descendant of David, and regain possession of their ancestral lands. The prophets of both the eighth and seventh century looked forward to this ideal (see, e.g., Hos 1:11 (2:2 HT); Isa 11:11-13; Jer 23:5-6; 30:3; 33:7; Ezek 37:15-22). This has already been anticipated in Jer 3:18.
211 tn Heb “And these are the words/things that the
212 tn The particle כִּי (ki) is functioning here as loosely causal or epexegetical of the preceding introduction. For this usage cf. BDB 473-74 s.v. כִּי 3.c. This nuance borders on that of the intensive use of כִּי. See the discussion in BDB 472 s.v. כִּי note and כִּי 1.e.
213 tn Heb “We have heard the sound of panic and of fear, and there is no peace.” It is generally agreed that the person of the verb presupposes that this is an unintroduced quote of the people.
214 tn Heb “Ask and see/consider.”
215 tn Heb “with their hands on their loins.” The word rendered “loins” refers to the area between the ribs and the thighs.
216 tn Heb “Alas [or Woe] for that day will be great.” For the use of the particle “Alas” to signal a time of terrible trouble, even to sound the death knell for someone, see the translator’s note on 22:13.
sn The reference to a terrible time of trouble (Heb “that day”) is a common shorthand reference in the prophets to “the Day of the
217 tn Heb “It is a time of trouble for Jacob but he will be saved out of it.”
sn Jacob here is figurative for the people descended from him. Moreover the figure moves from Jacob = descendants of Jacob to only a part of those descendants. Not all of his descendants who have experienced and are now experiencing trouble will be saved. Only a remnant (i.e., the good figs, cf., e.g., Jer 23:3; 31:7) will see the good things that the
218 tn Heb “And it shall happen in that day.”
sn The time for them to be rescued (Heb “that day”) is the day of deliverance from the trouble alluded to at the end of the preceding verse, not the day of trouble mentioned at the beginning. Israel (even the good figs) will still need to go through the period of trouble (cf. vv. 10-11).
220 tn Heb “I will break his yoke from upon your neck.” For the explanation of the figure see the study note on 27:2. The shift from third person at the end of v. 7 to second person in v. 8c, d and back to third person in v. 8e is typical of Hebrew poetry in the book of Psalms and in the prophetic books (cf., GKC 351 §114.p and compare usage in Deut 32:15; Isa 5:8 listed there). The present translation, like several other modern ones, has typically leveled them to the same person to avoid confusion for modern readers who are not accustomed to this poetic tradition.
sn In the immediate context the reference to the yoke of their servitude to foreign domination (Heb “his yoke”) should be understood as a reference to the yoke of servitude to Nebuchadnezzar which has been referred to often in Jer 27-28 (see, e.g., 27:8, 12; 28:2, 4, 11). The end of that servitude has already been referred to in 25:11-14; 29:11-14. Like many other passages in the OT it has been given a later eschatological reinterpretation in the light of subsequent bondages and lack of complete fulfillment, i.e., of restoration to the land and restoration of the Davidic monarchy.
221 tn Heb “I will tear off their bands.” The “bands” are the leather straps which held the yoke bars in place (cf. 27:2). The metaphor of the “yoke on the neck” is continued. The translation reflects the sense of the metaphor but not the specific referent.
222 tn The word “subject” in this verse and “subjugate” are from the same root word in Hebrew. A deliberate contrast is drawn between the two powers that they will serve.
223 tn Heb “and to David their king whom I will raise up for them.”
sn The Davidic ruler which I will raise up as king over them refers to a descendant of David who would be raised up over a regathered and reunited Israel and Judah. He is called “David” in Hos 3:5, Ezek 34:23-24; 37:24-25 and referred to as a shoot or sprig of Jesse in Isa 11:1, 10 and a “righteous branch” springing from David (the Davidic line). He is called “David” because he is from the Davidic line and because David is the type of the ideal king whom the prophets looked forward to. See further the study notes on 23:5 for this ideal king and for his relation to the NT fulfillment in the person of Jesus the Christ.
224 tn Heb “So do not be afraid, my servant Jacob, oracle of the
225 tn Heb “For I will rescue you from far away, your descendants from the land of their captivity.”
227 tn Heb “Oracle of the
228 tn The translation “entirely unpunished” is intended to reflect the emphatic construction of the infinitive absolute before the finite verb.
231 sn The wounds to the body politic are those of the incursions from the enemy from the north referred to in Jer 4:6; 6:1 over which Jeremiah and even God himself have lamented (Jer 8:21; 10:19; 14:17). The enemy from the north has been identified as Babylon and has been identified as the agent of God’s punishment of his disobedient people (Jer 1:15; 4:6; 25:9).
232 tc The translation of these first two lines follows the redivision of the lines suggested in NIV and NRSV rather than that of the Masoretes who read, “There is no one who pleads your cause with reference to [your] wound.”
sn This verse exhibits a mixed metaphor of an advocate pleading someone’s case (cf., Jer 5:28; 22:18) and of a physician applying medicine to wounds and sores resulting from them (see, e.g., Jer 8:18 for the latter metaphor). Zion’s sins are beyond defense and the wounds inflicted upon her beyond healing. However, God, himself, in his own time will forgive her sins (Jer 31:34; 33:8) and heal her wounds (Jer 30:17).
233 tn Heb “forgotten you.”
234 tn Heb “attacked you like…with the chastening of a cruel one because of the greatness of your iniquity [and because] your sins are many.” The sentence has been broken down to conform to contemporary English style and better poetic scansion.
235 tn For the translation of this particle, which is normally translated “therefore” and often introduces an announcement of judgment, compare the usage at Jer 16:14 and the translator’s note there. Here as there it introduces a contrast, a rather unexpected announcement of salvation. For a similar use see also Hos 2:14 (2:16 HT). Recognition of this usage makes the proposed emendation of BHS of לָכֵן כָּל (lakhen kol) to וְכָל (vÿkhol) unnecessary.
236 sn With the exception of the second line there is a definite attempt at wordplay in each line to underline the principle of lex talionis on a national and political level. This principle has already been appealed to in the case of the end of Babylonian sovereignty in 25:14; 27:7.
237 tn Again the particle כִּי (ki) appears to be intensive rather than causal. Compare the translator’s note on v. 12. It is possible that it has an adversative sense as an implicit contrast with v. 13 which expresses these concepts in the negative (cf. BDB 474 s.v. כִּי 3.e for this use in statements which are contextually closer to one another).
238 tn Heb “Oracle of the
239 tn Heb “I will restore the fortunes of the tents of Jacob and will have compassion on his habitations.” For the meaning of the idiom “restore the fortunes of” see the translator’s note on 29:14. The “tents of Jacob” refers to their homes or houses (see BDB 14 s.v. אֹהֶל 2 and compare usage in Judg 19:9; Mal 2:12). The word “ruined” has been supplied in the translation to show more clearly the idea of restoration of their houses on their former sites in conformity to the concepts in the latter half of the verse.
240 sn Heb “on its tel.” A tel is a site where successive layers of occupation are built upon one another after the destruction or decay of the former city. The original site was not abandoned because it had been chosen for strategic purposes, such as proximity to water or ease of defense. Many modern archaeological sites have the designation “Tel” as a component of their name because of this practice.
242 tn Heb “Out of them will come thanksgiving and a sound of those who are playful.”
244 tn Heb “his children will be as in former times and his congregation/community will be established before me.” “His children” refers to “Jacob” who has been referred to in v. 18 in the phrase “I will restore the fortunes of the tents of Jacob.” “His children” are thus the restored exiles. Some commentaries see the reference here to the restoration of numbers in accordance with the previous verse. However, the last line of this verse and the reference to the ruler in the following verse suggests rather restoration of the religious and political institutions to their former state. For the use of the word translated “community” (עֵדָה, ’edah) to refer to a political congregation as well as its normal use to refer to a religious one see 1 Kgs 12:20. For the idea of “in my favor” (i.e., under the eye and regard of) for the Hebrew phrase used here (לְפָנַי, lÿfanay) see BDB 817 s.v. פָּנֶה II.4.a(b).
245 sn The statement their ruler will come from their own number accords with the regulation in Deut 17:15. They would not be ruled by a foreign leader but by one of their own people. In v. 9 he is specifically said to come from the Davidic line. See the study note there.
246 sn Ordinarily this prerogative was confined to the priests and the Levites and even then under strict regulations (cf., e.g., Num 8:19; 16:10; Lev 16:10; 21:17; 22:3). Uzziah king of Judah violated this and suffered leprosy for having done so (2 Chr 26:16-20). It is clear, however, that both David and Solomon on occasion exercised priestly functions in the presence of the ark or the altar which it was normally lawful for only the priests to approach (cf., e.g., 2 Sam 6:13-14; 1 Kgs 8:22, 54-55). Here reference is probably not to the normal prerogatives of offering sacrifice or burning incense but access to God’s special presence at special times for the purpose of consultation.
247 tn Heb “For who is he who would pledge his heart to draw near to me.” The question is a rhetorical one expecting the answer “no one” and is a way of expressing an emphatic negative (see BDB 566 s.v. מִי f[c]). The concept of “pledging” something refers to putting up security in guarantee of payment. Here the word is used figuratively of “putting up one’s heart [i.e., his very being (cf. BDB 524 s.v. לֵב 7 and Ps 22:26)]” for the privilege of access to God. The rhetorical question denies that any one would do that if he were not bidden by God to do so.
248 tn Heb “Oracle of the
249 sn This was their highest privilege (cf. Exod 6:7, Lev 26:12; Jer 24:7) but also their greatest responsibility (cf. Jer 7:3; 11:4). It is a formula referring to a covenant relationship in which God pledges to protect, provide, and be present with his people and they in turn promise to be loyal and obedient to him (see Deut 26:17-18; 29:10-13).
250 sn Jer 30:23-24 are almost a verbatim repetition of 23:19-20. There the verses were addressed to the people of Jerusalem as a warning that the false prophets had no intimate awareness of the
251 sn This verse repeats v. 22 but with specific reference to all the clans of Israel, i.e., to all Israel and Judah. It functions here as a transition to the next section which will deal with the restoration of Israel (31:3-20) and Judah (31:21-25) and their reunification in the land (31:27-29) under a new covenant relation with God (31:31-37). See also the study note on 30:3 for further reference to this reunification in Jeremiah and the other prophets.
252 tn Heb “Oracle of the
253 tn Heb “who survived the sword.”
sn This refers to the remnant of northern Israel who had not been killed when Assyria conquered Israel in 722
254 tn Or “The people of Israel who survived the onslaughts of Egypt and Amalek found favor in the wilderness as they journeyed to find rest. At that time long ago the
255 tn Heb “Virgin Israel.”
sn For the significance of this metaphor see the note on Jer 14:17. Here the emphasis appears on his special love and care for his people and the hint (further developed in vv. 21-22) that, though guilty of sin, he considers them like an innocent young virgin.
258 sn The terms used here refer to the enjoyment of a period of peace and stability and the reversal of the curse (contrast, e.g., Deut 28:30). The Hebrew word translated “enjoy its fruit” is a technical one that refers to the owner of a vineyard getting to enjoy its fruit in the fifth year after it was planted, the crops of the first three years lying fallow, and that of the fourth being given to the
259 sn Watchmen were stationed at vantage points to pass on warning of coming attack (Jer 6:17; Ezek 33:2, 6) or to spread the news of victory (Isa 52:8). Here reference is made to the watchmen who signaled the special times of the year such as the new moon and festival times when Israel was to go to Jerusalem to worship. Reference is not made to these in the Hebrew Bible but there is a good deal of instruction regarding them in the later Babylonian Talmud.
260 sn Not only will Israel and Judah be reunited under one ruler (cf. 23:5-6), but they will share a unified place and practice of worship once again in contrast to Israel using the illicit places of worship, illicit priesthood, and illicit feasts instituted by Jeroboam (1 Kgs 12:26-31) and continued until the downfall of Samaria in 722
263 tn It is unclear who the addressees of the masculine plural imperatives are in this verse. Possibly they are the implied exiles who are viewed as in the process of returning and praying for their fellow countrymen.
264 tc Or “The
267 sn Jer 31:8-9 are reminiscent of the “New Exodus” motif of Isa 40-66 which has already been referred to in Jer 16:14-15; 23:7-8. See especially Isa 35:3-10; 40:3-5, 11; 41:17-20; 42:14-17; 43:16-21; 49:9-13. As there, the New Exodus will so outstrip the old that the old will pale in comparison and be almost forgotten (see Jer 23:7-8).
268 sn Ephraim was the second son of Joseph who was elevated to a place of prominence in the family of Jacob by the patriarch’s special blessing. It was the strongest tribe in northern Israel and Samaria lay in its territory. It is often used as a poetic parallel for Israel as here. The poetry is not speaking of two separate entities here; it is a way of repeating an idea for emphasis. Moreover, there is no intent to show special preference for northern Israel over Judah. All Israel is metaphorically God’s son and the object of his special care and concern (Exod 4:22; Deut 32:6).
269 sn Two rather theologically significant metaphors are used in this verse. The Hebrew word translated “will set…free” is a word used in the legal sphere for paying a redemption price to secure the freedom of a person or thing (see, e.g., Exod 13:13, 15). It is used metaphorically and theologically to refer to Israel’s deliverance from Egyptian bondage (Deut 15:15; Mic 6:4) and its deliverance from Babylonian exile (Isa 35:10). The word translated “secure their release” is a word used in the sphere of family responsibility where a person paid the price to free an indentured relative (Lev 25:48, 49) or paid the price to restore a relative’s property seized to pay a debt (Lev 25:25, 33). This word, too, was used to refer metaphorically and theologically to Israel’s deliverance from Egyptian bondage (Exod 6:6) or release from Babylonian exile (Isa 43:1-4; 44:22). These words are traditionally translated “ransom” and “redeem” and are a part of traditional Jewish and Christian vocabulary for physical and spiritual deliverance.
270 tn Heb “from the hand/power of the one too strong for him.”
271 tn Reading a Qal perfect from the root II נָהַר (nahar; so KBL 509 s.v. and HALOT 639 s.v.) rather than I נָהַר (so BDB 625 s.v.).
272 tn Heb “Oracle of the
273 tc The translation follows the reading of the LXX (Greek version). The Hebrew reads “will dance and be glad, young men and old men together.” The Greek version presupposes a Qal imperfect of a rare verb (יַחְדּוּ [yakhdu] from the verb חָדָה [khadah]; see BDB 292 s.v. II חָדָה Qal) as opposed to the Hebrew text which reads a common adverb יַחְדָּו (yakhdav). The consonantal text is the same but the vocalization is different. There are no other examples of the syntax of the adverb used this way (i.e., of a compound subject added to a third subject) and the vocalization of the Hebrew text can be explained on the basis of a scribe misvocalizing the text based on his greater familiarity with the adverb.
274 tn Heb “I will satiate the priests with fat.” However, the word translated “fat” refers literally to the fat ashes of the sacrifices (see Lev 1:16; 4:2 and cf. BDB 206 s.v. דֶּשֶׁן 2. The word is used more abstractly for “abundance” or “rich food” (see Job 36:16 and BDB 206 s.v. דֶּשֶׁן 1). The people and the priests were prohibited from eating the fat (Lev 7:23-24).
275 sn Ramah is a town in Benjamin approximately five miles (8 km) north of Jerusalem. It was on the road between Bethel and Bethlehem. Traditionally, Rachel’s tomb was located near there at a place called Zelzah (1 Sam 10:2). Rachel was the mother of Joseph and Benjamin and was very concerned about having children because she was barren (Gen 30:1-2) and went to great lengths to have them (Gen 30:3, 14-15, 22-24). She was the grandmother of Ephraim and Manasseh which were two of the major tribes in northern Israel. Here Rachel is viewed metaphorically as weeping for her “children,” the descendants of Ephraim and Manasseh, who had been carried away into captivity in 722
277 tn The words “to her” are not in the text but are implicit from the context. They are supplied in the translation for clarity.
278 tn Heb “Refrain your voice from crying and your eyes from tears.”
280 tn Heb “Oracle of the
281 tn For this nuance for the Hebrew word אַחֲרִית (’akharit) see BDB 31 s.v. אַחֲרִית d and compare usage in Pss 37:38; 109:13. Others translate “your future” but the “future” lies with the return of her descendants, her posterity.
282 tn Heb “Oracle of the
283 tn The use of “indeed” is intended to reflect the infinitive absolute which precedes the verb for emphasis (see IBHS 585-86 §35.3.1f).
sn Jer 2:20; 5:5 already referred to Israel’s refusal to bear the yoke of loyalty and obedience to the
286 tn The verb here is from the same root as the preceding and is probably an example of the “tolerative Niphal,” i.e., “I let myself be disciplined/I responded to it.” See IBHS 389-90 §23.4g and note the translation of some of the examples there, especially Isa 19:22; 65:1.
287 tn Heb “Bring me back in order that I may come back.” For the use of the plural pronouns see the marginal note at the beginning of the verse. The verb “bring back” and “come back” are from the same root in two different verbal stems and in the context express the idea of spiritual repentance and restoration of relationship not physical return to the land. (See BDB 999 s.v. שׁוּב Hiph.2.a for the first verb and 997 s.v. Qal.6.c for the second.) For the use of the cohortative to express purpose after the imperative see GKC 320 §108.d or IBHS 575 §34.5.2b.
sn There is a wordplay on several different nuances of the same Hebrew verb in vv. 16-19. The Hebrew verb shub refers both to their turning away from God (v. 19) and to their turning back to him (v. 18). It is also the word that is used for their return to their homeland (vv. 16-17).
288 tn For this meaning of the verb see HAL 374 s.v. יָדַע Nif 5 or W. L. Holladay, Concise Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon, 129. REB translates “Now that I am submissive” relating the verb to a second root meaning “be submissive.” (See HALOT 375 s.v. II יָדַע and J. Barr, Comparative Philology and the Text of the Old Testament, 19-21, for evidence for this verb. Other passages cited with this nuance are Judg 8:16; Prov 10:9; Job 20:20.)
sn The expression the disgraceful things we did in our earlier history refers to the disgrace that accompanied the sins that Israel did in her earlier years before she learned the painful lesson of submission to the
291 tn Heb “Is Ephraim a dear son to me or a child of delight?” For the substitution of Israel for Ephraim and the plural pronouns for the singular see the note on v. 18. According to BDB 210 s.v. הֲ 1.c the question is rhetorical having the force of an impassioned affirmation. See 1 Sam 2:27; Job 41:9 (41:1 HT) for parallel usage.
292 tn Heb “my stomach churns for him.” The parallelism shows that this refers to pity or compassion.
293 tn Heb “Oracle of the
294 tn The words “I will say” are not in the text. They are supplied in the translation to mark the transition from the address about Israel in a response to Rachel’s weeping (vv. 15-20) to a direct address to Israel which is essentially the answer to Israel’s prayer of penitence (cf. G. L. Keown, P. J. Scalise, T. G. Smothers, Jeremiah 26-52 [WBC], 121.)
296 tn Heb “Set your mind to the highway, the way which you went.” The phrase “the way you went” has been translated “the road you took when you were carried off” to help the reader see the reference to the exile implicit in the context. The verb “which you went” is another example of the old second feminine singular which the Masoretes typically revocalize (Kethib הָלָכְתִּי [halakhti]; Qere הָלָכְתְּ [halakht]). The vocative has been supplied in the translation at the beginning to help make the transition from third person reference to Ephraim/Israel in the preceding to second person in the following and to identify the referent of the imperatives. Likewise, this line has been moved to the front to show that the reference to setting up sign posts and landmarks is not literal but figurative, referring to making a mental note of the way they took when carried off so that they can easily find their way back. Lines three and four in the Hebrew text read, “Set up sign posts for yourself; set up guideposts/landmarks for yourself.” The word translated “telltale signs marking the way” occurs only here. Though its etymology and precise meaning are unknown, all the lexicons agree in translating it as “sign post” or something similar based on the parallelism.
297 tn The translation “dilly-dally” is suggested by J. Bright, Jeremiah (AB), 276. The verb occurs only here in this stem (the Hitpael) and only one other time in any other stem (the Qal in Song 5:6). The dictionaries define it as “to turn this way and that” (cf., e.g., BDB 330 s.v. חָמַק Hithp.). In the context it refers to turning this way and that looking for the way back.
298 sn Israel’s backsliding is forgotten and forgiven. They had once been characterized as an apostate people (3:14, 22; the word “apostate” and “unfaithful” are the same in Hebrew) and figuratively depicted as an adulterous wife (3:20). Now they are viewed as having responded to his invitation (compare 31:18-19 with 3:22-25). Hence they are no longer depicted as an unfaithful daughter but as an unsullied virgin (see the literal translation of “my dear children” in vv. 4, 21 and the study note on v. 4.)
299 tn Heb “For the
300 sn Heb “create.” This word is always used with God as the subject and refers to the production of something new or unique, like the creation of the world and the first man and woman (Gen 1:1; 2:3; 1:27; 5:1) or the creation of a new heavens and a new earth in a new age (Isa 65:17), or the bringing about of new and unique circumstances (Num 16:30). Here reference is made contextually to the new exodus, that marvelous deliverance which will be so great that the old will pale in comparison (see the first note on v. 9).
301 tn The meaning of this last line is uncertain. The translation has taken it as proverbial for something new and unique. For a fairly complete discussion of most of the options see C. Feinberg, “Jeremiah,” EBC 6:571. For the nuance of “protecting” for the verb here see BDB 686 s.v. סָבַב Po‘ 1 and compare the usage in Deut 32:10.
303 tn Heb “They [i.e., people (the indefinite plural, GKC 460 §144.g)] will again say in the land of Judah and in its cities when I restore their fortunes.” For the meaning of the idiom “to restore the fortunes” see the translator’s note on 29:14.
304 tn The words “of Jerusalem” are not in the text but it is implicit in the titles that follow. They have been supplied in the translation for clarity to aid in identifying the referent.
305 sn The blessing pronounced on the city of Zion/Jerusalem by the restored exiles looks at the restoration of its once exalted state as the city known for its sanctity and its just dealing (see Isa 1:21 and Ps 122). This was a reversal of the state of Jerusalem in the time of Isaiah and Jeremiah where wickedness not righteousness characterized the inhabitants of the city (cf. Isa 1:21; Jer 4:14; 5:1; 13:27). The blessing here presupposes the rebuilding of the city of Jerusalem and the temple which gave the city its sanctity.
306 tn The translation “those who move about with their flocks” is based on an emendation of the Hebrew text which reads a third plural Qal perfect (נָסְעוּ, nos’u) to a masculine plural Qal participle in the construct (נֹסְעֵי, nosÿ’e) as suggested in the BHS fn. For the use of the construct participle before a noun with a preposition see GKC 421 §130.a. It is generally agreed that three classes of people are referred to here, townspeople, farmers, and shepherds. But the syntax of the Hebrew sentence is a little awkward: “And they [i.e., “people” (the indefinite plural, GKC 460 §144.g)] will live in it, Judah and all its cities [an apposition of nearer definition (GKC 425-26 §131.n)], [along with] farmers and those who move about with their flocks.” The first line refers awkwardly to the townspeople and the other two classes are added asyndetically (i.e., without the conjunction “and”).
307 tn The verbs here again emphasize that the actions are as good as done (i.e., they are prophetic perfects; cf. GKC 312-13 §106.n).
sn For the concept here compare Jer 31:12 where the promise was applied to northern Israel. This represents the reversal of the conditions that would characterize the exiles according to the covenant curse of Deut 28:65-67.
308 tn Or “When I, Jeremiah, heard this, I woke up and looked around. My sleep had been very pleasant.” The text is somewhat enigmatic. It has often been explained as an indication that Jeremiah had received this communication (30:3–31:26) while in a prophetic trance (compare Dan 10:9). However, there is no other indication that this is a vision or a vision report. G. L. Keown, P. J. Scalise, and T. G. Smothers (Jeremiah 26-52 [WBC], 124, 128-29) suggest that this is a speech of the restored (and refreshed) exiles like that which is formally introduced in v. 23. This speech, however, is not formally introduced. This interpretation is also reflected in TEV, CEV and is accepted here as fitting the context better and demanding less presuppositions. The Hebrew text reads literally, “Upon this I awoke and looked and my sleep was sweet to me.” Keown, Scalise, and Smothers have the best discussion of these two options as well as several other options.
sn This same expression is found in the introduction to the Book of Consolation (Jer 30:1-3) and in the introduction to the promise of a new covenant (or covenant; 31:31). In all three passages it is emphasized that the conditions apply to both Israel and Judah. The
310 tn Heb “Oracle of the
311 tn Heb “Behold, the days are coming and [= when] I will sow the house of Israel and the house of Judah with the seed of people and of animals.” For the significance of the metaphor see the study note.
sn The metaphor used here presupposes that drawn in Hos 2:23 (2:25 HT) which is in turn based on the wordplay with Jezreel (meaning “God sows”) in Hos 2:22. The figure is that of plant seed in the ground which produces a crop; here what are sown are the “seeds of people and animals.” For a similar picture of the repopulating of Israel and Judah see Ezek 36:10-11. The promise here reverses the scene of devastation that Jeremiah had depicted apocalyptically and hyperbolically in Jer 4:23-29 as judgment for Judah’s sins.
313 tn Heb “Oracle of the
314 tn This word only occurs here and in the parallel passage in Ezek 18:2 in the Qal stem and in Eccl 10:10 in the Piel stem. In the latter passage it refers to the bluntness of an ax that has not been sharpened. Here the idea is of the “bluntness” of the teeth, not from having ground them down due to the bitter taste of sour grapes but to the fact that they have lost their “edge,” “bite,” or “sharpness” because they are numb from the sour taste. For this meaning for the word see W. L. Holladay, Jeremiah (Hermeneia), 2:197.
sn This is a proverbial statement that is also found in Ezek 18:2. It served to articulate the complaint that the present generation was suffering for the accrued sins of their ancestors (cf. Lam 5:7) and that the
315 sn The
316 tn Heb “Oracle of the
318 tn Heb “the house of Israel and the house of Judah.”
319 tn The word “old” is not in the text but is implicit in the use of the word “new.” It is supplied in the translation for greater clarity.
320 tn Heb “fathers.”
sn This refers to the Mosaic covenant which the nation entered into with God at Sinai and renewed on the plains of Moab. The primary biblical passages explicating this covenant are Exod 19–24 and the book of Deuteronomy; see as well the study note on Jer 11:2 for the form this covenant took and its relation to the warnings of the prophets. The renewed document of Deuteronomy was written down and provisions made for periodic public reading and renewal of commitment to it (Deut 31:9-13). Josiah had done this after the discovery of the book of the law (which was either Deuteronomy or a synopsis of it) early in the ministry of Jeremiah (2 Kgs 23:1-4; the date would be near 622
321 tn Heb “when I took them by the hand and led them out.”
sn The metaphor of Yahweh as husband and Israel as wife has been used already in Jer 3 and is implicit in the repeated allusions to idolatry as spiritual adultery or prostitution. The best commentary on the faithfulness of God to his “husband-like” relation is seen in the book of Hosea, especially in Hos 1-3.
323 tn Heb “Oracle of the
325 tn Heb “after those days.” Commentators are generally agreed that this refers to the return from exile and the repopulation of the land referred to in vv. 27-28 and not to something subsequent to the time mentioned in v. 30. This is the sequencing that is also presupposed in other new covenant passages such as Deut 30:1-6; Ezek 11:17-20; 36:24-28.
326 tn Heb “Oracle of the
327 tn Heb “‘But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after these days:’ says the
328 tn Heb “in their inward parts.” The Hebrew word here refers to the seat of the thoughts, emotions, and decisions (Jer 9:8 [9:7 HT]). It is essentially synonymous with “heart” in Hebrew psychological terms.
329 tn The words “and minds” is not in the text but is supplied in the translation to bring the English psychology more into line with the Hebrew where the “heart” is the center both of knowing/thinking/reflecting and deciding/willing.
sn Two contexts are relevant for understanding this statement. First is the context of the first or old covenant which was characterized by a law written on stone tablets (e.g., Exod 32:15-16; 34:1, 28; Deut 4:13; 5:22; 9:10) or in a “book” or “scroll” (Deut 31:9-13) which could be lost (cf. 2 Kgs 22:8), forgotten (Hos 4:6), ignored (Jer 6:19; Amos 4:2), or altered (Jer 8:8). Second is the context of the repeated fault that Jeremiah has found with their stubborn (3:17; 7:24; 9:14; 11:8; 13:10; 16:12; 18:12; 23:17), uncircumcised (4:4; 9:26), and desperately wicked hearts (4:4; 17:9). Radical changes were necessary to get the people to obey the law from the heart and not just pay superficial or lip service to it (3:10; 12:2). Deut 30:1-6; Ezek 11:17-20; 36:24-28 speak of these radical changes. The
331 tn Heb “teach…, saying, ‘Know the
sn As mentioned in the translator’s note on 9:3 (9:2 HT) “knowing” God in covenant contexts like this involves more than just an awareness of who he is (9:23 [9:22 HT]). It involves an acknowledgment of his sovereignty and whole hearted commitment to obedience to him. This is perhaps best seen in the parallelisms in Hos 4:1; 6:6 where “the knowledge of God” is parallel with faithfulness and steadfast love and in the context of Hos 4 refers to obedience to the
332 sn This statement should be understood against the background of Jer 8:8-9 where class distinctions were drawn and certain people were considered to have more awareness and responsibility for knowing the law and also Jer 5:1-5 and 9:3-9 where the sinfulness of Israel was seen to be universal across these class distinctions and no trust was to be placed in friends, neighbors, or relatives because all without distinction had cast off God’s yoke (i.e., refused to submit themselves to his authority).
333 tn The Hebrew particle כִּי (ki) that introduces this clause refers to more than just the preceding clause (i.e., that all will know the
334 tn Heb “Yahweh of armies.” See the study note on 2:19 for this title. In the Hebrew text the verse reads: “Thus says the
335 tn Heb “Oracle of the
336 tn Heb “‘If these fixed orderings were to fail to be present before me,’ oracle of the
338 tn Heb “If the heavens above could be measured or the foundations of the earth below be explored, then also I could reject all the seed of Israel for all they have done.”
339 tn Heb “Oracle of the
340 tc The words “is coming” (בָּאִים, ba’im) are not in the written text (Kethib) but are supplied in the margin (Qere), in several Hebrew
sn On this idiom compare vv. 27, 31.
341 tn Heb “Oracle of the
343 tn Heb “the city will be built to [or for] the
344 tn The word “westward” is not in the text but is supplied in the translation to give some orientation.
sn The Tower of Hananel is referred to in Neh 3:1; 12:39; Zech 14:10. According to the directions given in Neh 3 it was in the northern wall, perhaps in the northeast corner, north of the temple mount. The Corner Gate is mentioned again in 2 Kgs 14:13; 2 Chr 25:23; 26:9; Zech 14:10. It is generally agreed that it was located in the northwest corner of the city.
345 tn The words “west” and “southward” are not in the text but are supplied in the translation to give some orientation.
sn The location of the Hill of Gareb and the place called Goah are not precisely known. However, it has been plausibly suggested from the other localities mentioned that the reference is to the hill west of the Hinnom valley mentioned in Josh 15:8. The location of Goah is generally placed south of that near the southwest corner of the Hinnom Valley which is referred to in the next verse.
346 sn It is generally agreed that this refers to the Hinnom Valley which was on the southwestern and southern side of the city. It was here where the people of Jerusalem had burned their children as sacrifices and where the
347 tc The translation here follows the Qere and a number of Hebrew
348 sn The Kidron Valley is the valley that joins the Hinnom Valley in the southeastern corner of the city and runs northward on the east side of the city.
349 tn The words “on the east” and “north” are not in the text but are supplied in the translation to give orientation.
351 tn The words “will be included within this city that is” are not in the text. The text merely says that “The whole valley…will be sacred to the
sn The area that is here delimited is larger than any of the known boundaries of Jerusalem during the OT period. Again, this refers to the increase in population of the restored community (cf. 31:27).
sn The dating formulas indicate that the date was 588/87
353 sn Jer 32:2-5 are parenthetical, giving the background for the actual report of what the
354 sn According to Jer 39:1 the siege began in Zedekiah’s ninth year (i.e., in 589/88
355 tn Heb “the courtyard of the guarding” or “place of guarding.” This expression occurs only in the book of Jeremiah (32:2, 8, 12; 33:1; 37:21; 38:6, 12, 28; 39:14, 15) and in Neh 3:25. It is not the same as an enclosed prison which is where Jeremiah was initially confined (37:15-16; literally a “house of imprisoning” [בֵּית הָאֵסוּר, bet ha’esur] or “house of confining” [בֵּית הַכֶּלֶא, bet hakkele’]). It is said to have been in the palace compound (32:2) near the citadel or upper palace (Neh 3:25). Though it was a place of confinement (32:2; 33:1; 39:15) Jeremiah was able to receive visitors, e.g., his cousin Hanamel (32:8) and the scribe Baruch (32:12), and conduct business there (32:12). According to 32:12 other Judeans were also housed there. A cistern of one of the royal princes, Malkijah, was located in this courtyard, so this is probably not a “prison compound” as NJPS interpret but a courtyard adjacent to a guardhouse or guard post (so G. L. Keown, P. J. Scalise, T. G. Smothers, Jeremiah 26-52 [WBC], 151, and compare Neh 12:39 where reference is made to a Gate of the Guard/Guardhouse) used here for housing political prisoners who did not deserve death or solitary confinement as some of the officials though Jeremiah did.
356 tn Heb “Zedekiah king of Judah.”
357 tn The translation represents an attempt to break up a very long Hebrew sentence with several levels of subordination and embedded quotations and also an attempt to capture the rhetorical force of the question “Why…” which is probably an example of what E. W. Bullinger (Figures of Speech, 953-54) calls a rhetorical question of expostulation or remonstrance (cf. the note on 26:9 and compare also the question in 36:29. In all three of these cases NJPS translates “How dare you…” which captures the force nicely). The Hebrew text reads, “For Zedekiah king of Judah had confined him, saying, ‘Why are you prophesying, saying, “Thus says the
359 tn Heb “his [Zedekiah’s] mouth will speak with his [Nebuchadnezzar’s] mouth and his eyes will see his eyes.” The verbs here are an obligatory imperfect and its vav consecutive perfect equivalent. (See IBHS 508-9 §31.4g for discussion and examples of the former and IBHS 528 §32.2.1d, n. 16, for the latter.)
360 tn This is the verb (פָּקַד, paqad) that has been met with several times in the book of Jeremiah, most often in the ominous sense of “punish” (e.g., 6:15; 11:22; 23:24) but also in the good sense of “resume concern for” (e.g., 27:22; 29:10). Here it is obviously in the ominous sense referring to his imprisonment and ultimate death (52:11).
sn Compare Jer 34:2-3 for this same prophecy. The incident in Jer 34:1-7 appears to be earlier than this one. Here Jeremiah is confined to the courtyard of the guardhouse; there he appears to have freedom of movement.
361 tn Heb “Oracle of the
362 sn The pronouns are plural here, referring to the people of Judah and Jerusalem. Jeremiah had counseled that they surrender (cf. 27:12; 21:8-10) because they couldn’t succeed against the Babylonian army even under the most favorable circumstances (37:3-10).
364 tn Heb “The word of the
366 sn Underlying this request are the laws of redemption of property spelled out in Lev 25:25-34 and illustrated in Ruth 4:3-4. Under these laws, if a property owner became impoverished and had to sell his land, the nearest male relative had the right and duty to buy it so that it would not pass out of the use of the extended family. The land, however, would not actually belong to Jeremiah because in the year of Jubilee it reverted to its original owner. All Jeremiah was actually buying was the right to use it (Lev 25:13-17). Buying the field, thus, did not make any sense (thus Jeremiah’s complaint in v. 25) other than the fact that the
367 tn Heb “And according to the word of the
368 tn Heb “I weighed out the money [more literally, “silver”] for him, seventeen shekels of silver.”
sn Coins were not in common use until the postexilic period. Payment in gold and silver was made by cutting off pieces of silver or gold and weighing them in a beam balance using standard weights as the measure. A shekel weighed approximately 0.4 ounce or 11.4 grams. The English equivalents are only approximations.
369 tn The words “of purchase” are not in the text but are implicit. The qualification is spelled out explicitly in vv. 11, 12, 13. These words are supplied in the translation for clarity. An alternative translation would be “I put the deed in writing.” However, since the same idiom כָּתַב בְּסֵפֶר (catav bÿsefer) is used later in v. 12 with respect to the witnesses, it is likely that it merely refers to signing the document.
370 tn The words “to the purchase” are not in the text but are implicit in the idiom “I had some witnesses serve as witness.” The words are supplied in the translation for clarity.
371 tn There is some uncertainty about the precise meaning of the phrases translated “the order of transfer and the regulations.” The translation follows the interpretation suggested by J. Bright, Jeremiah (AB), 237; J. A. Thompson, Jeremiah (NICOT), 586, n. 5; and presumably BDB 349 s.v. חֹק 7, which defines the use of חֹק (khoq) here as “conditions of the deed of purchase.”
373 tn Heb “I took the deed of purchase, both that which was sealed [and contained] the order and the regulations and that which was open [i.e., unsealed], and I gave the deed of purchase to Baruch…in the presence of my cousin Hanamel and in the presence of…and in the presence of….” It is awkward to begin a sentence with “I took…” without finishing the thought, and the long qualifiers in v. 12 make that sentence too long. The sentence is broken up in accordance with contemporary English style. The reference to the “deed of purchase” in v. 12 should be viewed as a plural consisting of both written and sealed copies as is clear from v. 11 and also v. 14. Part of the confusion is due to the nature of this document which consisted of a single papyrus scroll, half of which was rolled up and sealed and the other half which was left “opened” or unsealed. J. Bright (Jeremiah [AB], 237-38) is probably incorrect in assuming that the copies were duplicate since the qualification “containing the order of transfer and the regulations” is only applied to the appositional participle, “the sealed one [or copy].”
sn Aramaic documents from a slightly later period help us understand the nature of such deeds. The document consisted of a single papyrus sheet divided in half. One half contained all the particulars and was tightly rolled up, bound with strips of cloth or thread, sealed with wax upon which the parties affixed their seal, and signed by witnesses. The other copy consisted of an abstract and was left loosely rolled and unsealed (i.e., open to be consulted at will). If questions were raised about legality of the contract then the sealed copy could be unsealed and consulted.
374 tc The translation follows a number of Hebrew
376 tn Heb “many days.” See BDB s.v. יוֹם 5.b for this usage.
378 sn The significance of the symbolic act performed by Jeremiah as explained here was a further promise (see the “again” statements in 31:4, 5, 23 and the “no longer” statements in 31:12, 29, 34, 40) of future restoration beyond the destruction implied in vv. 3-5. After the interruption of exile, normal life of buying and selling of fields, etc. would again be resumed and former property rights would be recognized.
sn The parallel usage of this introduction in Jer 1:6; 4:10; 14:13 shows that though this prayer has a lengthy introductory section of praise vv. 17-22, this prayer is really one of complaint or lament.
382 tn Or “to thousands of generations.” The contrast of showing steadfast love to “thousands” to the limitation of punishing the third and fourth generation of children for their parents’ sins in Exod 20:5-6; Deut 5:9-10; Exod 34:7 has suggested to many commentators and translators (cf., e.g., NRSV, TEV, NJPS) that reference here is to “thousands of generations.” The statement is, of course, rhetorical emphasizing God’s great desire to bless as opposed to the reluctant necessity to punish. It is part of the attributes of God spelled out in Exod 34:6-7.
383 tn Heb “pays back into the bosom of their children the sin of their parents.”
384 tn Heb “Nothing is too hard for you who show…and who punishes…the great [and] powerful God whose name is Yahweh of armies, [you who are] great in counsel…whose eyes are open…who did signs…” Jer 32:18-22 is a long series of relative clauses introduced by participles or relative pronouns in vv. 18-20a followed by second person vav consecutive imperfects carrying on the last of these relative clauses in vv. 20b-22. This is typical of hymnic introductions to hymns of praise (cf., e.g., Ps 136) but it is hard to sustain the relative subordination which all goes back to the suffix on “hard for you.” The sentences have been broken up but the connection with the end of v. 17 has been sacrificed for conformity to contemporary English style.
385 tn Heb “[you are] great in counsel and mighty in deed.”
386 tn Heb “your eyes are open to the ways of the sons of men.”
387 tn Heb “giving to each according to his way [= behavior/conduct] and according to the fruit of his deeds.”
388 tn Or “You did miracles and amazing deeds in the land of Egypt. And you continue to do them until this day both in Israel and among mankind. By this mean you have gained a renown…” The translation here follows the syntactical understanding reflected also in NJPS. The Hebrew text reads: “you did miracles and marvelous acts in the land of Egypt until this day and in Israel and in mankind and you made for yourself a name as this day.” The majority of English versions and commentaries understand the phrases “until this day and in Israel and in mankind” to be an elliptical sentence with the preceding verb and objects supplied as reflected in the alternate translation. However, the emphasis on the miraculous deeds in Egypt in this section both before and after this elliptical phrase and the dominant usage of the terms “signs and wonders” to refer to the plagues and other miraculous signs in Egypt calls this interpretation into question. The key here is understanding “both in Israel and in mankind” as an example of a casus pendens construction (a dangling subject, object, or other modifier) before a conjunction introducing the main clause (cf. GKC 327 §111.h and 458 §143.d and compare the usage in Jer 6:19; 33:24; 1 Kgs 15:13). This verse is the topic sentence which is developed further in v. 21 and initiates a narrative history of the distant past that continues until v. 22b where reference is made to the long history of disobedience which has led to the present crisis.
389 tn Heb “You brought your people Israel out of the land of Egypt with signs and wonders and with a mighty hand and with outstretched arm and with great terror.” For the figurative expressions involved here see the marginal notes on 27:5. The sentence has been broken down to better conform to contemporary English style.
390 tn Heb “fathers.”
392 tn Or “They did not do everything that you commanded them to do.” This is probably a case where the negative (לֹא, lo’) negates the whole category indicated by “all” (כָּל, kol; see BDB 482 s.v. כָּל 1.e(c) and compare usage in Deut 12:16; 28:14). Jeremiah has repeatedly emphasized that the history of Israel since their entry into the land has been one of persistent disobedience and rebellion (cf., e.g. 7:22-26; 11:7-8). The statement, of course, is somewhat hyperbolical as all categorical statements of this kind are.
393 tn Heb “Siege ramps have come up to the city to capture it.”
394 tn Heb “sword.”
396 tn Heb “And the city has been given into the hands of the Chaldeans who are fighting against it because of the sword, starvation, and disease.” The verb “has been given” is one of those perfects that view the action as good as done (the perfect of certainty or prophetic perfect).
397 tn The word “
398 tn Heb “And what you said has happened and behold you see it.”
400 tn Heb “And you, Lord Yahweh, have said to me, ‘Buy the field for…’ even though the city will be given into the hands of the Babylonians.” The sentence has been broken up and the order reversed for English stylistic purposes. For the rendering “is sure to fall into the hands of” see the translator’s note on the preceding verse.
402 tn Heb “call in witnesses to witness.”
403 tn Heb “The word of the
404 tn Heb “Behold, I am the
sn This statement furnishes the grounds both for the assurance that the city will indeed be delivered over to Nebuchadnezzar (vv. 28-29a) and that it will be restored and repopulated (vv. 37-41). This can be seen from the parallel introductions in vv. 28, “Therefore the
405 tn Heb “Thus says the
406 tn Heb “Behold, I will give this city into the hand of…”
411 tn Heb “from their youth.”
412 tn Heb “the people of Israel.” However, since “people of Israel” has been used in the preceding line for the northern kingdom as opposed to the kingdom of Judah, it might lead to confusion to translate literally. Moreover, the pronoun “they” accomplishes the same purpose.
414 tn Heb “Oracle of the
415 tn The statements in vv. 28-29 regarding the certain destruction of the city are motivated by three parallel causal clauses in vv. 30a, b, 31, the last of which extends through subordinate and coordinate clauses until the end of v. 35. An attempt has been made to bring out this structure by repeating the idea “This/it will happen” in front of each of these causal clauses in the English translation.
416 tn Heb “from the day they built it until this day.”
sn The Israelites did not in fact “build” Jerusalem. They captured it from the Jebusites in the time of David. This refers perhaps to the enlarging and fortifying of the city after it came into the hands of the Israelites (2 Sam 5:6-10).
417 tn Heb “For this city has been to me for a source of my anger and my wrath from the day they built it until this day so as remove it.” The preposition ְל (lamed) with the infinitive (Heb “so as to remove it”; לַהֲסִירָהּ, lahasirah) expresses degree (cf. R. J. Williams, Hebrew Syntax, 37, §199, and compare usage in 2 Sam 13:2).
419 tn Heb “remove it from my sight 32:33 because of all the wickedness of the children of Israel and the children of Judah which they have done to make me angry, they, their kings, their officials, their priests, and their prophets, and the men of Judah, and the inhabitants of Jerusalem.” The sentence has been broken up in conformity with contemporary English style and an attempt has been made to preserve the causal connections.
421 tn For the idiom involved here see the translator’s note on 7:13. The verb that introduces this clause is a Piel infinitive absolute which is functioning in place of the finite verb (see, e.g., GKC 346 §113.ff and compare usage in Jer 8:15; 14:19. This grammatical point means that the versions cited in BHS fn a may not be reading a different text after all, but may merely be interpreting the form as syntactically equivalent to a finite verb as the present translation has done.).
sn This refers to God teaching them through the prophets whom he has sent as indicated by the repeated use of this idiom elsewhere in 7:13, 25; 11:7; 25:3, 4; 26:5, 19.
422 tn Heb “But they were not listening so as to accept correction.”
424 sn Compare Jer 7:30-31; 19:5 and the study notes on 7:30. The god Molech is especially associated with the practice of child sacrifice (Lev 18:21; 20:2-5; 2 Kgs 23:10). In 1 Kgs 11:7 this god is identified as the god of the Ammonites who is also called Milcom in 1 Kgs 11:5; 2 Kgs 23:13. Child sacrifice, however, was not confined to this god; it was also made to the god Baal (Jer 19:5) and to other idols that the Israelites had set up (Ezek 16:20-21). This practice was, however, strictly prohibited in Israel (Lev 18:21; 20:2-5; Deut 12:31; 18:10). It was this practice as well as other pagan rites that Manasseh had instituted in Judah that ultimately led to Judah’s demise (2 Kgs 24:3-4). Though Josiah tried to root these pagan practices (2 Kgs 23:4-14) out of Judah he could not do so. The people had only made a pretense of following his reforms; their hearts were still far from God (Jer 3:10; 12:2).
425 tn Heb “They built high places to Baal which are in the Valley of Ben Hinnom to cause their sons and daughters to pass through [the fire] to Molech [a thing] which I did not command them and [which] did not go up into my heart [= “mind” in modern psychology] to do this abomination so as to make Judah liable for punishment.” For the use of the Hiphil of חָטָא (khata’) to refer to the liability for punishment see BDB s.v. חָטָא Hiph.3 and compare the usage in Deut 24:8. Coming at the end as this does, this nuance is much more likely than “cause Judah to sin” which is the normal translation assigned to the verb here. The particle לְמַעַן (lÿma’an) that precedes it is here once again introducing a result and not a purpose (compare other clear examples in 27:10, 15). The sentence has been broken down in conformity to contemporary English style and an attempt has been made to make clear that what is detestable and not commanded is not merely child sacrifice to Molech but child sacrifice in general.
427 tn Heb “sword.”
428 sn Compare Jer 32:24, 28. In 32:24 this is Jeremiah’s statement just before he expresses his perplexity about the
429 tn Heb “And now therefore thus says the
430 tn The verb here should be interpreted as a future perfect; though some of the people have already been exiled (in 605 and 597
432 tn Heb “I will give to them one heart and one way to [= in order that they may] fear me all the days for good to them.” The phrase “one heart” refers both to unanimity of will and accord (cf. 1 Chr 12:38 [12:39 HT]; 2 Chr 30:12) and to singleness of purpose or intent (cf. Ezek 11:19 and see BDB 525 s.v. ֵלב 4 where reference is made to “inclinations, resolutions, and determinations of the will”). The phrase “one way” refers to one way of life or conduct (cf. BDB 203 s.v. דֶּרֶךְ 6.a where reference is made to moral action and character), a way of life that is further qualified by the goal of showing “fear, reverence, respect” for the
sn Other passages also speak about the “single-minded purpose” (Heb “one heart”) and “living in a way that shows respect for me.” Deut 30:6-8 speaks of a circumcised heart that will love him, obey him, and keep his commands. Ezek 11:20-21 speaks of the removal of a stony heart and the giving of a single-minded, “fleshy” heart and a new spirit that will follow his decrees and keep his laws. Ezek 36:26-27 speaks of the removal of a stony heart and the giving of a new, “fleshy” heart and a new spirit and an infusion of God’s own spirit so that they will be able to follow his decrees and keep his laws. Jer 24:7 speaks of the giving of a (new) heart so that they might “know” him. And Jer 31:33 speaks of God writing his law on their hearts. All this shows that there is a new motivation and a new enablement for fulfilling the old stipulations, especially that of whole-hearted devotion to him (cf. Deut 6:4-6).
sn For other references to the lasting (or everlasting) nature of the new covenant see Isa 55:3; 61:8; Jer 50:5; Ezek 16:60; 37:26. The new covenant appears to be similar to the ancient Near Eastern covenants of grants whereby a great king gave a loyal vassal a grant of land or dynastic dominion over a realm in perpetuity in recognition of past loyalty. The right to such was perpetual as long as the great king exercised dominion, but the actual enjoyment could be forfeited by individual members of the vassal’s dynasty. The best example of such an covenant in the OT is the Davidic covenant where the dynasty was given perpetual right to rule over Israel. Individual kings might be disciplined and their right to enjoy dominion taken away, but the dynasty still maintained the right to rule (see 2 Sam 23:5; Ps 89:26-37 and note especially 1 Kgs 11:23-39). The new covenant appears to be the renewal of God’s promise to Abraham to always be the God of his descendants and for his descendants to be his special people (Gen 17:7) something they appear to have forfeited by their disobedience (see Hos 1:9). However, under the new covenant he promises to never stop doing them good and grants them a new heart, a new spirit, the infusion of his own spirit, and the love and reverence necessary to keep from turning away from him. The new covenant is not based on their past loyalty but on his gracious forgiveness and his gifts.
434 tn Or “stop being gracious to them” or “stop blessing them with good”; Heb “turn back from them to do good to them.”
435 tn Or “I will make them want to fear and respect me so much that”; Heb “I will put the fear of me in their hearts.” However, as has been noted several times, “heart” in Hebrew is more the center of the volition (and intellect) than the center of emotions as it is in English. Both translations are intended to reflect the difference in psychology.
436 tn The words “never again” are not in the text but are implicit from the context and are supplied not only by this translation but by a number of others.
439 tn Heb “As I have brought all this great disaster on these people so I will bring upon them all the good fortune which I am promising them.” The translation has broken down the longer Hebrew sentence to better conform to English style.
sn See the same guarantee in Jer 31:27.
442 tn The noun is singular with the article, but it is a case of the generic singular (cf. GKC 406 §126.m).
443 tn Heb “Fields will be bought in this land of which you [masc. pl.] are saying, ‘It will be desolate [a perfect of certainty or prophetic perfect] without man or beast; it will be given into the hand of the Chaldeans.’” The original sentence has been broken down to better conform to contemporary English style.
444 tn Heb “They will buy fields with silver and write in the deed and seal [it] and have witnesses witness [it] in the land of Benjamin, in the environs of Jerusalem, in the towns in Judah, in the towns in the hill country, in the towns in the Shephelah, and in the towns in the Negev.” The long Hebrew sentence has again been restructured to better conform to contemporary English style. The indefinite “they will buy” is treated as a passive. It is followed by three infinitive absolutes which substitute for the finite verb (cf. GKC 345 §113.y) which is a common feature of the style of the book of Jeremiah.
sn For the geographical districts mentioned here compare Jer 17:26.
446 tn Heb “Oracle of the
447 sn The introductory statement here ties this incident in with the preceding chapter which was the first time that the
448 tn Heb “And the word of the
449 tn Or “I, the
450 tn This passive participle or adjective is normally used to describe cities or walls as “fortified” or “inaccessible.” All the lexicons, however, agree in seeing it used here metaphorically of “secret” or “mysterious” things, things that Jeremiah could not know apart from the
451 tn Heb “the sword.” The figure has been interpreted for the sake of clarity.
453 sn This refers to the tearing down of buildings within the city to strengthen the wall or to fill gaps in it which had been broken down by the Babylonian battering rams. For a parallel to this during the siege of Sennacherib in the time of Hezekiah see Isa 22:10; 2 Chr 32:5. These torn-down buildings were also used as burial mounds for those who died in the fighting or through starvation and disease during the siege. The siege prohibited them from taking the bodies outside the city for burial and leaving them in their houses or in the streets would have defiled them.
454 tn Heb “Because I have hidden my face from.” The modern equivalent for this gesture of rejection is “to turn the back on.” See Ps 13:1 for comparable usage. The perfect is to be interpreted as a perfect of resolve (cf. IBHS 488-89 §30.5.1d and compare the usage in Ruth 4:3).
455 tn The translation and meaning of vv. 4-5 are somewhat uncertain. The translation and precise meaning of vv. 4-5 are uncertain at a number of points due to some difficult syntactical constructions and some debate about the text and meaning of several words. The text reads more literally, “33:4 For thus says the
456 tn Heb “Behold I am healing.” For the usage of the particle “behold” indicating certainty see the translator’s note on 1:6. These are the great and hidden things that the
458 tn The meaning and text of this word is questioned by KBL 749 s.v. עֲתֶרֶת. However, KBL also emends both occurrences of the verb from which BDB 801 s.v. עֲתֶרֶת derives this noun. BDB is more likely correct in seeing this and the usage of the verb in Prov 27:6; Ezek 35:13 as Aramaic loan words from a root meaning to be rich (equivalent to the Hebrew עָשַׁר, ’ashar).
462 tn Heb “And it [the city] will be to me for a name for joy and for praise and for honor before all the nations of the earth which will hear of all the good things which I will do for them and which will be in awe and tremble for all the good things and all the peace [or prosperity] which I will do for them.” The long complex Hebrew sentence has been broken down to better conform with contemporary English style.
466 tn Heb “33:10 Thus says the
468 sn This is a common hymnic introduction to both individual songs of thanksgiving (e.g., Ps 118:1) and communal songs of thanksgiving (e.g., Ps 136 where it is a liturgical refrain accompanying a recital of Israel’s early history and of the
469 tn Heb “Oracle of the
470 tn Or “I will restore the fortunes of the land.”
472 tn Heb “Thus says Yahweh of armies.” For the explanation for the first person introduction see the translator’s notes on 33:2, 10. Verses 4, 10, 12 introduce three oracles, all under the answer to the
473 sn Heb “Sheep will again pass under the hands of the counter.” This appears to be a reference to counting the sheep to make sure that none was missing as they returned to the fold. See the same idiom in Lev 27:52 and in the metaphor in Ezek 20:37.
476 sn This refers at the very least to the promises of Jer 23:5-6, 7-8; 30:3; 31:27, 31 where the same formula “The time will certainly come (Heb “Behold the days are coming”)” occurs. Reference may also be to the promises through the earlier prophets of what is alluded to here, i.e., the restoration of Israel and Judah under a Davidic ruler and the revival of the offerings (cf. Hos 1:10-11; 3:4-5; Amos 9:11-12; Isa 11:1-5, 10-16; Jer 30:9, 21 for the former and Jer 31:14; 33:11 for the latter).
477 tn Heb “sprig” or “shoot.”
sn For the meaning of this term and its significance in biblical prophecy see the study note on 23:5.
480 tn Heb “And this is what will be called to it: ‘The
sn For the significance of this title see the study note on the parallel text in 23:6. Other titles by which Jerusalem is to be known are found in Isa 62:2-4; Jer 3:17; Ezek 48:35; Zech 8:3 emphasizing that the
481 tn Heb “a man shall not be cut off to David [i.e., belonging to the Davidic line] sitting on the throne of the house of Israel.”
483 tn Heb “And to the Levites, the priests [= the Levitical priests, the apposition in place of the adjective] there shall not be cut off a man from before me who offers up burnt offering, sacrifices a cereal offering, or makes a sacrifice all the days.”
485 tn Heb “Thus says the
488 tn The very complex and elliptical syntax of the original Hebrew of vv. 20-21 has been broken down to better conform with contemporary English style. The text reads somewhat literally (after the addition of a couple of phrases which have been left out by ellipsis): “Thus says the
489 tn Heb “Just as the stars in the sky cannot be numbered or the sand on the seashore cannot be measured, so I will greatly increase [or multiply] the seed of my servant David and the Levites who minister before me.” The word “seed of” does not carry over to the “the Levites” as a noun governing two genitives because “the Levites” has the accusative marker in front of it. The sentence has been broken down in conformity with contemporary English style.
sn Context makes it clear that what is in view is an innumerable line of descendants from the righteous ruler that the
491 tn Heb “Have you not seen what this people have said, saying.” The question is rhetorical and expects a positive answer. The sentence has been broken in two to better conform with contemporary English style.
492 tn Heb “The two families which the
493 tn Heb “and my people [i.e., Israel and Judah] they disdain [or look down on] from being again a nation before them.” The phrase “before them” refers to their estimation, their mental view (cf. BDB s.v. פָּנֶה II.4.a[g]). Hence it means they look with disdain on the people being a nation again (cf. BDB s.v. עוֹד 1.a[b] for the usage of עוֹד [’od] here).
494 tn Heb “Thus says the
495 tn The Hebrew particle כִּי (ki) is probably intensive here as it has been on a number of occasions in the book of Jeremiah (see BDB 472 s.v. כִּי 1.e for the category).
496 tn Or “I will make them prosperous once again,” or “I will bring them back from captivity.”
sn For the meaning of this idiom see the translator’s note on Jer 29:14 and compare the usage in 29:14; 30:3, 18; 31:23; 32:44; 33:7, 11. This has been the emphasis on this section which is called by some commentators “The Book of Consolation.” Jeremiah’s emphasis up until chapters 30-33 had been on judgment but he was also called to be the prophet of restoration (cf. Jer 1:10). Promises of restoration though rare up to this point have, however, occurred on occasion (see, e.g., Jer 3:18; 23:5-7; 24:6-7; 29:10-14).
498 tn Heb “The word which came to Jeremiah from the
sn It is difficult to assign dates to passages which have no dating formulas but there is sufficient detail in this passage to show that this incident occurred sometime early in the siege of Jerusalem while Jeremiah was still free to come and go (see v. 2 and compare 37:4 and see the second study note on 32:2). The Babylonian forces blockaded Jerusalem and attacked the outlying cities, reducing them one by one until Jerusalem had no further help. According to v. 7 Azekah and Lachish in the western foothills still held out and there is evidence from some of the correspondence from Lachish at this period that help was being sought from Egypt.
499 tn Heb “told him”; the referent (Jeremiah) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
500 tn Heb “told him”; the referent (Jeremiah) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
501 tn Heb 34:1 “The word which came to Jeremiah from the
502 tn Heb “Your eyes will see the eyes of the king of Babylon and his mouth will speak with your mouth.” For this same idiom in reverse order see 32:4 and consult the translator’s note there for the obligatory nuance given to the verbs.
sn For the fulfillment of this see Jer 52:7-11.
503 tn Heb “However, hear the word of the
504 tn Heb “by the sword.”
sn The contrast is between death in battle or by execution and death in the normal course of life. Zedekiah was captured, had to witness the execution of his sons, had his eyes put out, and was taken to Babylon where he died after a lengthy imprisonment (Jer 52:10-11).
505 tn Heb “And like the burning [of incense] for your fathers, the former kings who were before you, so will they burn [incense] for you.” The sentence has been reversed for easier style and the technical use of the terms interpreted.
sn For the custom referred to compare 2 Chr 16:14; 21:19.
507 tn Heb “For [or Indeed] I myself have spoken [this] word.”
508 tn Heb “Oracle of the
509 tn Heb “And the army of the king of Babylon was fighting against Jerusalem and against all the cities of Judah which were left, [namely] against Lachish and Azekah for they alone were left of the cities of Judah as fortified cities.” The intent of this sentence is to serve as a circumstantial sentence to v. 6 (= “while the army…”). That thought is picked up by “he did this while….” The long complex sentence in v. 7 has been broken down and qualifying material placed in the proper places to convey the same information in shorter English sentences in conformity with contemporary English style.
sn There are no details regarding the nature of this covenant, but it was probably a parity covenant in which the people agreed to free their slaves in exchange for some concessions from the king (see the study note on 11:2 for more details on the nature of ancient Near Eastern covenants). More details about this covenant are given in vv. 15, 18-19 where it is said to have been made before the
512 tn Heb “after King Zedekiah made a covenant…to proclaim liberty to them [the slaves mentioned in the next verse] so that each would send away free his male slave and his female slave, the Hebrew man and the Hebrew woman, so that a man would not hold them in bondage, namely a Judean, his brother [this latter phrase is explicative of “them” because it repeats the preposition in front of “them”].” The complex Hebrew syntax has been broken down into shorter English sentences but an attempt has been made to retain the proper subordinations.
sn Through economic necessity some of the poorer people of the land had on occasion to sell themselves or their children to wealthier Hebrew landowners. The terms of their servitude were strictly regulated under Hebrew law (cf. Exod 21:2-11; Lev 25:39-55; Deut 15:12-18). In brief, no Hebrew was to serve a fellow Hebrew for any longer than six years. In the seventh year he or she was to go free. The period could even be shortened if the year of jubilee intervened since all debts were to be canceled, freedom restored, and indentured property returned in that year. Some see the covenant here coming in conjunction with such a jubilee year since it involved the freedom of all slaves regardless of how long they had served. Others see this covenant as paralleling an old Babylonian practice of a king declaring liberty for slaves and canceling all debts generally at the beginning of his reign (but also at other significant times within it) in order to ingratiate himself with his subjects.
513 tn Heb “And they complied, [that is] all the leaders and all the people who entered into the covenant that they would each let his male slave and his female slave go free so as not to hold them in bondage any longer; they complied and they let [them] go.” The verb “they complied” (Heb “they hearkened”) is repeated at the end after the lengthy description of the subject. This is characteristic of Hebrew style. The translation has resolved the complex sentence by making the relative clauses modifying the subject independent sentences describing the situational background before mentioning the main focus, “they had complied and let them go.”
514 sn Most commentators are agreed that the incident referred to here occurred during the period of relief from the siege provided by the Babylonians going off to fight against the Egyptians who were apparently coming to Zedekiah’s aid (compare vv. 21-22 with 37:5, 7). The freeing of the slaves had occurred earlier, under the crisis of the siege while the people were more responsive to the
515 tn Heb “they had brought them into subjection for male and female slaves.” However, the qualification of “male and female” is already clear from the preceding and is unnecessary to the English sentence.
516 tn Heb “And the word of the
517 tn Heb “Thus says the
519 tn Heb “out of the house of bondage.”
sn This refers to the Mosaic covenant, initiated at Mount Sinai and renewed on the plains of Moab. The statement “I brought you out of Egypt, out of the house of bondage” functions as the “historical prologue” in the Ten Commandments which is the
520 tn Heb “made a covenant, saying.” This was only one of several stipulations of the covenant. The form used here has been chosen as an indirect way of relating the specific stipulation that is being focused upon to the general covenant that is referred to in v. 13.
522 tn The presence of the independent pronoun in the Hebrew text is intended to contrast their actions with those of their ancestors.
524 sn The verb at the beginning of v. 15 and v. 16 are the same in the Hebrew. They had two changes of heart (Heb “you turned”), one that was pleasing to him (Heb “right in his eyes”) and one that showed they did not honor him (Heb “profaned [or belittled] his name”).
525 sn Heb “you profaned my name.” His name had been invoked in the oath confirming the covenant. Breaking the covenant involved taking his name in vain (cf. Exod 20:7; Deut 5:11; Jer 5:2). Hence the one who bore the name was not treated with the special honor and reverence due him (see the study note on 23:27 for the significance of “name” in the OT).
526 tn Heb “and you brought them into subjection to be to you for male and female slaves.” See the translator’s note on v. 11 for the same redundant repetition which is not carried over into the contemporary English sentence.
527 tn The Hebrew text has a compound object, the two terms of which have been synonyms in vv. 14, 15. G. L. Keown, P. J. Scalise, and T. G. Smothers (Jeremiah 26-52 [WBC], 189) make the interesting observation that these two terms (Heb “brother” and “neighbor”) emphasize the relationships that should have taken precedence over their being viewed as mere slaves.
528 sn This is, of course, a metaphorical and ironical use of the term “to grant freedom to.” It is, however, a typical statement of the concept of talionic justice which is quite often operative in God’s judgments in the OT (cf., e.g., Obad 15).
529 tn Heb “Oracle of the
532 tn There is a little confusion in the syntax of this section because the noun “the calf” does not have any formal conjunction or preposition with it showing how it relates to the rest of the sentence. KJV treats it and the following words as though they were a temporal clause modifying “covenant which they made.” The majority of modern English versions and commentaries, however, understand it as a second accusative after the verb + object “I will make the men.” This fits under the category of what GKC 375 §118.r calls an accusative of comparison (compare usage in Isa 21:8; Zech 2:8). Stated baldly, “I will make the people…the calf,” it is, however, more forceful than the formal use of the noun + preposition כְּ just as metaphors are generally more forceful than similes. The whole verse is one long, complex sentence in Hebrew: “I will make the men who broke my covenant [referring to the Mosaic covenant containing the stipulation to free slaves after six years] [and] who did not keep the terms of the covenant which they made before me [referring to their agreement to free their slaves] [like] the calf which they cut in two and passed between its pieces.” The sentence has been broken down into shorter sentences in conformity with contemporary English style.
534 tn This verse is not actually a sentence in the Hebrew original but is a prepositioned object to the verb in v. 20, “I will hand them over.” This construction is called casus pendens in the older grammars and is used to call attention to a subject or object (cf. GKC 458 §143.d and compare the usage in 33:24). The same nondescript “I will punish” which was used to resolve the complex sentence in the previous verse has been chosen to introduce the objects here before the more specific “I will hand them over” in the next verse.
536 tn Heb “And Zedekiah king of Judah and his officials I will give into the hand of their enemies and into the hand of those who seek their lives and into the hands of the army of the king of Babylon which has gone up from against them.” The last two “and into the hand” phrases are each giving further explication of “their enemies” (the conjunction is explicative [cf. BDB 252 s.v. וְ 1.b]). The sentence has been broken down into shorter English sentences in conformity with contemporary English style.
sn This refers to the relief offered by the withdrawal of the Babylonian troops to fight against the Egyptians which were coming to Zedekiah’s aid (cf. 37:5, 7, 11).
537 tn Heb “Oracle of the
538 sn The introductory statement here shows that this incident is earlier than those in Jer 32–34 which all take place in the reign of Zedekiah. Jehoiakim ruled from 609/8
539 tn Heb “The word which came to Jeremiah from the
540 tn Heb “the house of the Rechabites.” “House” is used here in terms of “household” or “family” (cf. BDB 109 s.v. בַּיִת 5.a, b).
sn Nothing is known about the Rechabite community other than what is said about them in this chapter. From vv. 7-8 it appears that they were a nomadic tribe that had resisted settling down and taking up farming. They had also agreed to abstain from drinking wine. Most scholars agree in equating the Jonadab son of Rechab mentioned as the leader who had instituted these strictures as the same Jonadab who assisted Jehu in his religious purge of Baalism following the reign of Ahab (2 Kgs 10:15, 23-24). If this is the case, the Rechabites followed these same rules for almost 250 years because Jehu’s purge of Baalism and the beginning of his reign was in 841
541 sn This refers to one of the rooms built on the outside of the temple that were used as living quarters for the priests and for storage rooms (cf. Neh 13:4-5; 1 Kgs 6:5; 1 Chr 28:12; 2 Chr 31:11 and compare Ezek 41:1-14).
542 tn Heb “the sons of Hanan son of Igdaliah, the man of God.” The reference to “sons” and to “man of God” fits the usage of these terms elsewhere to refer to prophets and their disciples (see BDB 43-44 s.v. אֱלֹהִים 3(b) and compare usage in 2 Kgs 4:40 for the former and BDB 121 s.v. בֵּן 7.a and compare the usage in 2 Kgs 4:38 for the latter).
543 sn According to Jer 52:24; 2 Kgs 25:18 there were three officers who carried out this duty. It was their duty to guard the entrance of the temple to keep people out that did not belong there, such as those who were foreigners or ritually unclean (see 2 Kgs 12:9 and compare Ps 118:19-20).
544 tn Heb “Drink wine.”
545 tn Heb “Don’t plant a vineyard and it shall not be to you [= and you shall/must not have one].”
546 tn Heb “Don’t…and don’t…but live…in order that you might….”
547 sn Heb “where you are sojourning.” The terms “sojourn” and “sojourner” referred to a person who resided in a country not his own, without the rights and privileges of citizenship as a member of a nation, state, or principality. In the ancient Near East such people were dependent on the laws of hospitality rather than the laws of state for protection and provision of legal rights. Perhaps the best illustration of this is Abraham who “sojourned” among the Philistines and the Hittites in Canaan and was dependent upon them for grazing and water rights and for a place to bury his wife (cf. Gen 20-24). What is described here is the typical lifestyle of a nomadic tribe.
548 tn Heb “We have not drunk wine all our days.” Actually vv. 8b-9a are a series of infinitive constructs plus the negative לְבִלְתִּי (lÿvilti) explaining the particulars of how they have obeyed, i.e., by not drinking wine…and by not building….” The more direct declarative statement is used here to shorten the sentence and is more in keeping with contemporary style.
549 tn Heb “We have obeyed and done according to all which our ancestor Jonadab commanded us.”
553 tn Heb “35:12 And the word of the
554 tn Heb “Oracle of the
555 tn The words “from this” are not in the text but are implicit from the context. They have been supplied in the translation for the sake of clarity.
556 tn Heb “Will you not learn a lesson…?” The rhetorical question here has the force of an imperative, made explicit in the translation.
557 tn Heb “The words of Jonadab son of Rechab which he commanded his descendants not to drink wine have been carried out.” (For the construction of the accusative of subject after a passive verb illustrated here see GKC 388 §121.b.) The sentence has been broken down and made more direct to better conform to contemporary English style.
558 tn The vav (ו) plus the independent pronoun before the verb is intended to mark a sharp contrast. It is difficult, if not impossible to mark this in English other than “But I.”
559 tn On this idiom (which occurs again in the following verse) see the translator’s note on 7:13 for this idiom and compare its use in 7:13, 25; 11:7; 25:3, 4; 26:5; 29:19; 32:33; 35:14, 15; 44:9.
562 tn This is an attempt to represent the particle כִּי (ki) which is probably not really intensive here (cf. BDB 472 s.v. כִּי 1.e) but is one of those causal uses of כִּי that BDB discusses on 473-74 s.v. כִּי 3.c where the cause is really the failure of the people of Judah and Jerusalem to listen/obey. I.e., the causal particle is at the beginning of the sentence so as not to interrupt the contrast drawn.
563 tn Heb “this people.” However, the speech is addressed to the people of Judah and the citizens of Jerusalem, so the second person is retained in English. In addition to the stylistic difference that Hebrew exhibits in the rapid shift between persons (second to third and third to second, which have repeatedly been noted and documented from GKC 462 §144.p) there may be a subtle rhetorical reason for the shift here. The shift from direct address to indirect address which characterizes this verse and the next may reflect the
564 tn Heb “Therefore, thus says the
566 tn Heb “There shall not be cut to Jonadab son of Rechab a man standing before me all the days.” For the first part of this idiom see 33:17-18 where it is applied to David always having a descendant to occupy the throne and the Levites will always have priests to offer up sacrifices. For the latter part of the idiom “to stand before” referring to service see BDB 764 s.v. עָמַד 1.e and compare the usage in 1 Kgs 1:2; 2 Kgs 3:14; Jer 15:19; Deut 10:8. As comparison with those passages will show, it refers to attending on, or serving a superior, a king, or the
567 sn The fourth year that Jehoiakim…was ruling over Judah would have been 605/4
568 tn Heb “This word came to Jeremiah from the
569 sn Heb “a roll [or scroll] of a document.” Scrolls consisted of pieces of leather or parchment sewn together and rolled up on wooden rollers. The writing was written from right to left and from top to bottom in columns and the scroll unrolled from the left roller and rolled onto the right one as the scroll was read. The scroll varied in length depending on the contents. This scroll was probably not all that long since it was read three times in a single day (vv. 10-11, 15-16, 21-23).
570 sn The intent is hardly that of giving a verbatim report of everything that the
571 sn This refers to the messages that Jeremiah delivered during the last eighteen years of Josiah, the three month reign of Jehoahaz and the first four years of Jehoiakim’s reign (the period between Josiah’s thirteenth year [cf. 1:2] and the fourth year of Jehoiakim [v. 1]). The exact content of this scroll is unknown since many of the messages in the present book are undated. It is also not known what relation this scroll had to the present form of the book of Jeremiah, since this scroll was destroyed and another one written that contained more than this one did (cf. v. 32). Since Jeremiah continued his ministry down to the fall of Jerusalem in 587/6
572 tn Heb “will turn each one from his wicked way.”
573 tn Heb “their iniquity and their sin.”
574 tn Heb “Then Baruch wrote down on a scroll from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the
575 tn Heb “I am restrained; I cannot go into.” The word “restrained” is used elsewhere in Jeremiah of his being confined to the courtyard of the guardhouse (33:1; 39:15). However, that occurred only later during the tenth year of Zedekiah (Jer 32:1-2) and Jeremiah appears here to be free to come and go as he pleased (vv. 19, 26). The word is used in the active voice of the
576 sn Regular fast days were not a part of Israel’s religious calendar. Rather fast days were called on special occasions, i.e., in times of drought or a locust plague (Joel 1:14; 2:15), or during a military crisis (2 Chr 20:3), or after defeat in battle (1 Sam 31:13; 2 Sam 1:12). A fast day was likely chosen for the reading of the scroll because the people would be more mindful of the crisis they were in and be in more of a repentant mood. The events referred to in the study note on v. 1 would have provided the basis for Jeremiah’s anticipation of a fast day when the scroll could be read.
577 tn Heb “So you go and read from the scroll which you have written from my mouth the words of the
578 tn Heb “will turn each one from his wicked way.”
579 tn Heb “For great is the anger and the wrath which the
580 tn Heb “And Baruch son of Neriah did according to all that the prophet Jeremiah commanded him with regard to reading from the scroll the words of the
582 tn There is some debate about the syntax of the words translated “All the people living in Jerusalem and all the people who came into Jerusalem from the towns in Judah.” As the sentence is structured in Hebrew it looks like these words are the subject of “proclaim a fast.” However, most commentaries point out that the people themselves would hardly proclaim a fast; they would be summoned to fast (cf. 1 Kgs 21:9, 12; Jonah 3:7). Hence many see these words as the object of the verb which has an impersonal subject “they.” This is most likely unless with J. Bright (Jeremiah [AB], 180) the word “proclaim” is used in a looser sense as “observed.” The translation has chosen to follow this latter tack rather than use the impersonal (or an equivalent passive) construction in English. For a similar problem see Jonah 3:5 which precedes the official proclamation in 3:7. The Hebrew text reads: “In the fifth year of Jehoiakim son of Josiah king of Judah, in the ninth month they proclaimed a fast before the
sn Judging from v. 22 this was one of the winter months meaning that the reckoning is based on the calendar which starts with April rather than the one which starts with September (Nisan to Nisan rather than Tishri to Tishri). The ninth month would have been Kislev which corresponds roughly to December. According to Babylonian historical records this is the same year and the same month when Ashkelon was captured and sacked. The surrender of Jerusalem and the subsequent looting of the temple in the previous year (Dan 1:1) and the return of the menacing presence of Nebuchadnezzar in the near vicinity were probably the impetus for the fast.
583 sn Shaphan had been the royal secretary under Jehoiakim’s father’s rule. During the course of his official duties the book of the law had been discovered and he had read it and reported its contents to Josiah who instituted sweeping reforms on the basis of his obedience to it. (See 2 Kgs 22 and note especially vv. 3, 8, 10.) If the Shaphan mentioned in 26:14 is the same person as this, Gemariah would have been the brother of the man who spoke up on Jeremiah’s behalf when the priests and prophets sought to have him killed.
584 sn It is generally agreed that this is the same as the inner court mentioned in 1 Kgs 6:36; 7:12. It is called “upper” here because it stood above (cf. 1 Kgs 7:12) the outer court where all the people were standing.
585 sn The New Gate is the same gate where Jeremiah had been accused of falsely claiming the
586 tn The syntax of the original is complicated due to all the qualifying terms: Heb “And Baruch read from the scroll the words of Jeremiah in the house of the
587 tn Heb “Micaiah son of Gemariah son of Shaphan heard all the words of the
589 sn This man has already been mentioned in Jer 26:22 as the official who was sent to Egypt to extradite the prophet Uriah that Jehoiakim had executed. Though he was instrumental in the death of that prophet, he appears to have been favorably disposed to Jeremiah or at least impressed by the seriousness of his messages, because he is one of the officials that urged Baruch and Jeremiah to hide (v. 19), and he counseled Jehoiakim not to burn the scroll (v. 25).
590 tn Heb “Micaiah reported to them all the words which he heard when Baruch read from the scroll in the ears of the people.”
591 tn Heb “in your hand.”
592 tn The original has another example of a prepositioned object (called casus pendens in the grammars; cf. GKC 458 §143.b) which is intended to focus attention on “the scroll.” The Hebrew sentence reads: “The scroll which you read from it in the ears of the people take it and come.” Any attempt to carry over this emphasis into the English translation would be awkward. Likewise, the order of the two imperatives has been reversed as more natural in English.
593 tn Heb “So Baruch son of Neriah took the scroll in his hand and went to them.” The clause order has been rearranged in the translation for stylistic reasons.
594 tn Or “‘to us personally’…to them personally”; Heb “‘in our ears’…in their ears.” Elsewhere this has been rendered “in the hearing of” or “where they could hear.” All three of those idioms sound unnatural in this context. The mere personal pronoun seems adequate.
595 tn Heb “all the words.”
596 tn According to BDB 808 s.v. פָּחַד Qal.1 and 40 s.v. אֶל 3.a, this is an example of the “pregnant” use of a preposition where an implied verb has to be supplied in the translation to conform the normal range of the preposition with the verb that is governing it. The Hebrew text reads: “they feared unto one another.” BDB translates “they turned in dread to each other.” The translation adopted seems more appropriate in this context.
597 tn Heb “We must certainly report to the king all these things.” Here the word דְּבָרִים (dÿvarim) must mean “things” (cf. BDB 183 s.v. דָּבָר IV.3) rather than “words” because a verbatim report of all the words in the scroll is scarcely meant. The present translation has chosen to use a form that suggests a summary report of all the matters spoken about in the scroll rather than the indefinite “things.”
598 tn Or “Did Jeremiah dictate them to you?” The words “Do they actually come from Jeremiah’s mouth?” assume that the last phrase (מִפִּיו, mippiv) is a question, either without the formal he (הֲ) interrogative (see GKC 473 §150.a and compare usage in 1 Sam 16:4; Prov 5:16) or with a letter supplied from the end of the preceding word (single writing of a letter following the same letter [haplography]; so the majority of modern commentaries). The word is missing in the Greek version. The presence of this same word at the beginning of the answer in the next verse suggests that this was a question (probably without the he [הֲ] interrogative to make it more emphatic) since the common way to answer affirmatively is to repeat the emphatic word in the question (cf. GKC 476 §150.n and compare usage in Gen 24:58). The intent of the question is to make sure that these were actually Jeremiah’s words not Baruch’s own creation (cf. Jer 42:2-3 for a similar suspicion).
599 tn The verbal forms emphasize that each word came from his mouth. The first verb is an imperfect which emphasizes repeated action in past time and the second verb is a participle which emphasizes ongoing action. However, it is a little awkward to try to express this nuance in contemporary English. Even though it is not reflected in the translation, it is noted here for future reference.
600 tn The verbs here are both direct imperatives but it sounds awkward to say “You and Jeremiah, go and hide” in contemporary English. The same force is accomplished by phrasing the statement as strong advice.
601 tn Heb “they deposited.” For the usage of the verb here see BDB 824 s.v. פָּקַד Hiph.2.b and compare the usage in Jer 37:21 where it is used for “confining” Jeremiah in the courtyard of the guardhouse.
603 tn Both here and in the next verse the Hebrew has “in the ears of” before “the king” (and also before “all the officials”). As in v. 15 these words are not represented in the translation due to the awkwardness of the idiom in contemporary English (see the translator’s note on v. 15).
604 tn Heb “and Jehudi read it.” However, Jehudi has been the subject of the preceding; so it would be awkward in English to use the personal subject. The translation has chosen to bring out the idea that Jehudi himself read it by using the reflexive.
605 tn Heb “in the autumn house.” Commentators are agreed that this was not a separate building or palace but the winter quarters in the palace.
sn Larger houses, including the palace, were two-storied buildings with a lower quarters better suited for the cold of winter and an upper quarters which was better ventilated to provide cool in the summer. Since this was the ninth month (December) the king had taken up residence in the lower, warmer quarters which were equipped with a portable fire pot or brazier to keep him warm.
606 tc Heb “the fire in the firepot was burning before him.” The translation assumes that the word “fire” (אֵשׁ, ’esh) has dropped out after the particle אֶת (’et) because of the similar beginnings of the two words. The word “fire” is found in the Greek, Syriac, and Targumic translations according to BHS. The particle אֵת should be retained rather than dropped as an erroneous writing of אֵשׁ. Its presence is to be explained as the usage of the sign of the accusative introducing a new subject (cf. BDB 85 s.v. אֶת 3.α and compare the usage in 27:8; 38:16 [in the Kethib]; 45:4).
607 tn Heb “doors.” This is the only time the word “door” is used in this way but all the commentaries and lexicons agree that it means “columns.” The meaning is figurative based on the similarity of shape.
608 tn Heb “he.” The majority of commentaries and English versions are agreed that “he” is the king. However, since a penknife (Heb “a scribe’s razor”) is used to cut the columns off, it is possible that Jehudi himself did it. However, even if Jehudi himself did it, he was acting on the king’s orders.
609 sn Heb “a scribe’s razor.” There is some irony involved here since a scribe’s razor was used to trim the sheets to be sewn together, scrape them in preparation for writing, and to erase errors. What was normally used to prepare the scroll was used to destroy it.
610 tn Heb “until the whole scroll was consumed upon the fire which was in the fire pot.”
611 tn Heb “Neither the king nor any of his servants who heard all these words were afraid or tore their clothes.” The sentence has been broken up into two shorter sentences to better conform to English style and some of the terms explained (e.g., tore their clothes) for the sake of clarity.
sn There are some interesting wordplays and contrasts involved here. The action of the king and his attendants should be contrasted with that of the officials who heard the same things read (v. 16). The king and his officials did not tear their garments in grief and sorrow; instead the king cut up the scroll (the words “tear” and “cut off” are the same in Hebrew [קָרַע, qara’]). Likewise, the actions of Jehoiakim and his attendants is to be contrasted with that of his father Josiah who some twenty or more years earlier tore his clothes in grief and sorrow (2 Kgs 22:11-20) and led the people in renewing their commitment to the covenant (2 Kgs 23:1-3). That was what the
612 tn Heb “And also Elnathan, Delaiah, and Gemariah urged [or had urged] the king not to burn the scroll, but he did not listen to them.” The translation attempts to lessen the clash in chronological sequencing with the preceding. This sentence is essentially a flash back to a time before the scroll was totally burned (v. 23).
613 tn Heb “the son of the king.” Many of the commentaries express doubt that this actually refers to Jehoiakim’s own son since Jehoiakim was only about thirty at this time and one of his sons would not have been old enough to have been in such a position of authority. The same doubt is expressed about the use of this term in 38:6 and in 1 Kgs 22:26. The term need not refer to the ruling king’s own son but one of the royal princes.
614 tn Heb “Then the word of the
615 tn Heb “Return, take another.” The verb “return” is used in the sense of repetition “take again” (cf. BDB 998 s.v. שׁוּב Qal.8). The idea is already contained in “Get another” so most modern English versions do not represent it.
616 tn Heb “all the former words/things.”
617 tn Heb “first [or former] scroll.”
618 tn Or “In essence you asked.” For explanation see the translator’s note on the end of the verse.
619 tn Heb “You burned this scroll, saying, ‘Why did you write on it, saying, “The king of Babylon will certainly come [the infinitive absolute before the finite verb expresses certainty here as several places elsewhere in Jeremiah] and destroy this land and exterminate from it both man and beast.”’” The sentence raises several difficulties for translating literally. I.e., the “you” in “why did you write” is undefined, though it obviously refers to Jeremiah. The gerund “saying” that introduces ‘Why did you write’ does not fit very well with “you burned the scroll.” Gerunds of this sort are normally explanatory. Lastly, there is no indication in the narrative that Jehoiakim ever directly asked Jeremiah this question. In fact, he had been hidden out of sight so Jehoiakim couldn’t confront him. The question is presented rhetorically, expressing Jehoiakim’s thoughts or intents and giving the rational for burning the scroll, i.e., he questioned Jeremiah’s right to say such things. The translation has attempted to be as literal as possible without resolving some of these difficulties. One level of embedded quotes has been eliminated for greater simplicity. For the rendering of “How dare you” for the interrogative “why do you” see the translator’s note on 26:9.
620 sn This prophesy was not “totally” fulfilled because his son Jehoiachin (Jeconiah) did occupy the throne for three months (2 Kgs 23:8). However, his rule was negligible and after his capitulation and exile to Babylon, he himself was promised that neither he nor his successors would occupy the throne of David (cf. Jer 22:30; and see the study notes on 22:24, 30).
622 tn Heb “for their iniquity.”
624 tn Heb “all the disaster which I spoke against them and they did not listen [or obey].”
625 tn Heb “And he wrote upon it from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the scroll which Jehoiakim king of Judah burned in the fire. And many words like these were added to them besides [or further].” The translation uses the more active form in the last line because of the tendency in contemporary English style to avoid the passive. It also uses the words “everything” for “all the words” and “messages” for “words” because those are legitimate usages of these phrases, and they avoid the mistaken impression that Jeremiah repeated verbatim the words on the former scroll or repeated verbatim the messages that he had delivered during the course of the preceding twenty-three years.
627 tn Heb “And Zedekiah son of Josiah whom Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon made king in the land of Judah ruled as king instead of Coniah son of Jehoiakim.” The sentence has been restructured and simplified to better conform to contemporary English style.
628 sn These two verses (37:1-2) are introductory to chs. 37–38 and are intended to characterize Zedekiah and his regime as disobedient just like Jehoiakim and his regime had been (Jer 36:27; cf. 2 Kgs 24:19-20). This characterization is important because Zedekiah is portrayed in the incidents that follow in 37–38 as seeking the
629 sn This is the second of two delegations that Zedekiah sent to Jeremiah to ask him to pray for a miraculous deliverance. Both of them are against the background of the siege of Jerusalem which was instigated by Zedekiah’s rebelling against Nebuchadnezzar and sending to Egypt for help (cf. Ezek 17:15). The earlier delegation (21:1-2) was sent before Nebuchadnezzar had clamped down on Jerusalem because the Judean forces at that time were still fighting against the Babylonian forces in the open field (see 21:4 and the translator’s note there). Here the siege has been lifted because the Babylonian troops had heard a report that the Egyptian army was on the way into Palestine to give the Judeans the promised aid (vv. 5, 7). The request is briefer here than in 21:2 but the intent is no doubt the same (see also the study note on 21:2).
631 sn The priest Zephaniah son of Maaseiah was a member of the earlier delegation (21:2) and the chief of security in the temple to whom the Babylonian false prophet wrote a letter complaining that Jeremiah should be locked up for his treasonous prophecies (29:25-26). See the study notes on 21:2 and 29:25 for further details.
632 sn This statement anticipates v. 15. Verses 3-4 are parenthetical to the narrative thread which is picked up in v. 5. They provide background information necessary for understanding the situation at the time the delegation comes to Jeremiah.
633 tn The words “as he pleased” are not in the text but are implicit in the idiom both in Hebrew and in English. They have been supplied in the translation for clarity and the sake of English idiom.
636 tn Heb “And the army of Pharaoh had set out from Egypt and the Chaldeans who were besieging Jerusalem heard a report about them and they went up from besieging them.” The sentence has been restructured and reworded to give greater emphasis to the most pertinent fact, i.e., that the siege had been temporarily lifted. The word “temporarily” is not in the text but is implicit from the rest of the context. It is supplied in the translation here to better show that the information in vv. 4-5 is all parenthetical, providing a background for the oracle that will follow. For the meaning “given up their siege against” (Heb “had taken themselves away from against”) see BDB 749 s.v. עָלָה Niph.1.c(2); 759 s.v. עַל IV.2.b.
sn The Pharaoh referred to here is Pharaoh Hophra who is named in Jer 44:30. He ruled from 589-570
637 tn Heb “And the word of the
638 tn Or “to ask me what will happen.” The dominant usage of the verb דָּרַשׁ (darash) is to “inquire” in the sense of gaining information about what will happen (cf., e.g., 1 Kgs 14:5; 2 Kgs 8:8; 22:7-8) but it is also used in the sense of “seeking help” from (cf., e.g., Isa 31:1; 2 Chr 16:12; 20:3). The latter nuance appears appropriate in Jer 20:2 where Zedekiah is hoping for some miraculous intervention. That nuance also appears appropriate here where Zedekiah has sent messengers to ask Jeremiah to intercede on their behalf. However, it is also possible that the intent of both verbs is to find out from God whether the Egyptian mission will succeed and more permanent relief from the siege will be had.
639 tn Heb “will go back to its land, Egypt.”
642 tn Heb “Thus says the
644 tn The length and complexity of this English sentence violates the more simple style that has been used to conform such sentences to contemporary English style. However, there does not seem to be any alternative that would enable a simpler style and still retain the causal and conditional connections that give this sentence the rhetorical force that it has in the original. The condition is, of course, purely hypothetical and the consequence a poetic exaggeration. The intent is to assure Zedekiah that there is absolutely no hope of the city being spared.
645 tn The words “The following events also occurred” are not in the text. They are a way to introduce the incidents recorded in 37:11-21 without creating a long complex sentence in English like the Hebrew does. The Hebrew of vv. 11-12a reads “And it was/happened while the army of the Chaldeans had taken themselves up from against Jerusalem, Jeremiah set out from Jerusalem to go to the land of Benjamin to take part…” For the rendering “temporarily withdrawn from Jerusalem” see the translator’s note on v. 5. The words “was coming” are not in the text either but are implicit and have been supplied in the translation for clarity and smoothness of English expression.
648 tn The meaning of this last sentence is somewhat uncertain. The Hebrew expression here occurs nowhere else in the Hebrew Bible and its meaning is debated. The verb is pointed as a shortened form of the Hiphil infinitive construct of חָלַק (khalaq; see GKC 148 §53.q for explanation of the phenomenon and other examples). There are, however, no other examples of the use of this verb in the Hiphil. BDB 324 s.v. חָלַק Hiph defines it as “receive a portion” and explains it as a denominative from חֵלֶק (kheleq, “portion”) but says that the form is dubious. KBL s.v. חָלַק Hif defines it as “take part in dividing” but that does not fit the prepositional phrase that follows (מִשָּׁם, misham, “from there”) as well as “to receive a portion.” The Greek version did not understand this of dividing property but of conducting business. Later revisions of the Greek and the Latin version, however, did understand it of “taking a share.” The translation of BDB has been expanded to better reflect the probable situation. For the meaning of “his family” for the noun עַם (’am) compare the usage in Job 18:19. For a fuller discussion of the probable situation see J. A. Thompson, Jeremiah (NICOT), 633-34.
sn Though some commentators disagree, this transaction should not be viewed as subsequent to the transaction recorded in Jer 32 and seen as an attempt to take possession of a field that he had already bought. That transaction took place sometime later after he had been confined to the courtyard of the guardhouse (compare 32:2 with 37:21) and involved his buying a near relative’s field. The word used here refers to “getting one’s own share” (compare 1 Sam 30:24; Josh 15:13, and see also Mic 2:4) not taking possession of someone else’s. “There” refers to the territory of Benjamin just mentioned but more specifically to Jeremiah’s hometown, Anathoth (cf. 1:1).
650 sn Nothing further is known about Irijah. It is generally agreed that the Hananiah mentioned here is not the same as the false prophet of the same name whom Jeremiah confronted approximately six years earlier (28:1, 5, 10, 15).
651 tn Heb “And he was in the gate of Benjamin and there was an officer of the guard whose name [more literally, and his name] was Irijah…and he seized the prophet Jeremiah, saying.” The sentence has been broken down and simplified to better conform with contemporary English style.
sn Irijah’s charge was based on the suspicion that Jeremiah was following his own counsel to the people to surrender to the Babylonians if they wanted to save their lives (Jer 21:9).
654 sn The officials mentioned here are not the same as those mentioned in Jer 36:12, most of whom were favorably disposed toward Jeremiah, or at least regarded what he said with enough trepidation to try to protect Jeremiah and preserve the scroll containing his messages (36:16, 19, 24). All those officials had been taken into exile with Jeconiah in 597
655 tn Heb “for they had made it into the house of confinement.” The causal particle does not fit the English sentence very well and “house of confinement” needs some explanation. Some translate this word “prison” but that creates redundancy with the earlier word translated “prison” (בֵּית הָאֵסוּר, bet ha’esur, “house of the band/binding”] which is more closely related to the concept of prison [cf. אָסִיר, ’asir, “prisoner”]). It is clear from the next verse that Jeremiah was confined in a cell in the dungeon of this place.
656 tn The particle כִּי (ki) here is probably temporal, introducing the protasis to the main clause in v. 17 (cf. BDB 473 s.v. כִּי 2.a). However, that would make the translation too long, so the present translation does what several modern English versions do here, though there are no parallels listed for this nuance in the lexicons.
657 tn Heb “Jeremiah came into the house of the pit [= “dungeon,” BDB 92 s.v. בּוֹר 4 and compare usage in Gen 40:15; 41:14] and into the cells [this word occurs only here; it is defined on the basis of the cognate languages (cf. BDB 333 s.v. חָנוּת)].” The sentence has been restructured and some words supplied in the translation to better relate it to the preceding context.
658 tn Heb “Jeremiah.” But the proper name is somewhat redundant and unnecessary in a modern translation.
659 tn Heb “Then King Zedekiah sent and brought him and the king asked him privately [or more literally, in secret] and said.”
660 tn Heb “Then he said.”
662 tn Heb “What crime have I committed against you, or your servants, or this people that you [masc. pl.] have put me in prison?” Some of the terms have been expanded for clarification and the sentence has been broken in two to better conform with contemporary English style.
The masculine plural is used here because Zedekiah is being addressed as representative of the whole group previously named.
663 tn Heb “And where are your prophets who prophesied to you, saying, ‘The king of Babylon will not come against you or against this land?’” The indirect quote has been used in the translation because of its simpler, more direct style.
664 tn Heb “My lord, the king.”
665 tn Heb “let my plea for mercy fall before you.” I.e., let it come before you and be favorably received (= granted; by metonymical extension).
666 tn Or “So that I will not die there,” or “or I will die there”; Heb “and I will not die there.” The particle that introduces this clause (וְלֹא) regularly introduces negative purpose clauses after the volitive sequence (אַל [’al] + jussive here) according to GKC 323 §109.g. However, purpose and result clauses in Hebrew (and Greek) are often indistinguishable. Here the clause is more in the nature of a negative result.
667 tn Heb “And/Then King Zedekiah ordered and they committed Jeremiah to [or deposited…in] the courtyard of the guardhouse and they gave to him a loaf of bread.” The translation has been structured the way it has to avoid the ambiguous “they” which is the impersonal subject which is sometimes rendered passive in English (cf. GKC 460 §144.d). This text also has another example of the vav (ו) + infinitive absolute continuing a finite verbal form (וְנָתֹן [vÿnaton] = “and they gave”; cf. GKC 345 §113.y and see Jer 32:44; 36:23).
668 tn Heb “Stayed/Remained/ Lived.”
669 tn The name is spelled “Jucal” in the Hebrew text here rather than “Jehucal” as in Jer 37:3. The translation uses the same spelling throughout so that the English reader can identify these as the same individual.
sn Jehucal was a member of the delegation sent to Jeremiah by Zedekiah in Jer 37:3.
671 tn J. Bright (Jeremiah [AB], 226, 30) is probably correct in translating the verbs here as pluperfects and in explaining that these words are prophecies that Jeremiah uttered before his arrest not prophecies that were being delivered to the people through intermediaries sent by Jeremiah who was confined in the courtyard of the guardhouse. For the use of the vav consecutive + imperfect to denote the pluperfect see the discussion and examples in IBHS 552-53 §33.2.3a and see the usage in Exod 4:19. The words that are cited in v. 2 are those recorded in 21:9 on the occasion of the first delegation and those in v. 3 are those recorded in 21:10; 34:2; 37:8; 32:28 all except the last delivered before Jeremiah was confined in the courtyard of the guardhouse.
672 tn Heb “by sword, by starvation, or by disease.”
674 tn Heb “his life will be to him for spoil and he will live.” For the meaning of this idiom see the study note on 21:9. The words and “he will live” have been left out of the translation because they are redundant after “will live” and “they will escape with their lives.”
sn See Jer 21:9 for this prophecy.
675 tn The words “They had also heard him say,” are not in the Hebrew text. They are supplied in the translation for clarity so as to avoid any possible confusion that might be created by saying merely “And the
678 tn Heb “by saying these things.”
679 tn The Hebrew particle כִּי (ki) has not been rendered here because it is introducing a parallel causal clause to the preceding one. To render “For” might be misunderstood as a grounds for the preceding statement. To render “And” or “Moreover” sounds a little odd here. If it must be represented, “Moreover” is perhaps the best rendering.
680 tn Or “is not looking out for these people’s best interests but is really trying to do them harm”; Heb “is not seeking the welfare [or “well-being”; Hebrew shalom] of this people but [their] harm [more literally, evil].”
681 tn Heb “Behold, he is in your hands [= power/control].”
682 tn Heb “For the king cannot do a thing with/against you.” The personal pronoun “I” is substituted in the English translation due to differences in style; Hebrew style often uses the third person or the title in speaking of oneself but English rarely if ever does. Compare the common paraphrasis of “your servant” for “I” in Hebrew (cf. BDB 714 s.v. עֶבֶד 6 and usage in 1 Sam 20:7, 8) and compare the usage in Pss 63:11 (63:12 HT); 61:6 (61:7 HT) where the king is praying for himself. For the meaning of יָכֹל (yakhol) as “to be able to do anything,” see BDB 407 s.v. יָכֹל 1.g.
683 tn Heb “they.”
684 sn A cistern was a pear-shaped pit with a narrow opening. Cisterns were cut or dug in the limestone rock and lined with plaster to prevent seepage. They were used to collect and store rain water or water carried up from a spring.
686 tn Heb “And they let Jeremiah down with ropes and in the cistern there was no water, only mud, and Jeremiah sank in the mud.” The clauses have been reordered and restructured to create a more natural and smoother order in English.
688 tn Heb “Ebed Melech, the Cushite, a man, an eunuch/official, and he was [= who was; a circumstantial clause] in the house of the king, heard that they had put Jeremiah…” The passive construction “Jeremiah had been put” has been used to avoid the indefinite subject “they” or the addition of “the officials.” For the translation of סָרִיס (saris) as “official” here rather than “eunuch” see the translator’s note on 29:2 and see also the usage in 34:19. For the translation of “Cushite” as Ethiopian see the study note on 13:23.
689 tn Heb “And the king was sitting in the Benjamin Gate.” This clause is circumstantial to the following clause; thus “while the king was…” Most commentators agree that the reference to sitting in the gate here likely refers to the same kind of judicial context that has been posited for 26:10 (see the translator’s note there for further references). Hence the translation uses “sitting” with the more technical “holding court” to better reflect the probable situation.
690 tn Heb “Those men have made evil all they have done to the prophet Jeremiah in that they have thrown him into the cistern and he will die of starvation in the place where he is because there is no more food in the city.” The particle אֵת (’et) before “they have thrown” (אֵת אֲשֶׁר הִשְׁלִיכוּ, ’et ’asher hishlikhu) is explanatory or further definition of “all they have done to” (i.e., the particle is repeated for apposition). The verb form “and he is sure to die” is an unusual use of the vav (ו) consecutive + imperfect that the grammars see as giving a logical consequence without a past nuance (cf. GKC 328 §111.l and IBHS 557-58 §33.3.1f).
sn “Because there isn’t any food left in the city” is rhetorical exaggeration; the food did not run out until just before the city fell. Perhaps the intent is to refer to the fact that there was no food in the city for people so confined (i.e., in solitary confinement).
691 tc Some modern English versions (e.g., NRSV, REB, TEV) and commentaries read “three” on the basis that thirty men would not be necessary for the task (cf. J. Bright, Jeremiah [AB], 231). Though the difference in “three” and “thirty” involves minimal emendation (שְׁלֹשָׁה [shÿlosha] for שְׁלֹשִׁים [shÿloshim]) there is no textual or versional evidence for it except for one Hebrew
692 tn Heb “went into the palace in under the treasury.” Several of the commentaries (e.g., J. Bright, Jeremiah [AB], 227; J. A. Thompson, Jeremiah [NICOT], 639, n. 6) emend the prepositional phrase “in under” (אֶל־תַּחַת, ’el-takhat) to the noun “wardrobe” plus the preposition “to” (אֶל־מֶלְתַחַת, ’el-meltakhat). This is a plausible emendation which would involve dropping out מֶל (mel) due to its similarity with the אֶל (’el) which precedes it. However, there is no textual or versional evidence for such a reading and the compound preposition is not in itself objectionable (cf. BDB 1066 s.v. תַּחַת III.1.a). The Greek version reads “the part underground” (representing a Hebrew Vorlage of אֶל תַּחַת הָאָרֶץ, ’el takhat ha’arets) in place of אֶל תַּחַת הָאוֹצָר (’el takhat ha’otsar). The translation follows the Hebrew text but adds the word “room” for the sake of English style.
693 tn Heb “worn-out clothes and worn-out rags.”
695 tn Heb “under the joints of your arms under the ropes.” The two uses of “under” have different orientations and are best reflected by “between your armpits and the ropes” or “under your armpits to pad the ropes.”
696 tn Or “Jeremiah did so.” The alternate translation is what the text reads literally.
697 tn Heb “Jeremiah remained/stayed in the courtyard of the guardhouse.” The translation is meant to better reflect the situation; i.e., Jeremiah was released from the cistern but still had to stay in the courtyard of the guardhouse.
698 tn The words “Some time later” are not in the text but are a way of translating the conjunction “And” or “Then” that introduces this narrative.
699 sn The precise location of this entrance is unknown since it is mentioned nowhere else in the OT. Many commentators equate this with the “king’s outer entry” (mentioned in 2 Kgs 16:18) which appears to have been a private entryway between the temple and the palace.
700 tn The words “when you answer” are not in the text but are implicit in the connection. They are supplied in the translation for the sake of clarity and smoothness of style.
701 tn Or “you will most certainly kill me, won’t you?” Heb “Will you not certainly kill me?” The question is rhetorical and expects a positive answer. In situations like this BDB s.v. לֹא 4.b(β) says that הֲלֹא (halo’) “has a tendency to become little more than an affirmative particle, declaring with some rhetorical emphasis what is, or might be, well known.” The idea of certainty is emphasized here by the addition of the infinitive absolute before the finite verb (Joüon 2:422 §123.e).
702 tn Heb “So King Zedekiah secretly swore an oath to Jeremiah, saying.”
703 tn Heb “who has made this life/soul/ breath [נֶפֶשׁ, nefesh] for us.” The Hebrew term נֶפֶשׁ refers to the living, breathing substance of a person which constitutes his very life (cf. BDB 659 s.v. נֶפֶשׁ 1; 3).
704 tn Heb “who are seeking your life.”
706 tn Heb “Your life/soul will live.” The quote is a long condition-consequence sentence with compound consequential clauses. It reads, “If you will only go out to the officers of the king of Babylon, your soul [= you yourself; BDB 660 s.v. נֶפֶשׁ 4.a] will live and this city will not be burned with fire and you and your household will live.” The sentence has been broken down and restructured to better conform with contemporary English style. The infinitive absolute in the condition emphasizes the one condition, i.e., going out or surrendering (cf. Joüon 2:423 §123.g, and compare usage in Exod 15:26). For the idiom “go out to” = “surrender to” see the full idiom in 21:9 “go out and fall over to” which is condensed in 38:2 to “go out to.” The expression here is the same as in 38:2.
708 tn Heb “will not escape from their hand.”
sn Zedekiah held out this hope of escape until the end and attempted to do so but was unsuccessful (cf. 39:4-5).
711 tn Heb “Please listen to the voice of the
713 tn Heb “And they will say.” The words “taunt you” are supplied in the translation to give the flavor of the words that follow.
714 tn Heb “The men of your friendship incited you and prevailed over you. Your feet are sunk in the mud. They turned backward.” The term “men of your friendship” (cf. BDB 1023 s.v. שָׁלוֹם 5.a) is used to refer to Jeremiah’s “so-called friends” in 20:10, to the trusted friend who deserted the psalmist in Ps 41:10, and to the allies of Edom in Obad 7. According to most commentators it refers here to the false prophets and counselors who urged the king to rebel against Nebuchadnezzar. The verb translated “misled” is a verb that often refers to inciting or instigating someone to do something, often with negative connotations (so BDB 694 s.v. סוּת Hiph.2). It is generally translated “deceive” or “mislead” in 2 Kgs 18:32; 2 Chr 32:11, 15. Here it refers to the fact that his pro-Egyptian counselors induced him to rebel. They have proven too powerful for him and prevailed on him (יָכֹל לְ, yakhol lÿ; see BDB 408 s.v. יָכֹל 2.b) to follow a policy which will prove detrimental to him, his family, and the city. The phrase “your feet are sunk in the mud” is figurative for being entangled in great difficulties (so BDB 371 s.v. טָבַע Hoph and compare the usage in the highly figurative description of trouble in Ps 69:2 [69:3 HT]).
sn The taunt song here refers to the fact that Zedekiah had been incited into rebellion by pro-Egyptian nobles in his court who prevailed on him to seek aid from the new Egyptian Pharaoh in 589
716 tn Heb “you yourself will not escape from their hand but will be seized by [caught in] the hand of the king of Babylon.” Neither use of “hand” is natural to the English idiom.
717 tc This translation follows the reading of the Greek version and a few Hebrew
718 tn Heb “about these words.”
sn This is probably not a threat that the king himself will kill Jeremiah, but a premonition that if the pro-Egyptian party that was seeking to kill Jeremiah found out about the conversation they would go ahead and kill Jeremiah (cf. 38:2-4).
720 tn The phrase “and what the king said to you” is actually at the end of the verse, but most commentators see it as also under the governance of “tell us” and many commentaries and English versions move the clause forward for the sake of English style as has been done here.
722 tn Verses 25-26 form a long compound, complex conditional sentence. The condition is found in v. 25 and contains a long quote. The consequence is found in v. 26 and contains another long quote. The Hebrew sentence literally reads: “And if the officials hear that I have talked with you and come to you and say to you, ‘Please tell us what you said to the king. Do not hide from us and we will not kill you [so that we will not kill you] and [tell us] what the king said to you,’ then tell them.” The sentence has been broken up to better conform with contemporary English style.
723 tn Heb “I was causing to fall [= presenting] my petition before the king not to send me back to Jonathan’s house to die there.” The word “dungeon of” is supplied in the translation to help the reader connect this petition with Jeremiah’s earlier place of imprisonment where the officials had put him with every intention of letting him die there (37:15-16, 20).
sn See Jer 37:15-16, 20.
724 tn Heb “All the officials came to Jeremiah and questioned him.”
725 tn Heb “And he reported to them according to all these words which the king had commanded.”
726 tn Heb “And they were silent from him because the word/matter [i.e., the conversation between Jeremiah and the king] had not been heard.” According to BDB 578 s.v. מִן 1.a the preposition “from” is significant in this construction, implying a verb of motion. I.e., “they were [fell] silent [and turned away] from him.”
727 tn Heb “And Jeremiah stayed/remained in the courtyard of the guardhouse…” The translation once again intends to reflect the situation. Jeremiah had a secret meeting with the king at the third entrance to the temple (v. 14). He was returned to the courtyard of the guardhouse (cf. v. 13) after the conversation with the king where the officials came to question him (v. 27). He was not sent back to the dungeon in Jonathan’s house as he feared, but was left confined in the courtyard of the guardhouse.
730 tc The precise meaning of this line and its relation to the context are somewhat uncertain. This line is missing from the Greek and Syriac versions and from a few Hebrew
731 sn 2 Kgs 25:1 and Jer 52:4 give the more precise date of the tenth day of the tenth month of the ninth year which would have been Jan 15, 588
732 sn According to modern reckoning that would have been July 18, 586
733 tn English versions and commentaries differ on the number of officials named here and the exact spelling of their names. For a good discussion of the options see F. B. Huey, Jeremiah, Lamentations (NAC), 341, n. 71. Most commentaries follow the general lead of J. Bright (Jeremiah [AB], 243) as the present translation has done here. However, the second name is not emended on the basis of v. 13 as Bright does, nor is the second Nergal-Sharezer regarded as the same man as the first and the information on the two combined as he does. The first Nergal-Sharezer is generally identified on the basis of Babylonian records as the man who usurped the throne from Nebuchadnezzar’s son, Awel-Marduk or Evil-Merodach as he is known in the OT (Jer 52:31; 2 Kgs 25:27). The present translation renders the two technical Babylonian terms “Rab-Saris” (only in Jer 39:3, 13; 2 Kgs 18:17) and “Rab-Mag” (only in Jer 39:3, 13) as “chief officer” and “high official” without knowing precisely what offices they held. This has been done to give the modern reader some feeling of their high position without specifying exactly what their precise positions were (i.e., the generic has been used for the [unknown] specific).
734 tn Heb “sat.” The precise meaning of this phrase is not altogether clear, but J. Bright (Jeremiah [AB], 243) is undoubtedly correct in assuming that it had to do with setting up a provisional military government over the city.
735 tn The Hebrew style here is typically full or redundant, giving a general subject first and then listing the specifics. The Hebrew text reads: “Then all the officers of the king of Babylon came and sat in the Middle Gate, Nergal-Sharezer…and all the rest of the officers of the king of Babylon.” In the translation the general subject has been eliminated and the list of the “real” subjects used instead; this eliminates the dashes or commas typical of some modern English versions.
sn The identification of the location of the Middle Gate is uncertain since it is mentioned nowhere else in the OT.
736 sn The king’s garden is mentioned again in Neh 3:15 in conjunction with the pool of Siloam and the stairs that go down from the city of David. This would have been in the southern part of the city near the Tyropean Valley which agrees with the reference to the “two walls” which were probably the walls on the eastern and western hills.
737 sn Heb “toward the Arabah.” The Arabah was the rift valley north and south of the Dead Sea. Here the intention was undoubtedly to escape across the Jordan to Moab or Ammon. It appears from 40:14; 41:15 that the Ammonites were known to harbor fugitives from the Babylonians.
741 sn Riblah was a strategic town on the Orontes River in Syria. It was at a crossing of the major roads between Egypt and Mesopotamia. Pharaoh Necho had earlier received Jehoahaz there and put him in chains (2 Kgs 23:33) prior to taking him captive to Egypt. Nebuchadnezzar had set up his base camp for conducting his campaigns against the Palestinian states there and was now sitting in judgment on prisoners brought to him.
742 tn Heb “fetters of bronze.” The more generic “chains” is used in the translation because “fetters” is a word unfamiliar to most modern readers.
744 tc The reading here is based on an emendation following the parallels in Jer 52:13 and 2 Kgs 25:9. The Hebrew text here does not have “the temple of the
745 sn According to the parallels in 2 Kgs 25:8-9; Jer 52:12-13 this occurred almost a month after the wall was breached and Zedekiah’s failed escape. It took place under the direction of Nebuzaradan, the captain of the king’s special guard who is mentioned in the next verse.
747 tc The translation is based on an emendation of the text which leaves out “the rest of the people who were left” as a double writing of the same phrase at the beginning of the verse. Some commentators emend the phrase “the rest of the people who were left” (הַנִּשְׁאָרִים וְאֶת יֶתֶר הָעָם, hannish’arim vÿ’et yeter ha’am) to read “the rest of the craftsmen who were left” (וְאֶת יֶתֶר הָאָמוֹן הַנִּשְׁאָרִים, vÿ’et yeter ha’amon hannish’arim) on the basis of the parallel in Jer 52:15 (which does not have הַנִּשְׁאָרִים, hannish’arim). However, it is easier to explain the phrase as a dittography of the phrase at the beginning (which is exactly the same except הָעִיר [ha’ir] follows it). The text is redundant because it refers twice to the same group of people. The Hebrew text reads: “And the rest of the people who were left in the city and the deserters who had deserted to him and the rest of the people Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, carried into exile to Babylon.” The text has also been divided up to create two shorter sentences to better conform with contemporary English style.
748 tn Heb “Nebuzaradan, the captain of the royal guard.” However, the subject is clear from the preceding and contemporary English style would normally avoid repeating the proper name and title.
749 tn Heb “And Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon commanded concerning Jeremiah by the hand of Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, saying.” Since Nebuchadnezzar is at Riblah (v. 6) and Nebuzaradan and the other officers named in the next verse are at Jerusalem, the vav consecutive imperfect should again be translated as a pluperfect (see 38:2 and the translator’s notes there for explanation). For the meaning of “through” or “through the agency of” for the phrase בְּיַד (bÿyad) see BDB 391 s.v. יָד 5.d. The sentence has been broken up to better conform with contemporary English style.
750 tn Heb “Get [or fetch] him.” The referent is supplied for clarity.
752 tn Heb “Don’t do anything evil [= harmful] to him.”
754 sn Gedaliah. This is the first reference to this individual whom Nebuchadnezzar appointed governor over the people who were left to live in Judah (cf. 40:5; 2 Kgs 25:22). His father was the man who spoke up for Jeremiah when he was accused of being a false prophet by some of the priests and prophets (26:24). His grandfather was the royal secretary under Josiah who brought the discovery of the book of the law to Josiah’s attention, read it to him, and was involved in helping Josiah institute his reforms (2 Kgs 22:8-10).
755 tn The meaning of the last phrase is uncertain. An alternate translation is “to take him home with him.” The text reads literally “to bring him into the house.” However, it is unclear whether “the house” refers to Jeremiah’s house or to Gedaliah’s. The fact that Nebuzaradan later offers Jeremiah the option of going back to Gedaliah (40:5) suggests that the house is here Gedaliah’s where Jeremiah would be looked out for in accord with Nebuchadnezzar’s command (v. 12).
756 tn Many translate this last clause as a conclusion or summary remark, “So Jeremiah stayed…” However, it is better to translate it as an adversative because it probably refers to the fact that rather than staying with Gedaliah in the governor’s residence Jeremiah stayed among the people. That is how he wound up being led off as a prisoner to Ramah. See further the study note on 40:1. According to IBHS 550 §33.2.1d the vav (ו) consecutive can have either of these values (see examples 11 and 12 for the adversative or contrastive nuance).
757 sn Jer 39:15-18. This incident is out of chronological order (see Jer 38:7-13). It is placed here either due to a desire not to interrupt the sequential ordering of events centering on Jeremiah’s imprisonment and his release (38:14–39:14) or to contrast God’s care and concern for the faithful (Ebed-Melech who, though a foreigner, trusted in God) with his harsh treatment of the faithless (Zedekiah who, though informed of God’s will, was too weak-willed in the face of opposition by his courtiers to carry it out).
758 tn Heb “Now the word of the
759 sn Even though Jeremiah was confined to the courtyard of the guardhouse, he was still free to entertain visitors (32:2, 8). Moreover, Ebed-Melech was an official attached to the royal court and would have had access to the courtyard of the guardhouse (38:7, 13). Jeremiah would not have had to leave the courtyard of the guardhouse to “go and tell” him something.
760 tn Heb “Behold, I will bring to pass my words against this city for evil/disaster and not for good/good fortune.” For the form of the verb מֵבִי ([mevi] Kethib, מֵבִיא [mevi’] Qere) see GKC 206-7 §74.k, where the same form is noted for the Kethib in 2 Sam 5:2; 1 Kgs 21:21; Jer 19:15 all of which occur before a word beginning with א. For the nuance “carry out” (or “bring to pass”) see BDB 99 s.v. בּוֹא Hiph.2.b.
761 tn Heb “And they [= my words for disaster] will come to pass [= happen] before you on that day [i.e., the day that I bring them to pass/carry them out].”
762 tn Heb “But I will rescue you on that day” (referring to the same day mentioned in the preceding verse).
763 tn Heb “Oracle of the
764 sn Some commentators see this as a reference to the princes from whose clutches Ebed-Melech delivered Jeremiah (38:7-13). However, it is clear that in this context it refers to those that he would fear when the
765 sn Heb “you will not fall by the sword.” In the context this would include death in battle and execution as a prisoner of war.
767 tn Heb “Oracle of the
768 tn Heb “The word which came to Jeremiah from the
769 sn Some commentators see the account of Jeremiah’s release here in 40:1-6 as an alternate and contradictory account to that of Jeremiah’s release in 39:11-14. However, most commentators see them as complementary and sequential. Jeremiah had been released from the courtyard of the guardhouse on orders of the military tribunal there shortly after Nebuzaradan got to Jerusalem and passed on Nebuchadnezzar’s orders to them. He had been released to the custody of Gedaliah who was to take him back to the governor’s residence and look after him there. However, Jeremiah remained in Jerusalem among the people there. He was mistakenly rounded up with them and led off as a prisoner to be deported with the rest of the exiles. However, when he got to Ramah which was a staging area for deportees, Nebuzaradan recognized him among the prisoners and released him a second time.
770 tn Heb “when he took him and he was in chains.” The subject is probably Nebuzaradan or the indefinite third singular (GKC 460 §144.d). The Kethib of the word for בָּאזִקִּים (ba’ziqqim) is to be explained as a secondary formation with prosthetic א (aleph) from the normal word for “fetter” (זֵק, zeq) according to HALOT 27 s.v. אֲזִקִּים (see GKC 70 §19.m and 235-36 §85.b for the phenomenon).
772 tn Heb “Because you [masc. pl.] sinned against the
773 tn The verb here is an example of the perfect of resolve where the speaker announces his intention to do something according to IBHS 488-89 §30.5.1d. The word “Jeremiah” is supplied in the translation to avoid the possible misunderstanding that the you is still plural.
777 tn Heb “Unto the good and the right in your eyes to go, go there.”
778 tc Or “Before Jeremiah could answer, the captain of the guard added.” Or “But if you remain, then go back.” The meaning of the first part of v. 5 is uncertain. The text is either very cryptic here or is corrupt, perhaps beyond restoration. The Hebrew text reads, “and he was not yet turning and return to Gedaliah” (וְעוֹדֶנּוּ לֹא־יָשׁוּב וְשֻׁבָה אֶל־גְּדַלְיָה) which is very cryptic. The Greek version lacks everything in v. 4 after “I will look out for you” and begins v. 5 with “But if not, run, return to Gedaliah” (= וְאִם לֹא רוּץ וְשֻׁבָה אֶל־גְּדַלְיָה). The Latin version reads the same as the Hebrew in v. 4 but reads “and don’t come with me but stay with Gedaliah” (= a possible Hebrew text of וְעִמָּדִי לֹא תָּשׁוּב וְשֵׁבָה אֶת־גְּדַלְיָה). The Syriac version reads “But if you are remaining then return to Gedaliah” (reading a possible Hebrew text of יֹשֵׁב וְשֻׁבָה אֶל־גְּדַלְיָה וְעוֹדְךָ לֻא with an abnormal writing of a conditional particle normally written לוּ [lu] and normally introducing conditions assumed to be untrue or reading וְעוֹדְךָ לְיֹשֵׁב וְשֻׁבָה אֶל־גְּדַלְיָה with an emphatic לְ [lÿ, see IBHS 211-12 §11.2.10i] and an informally introduced condition). NRSV does not explain the Hebrew base for its reading but accepts the Syriac as the original. It does appear to be the most likely alternative if the Hebrew is not accepted. However, the fact that none of the versions agree and all appear to be smoother than the Hebrew text suggests that they were dealing with an awkward original that they were trying to smooth out. Hence it is perhaps best to retain the Hebrew and make the best sense possible out of it. The most common reading of the Hebrew text as it stands is “and while he was not yet turning [= but before he was able to turn (to go)] [Nebuzaradan continued], ‘Go back to Gedaliah.’” (The imperfect in this case is an imperfect of capability [see IBHS 507 §31.4c, examples 2, 4, 5].) That is the reading that is adopted here. REB and TEV appear to accept a minor emendation of the verb “turn to leave” (יָשׁוּב, yashuv, a Qal imperfect) to “answer” (יָשִׁיב, yashiv, a Hiphil imperfect with an elided object [see BDB 999 s.v. שׁוּב Hiph.3 and compare 2 Chr 10:16]). All of this shows that the meaning of the text at this point is very uncertain.
780 tn Heb “Go back to Gedaliah…and live with him among the people.” The long Hebrew sentence has been restructured to better conform with contemporary English style.
781 sn Mizpah. It is generally agreed that this is the Mizpah that was on the border between Benjamin and Judah. It was located approximately eight miles north of Jerusalem and had been an important military and religious center from the time of the judges on (cf., e.g., Judg 20:1-3; 1 Sam 7:5-14; 1 Sam 10:17; 1 Kgs 15:22). It was not far from Ramah which was approximately four miles north of Jerusalem.
782 tn Heb “So Jeremiah went to Gedaliah…and lived with him among the people who had been left in the land.” The long Hebrew sentence has been divided in two to better conform with contemporary English style.
785 tn Verse 6 consists of a very long conditional clause whose main clause is found in v. 7. The text reads literally “When all the officers of the forces who were in the countryside heard, they and their men, that the king of Babylon had appointed Gedaliah…over the land and that he had committed to him men, women, and children, even from the poorest of the land from those who had not been carried off into exile to Babylon, they came.” The sentence has been broken up to better conform with contemporary English style. The phrase “the forces who were in the countryside” has been translated to reflect the probable situation, i.e., they had escaped and were hiding in the hills surrounding Jerusalem waiting for the Babylonians to leave (cf. Judg 6:2).
786 sn The name of these officers is given here because some of them become important to the plot of the subsequent narrative, in particular, Ishmael and Johanan. Ishmael was a member of the royal family (41:1). He formed an alliance with the king of Ammon, assassinated Gedaliah, killed the soldiers stationed at Mizpah and many of Gedaliah’s followers, and attempted to carry off the rest of the people left at Mizpah to Ammon (40:13; 41:1-3, 10). Johanan was the leading officer who sought to stop Ishmael from killing Gedaliah (40:13-16) and who rescued the Jews that Ishmael was trying to carry off to Ammon (41:11-15). He along with another man named Jezaniah and these other officers were the leaders of the Jews who asked for Jeremiah’s advice about what they should do after Ishmael had killed Gedaliah (43:1-7).
787 tn The words “so as to give them some assurance of safety” are not in the text but are generally understood by all commentators. This would be a case of substitution of cause for effect, the oath, put for the effect, the assurance of safety (NJPS translates directly “reassured them”).
790 tn Heb “summer fruit.” “Summer fruit” is meaningless to most modern readers; dates and figs are what is involved.
791 tn This plus “Things will go well with you” is in essence the substance of the oath. The pronouns are emphatic, “And I, behold I will stay…and you, you may gather.” The imperatives in the second half of the verse are more a form of permission than of command or advice (cf. NJPS, REB, TEV and compare the usage in 40:4 and the references in the translator’s note there).
792 tn Heb “summer fruit.” “Summer fruit” is meaningless to most modern readers; dates and figs are what is involved.
793 tn The translation is intended to reflect the emphasizing infinitive absolute before the finite verb.
794 tn Heb “Why should he kill you?” However, this is one of those cases listed in BDB 554 s.v. מָה 4.d(b) where it introduces a question introducing rhetorically the reason why something should not be done. In cases like this BDB notes that it approximates the meaning “lest” and is translated in Greek by μήποτε (mhpote) or μή (mh) as the Greek version does here. Hence it is separated from the preceding and translated “otherwise” for the sake of English style.
795 tn Heb “this thing.”
796 tn Heb “is false” or “is a lie.”
797 sn It is not altogether clear whether this is in the same year that Jerusalem fell or not. The wall was breached in the fourth month (= early July; 39:2) and Nebuzaradan came and burned the palace, the temple, and many of the houses and tore down the wall in the fifth month (= early August; 52:12). That would have left time between the fifth month and the seventh month (October) to gather in the harvest of grapes, dates and figs, and olives (40:12). However, many commentators feel that too much activity takes place in too short a time for this to have been in the same year and posit that it happened the following year or even five years later when a further deportation took place, possibly in retaliation for the murder of Gedaliah and the Babylonian garrison at Mizpah (52:30). The assassination of Gedaliah had momentous consequences and was commemorated in one of the post exilic fast days lamenting the fall of Jerusalem (Zech 8:19).
798 sn All the Judeans. This can scarcely refer to all the Judeans who had rallied around Gedaliah at Mizpah because v. 10 later speaks of Ishmael carrying off “the rest of the people who were at Mizpah.” Probably what is meant is “all the Judeans and Babylonian soldiers” that were also at the meal. It is possible that this meal was intended to seal a covenant between Gedaliah and Ishmael of Ishmael’s allegiance to Gedaliah and his Babylonian overlords (cf. Gen 26:30-31; 31:53-54; Exod 24:11). In any case, this act of treachery and deceit was an extreme violation of the customs of hospitality practiced in the ancient Near East.
799 tn Heb “Chaldean.” See the study note on 21:4 for explanation. There are two cases of apposition with the repetition of the preposition or of the sign of the accusative in this verse, e.g., “who were with him, [namely] with Gedaliah” and “all the Chaldeans who happened to be there, [namely] the soldiers.”
800 tn Heb “were found there.” For this nuance of the verb see BDB 594 s.v. מָצָא Niph.2.c.
801 sn Shechem, Shiloh, and Samaria were all cities in the northern kingdom of Israel with important religious and political histories. When Israel was destroyed in 722
802 tn The words “to show they were mourning” are not in the text but are implicit in the acts. They are supplied in the translation for clarification for readers who may not be familiar with ancient mourning customs.
803 tn The words “in Jerusalem” are not in the text but are implicit. They are supplied in the translation for clarity.
804 tn Heb “he was weeping/crying.” The translation is intended to better reflect the situation.
805 tn Heb “Come to Gedaliah the son of Ahikam.” The words that are supplied in the translation are implicit to the situation and are added for clarity.
806 tn The words “and threw their bodies” result from the significant use of the preposition אֶל (’el, so GKC 384 §119.gg and BDB 39 s.v. אֶל 1). Hence the suggestion in BHS (fn a) that the Syriac and two Greek
808 tn This sentence is a good example of the elliptical nature of some of the causal connections in the Hebrew Bible. All the Hebrew says literally is “For we have hidden stores of wheat, barley, olive oil, and honey in a field.” However, it is obvious that they are using this as their bargaining chip to prevent Ishmael and his men from killing them. For the use of “for” (כִּי, ki) for such elliptical thoughts see BDB 473-74 s.v. כִּי 3.c.
809 tn Or “So he refrained from killing them”; Heb “he refrained and did not kill them.”
810 tn Heb “in the midst of their brothers/fellow countrymen.”
811 tc The translation here follows the reading of the Greek version. The meaning of the Hebrew is uncertain; some understand it to mean “because of Gedaliah [i.e., to cover up the affair with Gedaliah]” and others understand it to mean “alongside of Gedaliah.” The translation presupposes that the Hebrew text reads בּוֹר גָּדוֹל הוּא (bor gadol hu’) in place of בְּיַד־גְּדַלְיָהוּ הוּא (bÿyad-gÿdalyahu). The meaning of בְּיַד (bÿyad) does not fit any of the normal ones given for this expression and those who retain the Hebrew text normally explain it as an unparalleled use of “because” or “in the affair of” (so NJPS) or a rare use meaning “near, by the side of “ (see BDB 391 s.v. יָד 5.d where only Ps 141:6 and Zech 4:12 are cited. BDB themselves suggest reading with the Greek version as the present translation does [so BDB 391 s.v. יָד 5.c(3)]). For the syntax presupposed by the Greek text which has been followed consult IBHS 298 §16.3.3d and 133 §8.4.2b. The first clause is a classifying clause with normal order of subject-predicate-copulative pronoun and it is followed by a further qualifying relative clause.
813 tn Or “with corpses”; Heb “with the slain.”
814 tn Heb “the daughters of the king.” Most commentators do not feel that this refers to the actual daughters of Zedekiah since they would have been too politically important to have escaped exile with their father. As noted in the translator’s note on 36:26 this need not refer to the actual daughters of the king but may refer to other royal daughters, i.e., the daughters of other royal princes.
815 tn Or “crimes,” or “evil things”; Heb “the evil.”
817 tn Heb “all the people who were with Ishmael.” However, this does not refer to his own troops but to those he had taken with him from Mizpah, i.e., the captives. The phrase is specifically clarified in the next verse, i.e. “the people whom Ishmael had taken captive from Mizpah.” Hence the phrase is translated here according to sense, not according to the literal wording.
819 sn Geruth Kimham is nowhere else mentioned in the Bible and its precise location is unknown. Many commentators relate the second part of the name to the name of the son of David’s benefactor when he fled from Absalom (2 Sam 19:38-39) and see this as a reference to an estate that David assigned this son as reward for his father’s largess. Gibeon was about six miles northwest of Jerusalem and Benjamin is approximately the same distance southwest of it. Hence, the people mentioned here had not traveled all that far.
821 tn Verses 16-18a are a long complex sentence in the Hebrew text with some rather awkward placement of qualifying terms. In the Hebrew text these verses read: “41:16 And he took, Johanan…and all the army officers with him, all the people who were left alive which he [Johanan] had taken back from Ishmael son of Nethaniah from Mizpah after he [Ishmael] had killed Gedaliah…men, men of war, and women and children and court officials which he [Johanan] had brought back from Gibeon 41:17 and they went and they stayed at Geruth Kimham…to go to enter Egypt 41:18 because of the Chaldean because they were afraid of them because Ishmael…” The sentence has been broken down and restructured to reflect all the relevant data in shorter sentences which better conform with contemporary English style. There are a couple of places where the text and syntax are debated. Many modern English versions and commentaries read “They led off/took control of/took all survivors of the people whom Ishmael…had taken captive [reading שָׁבָה ֹאתָם (shavah ’otam) in place of הֵשִׁיב מֵאֵת (heshiv me’et), “whom he (Johanan) had taken back/rescued from Ishmael] from Mizpah after he had…” This is a decidedly smoother text but there is no manuscript or versional evidence for it and so it has been rejected here. Some commentators and English versions see the words “men of war” (“soldiers”) following the word “men” as appositional to that word and hence see only one category. However, there are no parallels to these words used in this kind of apposition. So the translation reflects two categories.
822 sn Jezaniah son of Hoshaiah may have been the same as the Jezaniah son of the Maacathite mentioned in 40:8. The title “the Maacathite” would identify the locality from which his father came, i.e., a region in northern Transjordan east of Lake Huleh. Many think he is also the same man who is named “Azariah” in Jer 43:2 (the Greek version has Azariah both here and in 43:2). It was not uncommon for one man to have two names, e.g., Uzziah who was also named Azariah (compare 2 Kgs 14:21 with 2 Chr 26:1).
823 tn Or “without distinction,” or “All the people from the least important to the most important”; Heb “from the least to the greatest.” This is a figure of speech that uses polar opposites as an all-inclusive designation of everyone without exception (i.e., it included all the people from the least important or poorest to the most important or richest.)
825 tn Heb “on behalf of us, [that is] on behalf of all this remnant.”
sn This refers to the small remnant of people who were left of those from Mizpah who had been taken captive by Ishmael after he had killed Gedaliah and who had been rescued from him at Gibeon. There were other Judeans still left in the land of Judah who had not been killed or deported by the Babylonians.
826 tn Heb “For we are left a few from the many as your eyes are seeing us.” The words “used to be” are not in the text but are implicit. These words are supplied in the translation for clarity and smoothness of English style.
828 tn Heb “all the word which the
829 tn Heb “do according to all the word which.”
830 tn Heb “Whether good or whether evil we will hearken to the voice of the
831 tn Or “without distinction,” or “All the people from the least important to the most important”; Heb “from the least to the greatest.” This is a figure of speech that uses polar opposites as an all-inclusive designation of everyone without exception (i.e., it included all the people from the least important or poorest to the most important or richest.)
832 tn Heb “Thus says the
sn Their “request” is that Jeremiah would tell them where to go and what to do (v. 3).
833 tn The word “just” is intended to reflect the infinitive absolute before the finite verb emphasizing here the condition rather than the verb root (see Joüon 2:423 §123.g, and compare the usage in Exod 15:26). The form looks like the infinitive absolute of the verb שׁוּב (shuv), but all the versions interpret it as though it is from יָשַׁב (yashav) which is the root of the verb that follows it. Either this is a textual error of the loss of a י (yod) or this is one of the cases that GKC 69 §19.i list as the possible loss of a weak consonant at the beginning of a word.
836 tn Heb “oracle of the
837 tn Heb “see [or experience] war.”
838 tn Heb “hear the sound of the trumpet.” The trumpet was used to gather the troops and to sound the alarm for battle.
839 tn Jer 42:13-14 are a long complex condition (protasis) whose consequence (apodosis) does not begin until v. 15. The Hebrew text of vv. 13-14 reads: 42:13 “But if you say [or continue to say (the form is a participle)], ‘We will not stay in this land’ with the result that you do not obey [or “more literally, do not hearken to the voice of] the
842 tn Or “will follow you right into Egypt,” or “will dog your steps all the way to Egypt”; Heb “cling after.” This is the only case of this verb with this preposition in the Qal stem. However, it is used with this preposition several times in the Hiphil, all with the meaning of “to pursue closely.” See BDB 180 s.v. דָּבַק Hiph.2 and compare Judg 20:45; 1 Sam 14:22; 1 Chr 10:2.
843 tn The repetition of the adverb “there” in the translation of vv. 14, 16 is to draw attention to the rhetorical emphasis on the locale of Egypt in the original text of both v. 14 and v. 16. In v. 14 they say, “to the land of Egypt we will go…and there we will live.” In v. 16 God says, “wars…there will catch up with you…the hunger…there will follow after you…and there you will die.” God rhetorically denies their focus on Egypt as a place of safety and of relative prosperity. That can only be found in Judah under the protective presence of the
844 tn Or “Indeed.”
848 tn Or “land.” The reference is, of course, to the land of Judah.
849 tn Heb “Know for certain that I warn you…” The idea of “for certain” is intended to reflect the emphatic use of the infinitive absolute before the volitive use of the imperfect (see IBHS 587-88 §35.3.1h and 509 §31.5b). The substitution “of this:” for “that” has been made to shorten the sentence in conformity with contemporary English style.
850 tn Heb “today.”
851 tn Heb “you are erring at the cost of your own lives” (BDB 1073 s.v. תָּעָה Hiph.3 and HALOT 1626 s.v. תָּעָה Hif 4, and cf. BDB 90 s.v. בְּ 3 and see parallels in 1 Kgs 2:23; 2 Sam 23:17 for the nuance of “at the cost of your lives”). This fits the context better than “you are deceiving yourselves” (KBL 1035 s.v. תָּעָה Hif 4). The reading here follows the Qere הִתְעֵיתֶם (hit’etem) rather than the Kethib which has a metathesis of י (yod) and ת (tav), i.e., הִתְעֵתֶים. The Greek text presupposes הֲרֵעֹתֶם (hare’otem, “you have done evil”), but that reading is generally rejected as secondary.
852 tn Heb “According to all which the
853 tn Or “Today.”
854 tn The words “what he said” are not in the text but are implicit and seem necessary for clarity.
855 tn Heb “But you have not hearkened to the voice of [idiomatic for “obeyed” see BDB 1034 s.v. שָׁמַע Qal.1.m] the
856 tn This sentence contains an emphasis that is impossible to translate into idiomatic English that would not sound redundant. In Hebrew the sentence reads: “When Jeremiah finished [the temporal subordination is left out here because it would make the sentence too long] telling all the people all the words [or all the things] which the
858 tn Or “is inciting you against us.”
859 tn Heb “in order to give us into the hands of the Chaldeans.” The substitution “he wants to” as the equivalent of the purpose clause has been chosen to shorten the sentence to better conform with contemporary English style.
862 tn Heb “the daughters of the king.” See the translator’s n