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Jeremiah 26:11-16

26:11 Then the priests and the prophets made their charges before the officials and all the people. They said, 1  “This man should be condemned to die 2  because he prophesied against this city. You have heard him do so 3  with your own ears.”

26:12 Then Jeremiah made his defense before all the officials and all the people. 4  “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. 5  Obey the Lord your God. If you do, the Lord will forgo destroying you as he threatened he would. 6  26:14 As to my case, I am in your power. 7  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!” 8 

26:16 Then the officials and all the people rendered their verdict to the priests and the prophets. They said, 9  “This man should not be condemned to die. 10  For he has spoken to us under the authority of the Lord our God.” 11 

1 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.”

2 tn Heb “a sentence of death to this man.”

3 tn Heb “it.”

4 tn Heb “Jeremiah said to all the leaders and all the people….” See the note on the word “said” in the preceding verse.

5 tn Heb “Make good your ways and your actions.” For the same expression see 7:3, 5; 18:11.

6 tn For the idiom and translation of terms involved here see 18:8 and the translator’s note there.

sn The Lord is being consistent in the application of the principle laid down in Jer 18:7-8 that reformation of character will result in the withdrawal of the punishment of “uprooting, tearing down, destroying.” His prophecies of doom are conditional threats, open to change with change in behavior.

7 tn Heb “And I, behold I am in your hand.” Hand is quite commonly used for “power” or “control” in biblical contexts.

8 tn Heb “For in truth the Lord has sent me to you to speak in your ears all these words/things.”

9 tn Heb “Then the officials and all the people said to the priests and the prophets…”

10 sn Contrast v. 11.

11 tn Heb “For in the name of the Lord our God he has spoken to us.” The emphasis is on “in the name of…”

sn The priests and false prophets claimed that they were speaking in the Lord’s name (i.e., as his representatives and with his authority [see 1 Sam 25:9; 1 Kgs 21:8 and cf. the study note on Jer 23:27]) and felt that Jeremiah’s claims to be doing so were false (see v. 9). Jeremiah (and the Lord) charged that the opposite was the case (cf. 14:14-15; 23:21). The officials and the people, at least at this time, accepted his claims that the Lord had sent him (vv. 12, 15).

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