24 During Jehoiakim’s rule, King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylonia[a] invaded and took control of Judah. Jehoiakim obeyed Nebuchadnezzar for three years, but then he rebelled.
2 At that time, the Lord started sending troops to rob and destroy towns in Judah. Some of these troops were from Babylonia, and others were from Syria, Moab, and Ammon. The Lord had sent his servants the prophets to warn Judah about this, 3 and now he was making it happen. The country of Judah was going to be wiped out, because Manasseh had sinned 4 and caused many innocent people to die. The Lord would not forgive this.
5 Everything else Jehoiakim did while he was king is written in The History of the Kings of Judah. 6 Jehoiakim died, and his son Jehoiachin became king.
7 King Nebuchadnezzar defeated King Neco of Egypt and took control of his land from the Egyptian Gorge all the way north to the Euphrates River. So Neco never invaded Judah again.[b]
King Jehoiachin of Judah Is Taken to Babylon
8 Jehoiachin was eighteen years old when he became king of Judah, and he ruled only three months from Jerusalem. His mother Nehushta was the daughter of Elnathan from Jerusalem. 9 Jehoiachin disobeyed the Lord, just as his father Jehoiakim had done.
10 King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylonia sent troops to attack Jerusalem soon after Jehoiachin became king. 11 During the attack, Nebuchadnezzar himself arrived at the city. 12 Jehoiachin immediately surrendered, together with his mother and his servants, as well as his army officers and officials. Then Nebuchadnezzar had Jehoiachin arrested. These things took place in the eighth year of Nebuchadnezzar’s rule in Babylonia.[c]
13 The Lord had warned[d] that someday the treasures would be taken from the royal palace and from the temple, including the gold objects that Solomon had made for the temple. And that’s exactly what Nebuchadnezzar ordered his soldiers to do. 14 He also led away as prisoners the Jerusalem officials, the military leaders, and the skilled workers—ten thousand in all. Only the very poorest people were left in Judah.
15 Nebuchadnezzar took Jehoiachin to Babylon, along with his mother, his wives, his officials, and the most important leaders of Judah. 16 He also led away seven thousand soldiers, one thousand skilled workers, and anyone who would be useful in battle.
17 Then Nebuchadnezzar appointed Jehoiachin’s uncle Mattaniah king of Judah and changed his name to Zedekiah.
King Zedekiah of Judah
18 Zedekiah was twenty-one years old when he was appointed king of Judah, and he ruled from Jerusalem for eleven years. His mother Hamutal was the daughter of Jeremiah from Libnah. 19 Zedekiah disobeyed the Lord, just as Jehoiakim had done. 20 It was Zedekiah who finally rebelled against Nebuchadnezzar.
The people of Judah and Jerusalem had made the Lord so angry that he finally turned his back on them. That’s why these horrible things were happening.
24.1King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylonia: Ruled Babylonia 605-562 B.C.
24.7again: Nebuchadnezzar defeated the Egyptian army in 605 B.C. at the town of Carchemish. But a few years later, he was forced to retreat all the way back to Babylonia, which allowed Jehoiakim to rebel (see verse 1).
24.12Babylonia: These events took place in 597 B.C.
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