Jeremiah 33-35New English Translation (NET Bible)
The Lord Promises a Second Time to Restore Israel and Judah
33 The Lord spoke to Jeremiah a second time while he was still confined in the courtyard of the guardhouse. 2 “I, the Lord, do these things. I, the Lord, form the plan to bring them about. I am known as the Lord. I say to you, 3 ‘Call on me in prayer and I will answer you. I will show you great and mysterious things which you still do not know about.’ 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: 5 ‘The defenders of the city will go out and fight with the Babylonians. 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. That will happen because I have decided to turn my back on this city on account of the wicked things they have done. 6 But I will most surely heal the wounds of this city and restore it and its people to health. I will show them abundant peace and security. 7 I will restore Judah and Israel and will rebuild them as they were in days of old. 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. 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.’
10 “I, the Lord, say: ‘You and your people are saying 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 will soon be desolate, uninhabited either by people or by animals. But happy sounds will again be heard in these places. 11 Once again there will be sounds of joy and gladness and the glad celebrations of brides and grooms. 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.” For I, the Lord, affirm that I will restore the land to what it was in days of old.’
12 “I, the Lord who rules over all, say: ‘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. 13 I, the Lord, say that shepherds will once again count their sheep as they pass into the fold. 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.’
The Lord Reaffirms His Covenant with David, Israel, and Levi
14 “I, the Lord, affirm: ‘The time will certainly come when I will fulfill my gracious promise concerning the nations of Israel and Judah. 15 In those days and at that time I will raise up for them a righteous descendant of David.
“‘He will do what is just and right in the land. 16 Under his rule Judah will enjoy safety and Jerusalem will live in security. At that time Jerusalem will be called “The Lord has provided us with justice.” 17 For I, the Lord, promise: “David will never lack a successor to occupy the throne over the nation of Israel. 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.”’”
19 The Lord spoke further to Jeremiah. 20 “I, the Lord, make the following promise: ‘I have made a covenant with the day and with the night that they will always come at their proper times. Only if you people could break that covenant 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. 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.’”
23 The Lord spoke still further to Jeremiah. 24 “You have surely noticed what these people are saying, haven’t you? They are saying, ‘The Lord has rejected the two families of Israel and Judah that he chose.’ So they have little regard that my people will ever again be a nation. 25 But I, the Lord, make the following promise: I have made a covenant governing the coming of day and night. I have established the fixed laws governing heaven and earth. 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, I will restore them and show mercy to them.”
The Lord Makes an Ominous Promise to Zedekiah
34 The Lord spoke to Jeremiah while King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon was attacking Jerusalem 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. 2 The Lord God of Israel told Jeremiah to go and give King Zedekiah of Judah a message. He told Jeremiah to tell him, “The Lord says, ‘I am going to hand this city over to the king of Babylon and he will burn it down. 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. Then you must go to Babylon. 4 However, listen to what I, the Lord, promise you, King Zedekiah of Judah. I, the Lord, promise that you will not die in battle or be executed. 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. They will mourn for you, saying, “Poor, poor master!” Indeed, you have my own word on this. I, the Lord, affirm it!’”
6 The prophet Jeremiah told all this to King Zedekiah of Judah in Jerusalem. 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.
The Lord Threatens to Destroy Those Who Wronged Their Slaves
8 The Lord spoke to Jeremiah after King Zedekiah had made a covenant with all the people in Jerusalem to grant their slaves their freedom. 9 Everyone was supposed to free their male and female Hebrew slaves. No one was supposed to keep a fellow Judean enslaved. 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. 11 But later 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. 12 That was when the Lord spoke to Jeremiah, 13 “The Lord God of Israel has a message for you. ‘I made a covenant with your ancestors when I brought them out of Egypt where they had been slaves. It stipulated, 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.” But your ancestors did not obey me or pay any attention to me. 15 Recently, however, you yourselves 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. 16 But then you turned right around and showed that you did not honor me. 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. 17 So I, the Lord, say: “You have not really obeyed me and granted freedom to your neighbor and fellow countryman. Therefore, I will grant you freedom, the freedom to die in war, or by starvation or disease. I, the Lord, affirm it! I will make all the kingdoms of the earth horrified at what happens to you. 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. I will do so because they did not keep the terms of the covenant they made in my presence. 19 I will punish the leaders of Judah and Jerusalem, the court officials, the priests, and all the other people of the land who passed between the pieces of the calf. 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. 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. 22 For I, the Lord, affirm that 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.”’”
Judah’s Unfaithfulness Contrasted with the Rechabites’ Faithfulness
35 The Lord spoke to Jeremiah when Jehoiakim son of Josiah was ruling over Judah. 2 “Go to the Rechabite community. Invite them to come into one of the side rooms of the Lord’s temple and offer them some wine to drink.” 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. 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. 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 of the temple, stayed. 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.” 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. 7 Do not build houses. Do not plant crops. Do not plant a vineyard or own one. Live in tents all your lives. If you do these things you will live a long time in the land that you wander about on.’ 8 We and our wives and our sons and daughters have obeyed everything our ancestor Jonadab commanded us. We have never drunk wine. 9 We have not built any houses to live in. We do not own any vineyards, fields, or crops. 10 We have lived in tents. We have obeyed our ancestor Jonadab and done exactly as he commanded us. 11 But when King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon invaded the land we said, ‘Let’s get up and go to Jerusalem to get away from the Babylonian and Aramean armies.’ That is why we are staying here in Jerusalem.”
12 Then the Lord spoke to Jeremiah. 13 The Lord God of Israel who rules over all told him, “Go and speak to the people of Judah and the citizens of Jerusalem. Tell them, ‘I, the Lord, say: “You must learn a lesson from this about obeying what I say! 14 Jonadab son of Rechab ordered his descendants not to drink wine. His orders have been carried out. To this day his descendants have drunk no wine because they have obeyed what their ancestor commanded them. But I have spoken to you over and over again, but you have not obeyed me! 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. Do not pay allegiance to other gods 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. 16 Yes, the descendants of Jonadab son of Rechab have carried out the orders that their ancestor gave them. But you people have not obeyed me! 17 So I, the Lord, the God who rules over all, the God of Israel, say: “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.”’”
18 Then Jeremiah spoke to the Rechabite community, “The Lord God of Israel who rules over all says, ‘You have obeyed the orders of your ancestor Jonadab. You have followed all his instructions. You have done exactly as he commanded you.’ 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.’”
PhilemonNew English Translation (NET Bible)
1 From Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus, and Timothy our brother, to Philemon, our dear friend and colaborer, 2 to Apphia our sister, to Archippus our fellow soldier, and to the church that meets in your house. 3 Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ!
Thanks for Philemon’s Love and Faith
4 I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers, 5 because I hear of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints. 6 I pray that the faith you share with us may deepen your understanding of every blessing that belongs to you in Christ. 7 I have had great joy and encouragement because of your love, for the hearts of the saints have been refreshed through you, brother.
Paul’s Request for Onesimus
8 So, although I have quite a lot of confidence in Christ and could command you to do what is proper, 9 I would rather appeal to you on the basis of love—I, Paul, an old man and even now a prisoner for the sake of Christ Jesus— 10 I am appealing to you concerning my child, whose spiritual father I have become during my imprisonment, that is, Onesimus, 11 who was formerly useless to you, but is now useful to you and me. 12 I have sent him (who is my very heart) back to you. 13 I wanted to keep him with me so that he could serve me in your place during my imprisonment for the sake of the gospel. 14 However, without your consent I did not want to do anything, so that your good deed would not be out of compulsion, but from your own willingness. 15 For perhaps it was for this reason that he was separated from you for a little while, so that you would have him back eternally, 16 no longer as a slave, but more than a slave, as a dear brother. He is especially so to me, and even more so to you now, both humanly speaking and in the Lord. 17 Therefore if you regard me as a partner, accept him as you would me. 18 Now if he has defrauded you of anything or owes you anything, charge what he owes to me. 19 I, Paul, have written this letter with my own hand: I will repay it. I could also mention that you owe me your very self. 20 Yes, brother, let me have some benefit from you in the Lord. Refresh my heart in Christ. 21 Since I was confident that you would obey, I wrote to you, because I knew that you would do even more than what I am asking you to do. 22 At the same time also, prepare a place for me to stay, for I hope that through your prayers I will be given back to you.
23 Epaphras, my fellow prisoner in Christ Jesus, greets you. 24 Mark, Aristarchus, Demas, and Luke, my colaborers, greet you too. 25 May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.