Jerusalem’s Doom Is Sealed

21 The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord when (A)King Zedekiah sent to him (B)Pashhur the son of Melchiah, and (C)Zephaniah the son of Maaseiah, the priest, saying, (D)“Please inquire of the Lord for us, for [a]Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon makes war against us. Perhaps the Lord will deal with us according to all His wonderful works, that the king may go away from us.”

Then Jeremiah said to them, “Thus you shall say to Zedekiah, ‘Thus says the Lord God of Israel: “Behold, I will turn back the weapons of war that are in your hands, with which you fight against the king of Babylon and the [b]Chaldeans who besiege you outside the walls; and (E)I will assemble them in the midst of this city. I (F)Myself will fight against you with an (G)outstretched hand and with a strong arm, even in anger and fury and great wrath. I will strike the inhabitants of this city, both man and beast; they shall die of a great pestilence. And afterward,” says the Lord, (H)“I will deliver Zedekiah king of Judah, his servants and the people, and such as are left in this city from the pestilence and the sword and the famine, into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, into the hand of their enemies, and into the hand of those who seek their life; and he shall strike them with the edge of the sword. (I)He shall not spare them, or have pity or mercy.” ’

“Now you shall say to this people, ‘Thus says the Lord: “Behold, (J)I set before you the way of life and the way of death. He who (K)remains in this city shall die by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence; but he who goes out and [c]defects to the Chaldeans who besiege you, he shall (L)live, and his life shall be as a prize to him. 10 For I have (M)set My face against this city for adversity and not for good,” says the Lord. (N)“It shall be given into the hand of the king of Babylon, and he shall (O)burn it with fire.” ’

Message to the House of David

11 “And concerning the house of the king of Judah, say, ‘Hear the word of the Lord, 12 O house of David! Thus says the Lord:

(P)“Execute[d] judgment (Q)in the morning;
And deliver him who is plundered
Out of the hand of the oppressor,
Lest My fury go forth like fire
And burn so that no one can quench it,
Because of the evil of your doings.

13 “Behold, (R)I am against you, O [e]inhabitant of the valley,
And rock of the plain,” says the Lord,
“Who say, (S)‘Who shall come down against us?
Or who shall enter our dwellings?’
14 But I will punish you according to the (T)fruit of your [f]doings,” says the Lord;
“I will kindle a fire in its forest,
And (U)it shall devour all things around it.” ’ ”

Prophecies Against the Kings of Judah

22 Thus says the Lord: “Go down to the house of the king of Judah, and there speak this word, and say, (V)‘Hear the word of the Lord, O king of Judah, you who sit on the throne of David, you and your servants and your people who enter these gates! Thus says the Lord: (W)“Execute[g] judgment and righteousness, and deliver the plundered out of the hand of the oppressor. Do no wrong and do no violence to the stranger, the (X)fatherless, or the widow, nor shed innocent blood in this place. For if you indeed do this thing, (Y)then shall enter the gates of this house, riding on horses and in chariots, accompanied by servants and people, kings who sit on the throne of David. But if you will not [h]hear these words, (Z)I swear by Myself,” says the Lord, “that this house shall become a desolation.” ’ ”

For thus says the Lord to the house of the king of Judah:

“You are (AA)Gilead to Me,
The head of Lebanon;
Yet I surely will make you a wilderness,
Cities which are not inhabited.
I will prepare destroyers against you,
Everyone with his weapons;
They shall cut down (AB)your choice cedars
(AC)And cast them into the fire.

And many nations will pass by this city; and everyone will say to his neighbor, (AD)‘Why has the Lord done so to this great city?’ Then they will answer, (AE)‘Because they have forsaken the covenant of the Lord their God, and worshiped other gods and served them.’ ”

10 Weep not for (AF)the dead, nor bemoan him;
Weep bitterly for him (AG)who goes away,
For he shall return no more,
Nor see his native country.

Message to the Sons of Josiah

11 For thus says the Lord concerning (AH)Shallum[i] the son of Josiah, king of Judah, who reigned instead of Josiah his father, (AI)who went from this place: “He shall not return here anymore, 12 but he shall die in the place where they have led him captive, and shall see this land no more.

13 “Woe(AJ) to him who builds his house by unrighteousness
And his [j]chambers by injustice,
(AK)Who uses his neighbor’s service without wages
And gives him nothing for his work,
14 Who says, ‘I will build myself a wide house with spacious [k]chambers,
And cut out windows for it,
Paneling it with cedar
And painting it with vermilion.’

15 “Shall you reign because you enclose yourself in cedar?
Did not your father eat and drink,
And do justice and righteousness?
Then (AL)it was well with him.
16 He [l]judged the cause of the poor and needy;
Then it was well.
Was not this knowing Me?” says the Lord.
17 “Yet(AM) your eyes and your heart are for nothing but your covetousness,
For shedding innocent blood,
And practicing oppression and violence.”

18 Therefore thus says the Lord concerning Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah:

(AN)“They shall not lament for him,
Saying, (AO)‘Alas, my brother!’ or ‘Alas, my sister!’
They shall not lament for him,
Saying, ‘Alas, master!’ or ‘Alas, his glory!’
19 (AP)He shall be buried with the burial of a donkey,
Dragged and cast out beyond the gates of Jerusalem.

20 “Go up to Lebanon, and cry out,
And lift up your voice in Bashan;
Cry from Abarim,
For all your lovers are destroyed.
21 I spoke to you in your prosperity,
But you said, ‘I will not hear.’
(AQ)This has been your manner from your youth,
That you did not obey My voice.
22 The wind shall eat up all (AR)your [m]rulers,
And your lovers shall go into captivity;
Surely then you will be ashamed and humiliated
For all your wickedness.
23 O inhabitant of Lebanon,
Making your nest in the cedars,
How gracious will you be when pangs come upon you,
Like (AS)the pain of a woman in [n]labor?

Message to Coniah

24 As I live,” says the Lord, (AT)“though [o]Coniah the son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, (AU)were the [p]signet on My right hand, yet I would pluck you off; 25 (AV)and I will give you into the hand of those who seek your life, and into the hand of those whose face you fear—the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon and the hand of the [q]Chaldeans. 26 (AW)So I will cast you out, and your mother who bore you, into another country where you were not born; and there you shall die. 27 But to the land to which they desire to return, there they shall not return.

28 “Is this man [r]Coniah a despised, broken idol—
(AX)A vessel in which is no pleasure?
Why are they cast out, he and his descendants,
And cast into a land which they do not know?
29 (AY)O earth, earth, earth,
Hear the word of the Lord!
30 Thus says the Lord:
‘Write this man down as (AZ)childless,
A man who shall not prosper in his days;
For (BA)none of his descendants shall prosper,
Sitting on the throne of David,
And ruling anymore in Judah.’ ”


  1. Jeremiah 21:2 Heb. Nebuchadrezzar, and so elsewhere in the book
  2. Jeremiah 21:4 Or Babylonians, and so elsewhere in the book
  3. Jeremiah 21:9 Lit. falls away to
  4. Jeremiah 21:12 Dispense justice
  5. Jeremiah 21:13 dweller
  6. Jeremiah 21:14 deeds
  7. Jeremiah 22:3 Dispense justice
  8. Jeremiah 22:5 Obey
  9. Jeremiah 22:11 Or Jehoahaz
  10. Jeremiah 22:13 Lit. roof chambers, upper chambers
  11. Jeremiah 22:14 Lit. roof chambers, upper chambers
  12. Jeremiah 22:16 Defended
  13. Jeremiah 22:22 Lit. shepherds
  14. Jeremiah 22:23 childbirth
  15. Jeremiah 22:24 Or Jeconiah or Jehoiachin
  16. Jeremiah 22:24 signet ring
  17. Jeremiah 22:25 Or Babylonians
  18. Jeremiah 22:28 See note at v. 24

Bible Gateway Recommends