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Judgment Against Evil Kings

22 This is what the Lord says: “Go down to the ·palace [L house] of the king of Judah and ·prophesy this message [L say this word] there: ‘Hear the word of the Lord, king of Judah, who ·rules from [L sits on] David’s throne. You and your officers, and your people who come through these gates, listen! This is what the Lord says: Do ·what is fair and right [L justice and righteousness]. ·Save [Protect; Rescue] the one who has been robbed from the ·power [L hand] of his ·attacker [L oppressor]. Don’t mistreat or ·hurt [do violence to] the ·foreigners [resident aliens; Ex. 23:21; Lev. 19:33], orphans, or widows [Ex. 22:22; Deut. 10:18; 27:19]. Don’t ·kill innocent people [L spill innocent blood; Deut. 19:10; 27:25] here. If you carefully ·obey these commands [perform this word], kings who sit on David’s throne will come through the gates of this ·palace [L house] with their officers and people, riding in chariots and on horses. But if you don’t ·obey these commands [L listen to these words], says the Lord, I swear by my ·own name [L myself] that this ·king’s palace [L house] will become a ruin.’”

This is what the Lord says about the ·palace where the king of Judah lives [L house of the king of Judah]:

“You are like Gilead to me,
    like the ·mountaintops [summit] of ·Lebanon [C lush; the palace was built with the cedars of Lebanon; 1 Kin. 7:2].
But I will truly make you into a ·desert [wilderness],
    into towns where no one lives.
I will ·send [L consecrate; set apart] ·men to destroy the palace [destroyers],
    each with his weapons.
They will cut up your ·strong, beautiful cedar beams [L choice cedars]
    and throw them into the fire.

“People from many nations will pass by this city and ask each other, ‘Why has the Lord done such a terrible thing to Jerusalem, this great city?’ And the answer will be: ‘Because they [C the people of Judah] ·quit following [abandoned; forsook] the ·agreement [covenant; treaty] with the Lord their God. They ·worshiped [bowed down to] and served other gods.’”

Judgment Against Jehoahaz

10 Don’t cry for the dead one [C the king] or ·be sad about [bemoan] him.
    But cry ·painfully for the king who is being taken [L for the one who goes] away [C into exile],
because he will never return
    or see ·his homeland [L the land of his birth] again.

11 This is what the Lord says about Jehoahaz [L Shallum; C ruled 597 bc; 2 Kin. 23:31–33] son of Josiah who became king of Judah after his father left this place [C died]: “He will never return. 12 He will die where he has been taken ·captive [into exile], and he will not see this land again.”

Judgment Against Jehoiakim

13 “·How terrible it will be for one [Woe to the one; C King Jehoiakim (605–597 bc), placed on the throne by the Egyptian pharaoh to replace his brother Jehoahaz; 2 Kin. 23:34] who builds his ·palace [L house] by ·doing evil [L unrighteousness],
    ·who cheats people so he can build its upper rooms [his upper rooms without justice].
He makes his ·own people [L neighbors] work for nothing
    and does not pay them.
14 He says, ‘I will build a ·great palace [L spacious house] for myself
    with large upper rooms.’
So he ·builds it with [cuts out] large windows
    and uses cedar wood for the ·walls [panels],
    which he paints ·red [vermilion].

15 “Does having a lot of cedar [C in your house]
    make you a great king?
·Your father was satisfied to [L Did not your father…?; C Josiah, a godly king] have food and drink.
    He did what was right and fair,
    so everything went well for him.
16 He ·helped [L judged the cause of] those who were poor and needy,
    so everything went well for him.
·That is what it [L Is this not what it…?] means to know ·God [L me],”
    says the Lord.
17 “But ·you only look for and think about [L your eyes and your heart are on]
    what you can get dishonestly.
You are even willing to ·kill innocent people [L pour out innocent blood] to get it.
    You feel free to ·hurt [oppress] people and to steal from them.”

18 So this is what the Lord says to Jehoiakim son of Josiah king of Judah:

“They [C the people of Judah] will not cry [mourn] ·when Jehoiakim dies [L for him],
    saying: ‘·Oh [Woe], my brother,’ or ‘·Oh [Woe], my sister.’
They will not ·cry [mourn] for him, saying:
    ‘·Oh [Woe], master,’ or ‘·Oh [Woe], my king.’
19 They will bury him like a donkey,
    dragging and throwing his body away
    outside the gates of Jerusalem.

20 “Judah, go up to Lebanon and cry out.
    Let your voice be heard in Bashan.
Cry out from Abarim,
    because all your friends are destroyed!
21 When you [C Judah] were ·successful [prosperous], I warned you,
    but you said, ‘I won’t listen.’
·You have acted like this [L This is your way/path] since you were young;
    you have not ·obeyed me [L listened to my voice].
22 ·Like a storm, my punishment will blow all your shepherds away [L The wind will shepherd all your shepherds away]
    and send your ·friends [or lovers] into ·captivity [exile; 2 Kin. 23:36—24:7].
Then you will really be ashamed and ·disgraced [humiliated]
    because of all the ·wicked things [evil] you did.
23 You [C King Jehoiakim] live in Lebanon [C the palace was made of cedar from Lebanon],
    ·cozy [nestled] in your rooms of cedar.
But when your ·punishment [L pangs] comes, how you will groan
    like a woman ·giving birth to a baby [in labor]!

Judgment upon Jehoiachin

24 “As surely as I live,” says the Lord, “·Jehoiachin [L Coniah; C ruled 597 bc; 2 Kin. 24:8–17; 2 Chr. 36:9–10] son of Jehoiakim king of Judah, even if you were a signet ring on my right hand, I would still ·pull [tear] you off. 25 I will ·hand you over to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon and to the ·Babylonians [L Chaldeans]—those people you fear because they ·want to kill you [L seek your life]. 26 I will ·throw [hurl] you and your mother who bore you into another country [C Babylon]. Neither of you was born there, but both of you will die there. 27 They will want to come back, but they will never be able to return.”

28 ·Jehoiachin is like a broken pot someone threw away [L Is this man Jehoiachin a despised broken pot…?];
    ·he is like something [L a vessel…?] no one wants.
Why will Jehoiachin and his children be ·thrown out [hurled away]
    and ·sent [thrown] into a ·foreign land [country they do not know; C exiled to Babylon]?
29 Land, land, land [C of Judah],
    hear the word of the Lord!
30 This is what the Lord says:
“Write this down ·in the record about [L about this man; C Jehoiachin]:
    He is a man without children,
    a man who will not be successful in his ·lifetime [L days].
And none of his descendants will be successful;
    none will sit on the throne of David
    or rule in Judah.”