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25 This message for all the people of Judah came from the Lord to Jeremiah during the fourth year of the reign of King Jehoiakim of Judah (son of Josiah). This was the year Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, began his reign.

2-3 For the past twenty-three years, Jeremiah said, from the thirteenth year of the reign of Josiah (son of Amon) king of Judah, until now, God has been sending me his messages. I have faithfully passed them on to you, but you haven’t listened. Again and again down through the years, God has sent you his prophets, but you have refused to hear. Each time the message was this: “Turn from the evil road you are traveling and from the evil things you are doing. Only then can you continue to live here in this land which the Lord gave to you and to your ancestors forever. Don’t anger me by worshiping idols; but if you are true to me, then I’ll not harm you.” But you won’t listen; you have gone ahead and made me furious with your idols. So you have brought upon yourselves all the evil that has come your way.

8-9 And now the Lord God says: Because you have not listened to me, I will gather together all the armies of the north under Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon (I have appointed him as my deputy), and I will bring them all against this land and its people and against the other nations near you, and I will utterly destroy you and make you a byword of contempt forever. 10 I will take away your joy, your gladness, and your wedding feasts; your businesses shall fail, and all your homes shall lie in silent darkness. 11 This entire land shall become a desolate wasteland; all the world will be shocked at the disaster that befalls you. Israel and her neighboring lands shall serve the king of Babylon for seventy years.

12 Then, after these years[a] of slavery are ended, I will punish the king of Babylon* and his people for their sins; I will make the land of Chaldea an everlasting waste. 13 I will bring upon them all the terrors I have promised in this book—all the penalties announced by Jeremiah against the nations. 14 For many nations and great kings shall enslave the Chaldeans, just as they enslaved my people; I will punish them in proportion to their treatment of my people.

15 For the Lord God said to me: “Take from my hand this wine cup filled to the brim with my fury, and make all the nations to whom I send you drink from it. 16 They shall drink from it and reel, crazed by the death blows I rain upon them.”

17 So I took the cup of fury from the Lord and made all the nations drink from it—every nation God had sent me to; 18 I went to Jerusalem and to the cities of Judah, and their kings and princes drank of the cup so that from that day until this they have been desolate, hated, and cursed, just as they are today. 19-20 I went to Egypt, and Pharaoh, his servants, the princes, and the people—they too drank from that terrible cup, along with all the foreign population living in his land. So did all the kings of the land of Uz and the kings of the Philistine cities: Ashkelon, Gaza, Ekron, and what remains of Ashdod, 21 and I visited the nations of Edom, Moab, and Ammon; 22 and all the kings of Tyre and Sidon, and the kings of the regions across the sea; 23 Dedan, Tema, and Buz, and the other heathen there; 24 and all the kings of Arabia and of the nomadic tribes of the desert; 25 and all the kings of Zimri, Elam, and Media; 26 and all the kings of the northern countries, far and near, one after the other; and all the kingdoms of the world. And finally, the king of Babylon himself drank from this cup of God’s wrath.

27 Tell them, “The Lord of heaven’s armies, the God of Israel, says: Drink from this cup of my wrath until you are drunk and vomit and fall to rise no more, for I am sending terrible wars upon you.” 28 And if they refuse to accept the cup, tell them, “The Lord of heaven’s armies says you must drink it! You cannot escape! 29 I have begun to punish my own people, so should you go free? No, you shall not evade punishment. I will call for war against all the peoples of the earth.”

30 Therefore prophesy against them. Tell them the Lord will shout against his own from his holy temple in heaven and against all those living on the earth. He will shout as the harvesters do who tread the juice from the grapes. 31 That cry of judgment will reach the farthest ends of the earth, for the Lord has a case against all the nations—all mankind. He will slaughter all the wicked. 32 See, declares the Lord Almighty, the punishment shall go from nation to nation—a great whirlwind of wrath shall rise against the farthest corners of the earth. 33 On that day those the Lord has slain shall fill the earth from one end to the other. No one shall mourn for them nor gather up the bodies to bury them; they shall fertilize the earth.

34 Weep and moan, O evil shepherds; let the leaders of mankind beat their heads upon the stones, for their time has come to be slaughtered and scattered; they shall fall like fragile women. 35 And you will find no place to hide, no way to escape.

36 Listen to the frantic cries of the shepherds and to the leaders shouting in despair, for the Lord has spoiled their pastures. 37 People now living undisturbed will be cut down by the fierceness of the anger of the Lord. 38 He has left his lair like a lion seeking prey; their land has been laid waste by warring armies—because of the fierce anger of the Lord.

Footnotes

  1. Jeremiah 25:12 after these years, literally, “after the seventy years.” I will punish the king of Babylon. This event is further described in Daniel 5. The troops of Cyrus the Great entered Babylon in 539 b.c. and killed Belshazzar, the last Babylonian ruler.

Seventy Years of Captivity

25 The word came to Jeremiah concerning all the people of Judah in the fourth year of Jehoiakim(A) son of Josiah king of Judah, which was the first year of Nebuchadnezzar(B) king of Babylon. So Jeremiah the prophet said to all the people of Judah(C) and to all those living in Jerusalem: For twenty-three years—from the thirteenth year of Josiah(D) son of Amon king of Judah until this very day—the word of the Lord has come to me and I have spoken to you again and again,(E) but you have not listened.(F)

And though the Lord has sent all his servants the prophets(G) to you again and again, you have not listened or paid any attention.(H) They said, “Turn(I) now, each of you, from your evil ways and your evil practices, and you can stay in the land(J) the Lord gave to you and your ancestors for ever and ever. Do not follow other gods(K) to serve and worship them; do not arouse my anger with what your hands have made. Then I will not harm you.”

“But you did not listen to me,” declares the Lord, “and you have aroused(L) my anger with what your hands have made,(M) and you have brought harm(N) to yourselves.”

Therefore the Lord Almighty says this: “Because you have not listened to my words, I will summon(O) all the peoples of the north(P) and my servant(Q) Nebuchadnezzar(R) king of Babylon,” declares the Lord, “and I will bring them against this land and its inhabitants and against all the surrounding nations. I will completely destroy[a](S) them and make them an object of horror and scorn,(T) and an everlasting ruin.(U) 10 I will banish from them the sounds(V) of joy and gladness, the voices of bride and bridegroom,(W) the sound of millstones(X) and the light of the lamp.(Y) 11 This whole country will become a desolate wasteland,(Z) and these nations will serve(AA) the king of Babylon seventy years.(AB)

12 “But when the seventy years(AC) are fulfilled, I will punish the king of Babylon(AD) and his nation, the land of the Babylonians,[b] for their guilt,” declares the Lord, “and will make it desolate(AE) forever. 13 I will bring on that land all the things I have spoken against it, all that are written(AF) in this book and prophesied by Jeremiah against all the nations. 14 They themselves will be enslaved(AG) by many nations(AH) and great kings; I will repay(AI) them according to their deeds and the work of their hands.”

The Cup of God’s Wrath

15 This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, said to me: “Take from my hand this cup(AJ) filled with the wine of my wrath and make all the nations to whom I send(AK) you drink it. 16 When they drink(AL) it, they will stagger(AM) and go mad(AN) because of the sword(AO) I will send among them.”

17 So I took the cup from the Lord’s hand and made all the nations to whom he sent(AP) me drink it: 18 Jerusalem(AQ) and the towns of Judah, its kings and officials, to make them a ruin(AR) and an object of horror and scorn,(AS) a curse[c](AT)—as they are today;(AU) 19 Pharaoh king(AV) of Egypt,(AW) his attendants, his officials and all his people, 20 and all the foreign people there; all the kings of Uz;(AX) all the kings of the Philistines(AY) (those of Ashkelon,(AZ) Gaza,(BA) Ekron, and the people left at Ashdod); 21 Edom,(BB) Moab(BC) and Ammon;(BD) 22 all the kings of Tyre(BE) and Sidon;(BF) the kings of the coastlands(BG) across the sea; 23 Dedan,(BH) Tema,(BI) Buz(BJ) and all who are in distant places[d];(BK) 24 all the kings of Arabia(BL) and all the kings of the foreign people(BM) who live in the wilderness; 25 all the kings of Zimri,(BN) Elam(BO) and Media;(BP) 26 and all the kings of the north,(BQ) near and far, one after the other—all the kingdoms(BR) on the face of the earth. And after all of them, the king of Sheshak[e](BS) will drink it too.

27 “Then tell them, ‘This is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says: Drink, get drunk(BT) and vomit, and fall to rise no more because of the sword(BU) I will send among you.’ 28 But if they refuse to take the cup from your hand and drink(BV), tell them, ‘This is what the Lord Almighty says: You must drink it! 29 See, I am beginning to bring disaster(BW) on the city that bears my Name,(BX) and will you indeed go unpunished?(BY) You will not go unpunished, for I am calling down a sword(BZ) on all(CA) who live on the earth,(CB) declares the Lord Almighty.’

30 “Now prophesy all these words against them and say to them:

“‘The Lord will roar(CC) from on high;
    he will thunder(CD) from his holy dwelling(CE)
    and roar mightily against his land.
He will shout like those who tread(CF) the grapes,
    shout against all who live on the earth.
31 The tumult(CG) will resound to the ends of the earth,
    for the Lord will bring charges(CH) against the nations;
he will bring judgment(CI) on all(CJ) mankind
    and put the wicked to the sword,(CK)’”
declares the Lord.

32 This is what the Lord Almighty says:

“Look! Disaster(CL) is spreading
    from nation to nation;(CM)
a mighty storm(CN) is rising
    from the ends of the earth.”(CO)

33 At that time those slain(CP) by the Lord will be everywhere—from one end of the earth to the other. They will not be mourned or gathered(CQ) up or buried,(CR) but will be like dung lying on the ground.

34 Weep and wail, you shepherds;(CS)
    roll(CT) in the dust, you leaders of the flock.
For your time to be slaughtered(CU) has come;
    you will fall like the best of the rams.[f](CV)
35 The shepherds will have nowhere to flee,
    the leaders of the flock no place to escape.(CW)
36 Hear the cry(CX) of the shepherds,(CY)
    the wailing of the leaders of the flock,
    for the Lord is destroying their pasture.
37 The peaceful meadows will be laid waste
    because of the fierce anger of the Lord.
38 Like a lion(CZ) he will leave his lair,
    and their land will become desolate(DA)
because of the sword[g] of the oppressor(DB)
    and because of the Lord’s fierce anger.(DC)

Footnotes

  1. Jeremiah 25:9 The Hebrew term refers to the irrevocable giving over of things or persons to the Lord, often by totally destroying them.
  2. Jeremiah 25:12 Or Chaldeans
  3. Jeremiah 25:18 That is, their names to be used in cursing (see 29:22); or, to be seen by others as cursed
  4. Jeremiah 25:23 Or who clip the hair by their foreheads
  5. Jeremiah 25:26 Sheshak is a cryptogram for Babylon.
  6. Jeremiah 25:34 Septuagint; Hebrew fall and be shattered like fine pottery
  7. Jeremiah 25:38 Some Hebrew manuscripts and Septuagint (see also 46:16 and 50:16); most Hebrew manuscripts anger

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