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26 This message came to Jeremiah from the Lord during the first year of the reign of Jehoiakim (son of Josiah), king of Judah:

Stand out in front of the Temple of the Lord and make an announcement to all the people who have come there to worship from many parts of Judah. Give them the entire message; don’t leave out one word of all I have for them to hear. For perhaps they will listen and turn from their evil ways, and then I can withhold all the punishment I am ready to pour out upon them because of their evil deeds. Tell them the Lord says: If you will not listen to me and obey the laws I have given you, and if you will not listen to my servants, the prophets—for I sent them again and again to warn you, but you would not listen to them— then I will destroy this Temple as I destroyed the Tabernacle at Shiloh, and I will make Jerusalem a curse word in every nation of the earth.

7-8 When Jeremiah had finished his message, saying everything the Lord had told him to, the priests and false prophets and all the people in the Temple mobbed him, shouting, “Kill him! Kill him! What right do you have to say the Lord will destroy this Temple like the one at Shiloh?” they yelled. “What do you mean—Jerusalem destroyed and not one survivor?”

10 When the high officials of Judah heard what was going on, they rushed over from the palace and sat down at the door of the Temple to hold court. 11 Then the priests and the false prophets presented their accusations to the officials and the people. “This man should die!” they said. “You have heard with your own ears what a traitor he is, for he has prophesied against this city.”

12 Then Jeremiah spoke in his defense. “The Lord sent me,” he said, “to prophesy against this Temple and this city. He gave me every word of all that I have spoken. 13 But if you stop your sinning and begin obeying the Lord your God, he will cancel all the punishment he has announced against you. 14 As for me, I am helpless and in your power—do with me as you think best. 15 But there is one thing sure, if you kill me, you will be killing an innocent man, and the responsibility will lie upon you and upon this city and upon every person living in it; for it is absolutely true that the Lord sent me to speak every word that you have heard from me.”

16 Then the officials and people said to the priests and false prophets, “This man does not deserve the death sentence, for he has spoken to us in the name of the Lord our God.”

17 Then some of the wise old men stood and spoke to all the people standing around and said:

18 “The decision is right; for back in the days when Micah of Moresheth prophesied in the days of King Hezekiah of Judah, he told the people that God said: ‘This hill shall be plowed like an open field and this city of Jerusalem razed into heaps of stone, and a forest shall grow at the top where the great Temple now stands!’ 19 But did King Hezekiah and the people kill him for saying this? No, they turned from their wickedness and worshiped the Lord and begged the Lord to have mercy upon them; and the Lord held back the terrible punishment he had pronounced against them. If we kill Jeremiah for giving us the messages of God, who knows what God will do to us!”

20 Another true prophet of the Lord, Uriah (son of Shemaiah) from Kiriath-jearim, was also denouncing the city and the nation at the same time as Jeremiah was. 21 But when King Jehoiakim and the army officers and officials heard what he was saying, the king sent to kill him. Uriah heard about it and fled to Egypt. 22 Then King Jehoiakim sent Elnathan (son of Achbor) to Egypt along with several other men to capture Uriah. 23 They took him prisoner and brought him back to King Jehoiakim, who butchered him with a sword and had him buried in an unmarked grave.

24 But Ahikam (son of Shaphan), the royal secretary,[a] stood with Jeremiah and persuaded the court not to turn him over to the mob to kill him.


  1. Jeremiah 26:24 the royal secretary, implied; see 2 Kings 22:12.

Jeremiah Threatened With Death

26 Early in the reign of Jehoiakim(A) son of Josiah king of Judah, this word came from the Lord: “This is what the Lord says: Stand in the courtyard(B) of the Lord’s house and speak to all the people of the towns of Judah who come to worship in the house of the Lord.(C) Tell(D) them everything I command you; do not omit(E) a word. Perhaps they will listen and each will turn(F) from their evil ways. Then I will relent(G) and not inflict on them the disaster I was planning because of the evil they have done. Say to them, ‘This is what the Lord says: If you do not listen(H) to me and follow my law,(I) which I have set before you, and if you do not listen to the words of my servants the prophets, whom I have sent to you again and again (though you have not listened(J)), then I will make this house like Shiloh(K) and this city a curse[a](L) among all the nations of the earth.’”

The priests, the prophets and all the people heard Jeremiah speak these words in the house of the Lord. But as soon as Jeremiah finished telling all the people everything the Lord had commanded(M) him to say, the priests, the prophets and all the people seized(N) him and said, “You must die!(O) Why do you prophesy in the Lord’s name that this house will be like Shiloh and this city will be desolate and deserted?”(P) And all the people crowded(Q) around Jeremiah in the house of the Lord.

10 When the officials(R) of Judah heard about these things, they went up from the royal palace to the house of the Lord and took their places at the entrance of the New Gate(S) of the Lord’s house. 11 Then the priests and the prophets said to the officials and all the people, “This man should be sentenced to death(T) because he has prophesied against this city. You have heard it with your own ears!”(U)

12 Then Jeremiah said to all the officials(V) and all the people: “The Lord sent me to prophesy(W) against this house and this city all the things you have heard.(X) 13 Now reform(Y) your ways and your actions and obey(Z) the Lord your God. Then the Lord will relent(AA) and not bring the disaster he has pronounced against you. 14 As for me, I am in your hands;(AB) do with me whatever you think is good and right. 15 Be assured, however, that if you put me to death, you will bring the guilt of innocent blood(AC) on yourselves and on this city and on those who live in it, for in truth the Lord has sent me to you to speak all these words(AD) in your hearing.”

16 Then the officials(AE) and all the people said to the priests and the prophets, “This man should not be sentenced to death!(AF) He has spoken to us in the name of the Lord our God.”

17 Some of the elders of the land stepped forward and said to the entire assembly of people, 18 “Micah(AG) of Moresheth prophesied in the days of Hezekiah king of Judah. He told all the people of Judah, ‘This is what the Lord Almighty says:

“‘Zion(AH) will be plowed like a field,
    Jerusalem will become a heap of rubble,(AI)
    the temple hill(AJ) a mound overgrown with thickets.’[b](AK)

19 “Did Hezekiah king of Judah or anyone else in Judah put him to death? Did not Hezekiah(AL) fear the Lord and seek(AM) his favor? And did not the Lord relent,(AN) so that he did not bring the disaster(AO) he pronounced against them? We are about to bring a terrible disaster(AP) on ourselves!”

20 (Now Uriah son of Shemaiah from Kiriath Jearim(AQ) was another man who prophesied in the name of the Lord; he prophesied the same things against this city and this land as Jeremiah did. 21 When King Jehoiakim(AR) and all his officers and officials(AS) heard his words, the king was determined to put him to death.(AT) But Uriah heard of it and fled(AU) in fear to Egypt. 22 King Jehoiakim, however, sent Elnathan(AV) son of Akbor to Egypt, along with some other men. 23 They brought Uriah out of Egypt and took him to King Jehoiakim, who had him struck down with a sword(AW) and his body thrown into the burial place of the common people.)(AX)

24 Furthermore, Ahikam(AY) son of Shaphan supported Jeremiah, and so he was not handed over to the people to be put to death.


  1. Jeremiah 26:6 That is, its name will be used in cursing (see 29:22); or, others will see that it is cursed.
  2. Jeremiah 26:18 Micah 3:12