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18 Then Jeremiah asked King Zedekiah, “What crime have I committed against you, or the officials who serve you, or the people of Judah? What have I done to make you people throw me into prison?[a] 19 Where now are the prophets who prophesied to you that[b] the king of Babylon would not attack you or this land? 20 But now please listen, your royal Majesty,[c] and grant my plea for mercy.[d] Do not send me back to the house of Jonathan, the royal secretary. If you do, I will die there.”[e]

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  1. Jeremiah 37:18 tn Heb “What crime have I committed against you, or your servants, or this people that you [masc. pl.] have put me in prison?” Some of the terms have been expanded for clarification, and the sentence has been broken in two to better conform with contemporary English style. The masculine plural is used here because Zedekiah is being addressed as representative of the whole group previously named.
  2. Jeremiah 37:19 tn Heb “And where are your prophets who prophesied to you, saying, ‘The king of Babylon will not come against you or against this land?’” The indirect quote has been used in the translation because of its simpler, more direct style.
  3. Jeremiah 37:20 tn Heb “My lord, the king.”
  4. Jeremiah 37:20 tn Heb “let my plea for mercy fall before you.” That is, let it come before you and be favorably received (= granted; by metonymical extension).
  5. Jeremiah 37:20 tn Or “So that I will not die there,” or “or I will die there”; Heb “and I will not die there.” The particle that introduces this clause (וְלֹא) regularly introduces negative purpose clauses after the volitive sequence (אַל [ʾal] + jussive here) according to GKC 323 §109.g. However, purpose and result clauses in Hebrew (and Greek) are often indistinguishable. Here the clause is more in the nature of a negative result.