Modern English Version
Zedekiah’s Request Denied
21 The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord when King Zedekiah sent to him Pashhur the son of Malkijah, and Zephaniah the son of Maaseiah the priest, saying, 2 “Please inquire of the Lord for us. For Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon is making war against us. Perhaps the Lord will deal with us according to all His wondrous works, so that the enemy withdraws from us.”
3 Then Jeremiah said to them: Thus you shall say to Zedekiah: 4 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 against the Chaldeans who besiege you outside the walls; and I will assemble them into the midst of this city. 5 I Myself will fight against you with an outstretched hand and with a strong arm, even in anger, and in fury, and in great wrath. 6 I will strike the inhabitants of this city, both man and beast; they will die of a great pestilence. 7 Afterwards, says the Lord, I will deliver Zedekiah king of Judah and his servants and the people and such as are left in this city from the pestilence, from the sword, and from the famine into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of their enemies and into the hand of those who seek their life. And he will strike them with the edge of the sword. He will not spare them or have pity or mercy.
8 To this people you shall say: Thus says the Lord: See, I set before you the way of life, and the way of death. 9 He who abides in this city will die by the sword and by the famine and by the pestilence. But he who goes out and falls away to the Chaldeans who besiege you, he will live, and he will have his own life as booty. 10 For I have set My face against this city for disaster and not for good, says the Lord. It will be given into the hand of the king of Babylon, and he will burn it with fire.
Message to the House of David
11 Concerning the house of the king of Judah, say, Hear the word of the Lord, 12 O house of David; thus says the Lord:
Execute justice each morning,
and deliver him who has been robbed
from the hand of the oppressor,
lest My fury go out like fire
and burn so that no one can quench it,
because of the evil of your deeds.
13 See, I am against you,
O inhabitant of the valley,
O rocky plain,
says the Lord,
you men who say,
“Who shall come down against us?
Or who shall enter our dwellings?”
14 But I will punish you
according to the fruit of your deeds,
says the Lord,
and I will kindle a fire in the forest,
and it will devour all things around it.