24 After Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon had taken Jeconiah [who was also called Coniah and Jehoiachin] the son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, and the princes of Judah [along] with the craftsmen and smiths into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon, the Lord showed me [in a vision] two baskets of figs set before the temple of the Lord. 2 One basket had very good figs, like the figs that are the first to ripen; but the other basket had very bad figs, so rotten that they could not be eaten. 3 Then the Lord said to me, “What do you see, Jeremiah?” And I said, “Figs, the good figs, very good; and the bad figs, very bad, so rotten that they cannot be eaten.”
4 Again the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 5 “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, ‘Like these good figs, so I will regard as good the captives of Judah, whom I have sent from this place into the land of the Chaldeans. 6 For I will set My eyes on them for good, and I will bring them again to this land; and I will build them up and not overwhelm them, and I will plant them and not uproot them. 7 I will give them a heart to know Me, [understanding fully] that I am the Lord; and they will be My people, and I will be their God, for they will return to Me with their whole heart.
8 ‘And as for the bad figs, which are so rotten that they cannot be eaten,’ surely thus says the Lord, ‘so I will abandon Zedekiah king of Judah and his princes, and the remnant of Jerusalem who remain in this land and those who live in the land of Egypt. 9 I will make them a focus of ridicule and disappointment [tossed back and forth] among all the kingdoms of the earth, a [notorious] disgrace, a byword, a taunt and a curse in all places where I will scatter them. 10 I will send the sword, famine and virulent disease among them until they are consumed from the land which I gave to them and to their fathers.’”
25 The word that came to Jeremiah in regard to all the people of Judah in the fourth year of the reign of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah (that was the first year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon), 2 which Jeremiah the prophet spoke to all the people of Judah and to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying, 3 “For these twenty-three years—from the thirteenth year of Josiah the son of Amon, king of Judah, even to this day—the word of the Lord has come to me and I have spoken to you over and over again, but you have not listened. 4 Although the Lord has persistently sent to you all His servants the prophets, you have not listened nor [even] inclined your ear to hear [His message], 5 saying, ‘Turn now everyone from his evil way and the evil of your actions [that you may not forfeit the right to] live in the land that the Lord has given to you and your forefathers forever and ever; 6 and do not go after other gods to serve them and to worship them, and do not provoke Me to anger with the work of your hands, and I will do you no harm.’ 7 Yet you have not listened to Me,” says the Lord, “so that you have provoked Me to anger with the work (idols) of your hands to your own harm.
8 “Therefore thus says the Lord of hosts, ‘Because you have not obeyed My words, 9 behold (hear this), I will send for all the families of the north,’ says the Lord, ‘and I will send for Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, My servant [to enact My plan], and I will bring them against this land and against its inhabitants and against all these surrounding nations; and I will utterly destroy them and make them a horror and a hissing [that is, an object of warning and ridicule] and an everlasting desolation. 10 Moreover, I will take from them the voice of joy and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride, the sound of the millstones [grinding meal] and the light of the lamp [to light the night]. 11 This whole land will be a waste and a horror, and these nations will serve the king of Babylon [a]seventy years.
12 ‘Then when seventy years are completed, I will punish the king of Babylon and that nation, the land of the Chaldeans (Babylonia),’ says the Lord, ‘for their wickedness, and will make the land [of the Chaldeans] a perpetual waste. 13 I will bring on that land all My words which I have pronounced against it, all that is written in this book which Jeremiah has prophesied against all the nations. 14 (For many nations and great kings will make slaves of them, even the Chaldeans [who enslaved other nations]; and I will repay [all of] them according to their deeds and according to the work of their [own] hands.)’”
15 For thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, to me, “Take this cup of the wine of wrath from My hand and cause all the nations to whom I send you to drink it. 16 They will drink and stagger and go mad because of the sword that I will send among them.”
17 Then I (Jeremiah) took the cup from the Lord’s hand and made all the nations to whom the Lord had sent me drink it: 18 Jerusalem and the cities of Judah [being most guilty because their privileges were greatest], its kings and princes, to make them a horror, a ruin, a hissing and a curse, as it is to this day; 19 Pharaoh king of Egypt, his servants, his princes, all his people, 20 and all the foreign (mixed) population, all the kings of the land of Uz, and all the kings of the land of the Philistines (and [their cities of] Ashkelon, Gaza, Ekron, and the remnant of Ashdod); 21 Edom, Moab, and the children of Ammon; 22 all the kings of Tyre, all the kings of Sidon, and the kings of the islands and the coastlands across the [Mediterranean] Sea; 23 Dedan, Tema, Buz [the neighboring tribes north of Arabia], and all who clip off the side-growth of their hair; 24 all the kings of Arabia and all the kings of the foreign population who live in the desert; 25 all the kings of Zimri, all the kings of Elam (Persia), and all the kings of Media; 26 all the kings of the north, far and near, one after another—and all the kingdoms of the world which are on the face of the earth. And the king of Sheshach (Babylon) shall drink after them.
27 “Then you shall say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, “Drink, be drunk, vomit, and fall to rise no more because of the sword which I will send among you.”’ 28 And if they refuse to take the cup from your hand to drink, then you will say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts, “You shall surely drink! 29 For behold, I am beginning to work disaster in the city which is called by My Name, and shall you go unpunished? You will not be exempt from punishment, for I am calling for a sword against all the inhabitants of the earth,” says the Lord of hosts.’
30 “Therefore prophesy all these words against them and say to them:
‘The Lord will roar from on high
And utter His voice from His holy dwelling;
He will roar mightily against His fold and pasture.
He will jubilantly shout like those who tread the grapes [in the wine press],
Against all the inhabitants of the earth.
‘A noise has come to the end of the earth,
For the Lord has a controversy with and an indictment against the nations.
He is entering into judgment with all mankind;
As for the wicked, He has given them to the sword,’ says the Lord.”
Thus says the Lord of hosts,
“Behold, evil is going forth
From nation to nation,
And a great whirling tempest is rising
From the remotest part of the earth.
33 “And those slain by the Lord on that day will be from one end of the earth to the other end of the earth. They will not be lamented (mourned over with expressions of grief) or gathered or buried; they will be like dung on the ground.
“Wail, you shepherds, and cry;
And roll in ashes, you masters of the flock.
For the days of your slaughter and of your dispersions have come in full,
And you will fall and be broken into pieces like a choice vessel.
“The shepherds will have no way to flee,
Nor the masters of the flock any [way of] escape.
“A voice! The cry of the shepherds
And the wailing of the masters of the flock!
For the Lord is destroying their pasture,
“And the peaceful folds are devastated and made silent
Because of the fierce anger of the Lord.
“He has left His lair like the lion;
For their land has become a horror
Because of the fierceness of the oppressor
And because of the Lord’s fierce anger.”
26 In the beginning of the reign of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, this word came from the Lord, saying, 2 “Thus says the Lord, ‘Stand in the court of the Lord’s house [Jeremiah], and speak to all [the people of] the cities of Judah who have come to worship in the Lord’s house all the words that I have commanded you to speak to them. Do not omit a word! 3 It may be that they will listen and everyone will turn from his wickedness, so that I may relent and reverse [My decision concerning] the disaster which I am planning to do to them because of their malevolent deeds.’ 4 And you will say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord, “If you will not listen to Me and obey My law which I have set before you, 5 and listen and follow [carefully] the words of My servants the prophets, whom I have been sending to you repeatedly—though you have not listened— 6 then I will make this house [the temple] like [b]Shiloh, and I will make this city [subject to] the curse of all nations of the earth [because it will be so vile in their sight].”’”
7 The priests and the [false] prophets and all the people heard Jeremiah speaking these words in the house of the Lord. 8 Now when Jeremiah finished proclaiming everything that the Lord had commanded him to speak to all the people, the priests and the [false] prophets and all the people seized him, saying, “You must die! 9 Why have you prophesied in the name of the Lord saying, ‘This house will be like Shiloh [after the ark of the Lord had been taken by our enemies] and this city [Jerusalem] will be desolate, without inhabitant’?” And all the people were gathered around Jeremiah in the [outer area of the] house of the Lord.
10 When the [c]princes (court officials) of Judah heard these things, they came up from the king’s house to the house of the Lord and sat in the entrance of the New Gate of the house of the Lord. 11 Then the priests and the [false] prophets said to the princes and to all the people, “This man is deserving of death, for he has prophesied against this city as you have heard with your own ears.”
12 Then Jeremiah spoke to all the princes and to all the people, saying, “The Lord sent me to prophesy against this house and against this city all the words that you have heard. 13 Therefore, now change your ways and your deeds and obey the voice of the Lord your God; then the Lord will relent and reverse His decision concerning the misfortune which He has pronounced against you. 14 As for me, behold, I am in your hands; do with me as seems good and suitable to you. 15 But know for certain that if you put me to death, you will bring innocent blood on yourselves and on this city and on its inhabitants, for in truth the Lord has sent me to you to speak all these words in your hearing.”
16 Then the princes and all the people said to the priests and to the [false] prophets, “This man is not deserving of death, for he has spoken to us in the name of the Lord our God.” 17 Then some of the elders of the land stood up and spoke to all the assembly of the people, saying, 18 “Micah of Moresheth prophesied in the days of Hezekiah king of Judah; and he spoke to all the people of Judah, saying, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts,
“Zion will be [d]plowed like a field,
And Jerusalem will become [heaps of] ruins,
And the mountain of the house [of the Lord—Mount Moriah, on which stands the temple, shall become covered not with buildings, but] like a densely wooded height.”’
19 “Did Hezekiah king of Judah and all Judah put Micah to death? Did he not [reverently] fear the Lord and entreat the favor of the Lord? And did not the Lord relent and reverse His decision concerning the misfortune which He had pronounced against them? But [here] we are [thinking of] committing a great evil against ourselves.”
20 And there was also a man who prophesied in the name of the Lord, Uriah the son of Shemaiah of Kiriath-jearim, who prophesied against this city and against this land in words similar to all those of Jeremiah. 21 And when Jehoiakim the king, with all his mighty men and all the princes, heard his words, the king sought to put Uriah to death; but when Uriah heard of it, he was afraid and fled and escaped to Egypt. 22 Then Jehoiakim the king sent men to Egypt: Elnathan the son of Achbor and certain [other] men with him [went] to Egypt. 23 And they brought Uriah [God’s spokesman] from Egypt and led him to King Jehoiakim, who executed him with a sword and threw his dead body among the graves of the common people.
24 But the hand of Ahikam the son of Shaphan was with Jeremiah, so that he was not given into the hands of the people to put him to death.
2 But as for you, teach the things which are in agreement with sound doctrine [which produces men and women of good character whose lifestyle identifies them as true Christians]. 2 Older men are to be temperate, dignified, sensible, sound in faith, in love, in steadfastness [Christlike in character].
3 Older women similarly are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor addicted to much wine, teaching what is right and good, 4 so that they may encourage the young women to tenderly love their husbands and their children, 5 to be sensible, pure, makers of a home [where God is honored], good-natured, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored.
6 In a similar way urge the young men to be sensible and self-controlled and to behave wisely [taking life seriously]. 7 And in all things show yourself to be an example of good works, with purity in doctrine [having the strictest regard for integrity and truth], dignified, 8 sound and beyond reproach in instruction, so that the opponent [of the faith] will be shamed, having nothing bad to say about us.
9 Urge bond-servants to be subject to their own masters in everything, to be pleasing and not talk back, 10 not stealing [things, regardless of value], but proving themselves trustworthy, so that in every respect they will adorn and do credit to the teaching of God our Savior.
11 For the [remarkable, undeserved] grace of God that [a]brings salvation has appeared to all men. 12 It teaches us to reject ungodliness and worldly (immoral) desires, and to live sensible, upright, and godly lives [lives with a purpose that reflect spiritual maturity] in this present age, 13 awaiting and confidently expecting the [fulfillment of our] blessed hope and the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus, 14 who [willingly] gave Himself [to be crucified] on our behalf to redeem us and purchase our freedom from all wickedness, and to purify for Himself a chosen and very special people to be His own possession, who are enthusiastic for doing what is good.
15 Tell them these things. Encourage and rebuke with full authority. Let no one disregard or despise you [conduct yourself and your teaching so as to command respect].