Jeremiah 37–39; Matthew 27:1–26

Jeremiah Warns Zedekiah

37 uZedekiah the son of Josiah, vwhom Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon made king in the land of Judah, reigned instead of wConiah the son of Jehoiakim. xBut neither he nor his servants nor the people of the land listened to the words of the Lord that he spoke through Jeremiah the prophet.

King Zedekiah sent yJehucal the son of zShelemiah, and aZephaniah the priest, the son of bMaaseiah, to Jeremiah the prophet, saying, Please cpray for us to the Lord our God. dNow Jeremiah was still going in and out among the people, efor he had not yet been put in prison. fThe army of Pharaoh had come out of Egypt. And when gthe Chaldeans who were besieging Jerusalem heard news about them, hthey withdrew from Jerusalem.

Then the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah the prophet: Thus says the Lord, God of Israel: Thus shall you say to the king of Judah who isent you to me to inquire of me, Behold, jPharaoh's army that came to help you is about to kreturn to Egypt, to its own land. And lthe Chaldeans shall come back and fight against this city. lThey shall capture it and burn it with fire. Thus says the Lord, Do not deceive yourselves, saying, The Chaldeans will surely go away from us, for they will not go away. 10 mFor even if you should defeat the whole army of Chaldeans who are fighting against you, and there remained of them only wounded men, every man in his tent, they would rise up and lburn this city with fire.

Jeremiah Imprisoned

11 Now when nthe Chaldean army had withdrawn from Jerusalem at the approach of Pharaoh's army, 12 Jeremiah set out from Jerusalem to go to othe land of Benjamin pto receive his portion there qamong the people. 13 When he was at rthe Benjamin Gate, a sentry there named Irijah the son of sShelemiah, son of Hananiah, seized Jeremiah the prophet, saying, tYou are deserting to the Chaldeans. 14 And Jeremiah said, It is a lie; I am not deserting to the Chaldeans. But Irijah would not listen to him, and seized Jeremiah and brought him to uthe officials. 15 And the officials were enraged at Jeremiah, and they beat him vand imprisoned him in the house of Jonathan the secretary, for it had been made a prison.

16 wWhen Jeremiah had come to the dungeon cells and remained there many days, 17 King Zedekiah sent for him and received him. The king questioned him xsecretly in his house and said, Is there any word from the Lord? Jeremiah said, There is. Then he said, yYou shall be delivered into the hand of the king of Babylon. 18 Jeremiah also said to King Zedekiah, What wrong have I done to you or your servants or this people, vthat you have put me in prison? 19 zWhere are your prophets who prophesied to you, saying, The king of Babylon will not come against you and against this land? 20 Now hear, please, O my lord the king: alet my humble plea come before you and bdo not send me back to the house of Jonathan the secretary, lest I die there. 21 So King Zedekiah gave orders, and they committed Jeremiah to cthe court of the guard. And a loaf of bread was given him daily from the bakers' street, duntil all the bread of the city was gone. So Jeremiah remained in cthe court of the guard.

Jeremiah Cast into the Cistern

38 Now Shephatiah the son of Mattan, Gedaliah the son of Pashhur, eJucal the son of Shelemiah, and fPashhur the son of Malchiah heard the words that Jeremiah was saying to all the people: Thus says the Lord: gHe who stays in this city shall die by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence, gbut he who goes out to the Chaldeans shall live. He shall have his life as a prize of war, and live. Thus says the Lord: hThis city shall surely be given into the hand of the army of the king of Babylon and be taken. Then the officials said to the king, iLet this man be put to death, jfor he is weakening the hands of the soldiers who are left in this city, and the hands of all the people, by speaking such words to them. For this man is not seeking kthe welfare of this people, but their harm. King Zedekiah said, Behold, he is in your hands, lfor the king can do nothing against you. So they took Jeremiah mand cast him into the cistern of Malchiah, the king's son, which was in nthe court of the guard, letting Jeremiah down oby ropes. pAnd there was no water in the cistern, but only mud, and qJeremiah sank in the mud.

Jeremiah Rescued from the Cistern

When rEbed-melech sthe Ethiopian, ta eunuch who was in the king's house, heard that they had put Jeremiah into the cisternthe king was sitting uin the Benjamin Gate rEbed-melech went from the king's house and said to the king, My lord the king, these men have done evil in all that they did to Jeremiah the prophet by casting him into the cistern, and he will die there of vhunger, wfor there is no bread left in the city. 10 Then the king commanded rEbed-melech the Ethiopian, Take thirty men with you from here, and lift Jeremiah the prophet out of the cistern before he dies. 11 So rEbed-melech took the men with him and went to the house of the king, to a wardrobe in the storehouse, and took from there old rags and worn-out clothes, which he let down to Jeremiah in the cistern xby ropes. 12 Then rEbed-melech the Ethiopian said to Jeremiah, Put the rags and clothes between your armpits and xthe ropes. Jeremiah did so. 13 Then they drew Jeremiah up with xropes and lifted him out of the cistern. And Jeremiah remained in the ncourt of the guard.

Jeremiah Warns Zedekiah Again

14 King Zedekiah sent for Jeremiah the prophet and received him at the third entrance of the temple of the Lord. The king said to Jeremiah, I will ask you a question; hide nothing from me. 15 Jeremiah said to Zedekiah, If I tell you, will you not surely put me to death? And if I give you counsel, you will not listen to me. 16 Then King Zedekiah swore ysecretly to Jeremiah, zAs the Lord lives, awho made our souls, I will not put you to death or deliver you into the hand of bthese men who seek your life.

17 Then Jeremiah said to Zedekiah, Thus says the Lord, the God of hosts, the God of Israel: cIf you will surrender to dthe officials of the king of Babylon, ethen your life shall be spared, and this city shall not be burned with fire, and you and your house shall live. 18 But if you do not surrender to dthe officials of the king of Babylon, fthen this city shall be given into the hand of the Chaldeans, fand they shall burn it with fire, and you shall not escape from their hand. 19 King Zedekiah said to Jeremiah, I am afraid of the Judeans gwho have deserted to the Chaldeans, lest I be handed over to them and they deal cruelly with me. 20 Jeremiah said, You shall not be given to them. Obey now the voice of the Lord in what I say to you, hand it shall be well with you, and your life shall be spared. 21 But if you refuse to csurrender, this is the vision which the Lord has shown to me: 22 Behold, all the women left in the house of the king of Judah were being led out to the officials of the king of Babylon and were saying,

iYour trusted friends have deceived you

and prevailed against you;

now that your feet are sunk in the mud,

they turn away from you.

23 All your wives and jyour sons shall be led out to the Chaldeans, and you yourself shall not escape from their hand, but shall be seized by the king of Babylon, and this city shall be burned with fire.

24 Then Zedekiah said to Jeremiah, Let no one know of these words, and you shall not die. 25 If kthe officials hear that I have spoken with you and come to you and say to you, Tell us what you said to the king and what the king said to you; hide nothing from us and we will not put you to death, 26 then you shall say to them, lI made a humble plea to the king that he would not send me back to the house of Jonathan to die there. 27 Then all the officials came to Jeremiah and asked him, and he answered them as the king had instructed him. So they stopped speaking with him, for the conversation had not been overheard. 28 And Jeremiah remained min the court of the guard until the day that Jerusalem was taken.

The Fall of Jerusalem

39 nIn the ninth year of Zedekiah king of Judah, in the tenth month, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon and all his army came against Jerusalem and besieged it. In the eleventh year of Zedekiah, in the fourth month, on the ninth day of the month, a breach was made in the city. Then all othe officials of the king of Babylon came pand sat in the middle gate: Nergal-sar-ezer of Samgar, Nebu-sar-sekim qthe Rab-saris, Nergal-sar-ezer the Rab-mag, with all the rest of the officers of the king of Babylon. When Zedekiah king of Judah and all the soldiers saw them, they fled, going out of the city at night by way of the king's garden through the gate between the two walls; and they went toward rthe Arabah. But the army of the Chaldeans pursued them and overtook Zedekiah in sthe plains of Jericho. And when they had taken him, they brought him up to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, at tRiblah, in the land of Hamath; uand he passed sentence on him. The king of Babylon vslaughtered the sons of Zedekiah at tRiblah before his eyes, and the king of Babylon vslaughtered all the nobles of Judah. wHe put out the eyes of Zedekiah and bound him in chains to take him to Babylon. xThe Chaldeans burned the king's house and the house of the people, yand broke down the walls of Jerusalem. Then zNebuzaradan, the acaptain of the guard, carried into exile to Babylon the rest of the people who were left in the city, bthose who had deserted to him, and the people who remained. 10 Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, cleft in the land of Judah some of the poor people who owned nothing, and gave them vineyards and fields at the same time.

The Lord Delivers Jeremiah

11 Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon gave command concerning Jeremiah through Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, saying, 12 dTake him, look after him well, and do him no harm, but deal with him as he tells you. 13 So eNebuzaradan the captain of the guard, Nebushazban the Rab-saris, Nergal-sar-ezer the Rab-mag, eand all the chief officers of the king of Babylon 14 sent and took Jeremiah from fthe court of the guard. They entrusted him to gGedaliah the son of hAhikam, son of iShaphan, that he should take him home. So jhe lived among the people.

15 The word of the Lord came to Jeremiah kwhile he was shut up in the court of the guard: 16 Go, and say to lEbed-melech the Ethiopian, Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: mBehold, I will fulfill my words against this city for harm and nnot for good, and they shall be accomplished before you on that day. 17 But I will deliver you on that day, declares the Lord, and you shall not be given into the hand of the men oof whom you are afraid. 18 For I will surely save you, and you shall not fall by the sword, but you shall have your plife as a prize of war, qbecause you have put your trust in me, declares the Lord.


Jesus Delivered to Pilate

27 wWhen morning came, all the chief priests and the elders of the people xtook counsel against Jesus to put him to death. And they bound him and yled him away and zdelivered him over to aPilate the governor.

Judas Hangs Himself

Then when bJudas, his betrayer, saw that Jesus1 was condemned, che changed his mind and brought back dthe thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and the elders, saying, I have sinned by betraying innocent blood. They said, What is that to us? eSee to it yourself. And throwing down the pieces of silver into the temple, fhe departed, and he went and hanged himself. But the chief priests, taking the pieces of silver, said, It is not lawful to put them into gthe treasury, since it is blood money. So they took counsel and bought with them the potter's field as a burial place for strangers. Therefore hthat field has been called the Field of Blood ito this day. jThen was fulfilled what had been spoken by the prophet Jeremiah, saying, kAnd they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him on whom a price had been set by some of the sons of Israel, 10 and they gave them for the potter's field, as the Lord directed me.

Jesus Before Pilate

11 lNow Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor asked him, Are you mthe King of the Jews? Jesus said, nYou have said so. 12 oBut when he was accused by the chief priests and elders, he gave no answer. 13 Then Pilate said to him, pDo you not hear how many things they testify against you? 14 But he gave him no answer, not even to a single charge, so that the governor was greatly amazed.

The Crowd Chooses Barabbas

15 qNow at the feast the governor was accustomed to release for the crowd any one prisoner whom they wanted. 16 And they had then a notorious prisoner called Barabbas. 17 So when they had gathered, Pilate said to them, Whom do you want me to release for you: Barabbas, or rJesus who is called Christ? 18 For he knew that it was out sof envy that they had delivered him up. 19 Besides, while he was sitting on tthe judgment seat, his wife sent word to him, Have nothing to do with uthat righteous man, for I have suffered much because of him today vin a dream. 20 Now the chief priests and the elders persuaded the crowd to wask for Barabbas and destroy Jesus. 21 The governor again said to them, Which of the two do you want me to release for you? And they said, Barabbas. 22 Pilate said to them, Then what shall I do with Jesus who is called Christ? xThey all said, Let him be crucified! 23 And he said, Why? yWhat evil has he done? But they shouted all the more, Let him be crucified!

Pilate Delivers Jesus to Be Crucified

24 So when Pilate saw that he was gaining nothing, but rather that za riot was beginning, he took water and awashed his hands before the crowd, saying, I am innocent of bthis man's blood;2 csee to it yourselves. 25 And all the people answered, dHis blood be on us and eon our children! 26 Then he released for them Barabbas, and having fscourged3 Jesus, delivered him to be crucified.