Jeremiah 38 ©

1 Jeremiah, accused of disheartening the people by his prophecies, is cast into the dungeon of Malchiah; 7 out of which he is taken at the earnest entreaty of Ebed-melech. 14 In a secret conference he counselleth the king to save himself and the city by submitting to the Chaldeans. 24 By the king's instructions he concealeth from the princes the matter of the conference.


THEN aShephatiah the son of Mattan, and Gedaliah the son of Pashur, and Jucal the son of Shelemiah, and Pashur the son of Malchiah, bheard the words that Jeremiah had spoken unto all the people, saying,


Thus saith the LORD, cHe that remaineth in this city shall die by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence: but he that goeth forth to the Chaldeans shall live; for he shall have his life for a *prey, and shall live.


Thus saith the LORD, dThis city shall surely be given into the hand of the king of Babylon's army, which shall take it.


Therefore ethe princes said unto the king, We beseech thee, flet this man be put to death: for gthus he weakeneth the hands of the men of war that remain in this city, and the hands of all the people, in speaking such words unto them: for this man seeketh not the 1welfare of this people, but the hurt.


Then Zedekiah the king said, hBehold, he is in your hand: for ithe king is not he that can do any thing against you.

i v.24-27.

Then took they Jeremiah, and cast him into the jdungeon of Malchiah the son of 2Hammelech, that was in the court of the prison: and they let down Jeremiah with cords. And in the dungeon there was no water, but mire: so Jeremiah sunk in the mire.


¶Now when Ebed-melech kthe Ethiopian, one of the leunuchs which was in the king's house, heard that they had put Jeremiah in the dungeon; the king then msitting in the gate of Benjamin;


nEbed-melech went forth out of the king's house, and spake to the king, saying,


My lord the king, these men ohave done evil in all that they have done to Jeremiah the prophet, whom they have cast into the dungeon; and 3he is like to die for hunger in the place where he is: pfor there is no more bread in the city.


Then qthe king commanded Ebed-melech the Ethiopian, saying, Take from hence thirty men 4with thee, and take up Jeremiah the prophet out of the dungeon, before he die.


So Ebed-melech took the men with him, and went into the house of the king under the treasury, and took thence old cast *clouts and old rotten rags, and let them down by cords into the dungeon to Jeremiah.


And Ebed-melech the Ethiopian said unto Jeremiah, rPut now these old cast *clouts and rotten rags under thine armholes under the cords. And Jeremiah did so.


So they drew up Jeremiah swith cords, and took him up out of the dungeon: and tJeremiah remained in the court of the prison.

s v.6.

¶Then Zedekiah the king sent, and took Jeremiah the prophet unto him into the 5third entry that is in the house of the LORD: and the king said unto Jeremiah, uI will ask thee a thing; hide nothing from me.


Then Jeremiah said unto Zedekiah, If I declare it unto thee, vwilt thou not surely put me to death? and if I give thee counsel, wilt thou not hearken unto me?


So Zedekiah the king sware wsecretly unto Jeremiah, saying, As xthe LORD liveth, ythat made us this soul, I will not put thee to death, neither will I give thee into the hand of zthese men that seek thy life.


Then said Jeremiah unto Zedekiah, Thus saith the LORD, the aGod of hosts, the bGod of Israel; cIf thou wilt assuredly go forth unto the king of Babylon's princes, then thy soul shall live, and this city shall not be burned with fire; and thou shalt live, and thine house:


But dif thou wilt not go forth to the king of Babylon's princes, then shall this city be given into the hand of the Chaldeans, and they shall burn it with fire, and thou shalt not escape out of their hand.


And Zedekiah the king said unto Jeremiah, eI am afraid of the Jews that are fallen to the Chaldeans, lest they deliver me into their hand, and they mock me.


But Jeremiah said, They shall not deliver thee. Obey, fI beseech thee, the voice of the LORD, which I speak unto thee: so it shall be well unto thee, and thy gsoul shall live.


But if thou hrefuse to go forth, ithis is the word that the LORD hath shewed me:


And, behold, all the women that are left in the king of Judah's house shall be brought forth to the king of Babylon's princes, and jthose women shall say, 6Thy kfriends have set thee on, and have prevailed against thee: thy feet are sunk in the lmire, and they are mturned away back.


So nthey shall bring out all thy wives and othy children to the Chaldeans: and thou shalt not escape out of their hand, but pshalt be taken by the hand of the king of Babylon: and thou shalt 7cause this city to be burned with fire.


¶Then said Zedekiah unto Jeremiah, Let no man know of these words, and thou shalt not die.


But if qthe princes hear that I have talked with thee, and they come unto thee, and say unto thee, Declare unto us now what thou hast said unto the king, hide it not from us, and we will not put thee to death; also what the king said unto thee:

q v.1,4,5.

Then thou shalt say unto them, rI presented my supplication before the king, that he would not cause me to return to Jonathan's house, to die there.


Then came all the princes unto Jeremiah, and asked him: and he told them according to all these words that the king had commanded. So they 8left off speaking with him; for the matter was not perceived.


So Jeremiah sabode in the court of the prison until the day that Jerusalem was taken: and he was there when Jerusalem was taken.