1In the seventh month Ishmael son of Nethaniah and ten of his men came to Gedaliah son of Ahikam at Mizpah. (Nethaniah was the son of Elishama.) Now Ishmael was a member of the king’s family and had been one of the officers of the king of Judah. While they were eating a meal with Gedaliah at Mizpah, 2Ishmael and his ten men got up and killed Gedaliah son of Ahikam, the son of Shaphan, with a sword. (Gedaliah was the man the king of Babylon had chosen as governor over Judah.) 3Ishmael also killed all the Jews and the Babylonian soldiers who were there with Gedaliah at Mizpah.
4The day after Gedaliah was murdered, before anyone knew about it, 5eighty men came to Mizpah bringing grain offerings and incense to the Temple of the Lord. Those men from Shechem, Shiloh, and Samaria had shaved off their beards, torn their clothes, and cut themselves. 6Ishmael son of Nethaniah went out from Mizpah to meet them, crying as he walked. When he met them, he said, “Come with me to meet Gedaliah son of Ahikam.” 7So they went into Mizpah. Then Ishmael son of Nethaniah and his men killed seventy of them and threw the bodies into a deep well. 8But the ten men who were left alive said to Ishmael, “Don’t kill us! We have wheat and barley and oil and honey that we have hidden in a field.” So Ishmael let them live and did not kill them with the others. 9Now the well where he had thrown all the bodies had been made by King Asa as a part of his defenses against Baasha king of Israel. But Ishmael son of Nethaniah put dead bodies in it until it was full.
10Ishmael captured all the other people in Mizpah: the king’s daughters and all the other people who were left there. They were the ones whom Nebuzaradan commander of the guard had chosen Gedaliah son of Ahikam to take care of. So Ishmael son of Nethaniah captured those people, and he started to cross over to the country of the Ammonites.
11Johanan son of Kareah and all his army officers with him heard about all the evil things Ishmael son of Nethaniah had done. 12So they took their men and went to fight Ishmael son of Nethaniah and caught him near the big pool of water at Gibeon. 13When the captives Ishmael had taken saw Johanan and the army officers, they were glad. 14So all the people Ishmael had taken captive from Mizpah turned around and ran to Johanan son of Kareah. 15But Ishmael son of Nethaniah and eight of his men escaped from Johanan and ran away to the Ammonites.
16So Johanan son of Kareah and all his army officers saved the captives that Ishmael son of Nethaniah had taken from Mizpah after he murdered Gedaliah son of Ahikam. Among those left alive were soldiers, women, children, and palace officers. And Johanan brought them back from the town of Gibeon.
The Escape to Egypt
17-18Johanan and the other army officers were afraid of the Babylonians. Since the king of Babylon had chosen Gedaliah son of Ahikam to be governor of Judah but Ishmael son of Nethaniah had murdered him, Johanan was afraid that the Babylonians would be angry. So they decided to run away to Egypt. On the way they stayed at Geruth Kimham, near the town of Bethlehem.