1In the beginning of the reign of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, this word came from Yahweh: 2“Yahweh says: ‘Stand in the court of Yahweh’s house, and speak to all the cities of Judah, which come to worship in Yahweh’s house, all the words that I command you to speak to them. Don’t omit a word. 3It may be they will listen, and turn every man from his evil way; that I may relent from the evil which I intend to do to them because of the evil of their doings.’ 4You shall tell them, “Yahweh says: ‘If you will not listen to me, to walk in my law, which I have set before you, 5to listen to the words of my servants the prophets, whom I send to you, even rising up early and sending them, but you have not listened; 6then I will make this house like Shiloh, and will make this city a curse to all the nations of the earth.”’”
7The priests and the prophets and all the people heard Jeremiah speaking these words in Yahweh’s house. 8When Jeremiah had finished speaking all that Yahweh had commanded him to speak to all the people, the priests and the prophets and all the people seized him, saying, “You shall surely die! 9Why have you prophesied in Yahweh’s name, saying, ‘This house shall be like Shiloh, and this city shall be desolate, without inhabitant?’” All the people were crowded around Jeremiah in Yahweh’s house.
10When the princes of Judah heard these things, they came up from the king’s house to Yahweh’s house; and they sat in the entry of the new gate of Yahweh’s house. 11Then spoke the priests and the prophets to the princes and to all the people, saying, “This man is worthy of death; for he has prophesied against this city, as you have heard with your ears.”
12Then Jeremiah spoke to all the princes and to all the people, saying, “Yahweh sent me to prophesy against this house and against this city all the words that you have heard. 13Now therefore amend your ways and your doings, and obey Yahweh your God’s voice; and Yahweh will relent from the evil that he has pronounced against you. 14But as for me, behold, I am in your hand. Do with me what is good and right in your eyes. 15Only 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 Yahweh has sent me to you to speak all these words in your ears.”
16Then the princes and all the people said to the priests and to the prophets: “This man is not worthy of death; for he has spoken to us in the name of Yahweh our God.”
17Then certain of the elders of the land rose up, and spoke to all the assembly of the people, saying, 18“Micah the Morashtite prophesied in the days of Hezekiah king of Judah; and he spoke to all the people of Judah, saying, ‘Yahweh of Armies says:
“‘Zion will be plowed as a field,
and Jerusalem shall become heaps,
and the mountain of the house as the high places of a forest.’
19Did Hezekiah king of Judah and all Judah put him to death? Didn’t he fear Yahweh, and entreat the favor of Yahweh, and Yahweh relented of the disaster which he had pronounced against them? We would commit great evil against our own souls that way!”
20There was also a man who prophesied in Yahweh’s name, Uriah the son of Shemaiah of Kiriath Jearim; and he prophesied against this city and against this land according to all the words of Jeremiah. 21When Jehoiakim the king, with all his mighty men, and all the princes, heard his words, the king sought to put him to death; but when Uriah heard it, he was afraid, and fled, and went into Egypt: 22and Jehoiakim the king sent men into Egypt, Elnathan the son of Achbor, and certain men with him, into Egypt; 23and they fetched Uriah out of Egypt, and brought him to Jehoiakim the king, who killed him with the sword, and cast his dead body into the graves of the common people.
24But the hand of Ahikam the son of Shaphan was with Jeremiah, that they should not give him into the hand of the people to put him to death.