Jeremiah Remains in Judah
1The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord #[ch. 39:14] after Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard had let him go from #Josh. 18:25 Ramah, when he took him #[Ps. 149:8]bound in chains along with all the captives of Jerusalem and Judah who were being exiled to Babylon. 2The captain of the guard took Jeremiah and said to him, #[Deut. 29:24, 28]“The Lord your God pronounced this disaster against this place. 3The Lord has brought it about, and has done as he said. #ch. 44:3, 23; Deut. 29:25; See Dan. 9:10-12Because you sinned against the Lord and did not obey his voice, this thing has come upon you. 4Now, behold, I release you today from #[See ver. 1 above] the chains on your hands. #[ch. 39:12] If it seems good to you to come with me to Babylon, come, and I will look after you well, #[ch. 39:12] but if it seems wrong to you to come with me to Babylon, do not come. #[Gen. 20:15]See, the whole land is before you; go wherever you think it good and right to go. 5If you remain,#40:5 Syriac; the meaning of the Hebrew phrase is uncertain then return to #See ch. 39:14 Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, son of Shaphan, #ch. 41:2whom the king of Babylon appointed governor of the cities of Judah, and dwell with him among the people. Or go wherever you think it right to go.” So the captain of the guard gave him an allowance of food and a present, and let him go. 6Then Jeremiah went to #[See ver. 5 above] Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, at #ch. 41:6; Josh. 18:26 Mizpah, and lived with him #ch. 37:12; 39:14 among the people #ch. 39:10who were left in the land.
7 # For ver. 7-9, see 2 Kgs. 25:23, 24 When all the captains of the forces in the open country and their men heard that #ver. 5 the king of Babylon had appointed Gedaliah the son of Ahikam governor in the land and had committed to him men, women, and children, those of #ch. 39:10; 2 Kgs. 25:12the poorest of the land who had not been taken into exile to Babylon, 8they went to Gedaliah at #[See ver. 6 above] Mizpah—#ver. 14, 15, 16; See ch. 41:1-3 Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, #ver. 13, 15, 16; ch. 42:1, 8 Johanan the son of Kareah, Seraiah the son of Tanhumeth, the sons of Ephai the Netophathite, #ch. 42:1Jezaniah the son of the Maacathite, they and their men. 9Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, son of Shaphan, swore to them and their men, saying, “Do not be afraid to serve the Chaldeans. Dwell in the land and serve the king of Babylon, #ch. 38:20and it shall be well with you. 10As for me, I will dwell at #[See ver. 6 above] Mizpah, to represent you before the Chaldeans who will come to us. But as for you, #[ver. 12]gather wine and summer fruits and oil, and store them in your vessels, and dwell in your cities that you have taken.” 11Likewise, when all the Judeans who were in #[Num. 22:1; 2 Sam. 8:2] Moab and among #1 Sam. 11:1; 12:12 the Ammonites and in #Gen. 36:8Edom and in other lands heard that the king of Babylon had left a remnant in Judah and had appointed Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, son of Shaphan, as governor over them, 12#[ch. 43:5] then all the Judeans returned from all the places to which they had been driven and came to the land of Judah, to Gedaliah at Mizpah. And they #[ver. 10]gathered wine and summer fruits in great abundance.
13Now #ver. 8, 15, 16; ch. 42:1, 8 Johanan the son of Kareah and #ch. 41:11; 42:1all the leaders of the forces in the open country came to Gedaliah at Mizpah 14and said to him, “Do you know that Baalis the king of #[ch. 41:10]the Ammonites has sent Ishmael the son of Nethaniah to take your life?” But Gedaliah the son of Ahikam would not believe them. 15Then Johanan the son of Kareah spoke secretly to Gedaliah at Mizpah, “Please let me go and strike down Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, and no one will know it. Why should he take your life, so that all the Judeans who are gathered about you would be scattered, #[ch. 42:2]and the remnant of Judah would perish?” 16But Gedaliah the son of Ahikam said to Johanan the son of Kareah, “You shall not do this thing, for you are speaking falsely of Ishmael.”