1 IN THE beginning of the reign of Zedekiah son of Josiah king of Judah, this word came to Jeremiah from the Lord:
2 Thus says the Lord to me: Make for yourself thongs and yoke bars and put them on your neck,
3 And send them to the king of Edom, to the king of Moab, to the king of the Ammonites, to the king of Tyre, and to the king of Sidon by the hand of the messengers who have come to Jerusalem to Zedekiah king of Judah.
4 And command them to say to their masters, Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Thus shall you say to your masters:
5 I have made the earth, the men, and the beasts that are upon the face of the earth by My great power and by My outstretched arm, and I give it to whomever it seems right and suitable to Me.
6 And now I have given all these lands into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, My servant and instrument, and the beasts of the field also I have given him to serve him.
7 And all nations shall serve him and his son and his grandson until the [God-appointed] time [of punishment] of his own land comes; and then many nations and great kings shall make him their slave.
8 But any nation or kingdom that will not serve this same Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon and put its neck under the yoke of the king of Babylon, that nation will I punish, says the Lord, with the sword, with famine, and with pestilence, until I have consumed it by [Nebuchadnezzar's] hand.
9 So do not listen to your [false] prophets, your diviners, your dreamers [and your dreams, whether your own or others'], your soothsayers, your sorcerers, who say to you, You shall not serve the king of Babylon.
10 For they prophesy a lie to you which will cause you to be removed far from your land; and I will drive you out, and you will perish.
11 But any nation that brings its neck under the yoke of the king of Babylon and serves him, that nation will I let remain on its own land, says the Lord, to cultivate it and dwell in it.
12 I spoke also to Zedekiah king of Judah in the same way: Bring your necks under the yoke of the king of Babylon, and serve him and his people, and live.
13 Why will you and your people die by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence, as the Lord has spoken concerning any nation that will not serve the king of Babylon?
14 Do not listen to and believe the words of the [false] prophets who are saying to you, You shall not serve the king of Babylon, for it is a lie that they prophesy to you.
15 For I have not sent them, says the Lord; but they are prophesying falsely in My name. [It will only end when] I will drive you out to perish together with the [false] prophets who prophesy to you.
16 Also I said to the priests and to all these people, Thus says the Lord: Do not listen to the words of your [false] prophets who are prophesying to you, saying, Behold, the vessels of the Lord's house shall now shortly be brought back from Babylon; for they are prophesying a lie to you.
17 Do not listen to them or heed them; serve the king of Babylon, and live. Why should this city be laid waste?
18 But if they are true prophets and if the word of the Lord is really spoken by them, let them now make intercession to the Lord of hosts, that the vessels which are [still] left in the house of the Lord, in the house of the king of Judah, and in Jerusalem may not go to Babylon.
19 For thus says the Lord of hosts concerning the [bronze] pillars [each twenty-seven feet high], the [bronze] Sea [the laver at which the priests cleansed their hands and feet before ministering at the altar], the [bronze] bases [of the ten lavers in Solomon's temple used for washing animals to be offered as sacrifices], and the remainder of the vessels which are left in this city [Jerusalem], [I Kings 7:23-37; II Chron. 4:6; Jer. 52:17.]
20 Which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon did not take when he carried into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon Jeconiah [also called Coniah and Jehoiachin] son of Jehoiakim king of Judah, with all the nobles of Judah and Jerusalem–
21 Yes, thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, concerning the vessels which [still] remain in the house of the Lord, in the house of the king of Judah, and in Jerusalem:
22 They will be carried to Babylon and there will they be until the day that I visit them [with My favor], says the Lord. Then I will bring them back and restore them to this place.