The Final Invasion of Nebuchadnezzar
1It happened that in the ninth year of his reign, in the tenth month, on the tenth of the month, Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon came, he and his army, against Jerusalem. He encamped against it and built siege works against it all around. 2So the city came under siege until the eleventh year of the king. 3In the ninth month, the famine became severe in the city, and there was no food for the people of the land. 4Then the city was breached, and all of the men of war entered by night by way of the gate between the wall which was by the garden of the king, and the Chaldeans were against the city all around, so he#That is, Zedekiah left by the way of the Arabah. 5But the army of the Chaldeans pursued the king, and they overtook him in the Arabah of Jericho, and all of his army scattered from him. 6So they captured the king and brought him up to the king of Babylon at Riblah, and they passed sentence on him.#Literally “they spoke justice with him” 7They slaughtered the sons of Zedekiah before his eyes; then they blinded the eyes of Zedekiah and bound him in bronze fetters and brought him to Babylon.
Jerusalem Is Sacked and the Temple Burned
8In the fifth month, on the seventh of the month, that is, the nineteenth year of King Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, Nebuzaradan, a commander of the imperial guard, a servant of the king of Babylon, came to Jerusalem. 9He burned the temple of Yahweh, the palace of the king, and all of the houses of Jerusalem; every large house he burned with fire. 10He and all the army of the Chaldeans who were with the imperial guard tore down the wall of Jerusalem all around. 11The remainder of the people left in the city, the deserters who had deserted to the king of Babylon, and the remainder of the multitude, Nebuzaradan the commander of the imperial guard deported.
12But the poor of the land the commander of the imperial guard left for the vineyards and for tilling.
Plunder Taken by the Chaldeans
13The bronze pillars which were in the temple#Or “house” of Yahweh, the water carts, and the bronze sea that was in the temple of Yahweh, the Chaldeans broke into pieces and carried their bronze to Babylon. 14The pots, the shovels, the snuffers, the dishes, and the vessels of bronze with which they served there, they took. 15The firepans and the basins, whatever was gold, the commander of the imperial guard took for the gold and whatever was silver, for the silver. 16The two pillars, the one sea, and the water cart which Solomon had made for the temple of Yahweh, there was no weighing to the bronze of all of these vessels. 17The height of the one pillar was eighteen cubits; a bronze capital was on it, with the height of the capital being three cubits. The latticework and pomegranates on the capital all around were bronze, and likewise on the latticework for the second pillar.
18Then the commander of the imperial guard took Seraiah the chief priest, Zephaniah the second priest, and three of the threshold keepers. 19From the city he took one court official who was chief officer over the men of war, five men from the king’s council#Literally “from those who saw the face of the king” who were found in the city, the secretary of the commander of the army who mustered the people of the land, and sixty men from the people of the land being found in the city. 20Nebuzaradan commander of the imperial guard took them and brought them to the king of Babylon at Riblah. 21Then the king of Babylon struck them down and killed them at Riblah in the land of Hamath; thus Judah was removed from its land.
Gedaliah Appointed Governor
22Now as far as the people left in Judah whom Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon left behind, he appointed Gedaliah the son of Ahikam the son of Shaphan over them. 23When all of the commanders of the troops heard, they and the men, that the king of Babylon had appointed Gedaliah, they came to Gedaliah at Mizpah, even Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, Johanan the son of Kareah, Seriah the son of Tanhumeth the Netophathite, Jaazaniah the son of the Maacathite, they and their men. 24Gedaliah swore to them and to their men, and he said to them, “You must not be afraid because of the Chaldeans. Settle in the land and serve the king of Babylon, and may it go well with you.” 25But it happened in the seventh month that Ishmael the son of Nethaniah the son of Elishama from the offspring of the kingship came, and ten men with him, and they struck down Gedaliah so that he died with the Judeans and with the Chaldeans who were with him at Mizpah. 26Then all the people, from youngest to oldest, and the commanders of the troops, went to Egypt, for they were afraid of the presence of the Chaldeans.
Elderly Jehoiachin Cared for in Babylon
27It happened in the thirty-seventh year of the exile of Jehoiachin king of Judah, in the twelfth month on the twenty-seventh of the month, lifted Evil-Merodach king of Babylon in the year that he became king, the head of Jehoiachin king of Judah from the house of imprisonment. 28He spoke kindly#Literally “good things” to him, and he gave him a better seat than the seat of the kings who were with him in Babylon. 29So he changed the clothes of his imprisonment, and he ate food continually in his presence all the days of his life. 30His allowance was continually given to him from the king, a portion every day#Literally “a thing of day on his day” all the days of his life.