Then Shephatiah the son of Mattan, and Gedaliah the son of Pashur, and Jucal the
son of Shelemiah, and Pashur the son of Malchiah, heard the words that Jeremiah had
spoken unto all the people, saying,
Thus saith the LORD, He that remaineth in this city shall die by the sword, by the
famine, and by the pestilence: but he that goeth forth to the Chaldeans shall live; for
he shall have his life for a prey, and shall live.
Thus saith the LORD, This city shall surely be given into the hand of the king of
Babylon’s army, which shall take it.
Therefore the princes said unto the king, We beseech thee, let this man be put to
death: for thus he weakeneth the hands of the men of war that remain in this city, and
the hands of all the people, in speaking such words unto them: for this man seeketh not
the welfare of this people, but the hurt.
Then Zedekiah the king said, Behold, he is in your hand: for the king is not he
that can do any thing against you.
Then took they Jeremiah, and cast him into the dungeon of Malchiah the son of
Hammelech, that was in the court of the prison: and they let down Jeremiah with cords.
And in the dungeon there was no water, but mire: so Jeremiah sunk in the mire.
Now when Ebedmelech the Ethiopian, one of the eunuchs which was in the king’s
house, heard that they had put Jeremiah in the dungeon; the king then sitting in the
gate of Benjamin;
Ebedmelech went forth out of the king’s house, and spake to the king
My lord the king, these men have done evil in all that they have done to Jeremiah
the prophet, whom they have cast into the dungeon; and he is like to die for hunger in
the place where he is: for there is no more bread in the city.
Then the king commanded Ebedmelech the Ethiopian, saying, Take from hence thirty
men with thee, and take up Jeremiah the prophet out of the dungeon, before he die.
So Ebedmelech took the men with him, and went into the house of the king under the
treasury, and took thence old cast clouts and old rotten rags, and let them down by
cords into the dungeon to Jeremiah.
And Ebedmelech the Ethiopian said unto Jeremiah, Put now these old cast clouts and
rotten rags under thine armholes under the cords. And Jeremiah did so.
So they drew up Jeremiah with cords, and took him up out of the dungeon: and
Jeremiah remained in the court of the prison.
Then Zedekiah the king sent, and took Jeremiah the prophet unto him into the third
entry that is in the house of the LORD: and the king said unto Jeremiah, I will ask
thee a thing; hide nothing from me.
Then Jeremiah said unto Zedekiah, If I declare it unto thee, wilt thou not surely
put me to death? and if I give thee counsel, wilt thou not hearken unto me?
So Zedekiah the king sware secretly unto Jeremiah, saying, As the LORD liveth, that
made us this soul, I will not put thee to death, neither will I give thee into the hand
of these men that seek thy life.
Then said Jeremiah unto Zedekiah, Thus saith the LORD, the God of hosts, the God of
Israel; If thou wilt assuredly go forth unto the king of Babylon’s princes, then
thy soul shall live, and this city shall not be burned with fire; and thou shalt live,
and thine house:
But if thou wilt not go forth to the king of Babylon’s princes, then shall
this city be given into the hand of the Chaldeans, and they shall burn it with fire,
and thou shalt not escape out of their hand.
And Zedekiah the king said unto Jeremiah, I am afraid of the Jews that are fallen
to the Chaldeans, lest they deliver me into their hand, and they mock me.
But Jeremiah said, They shall not deliver thee. Obey, I beseech thee, the voice of
the LORD, which I speak unto thee: so it shall be well unto thee, and thy soul shall
But if thou refuse to go forth, this is the word that the LORD hath shewed me:
And, behold, all the women that are left in the king of Judah’s house shall
be brought forth to the king of Babylon’s princes, and those women shall say, Thy
friends have set thee on, and have prevailed against thee: thy feet are sunk in the
mire, and they are turned away back.
So they shall bring out all thy wives and thy children to the Chaldeans: and thou
shalt not escape out of their hand, but shalt be taken by the hand of the king of
Babylon: and thou shalt cause this city to be burned with fire.
Then said Zedekiah unto Jeremiah, Let no man know of these words, and thou shalt
But if the princes hear that I have talked with thee, and they come unto thee, and
say unto thee, Declare unto us now what thou hast said unto the king, hide it not from
us, and we will not put thee to death; also what the king said unto thee:
Then thou shalt say unto them, I presented my supplication before the king, that he
would not cause me to return to Jonathan’s house, to die there.
Then came all the princes unto Jeremiah, and asked him: and he told them according
to all these words that the king had commanded. So they left off speaking with him; for
the matter was not perceived.
So Jeremiah abode in the court of the prison until the day that Jerusalem was
taken: and he was there when Jerusalem was taken.