The fall of Jerusalem and the fate of Jeremiah
1 In the tenth month of the ninth year of Zedekiah king of Judah, Ne bu chad nezzar king of Babylon came with his entire army and they besieged Jeru salem. 2 On the ninth day of the fourth month in Zedekiah’s eleventh year a breach was made in the city wall. 3 All the officials of the king of Babylon entered and took their seats at the Middle Gate: Nergal-Sherazer of Samgar, Sarse kim chief officer, Nergal-Sherazer a high official and all the officials of the king of Babylon.
4 Upon seeing this, King Zedekiah of Judah and all the military fled from the city by night, going out by way of the king’s garden through the gate between the two walls in the direction of Ara bah. 5 But the Chaldean army chased them and caught up with Zedekiah in the plains of Jericho. They took him and brought him up to the king of Babylon at Riblah in the land of Hamath. There Nebu chad nezzar passed sentence on him. 6 The king of Baby lon slaughtered the sons of Zedekiah in his presence and all the nobles of Judah. 7 He gouged Zedekiah’s eyes and bound him with a double bronze chain to take him to Babylon.
8 The Chaldeans burned the King’s palace along with the people’s abodes and then broke down the walls of Jeru salem. 9 Nebuzaradan, com mander of the guards, deported to Ba by lon the remainder of the people who stayed in the city as well as those who had deserted to his side and those craftsmen who were still there. 10 As for the poorest people who owned nothing, Nebuzaradan left them at that time in the land of Judah, giving them vineyards and fields.
11 Nebuchadnezzar king of Baby lon had given orders about Jeremiah to Ne buzaradan chief of the guards: 12 “Take him and look after him; do him no harm but deal with him just as he tells you.” 13 Nebuzaradan commander of the guards, Nebushazban a chief officer, Nergal-Sherazer, a high official and all the other officers of the king of Babylon 14 sent and had Jeremiah taken from the Guards’ Court and given over to Gedaliah son of Ahikam son of Shaphan. So he remained among the people.
Reward for Ebedmelek
15 Now the word of Yahweh had come to Jeremiah while he was imprisoned in the Guards’ Court: 16 “Go and talk to Ebedmelek the Ethiopian: Tell him this word of Yahweh the God of hosts and the God of Israel: You see on that day that I am about to carry out what I have foretold in the past, disaster and not prosperity for this city.
17 But I will save you on that day – word of Yahweh – and you will not be handed over to those whom you fear. For I will certainly save you and you will not perish by the sword. 18 You will be able to escape and live because you have trusted me – it is Yahweh who speaks.”