Jeremiah Thrown Into a Cistern
38:1 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,
38:2 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.
38:3 Thus saith the LORD, This city shall surely be given
into the hand of the king of Babylon's army, which shall
38:4 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.
38:5 Then Zedekiah the king said, Behold, he is in your
hand: for the king is not he that can do any thing against
38:6 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.
38:7 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
38:8 Ebedmelech went forth out of the king's house, and
spake to the king saying,
38:9 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.
38:10 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.
38:11 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.
38:12 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.
38:13 So they drew up Jeremiah with cords, and took him up
out of the dungeon: and Jeremiah remained in the court of
38:14 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.
38:15 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?
38:16 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.
38:17 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:
38:18 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.
38:19 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.
38:20 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
38:21 But if thou refuse to go forth, this is the word that
the LORD hath shewed me:
38:22 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.
38:23 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
38:24 Then said Zedekiah unto Jeremiah, Let no man know of
these words, and thou shalt not die.
38:25 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
38:26 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.
38:27 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.
38:28 So Jeremiah abode in the court of the prison until
the day that Jerusalem was taken: and he was there when
Jerusalem was taken.