Jeremiah 52

1 Zedekiah was twenty-one years old when he began to reign; and he reigned eleven years in Jerusalem: and his mother’s name was Hamutal the daughter of Jeremiah of Libnah. 2 He did that which was evil in the LORD’s sight, according to all that Jehoiakim had done. 3 For through the LORD’s anger this happened in Jerusalem and Judah, until he had cast them out from his presence. Zedekiah rebelled against the king of Babylon. 4 In the ninth year of his reign, in the tenth month, in the tenth day of the month, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came, he and all his army, against Jerusalem, and encamped against it; and they built forts against it round about. 5 So the city was besieged to the eleventh year of king Zedekiah. 6 In the fourth month, in the ninth day of the month, the famine was severe in the city, so that there was no bread for the people of the land. 7 Then a breach was made in the city, and all the men of war fled, and went out of the city by night by the way of the gate between the two walls, which was by the king’s garden; (now the Chaldeans were against the city all around;) and they went towards the Arabah. 8 But the army of the Chaldeans pursued the king, and overtook Zedekiah in the plains of Jericho; and all his army was scattered from him. 9 Then they took the king, and carried him up to the king of Babylon to Riblah in the land of Hamath; and he gave judgement on him. 10 The king of Babylon killed the sons of Zedekiah before his eyes: he killed also all the princes of Judah in Riblah. 11 He put out the eyes of Zedekiah; and the king of Babylon bound him in fetters, and carried him to Babylon, and put him in prison until the day of his death. 12 Now in the fifth month, in the tenth day of the month, which was the nineteenth year of king Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, came Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard, who stood before the king of Babylon, into Jerusalem: 13 and he burnt the LORD’s house, and the king’s house; and all the houses of Jerusalem, even every great house, he burnt with fire. 14 All the army of the Chaldeans, who were with the captain of the guard, broke down all the walls of Jerusalem all around. 15 Then Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carried away captive of the poorest of the people, and the residue of the people who were left in the city, and those who fell away, who fell to the king of Babylon, and the residue of the multitude. 16 But Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard left of the poorest of the land to be vineyard keepers and farmers. 17 The Chaldeans broke the pillars of brass that were in the LORD’s house, and the bases and the bronze sea that were in the LORD’s house in pieces, and carried all of their brass to Babylon. 18 They also took away the pots, the shovels, the snuffers, the basins, the spoons, and all the vessels of brass with which they ministered. 19 The captain of the guard took away the cups, the fire pans, the basins, the pots, the lamp stands, the spoons, and the bowls; that which was of gold, in gold, and that which was of silver, in silver. 20 They took the two pillars, the one sea, and the twelve bronze bulls that were under the bases, which king Solomon had made for the LORD’s house. The brass of all these vessels was without weight. 21 As for the pillars, the height of the one pillar was eighteen cubits; and a line of twelve cubits encircled it; and its thickness was four fingers. It was hollow. 22 A capital of brass was on it; and the height of the one capital was five cubits, with network and pomegranates on the capital all around, all of brass: and the second pillar also had like these, and pomegranates. 23 There were ninety-six pomegranates on the sides; all the pomegranates were one hundred on the network all around. 24 The captain of the guard took Seraiah the chief priest, and Zephaniah the second priest, and the three keepers of the threshold: 25 and out of the city he took an officer who was set over the men of war; and seven men of those who saw the king’s face, who were found in the city; and the scribe of the captain of the army, who mustered the people of the land; and sixty men of the people of the land, who were found in the middle of the city. 26 Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard took them, and brought them to the king of Babylon to Riblah. 27 The king of Babylon struck them, and put them to death at Riblah in the land of Hamath. So Judah was carried away captive out of his land. 28 This is the people whom Nebuchadnezzar carried away captive: in the seventh year three thousand and twenty-three Jews; 29 in the eighteenth year of Nebuchadnezzar he carried away captive from Jerusalem eight hundred and thirty-two persons; 30 in the twenty-third year of Nebuchadnezzar Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carried away captive of the Jews seven hundred and forty-five persons: all the persons were four thousand and six hundred. 31 In the thirty-seventh year of the captivity of Jehoiachin king of Judah, in the twelfth month, in the twenty-fifth day of the month, Evilmerodach king of Babylon, in the first year of his reign, lifted up the head of Jehoiachin king of Judah, and released him from prison; 32 and he spoke kindly to him, and set his throne above the throne of the kings who were with him in Babylon, 33 and changed his prison garments. Jehoiachin ate bread before him continually all the days of his life: 34 and for his allowance, there was a continual allowance given him by the king of Babylon, every day a portion until the day of his death, all the days of his life.

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Questions about today’s reading? See if Matthew Henry can help.
Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary, 1706

Verses 1-11

This fruit of sin we should pray against above any thing; Cast me not away from thy presence, Ps. 51:11. None are cast out of God’s presence but those who by sin have first thrown themselves out. Zedekiah’s flight was in vain, for there is no escaping the judgments of God; they come upon the sinner, and overtake him, let him flee where he will.

Verses 12-23

The Chaldean army made woful havoc. But nothing is so particularly related here, as the carrying away of the articles in the temple. The remembrance of their beauty and value shows us the more the evil of sin.

Verses 24-30

The leaders of the Jews caused them to err; but now they are, in particular, made monuments of Divine justice. Here is an account of two earlier captivities. This people often were wonders both of judgment and mercy.

Verses 31-34

See this history of king Jehoiachin in II Kin. 25:27-30. Those under oppression will find it is not in vain for them to hope and quietly to wait for the salvation of the Lord. Our times are in God’s hand, for the hearts of all we have to deal with are so. May we be enabled, more and more, to rest on the Rock of Ages, and to look forward with holy faith to that hour, when the Lord will bring again Zion, and overthrow all the enemies of the church.

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