November 12 – OT Reading

Lamentations 1 – 3:36

Lamentations 1

The Sorrows of Zion

1 How lonely sits the city That was full of people! She has become like a widow Who was once great among the nations! She who was a princess among the provinces Has become a forced laborer! She weeps bitterly in the night And her tears are on her cheeks; She has none to comfort her Among all her lovers. All her friends have dealt treacherously with her; They have become her enemies. Judah has gone into exile under affliction And under harsh servitude; She dwells among the nations, But she has found no rest; All her pursuers have overtaken her In the midst of distress. The roads of Zion are in mourning Because no one comes to the appointed feasts. All her gates are desolate; Her priests are groaning, Her virgins are afflicted, And she herself is bitter. Her adversaries have become her masters, Her enemies prosper; For the Lord has caused her grief Because of the multitude of her transgressions; Her little ones have gone away As captives before the adversary. All her majesty Has departed from the daughter of Zion; Her princes have become like deer That have found no pasture; And they have fled without strength Before the pursuer. In the days of her affliction and homelessness Jerusalem remembers all her precious things That were from the days of old, When her people fell into the hand of the adversary And no one helped her. The adversaries saw her, They mocked at her ruin. Jerusalem sinned greatly, Therefore she has become an unclean thing. All who honored her despise her Because they have seen her nakedness; Even she herself groans and turns away. Her uncleanness was in her skirts; She did not consider her future. Therefore she has fallen astonishingly; She has no comforter. “See, O Lord, my affliction, For the enemy has magnified himself!” 10 The adversary has stretched out his hand Over all her precious things, For she has seen the nations enter her sanctuary, The ones whom You commanded That they should not enter into Your congregation. 11 All her people groan seeking bread; They have given their precious things for food To restore their lives themselves. “See, O Lord, and look, For I am despised.” 12 “Is it nothing to all you who pass this way? Look and see if there is any pain like my pain Which was severely dealt out to me, Which the Lord inflicted on the day of His fierce anger. 13 “From on high He sent fire into my bones, And it prevailed over them. He has spread a net for my feet; He has turned me back; He has made me desolate, Faint all day long. 14 “The yoke of my transgressions is bound; By His hand they are knit together. They have come upon my neck; He has made my strength fail. The Lord has given me into the hands Of those against whom I am not able to stand. 15 “The Lord has rejected all my strong men In my midst; He has called an appointed time against me To crush my young men; The Lord has trodden as in a wine press The virgin daughter of Judah. 16 “For these things I weep; My eyes run down with water; Because far from me is a comforter, One who restores my soul. My children are desolate Because the enemy has prevailed.” 17 Zion stretches out her hands; There is no one to comfort her; The Lord has commanded concerning Jacob That the ones round about him should be his adversaries; Jerusalem has become an unclean thing among them. 18 “The Lord is righteous; For I have rebelled against His command; Hear now, all peoples, And behold my pain; My virgins and my young men Have gone into captivity. 19 “I called to my lovers, but they deceived me; My priests and my elders perished in the city While they sought food to restore their strength themselves. 20 “See, O Lord, for I am in distress; My spirit is greatly troubled; My heart is overturned within me, For I have been very rebellious. In the street the sword slays; In the house it is like death. 21 “They have heard that I groan; There is no one to comfort me; All my enemies have heard of my calamity; They are glad that You have done it. Oh, that You would bring the day which You have proclaimed, That they may become like me. 22 “Let all their wickedness come before You; And deal with them as You have dealt with me For all my transgressions; For my groans are many and my heart is faint.”

 

Lamentations 2

God’s Anger over Israel

2 How the Lord has covered the daughter of Zion With a cloud in His anger! He has cast from heaven to earth The glory of Israel, And has not remembered His footstool In the day of His anger. The Lord has swallowed up; He has not spared All the habitations of Jacob. In His wrath He has thrown down The strongholds of the daughter of Judah; He has brought them down to the ground; He has profaned the kingdom and its princes. In fierce anger He has cut off All the strength of Israel; He has drawn back His right hand From before the enemy. And He has burned in Jacob like a flaming fire Consuming round about. He has bent His bow like an enemy; He has set His right hand like an adversary And slain all that were pleasant to the eye; In the tent of the daughter of Zion He has poured out His wrath like fire. The Lord has become like an enemy. He has swallowed up Israel; He has swallowed up all its palaces, He has destroyed its strongholds And multiplied in the daughter of Judah Mourning and moaning. And He has violently treated His tabernacle like a garden booth; He has destroyed His appointed meeting place. The Lord has caused to be forgotten The appointed feast and sabbath in Zion, And He has despised king and priest In the indignation of His anger. The Lord has rejected His altar, He has abandoned His sanctuary; He has delivered into the hand of the enemy The walls of her palaces. They have made a noise in the house of the Lord As in the day of an appointed feast. The Lord determined to destroy The wall of the daughter of Zion. He has stretched out a line, He has not restrained His hand from destroying, And He has caused rampart and wall to lament; They have languished together. Her gates have sunk into the ground, He has destroyed and broken her bars. Her king and her princes are among the nations; The law is no more. Also, her prophets find No vision from the Lord. 10 The elders of the daughter of Zion Sit on the ground, they are silent. They have thrown dust on their heads; They have girded themselves with sackcloth. The virgins of Jerusalem Have bowed their heads to the ground. 11 My eyes fail because of tears, My spirit is greatly troubled; My heart is poured out on the earth Because of the destruction of the daughter of my people, When little ones and infants faint In the streets of the city. 12 They say to their mothers, “Where is grain and wine?” As they faint like a wounded man In the streets of the city, As their life is poured out On their mothers’ bosom. 13 How shall I admonish you? To what shall I compare you, O daughter of Jerusalem? To what shall I liken you as I comfort you, O virgin daughter of Zion? For your ruin is as vast as the sea; Who can heal you? 14 Your prophets have seen for you False and foolish visions; And they have not exposed your iniquity So as to restore you from captivity, But they have seen for you false and misleading oracles. 15 All who pass along the way Clap their hands in derision at you; They hiss and shake their heads At the daughter of Jerusalem, “Is this the city of which they said, ‘The perfection of beauty, A joy to all the earth’?” 16 All your enemies Have opened their mouths wide against you; They hiss and gnash their teeth. They say, “We have swallowed her up! Surely this is the day for which we waited; We have reached it, we have seen it.” 17 The Lord has done what He purposed; He has accomplished His word Which He commanded from days of old. He has thrown down without sparing, And He has caused the enemy to rejoice over you; He has exalted the might of your adversaries. 18 Their heart cried out to the Lord, “O wall of the daughter of Zion, Let your tears run down like a river day and night; Give yourself no relief, Let your eyes have no rest. 19 “Arise, cry aloud in the night At the beginning of the night watches; Pour out your heart like water Before the presence of the Lord; Lift up your hands to Him For the life of your little ones Who are faint because of hunger At the head of every street.” 20 See, O Lord, and look! With whom have You dealt thus? Should women eat their offspring, The little ones who were born healthy? Should priest and prophet be slain In the sanctuary of the Lord? 21 On the ground in the streets Lie young and old; My virgins and my young men Have fallen by the sword. You have slain them in the day of Your anger, You have slaughtered, not sparing. 22 You called as in the day of an appointed feast My terrors on every side; And there was no one who escaped or survived In the day of the Lord’s anger. Those whom I bore and reared, My enemy annihilated them.

 

Lamentations 3

Jeremiah Shares Israel’s Affliction

3 I am the man who has seen affliction Because of the rod of His wrath. He has driven me and made me walk In darkness and not in light. Surely against me He has turned His hand Repeatedly all the day. He has caused my flesh and my skin to waste away, He has broken my bones. He has besieged and encompassed me with bitterness and hardship. In dark places He has made me dwell, Like those who have long been dead. He has walled me in so that I cannot go out; He has made my chain heavy. Even when I cry out and call for help, He shuts out my prayer. He has blocked my ways with hewn stone; He has made my paths crooked. 10 He is to me like a bear lying in wait, Like a lion in secret places. 11 He has turned aside my ways and torn me to pieces; He has made me desolate. 12 He bent His bow And set me as a target for the arrow. 13 He made the arrows of His quiver To enter into my inward parts. 14 I have become a laughingstock to all my people, Their mocking song all the day. 15 He has filled me with bitterness, He has made me drunk with wormwood. 16 He has broken my teeth with gravel; He has made me cower in the dust. 17 My soul has been rejected from peace; I have forgotten happiness. 18 So I say, “My strength has perished, And so has my hope from the Lord.”

Hope of Relief in God’s Mercy

19 Remember my affliction and my wandering, the wormwood and bitterness. 20 Surely my soul remembers And is bowed down within me. 21 This I recall to my mind, Therefore I have hope. 22 The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, For His compassions never fail. 23 They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness. 24 “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, “Therefore I have hope in Him.” 25 The Lord is good to those who wait for Him, To the person who seeks Him. 26 It is good that he waits silently For the salvation of the Lord. 27 It is good for a man that he should bear The yoke in his youth. 28 Let him sit alone and be silent Since He has laid it on him. 29 Let him put his mouth in the dust, Perhaps there is hope. 30 Let him give his cheek to the smiter, Let him be filled with reproach. 31 For the Lord will not reject forever, 32 For if He causes grief, Then He will have compassion According to His abundant lovingkindness. 33 For He does not afflict willingly Or grieve the sons of men. 34 To crush under His feet All the prisoners of the land, 35 To deprive a man of justice In the presence of the Most High, 36 To defraud a man in his lawsuit— Of these things the Lord does not approve.

Scripture quotations taken from the NASB © The Lockman Foundation (www.lockman.org)

November 11 – OT Reading

Jeremiah 51-52

Jeremiah 51

Babylon Judged for Sins against Israel

51 Thus says the Lord:

“Behold, I am going to arouse against Babylon And against the inhabitants of Leb-kamai The spirit of a destroyer. “I will dispatch foreigners to Babylon that they may winnow her And may devastate her land; For on every side they will be opposed to her In the day of her calamity. “Let not him who bends his bow bend it, Nor let him rise up in his scale-armor; So do not spare her young men; Devote all her army to destruction. “They will fall down slain in the land of the Chaldeans, And pierced through in their streets.”

For neither Israel nor Judah has been forsaken By his God, the Lord of hosts, Although their land is full of guilt Before the Holy One of Israel. Flee from the midst of Babylon, And each of you save his life! Do not be destroyed in her punishment, For this is the Lord’s time of vengeance; He is going to render recompense to her. Babylon has been a golden cup in the hand of the Lord, Intoxicating all the earth. The nations have drunk of her wine; Therefore the nations are going mad. Suddenly Babylon has fallen and been broken; Wail over her! Bring balm for her pain; Perhaps she may be healed. We applied healing to Babylon, but she was not healed; Forsake her and let us each go to his own country, For her judgment has reached to heaven And towers up to the very skies. 10 The Lord has brought about our vindication; Come and let us recount in Zion The work of the Lord our God!

11 Sharpen the arrows, fill the quivers! The Lord has aroused the spirit of the kings of the Medes, Because His purpose is against Babylon to destroy it; For it is the vengeance of the Lord, vengeance for His temple. 12 Lift up a signal against the walls of Babylon; Post a strong guard, Station sentries, Place men in ambush! For the Lord has both purposed and performed What He spoke concerning the inhabitants of Babylon. 13 O you who dwell by many waters, Abundant in treasures, Your end has come, The measure of your end. 14 The Lord of hosts has sworn by Himself: “Surely I will fill you with a population like locusts, And they will cry out with shouts of victory over you.”

15 It is He who made the earth by His power, Who established the world by His wisdom, And by His understanding He stretched out the heavens. 16 When He utters His voice, there is a tumult of waters in the heavens, And He causes the clouds to ascend from the end of the earth; He makes lightning for the rain And brings forth the wind from His storehouses. 17 All mankind is stupid, devoid of knowledge; Every goldsmith is put to shame by his idols, For his molten images are deceitful, And there is no breath in them. 18 They are worthless, a work of mockery; In the time of their punishment they will perish. 19 The portion of Jacob is not like these; For the Maker of all is He, And of the tribe of His inheritance; The Lord of hosts is His name. 20 He says, “You are My war-club, My weapon of war; And with you I shatter nations, And with you I destroy kingdoms. 21 “With you I shatter the horse and his rider, And with you I shatter the chariot and its rider, 22 And with you I shatter man and woman, And with you I shatter old man and youth, And with you I shatter young man and virgin, 23 And with you I shatter the shepherd and his flock, And with you I shatter the farmer and his team, And with you I shatter governors and prefects.

24 “But I will repay Babylon and all the inhabitants of Chaldea for all their evil that they have done in Zion before your eyes,” declares the Lord.

25 “Behold, I am against you, O destroying mountain, Who destroys the whole earth,” declares the Lord, “And I will stretch out My hand against you, And roll you down from the crags, And I will make you a burnt out mountain. 26 “They will not take from you even a stone for a corner Nor a stone for foundations, But you will be desolate forever,” declares the Lord.

27 Lift up a signal in the land, Blow a trumpet among the nations! Consecrate the nations against her, Summon against her the kingdoms of Ararat, Minni and Ashkenaz; Appoint a marshal against her, Bring up the horses like bristly locusts. 28 Consecrate the nations against her, The kings of the Medes, Their governors and all their prefects, And every land of their dominion. 29 So the land quakes and writhes, For the purposes of the Lord against Babylon stand, To make the land of Babylon A desolation without inhabitants. 30 The mighty men of Babylon have ceased fighting, They stay in the strongholds; Their strength is exhausted, They are becoming like women; Their dwelling places are set on fire, The bars of her gates are broken. 31 One courier runs to meet another, And one messenger to meet another, To tell the king of Babylon That his city has been captured from end to end; 32 The fords also have been seized, And they have burned the marshes with fire, And the men of war are terrified.

33 For thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel:

“The daughter of Babylon is like a threshing floor At the time it is stamped firm; Yet in a little while the time of harvest will come for her.”

34 “Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon has devoured me and crushed me, He has set me down like an empty vessel; He has swallowed me like a monster, He has filled his stomach with my delicacies; He has washed me away. 35 “May the violence done to me and to my flesh be upon Babylon,” The inhabitant of Zion will say; And, “May my blood be upon the inhabitants of Chaldea,” Jerusalem will say.

36 Therefore thus says the Lord,

“Behold, I am going to plead your case And exact full vengeance for you; And I will dry up her sea And make her fountain dry. 37 “Babylon will become a heap of ruins, a haunt of jackals, An object of horror and hissing, without inhabitants. 38 “They will roar together like young lions, They will growl like lions’ cubs. 39 “When they become heated up, I will serve them their banquet And make them drunk, that they may become jubilant And may sleep a perpetual sleep And not wake up,” declares the Lord. 40 “I will bring them down like lambs to the slaughter, Like rams together with male goats.

41 “How Sheshak has been captured, And the praise of the whole earth been seized! How Babylon has become an object of horror among the nations! 42 “The sea has come up over Babylon; She has been engulfed with its tumultuous waves. 43 “Her cities have become an object of horror, A parched land and a desert, A land in which no man lives And through which no son of man passes. 44 “I will punish Bel in Babylon, And I will make what he has swallowed come out of his mouth; And the nations will no longer stream to him. Even the wall of Babylon has fallen down!

45 “Come forth from her midst, My people, And each of you save yourselves From the fierce anger of the Lord. 46 “Now so that your heart does not grow faint, And you are not afraid at the report that will be heard in the land— For the report will come one year, And after that another report in another year, And violence will be in the land With ruler against ruler— 47 Therefore behold, days are coming When I will punish the idols of Babylon; And her whole land will be put to shame And all her slain will fall in her midst. 48 “Then heaven and earth and all that is in them Will shout for joy over Babylon, For the destroyers will come to her from the north,” Declares the Lord.

49 Indeed Babylon is to fall for the slain of Israel, As also for Babylon the slain of all the earth have fallen. 50 You who have escaped the sword, Depart! Do not stay! Remember the Lord from afar, And let Jerusalem come to your mind. 51 We are ashamed because we have heard reproach; Disgrace has covered our faces, For aliens have entered The holy places of the Lord’s house.

52 “Therefore behold, the days are coming,” declares the Lord, “When I will punish her idols, And the mortally wounded will groan throughout her land. 53 “Though Babylon should ascend to the heavens, And though she should fortify her lofty stronghold, From Me destroyers will come to her,” declares the Lord.

54 The sound of an outcry from Babylon, And of great destruction from the land of the Chaldeans! 55 For the Lord is going to destroy Babylon, And He will make her loud noise vanish from her. And their waves will roar like many waters; The tumult of their voices sounds forth. 56 For the destroyer is coming against her, against Babylon, And her mighty men will be captured, Their bows are shattered; For the Lord is a God of recompense, He will fully repay. 57 “I will make her princes and her wise men drunk, Her governors, her prefects and her mighty men, That they may sleep a perpetual sleep and not wake up,” Declares the King, whose name is the Lord of hosts.

58 Thus says the Lord of hosts,

“The broad wall of Babylon will be completely razed And her high gates will be set on fire; So the peoples will toil for nothing, And the nations become exhausted only for fire.”

59 The message which Jeremiah the prophet commanded Seraiah the son of Neriah, the grandson of Mahseiah, when he went with Zedekiah the king of Judah to Babylon in the fourth year of his reign. (Now Seraiah was quartermaster.) 60 So Jeremiah wrote in a single scroll all the calamity which would come upon Babylon, that is, all these words which have been written concerning Babylon. 61 Then Jeremiah said to Seraiah, “As soon as you come to Babylon, then see that you read all these words aloud, 62 and say, ‘You, O Lord, have promised concerning this place to cut it off, so that there will be nothing dwelling in it, whether man or beast, but it will be a perpetual desolation.’ 63 And as soon as you finish reading this scroll, you will tie a stone to it and throw it into the middle of the Euphrates, 64 and say, ‘Just so shall Babylon sink down and not rise again because of the calamity that I am going to bring upon her; and they will become exhausted.’” Thus far are the words of Jeremiah.

 

Jeremiah 52

The Fall of Jerusalem

52 Zedekiah was twenty-one years old when he became king, and he reigned eleven years in Jerusalem; and his mother’s name was Hamutal the daughter of Jeremiah of Libnah. He did evil in the sight of the Lord like all that Jehoiakim had done. For through the anger of the Lord this came about in Jerusalem and Judah until He cast them out from His presence. And Zedekiah rebelled against the king of Babylon. Now it came about in the ninth year of his reign, on the tenth day of the tenth month, that Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came, he and all his army, against Jerusalem, camped against it and built a siege wall all around it. So the city was under siege until the eleventh year of King Zedekiah. On the ninth day of the fourth month the famine was so severe in the city that there was no food for the people of the land. Then the city was broken into, and all the men of war fled and went forth from the city at night by way of the gate between the two walls which was by the king’s garden, though the Chaldeans were all around the city. And they went by way of the Arabah. 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. Then they captured the king and brought him up to the king of Babylon at Riblah in the land of Hamath, and he passed sentence on him. 10 The king of Babylon slaughtered the sons of Zedekiah before his eyes, and he also slaughtered all the princes of Judah in Riblah. 11 Then he blinded the eyes of Zedekiah; and the king of Babylon bound him with bronze fetters and brought him to Babylon and put him in prison until the day of his death.

12 Now on the tenth day of the fifth month, which was the nineteenth year of King Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, Nebuzaradan the captain of the bodyguard, who was in the service of the king of Babylon, came to Jerusalem. 13 He burned the house of the Lord, the king’s house and all the houses of Jerusalem; even every large house he burned with fire. 14 So all the army of the Chaldeans who were with the captain of the guard broke down all the walls around Jerusalem. 15 Then Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carried away into exile some of the poorest of the people, the rest of the people who were left in the city, the deserters who had deserted to the king of Babylon and the rest of the artisans. 16 But Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard left some of the poorest of the land to be vinedressers and plowmen.

17 Now the bronze pillars which belonged to the house of the Lord and the stands and the bronze sea, which were in the house of the Lord, the Chaldeans broke in pieces and carried all their bronze to Babylon. 18 They also took away the pots, the shovels, the snuffers, the basins, the pans and all the bronze vessels which were used in temple service. 19 The captain of the guard also took away the bowls, the firepans, the basins, the pots, the lampstands, the pans and the drink offering bowls, what was fine gold and what was fine silver. 20 The two pillars, the one sea, and the twelve bronze bulls that were under the sea, and the stands, which King Solomon had made for the house of the Lord—the bronze of all these vessels was beyond weight. 21 As for the pillars, the height of each pillar was eighteen cubits, and it was twelve cubits in circumference and four fingers in thickness, and hollow. 22 Now a capital of bronze was on it; and the height of each capital was five cubits, with network and pomegranates upon the capital all around, all of bronze. And the second pillar was like these, including pomegranates. 23 There were ninety-six exposed pomegranates; all the pomegranates numbered a hundred on the network all around.

24 Then the captain of the guard took Seraiah the chief priest and Zephaniah the second priest, with the three officers of the temple. 25 He also took from the city one official who was overseer of the men of war, and seven of the king’s advisers who were found in the city, and the scribe of the commander of the army who mustered the people of the land, and sixty men of the people of the land who were found in the midst of the city. 26 Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard took them and brought them to the king of Babylon at Riblah. 27 Then the king of Babylon struck them down and put them to death at Riblah in the land of Hamath. So Judah was led away into exile from its land.

28 These are the people whom Nebuchadnezzar carried away into exile: in the seventh year 3,023 Jews; 29 in the eighteenth year of Nebuchadnezzar 832 persons from Jerusalem; 30 in the twenty-third year of Nebuchadnezzar, Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carried into exile 745 Jewish people; there were 4,600 persons in all.

31 Now it came about in the thirty-seventh year of the exile of Jehoiachin king of Judah, in the twelfth month, on the twenty-fifth of the month, that Evil-merodach king of Babylon, in the first year of his reign, showed favor to Jehoiachin king of Judah and brought him out of prison. 32 Then he spoke kindly to him and set his throne above the thrones of the kings who were with him in Babylon. 33 So Jehoiachin changed his prison clothes, and had his meals in the king’s presence regularly all the days of his life. 34 For his allowance, a regular allowance was given him by the king of Babylon, a daily portion all the days of his life until the day of his death.

Scripture quotations taken from the NASB © The Lockman Foundation (www.lockman.org)

November 10 – OT Reading

Jeremiah 49-50

Jeremiah 49

Prophecy against Ammon

49 Concerning the sons of Ammon. Thus says the Lord:

“Does Israel have no sons? Or has he no heirs? Why then has Malcam taken possession of Gad And his people settled in its cities? “Therefore behold, the days are coming,” declares the Lord, “That I will cause a trumpet blast of war to be heard Against Rabbah of the sons of Ammon; And it will become a desolate heap, And her towns will be set on fire. Then Israel will take possession of his possessors,” Says the Lord. “Wail, O Heshbon, for Ai has been destroyed! Cry out, O daughters of Rabbah, Gird yourselves with sackcloth and lament, And rush back and forth inside the walls; For Malcam will go into exile Together with his priests and his princes. “How boastful you are about the valleys! Your valley is flowing away, O backsliding daughter Who trusts in her treasures, saying, ‘Who will come against me?’ “Behold, I am going to bring terror upon you,” Declares the Lord God of hosts, “From all directions around you; And each of you will be driven out headlong, With no one to gather the fugitives together. “But afterward I will restore The fortunes of the sons of Ammon,” Declares the Lord.

Prophecy against Edom

Concerning Edom. Thus says the Lord of hosts, “Is there no longer any wisdom in Teman? Has good counsel been lost to the prudent? Has their wisdom decayed? “Flee away, turn back, dwell in the depths, O inhabitants of Dedan, For I will bring the disaster of Esau upon him At the time I punish him. “If grape gatherers came to you, Would they not leave gleanings? If thieves came by night, They would destroy only until they had enough. 10 “But I have stripped Esau bare, I have uncovered his hiding places So that he will not be able to conceal himself; His offspring has been destroyed along with his relatives And his neighbors, and he is no more. 11 “Leave your orphans behind, I will keep them alive; And let your widows trust in Me.”

12 For thus says the Lord, “Behold, those who were not sentenced to drink the cup will certainly drink it, and are you the one who will be completely acquitted? You will not be acquitted, but you will certainly drink it13 For I have sworn by Myself,” declares the Lord, “that Bozrah will become an object of horror, a reproach, a ruin and a curse; and all its cities will become perpetual ruins.”

14 I have heard a message from the Lord, And an envoy is sent among the nations, saying, “Gather yourselves together and come against her, And rise up for battle!” 15 “For behold, I have made you small among the nations, Despised among men. 16 “As for the terror of you, The arrogance of your heart has deceived you, O you who live in the clefts of the rock, Who occupy the height of the hill. Though you make your nest as high as an eagle’s, I will bring you down from there,” declares the Lord.

17 “Edom will become an object of horror; everyone who passes by it will be horrified and will hiss at all its wounds. 18 Like the overthrow of Sodom and Gomorrah with its neighbors,” says the Lord, “no one will live there, nor will a son of man reside in it. 19 Behold, one will come up like a lion from the thickets of the Jordan against a perennially watered pasture; for in an instant I will make him run away from it, and whoever is chosen I shall appoint over it. For who is like Me, and who will summon Me into court? And who then is the shepherd who can stand against Me?”

20 Therefore hear the plan of the Lord which He has planned against Edom, and His purposes which He has purposed against the inhabitants of Teman: surely they will drag them off, even the little ones of the flock; surely He will make their pasture desolate because of them. 21 The earth has quaked at the noise of their downfall. There is an outcry! The noise of it has been heard at the Red Sea.22 Behold, He will mount up and swoop like an eagle and spread out His wings against Bozrah; and the hearts of the mighty men of Edom in that day will be like the heart of a woman in labor.

Prophecy against Damascus

23 Concerning Damascus. “Hamath and Arpad are put to shame, For they have heard bad news; They are disheartened. There is anxiety by the sea, It cannot be calmed. 24 “Damascus has become helpless; She has turned away to flee, And panic has gripped her; Distress and pangs have taken hold of her Like a woman in childbirth. 25 “How the city of praise has not been deserted, The town of My joy! 26 “Therefore, her young men will fall in her streets, And all the men of war will be silenced in that day,” declares the Lord of hosts. 27 “I will set fire to the wall of Damascus, And it will devour the fortified towers of Ben-hadad.”

Prophecy against Kedar and Hazor

28 Concerning Kedar and the kingdoms of Hazor, which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon defeated. Thus says the Lord,

“Arise, go up to Kedar And devastate the men of the east. 29 “They will take away their tents and their flocks; They will carry off for themselves Their tent curtains, all their goods and their camels, And they will call out to one another, ‘Terror on every side!’ 30 “Run away, flee! Dwell in the depths, O inhabitants of Hazor,” declares the Lord; “For Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon has formed a plan against you And devised a scheme against you. 31 “Arise, go up against a nation which is at ease, Which lives securely,” declares the Lord. “It has no gates or bars; They dwell alone. 32 “Their camels will become plunder, And their many cattle for booty, And I will scatter to all the winds those who cut the corners of their hair; And I will bring their disaster from every side,” declares the Lord. 33 “Hazor will become a haunt of jackals, A desolation forever; No one will live there, Nor will a son of man reside in it.”

Prophecy against Elam

34 That which came as the word of the Lord to Jeremiah the prophet concerning Elam, at the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah king of Judah, saying:

35 “Thus says the Lord of hosts, ‘Behold, I am going to break the bow of Elam, The finest of their might. 36 ‘I will bring upon Elam the four winds From the four ends of heaven, And will scatter them to all these winds; And there will be no nation To which the outcasts of Elam will not go. 37 ‘So I will shatter Elam before their enemies And before those who seek their lives; And I will bring calamity upon them, Even My fierce anger,’ declares the Lord, ‘And I will send out the sword after them Until I have consumed them. 38 ‘Then I will set My throne in Elam And destroy out of it king and princes,’ Declares the Lord. 39 ‘But it will come about in the last days That I will restore the fortunes of Elam,’” Declares the Lord.

 

Jeremiah 50

Prophecy against Babylon

 

50 The word which the Lord spoke concerning Babylon, the land of the Chaldeans, through Jeremiah the prophet:

“Declare and proclaim among the nations. Proclaim it and lift up a standard. Do not conceal it but say, ‘Babylon has been captured, Bel has been put to shame, Marduk has been shattered; Her images have been put to shame, her idols have been shattered.’

For a nation has come up against her out of the north; it will make her land an object of horror, and there will be no inhabitant in it. Both man and beast have wandered off, they have gone away!

“In those days and at that time,” declares the Lord, “the sons of Israel will come, both they and the sons of Judah as well; they will go along weeping as they go, and it will be the Lord their God they will seek. They will ask for the way to Zion, turning their faces in its direction; they will come that they may join themselves to the Lord in an everlasting covenant that will not be forgotten.

“My people have become lost sheep; Their shepherds have led them astray. They have made them turn aside on the mountains; They have gone along from mountain to hill And have forgotten their resting place. “All who came upon them have devoured them; And their adversaries have said, ‘We are not guilty, Inasmuch as they have sinned against the Lord who is the habitation of righteousness, Even the Lord, the hope of their fathers.’

“Wander away from the midst of Babylon And go forth from the land of the Chaldeans; Be also like male goats at the head of the flock. “For behold, I am going to arouse and bring up against Babylon A horde of great nations from the land of the north, And they will draw up their battle lines against her; From there she will be taken captive. Their arrows will be like an expert warrior Who does not return empty-handed. 10 “Chaldea will become plunder; All who plunder her will have enough,” declares the Lord.

11 “Because you are glad, because you are jubilant, O you who pillage My heritage, Because you skip about like a threshing heifer And neigh like stallions, 12 Your mother will be greatly ashamed, She who gave you birth will be humiliated. Behold, she will be the least of the nations, A wilderness, a parched land and a desert. 13 “Because of the indignation of the Lord she will not be inhabited, But she will be completely desolate; Everyone who passes by Babylon will be horrified And will hiss because of all her wounds. 14 “Draw up your battle lines against Babylon on every side, All you who bend the bow; Shoot at her, do not be sparing with your arrows, For she has sinned against the Lord. 15 “Raise your battle cry against her on every side! She has given herself up, her pillars have fallen, Her walls have been torn down. For this is the vengeance of the Lord: Take vengeance on her; As she has done to others, so do to her. 16 “Cut off the sower from Babylon And the one who wields the sickle at the time of harvest; From before the sword of the oppressor They will each turn back to his own people And they will each flee to his own land.

17 “Israel is a scattered flock, the lions have driven them away. The first one who devoured him was the king of Assyria, and this last one who has broken his bones is Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon.18 Therefore thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: ‘Behold, I am going to punish the king of Babylon and his land, just as I punished the king of Assyria. 19 And I will bring Israel back to his pasture and he will graze on Carmel and Bashan, and his desire will be satisfied in the hill country of Ephraim and Gilead. 20 In those days and at that time,’ declares the Lord, ‘search will be made for the iniquity of Israel, but there will be none; and for the sins of Judah, but they will not be found; for I will pardon those whom I leave as a remnant.’

21 “Against the land of Merathaim, go up against it, And against the inhabitants of Pekod. Slay and utterly destroy them,” declares the Lord, “And do according to all that I have commanded you. 22 “The noise of battle is in the land, And great destruction. 23 “How the hammer of the whole earth Has been cut off and broken! How Babylon has become An object of horror among the nations! 24 “I set a snare for you and you were also caught, O Babylon, While you yourself were not aware; You have been found and also seized Because you have engaged in conflict with the Lord.” 25 The Lord has opened His armory And has brought forth the weapons of His indignation, For it is a work of the Lord God of hosts In the land of the Chaldeans. 26 Come to her from the farthest border; Open up her barns, Pile her up like heaps And utterly destroy her, Let nothing be left to her. 27 Put all her young bulls to the sword; Let them go down to the slaughter! Woe be upon them, for their day has come, The time of their punishment.

28 There is a sound of fugitives and refugees from the land of Babylon, To declare in Zion the vengeance of the Lord our God, Vengeance for His temple.

29 “Summon many against Babylon, All those who bend the bow: Encamp against her on every side, Let there be no escape. Repay her according to her work; According to all that she has done, so do to her; For she has become arrogant against the Lord, Against the Holy One of Israel. 30 “Therefore her young men will fall in her streets, And all her men of war will be silenced in that day,” declares the Lord. 31 “Behold, I am against you, O arrogant one,” Declares the Lord God of hosts, “For your day has come, The time when I will punish you. 32 “The arrogant one will stumble and fall With no one to raise him up; And I will set fire to his cities And it will devour all his environs.”

33 Thus says the Lord of hosts, “The sons of Israel are oppressed, And the sons of Judah as well; And all who took them captive have held them fast, They have refused to let them go. 34 “Their Redeemer is strong, the Lord of hosts is His name; He will vigorously plead their case So that He may bring rest to the earth, But turmoil to the inhabitants of Babylon. 35 “A sword against the Chaldeans,” declares the Lord, “And against the inhabitants of Babylon And against her officials and her wise men! 36 “A sword against the oracle priests, and they will become fools! A sword against her mighty men, and they will be shattered! 37 “A sword against their horses and against their chariots And against all the foreigners who are in the midst of her, And they will become women! A sword against her treasures, and they will be plundered! 38 “A drought on her waters, and they will be dried up! For it is a land of idols, And they are mad over fearsome idols.

39 “Therefore the desert creatures will live there along with the jackals; The ostriches also will live in it, And it will never again be inhabited Or dwelt in from generation to generation. 40 “As when God overthrew Sodom And Gomorrah with its neighbors,” declares the Lord, “No man will live there, Nor will any son of man reside in it.

41 “Behold, a people is coming from the north, And a great nation and many kings Will be aroused from the remote parts of the earth. 42 “They seize their bow and javelin; They are cruel and have no mercy. Their voice roars like the sea; And they ride on horses, Marshalled like a man for the battle Against you, O daughter of Babylon. 43 “The king of Babylon has heard the report about them, And his hands hang limp; Distress has gripped him, Agony like a woman in childbirth.

44 “Behold, one will come up like a lion from the thicket of the Jordan to a perennially watered pasture; for in an instant I will make them run away from it, and whoever is chosen I will appoint over it. For who is like Me, and who will summon Me into court? And who then is the shepherd who can stand before Me?” 45 Therefore hear the plan of the Lord which He has planned against Babylon, and His purposes which He has purposed against the land of the Chaldeans: surely they will drag them off, even the little ones of the flock; surely He will make their pasture desolate because of them. 46 At the shout, “Babylon has been seized!” the earth is shaken, and an outcry is heard among the nations.

Scripture quotations taken from the NASB © The Lockman Foundation (www.lockman.org)

November 7 – OT Reading

Jeremiah 46-48

Jeremiah 46

Defeat of Pharaoh Foretold

46 That which came as the word of the Lord to Jeremiah the prophet concerning the nations.

To Egypt, concerning the army of Pharaoh Neco king of Egypt, which was by the Euphrates River at Carchemish, which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon defeated in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah:

“Line up the shield and buckler, And draw near for the battle! “Harness the horses, And mount the steeds, And take your stand with helmets on! Polish the spears, Put on the scale-armor! “Why have I seen it? They are terrified, They are drawing back, And their mighty men are defeated And have taken refuge in flight, Without facing back; Terror is on every side!” Declares the Lord. Let not the swift man flee, Nor the mighty man escape; In the north beside the river Euphrates They have stumbled and fallen. Who is this that rises like the Nile, Like the rivers whose waters surge about? Egypt rises like the Nile, Even like the rivers whose waters surge about; And He has said, “I will rise and cover that land; I will surely destroy the city and its inhabitants.” Go up, you horses, and drive madly, you chariots, That the mighty men may march forward: Ethiopia and Put, that handle the shield, And the Lydians, that handle and bend the bow. 10 For that day belongs to the Lord God of hosts, A day of vengeance, so as to avenge Himself on His foes; And the sword will devour and be satiated And drink its fill of their blood; For there will be a slaughter for the Lord God of hosts, In the land of the north by the river Euphrates. 11 Go up to Gilead and obtain balm, O virgin daughter of Egypt! In vain have you multiplied remedies; There is no healing for you. 12 The nations have heard of your shame, And the earth is full of your cry of distress; For one warrior has stumbled over another, And both of them have fallen down together.

13 This is the message which the Lord spoke to Jeremiah the prophet about the coming of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon to smite the land of Egypt:

14 “Declare in Egypt and proclaim in Migdol, Proclaim also in Memphis and Tahpanhes; Say, ‘Take your stand and get yourself ready, For the sword has devoured those around you.’ 15 “Why have your mighty ones become prostrate? They do not stand because the Lord has thrust them down. 16 “They have repeatedly stumbled; Indeed, they have fallen one against another. Then they said, ‘Get up! And let us go back To our own people and our native land Away from the sword of the oppressor.’ 17 “They cried there, ‘Pharaoh king of Egypt is but a big noise; He has let the appointed time pass by!’ 18 “As I live,” declares the King Whose name is the Lord of hosts, “Surely one shall come who looms up like Tabor among the mountains, Or like Carmel by the sea. 19 “Make your baggage ready for exile, O daughter dwelling in Egypt, For Memphis will become a desolation; It will even be burned down and bereft of inhabitants. 20 “Egypt is a pretty heifer, But a horsefly is coming from the north—it is coming! 21 “Also her mercenaries in her midst Are like fattened calves, For even they too have turned back and have fled away together; They did not stand their ground. For the day of their calamity has come upon them, The time of their punishment. 22 “Its sound moves along like a serpent; For they move on like an army And come to her as woodcutters with axes. 23 “They have cut down her forest,” declares the Lord; “Surely it will no more be found, Even though they are now more numerous than locusts And are without number. 24 “The daughter of Egypt has been put to shame, Given over to the power of the people of the north.”

25 The Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, says, “Behold, I am going to punish Amon of Thebes, and Pharaoh, and Egypt along with her gods and her kings, even Pharaoh and those who trust in him. 26 I shall give them over to the power of those who are seeking their lives, even into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon and into the hand of his officers. Afterwards, however, it will be inhabited as in the days of old,” declares the Lord.

27 “But as for you, O Jacob My servant, do not fear, Nor be dismayed, O Israel! For, see, I am going to save you from afar, And your descendants from the land of their captivity; And Jacob will return and be undisturbed And secure, with no one making him tremble. 28 “O Jacob My servant, do not fear,” declares the Lord, “For I am with you. For I will make a full end of all the nations Where I have driven you, Yet I will not make a full end of you; But I will correct you properly And by no means leave you unpunished.”

 

Jeremiah 47

Prophecy against Philistia

47 That which came as the word of the Lord to Jeremiah the prophet concerning the Philistines, before Pharaoh conquered Gaza. Thus says the Lord:

“Behold, waters are going to rise from the north And become an overflowing torrent, And overflow the land and all its fullness, The city and those who live in it; And the men will cry out, And every inhabitant of the land will wail. “Because of the noise of the galloping hoofs of his stallions, The tumult of his chariots, and the rumbling of his wheels, The fathers have not turned back for their children, Because of the limpness of their hands, On account of the day that is coming To destroy all the Philistines, To cut off from Tyre and Sidon Every ally that is left; For the Lord is going to destroy the Philistines, The remnant of the coastland of Caphtor. “Baldness has come upon Gaza; Ashkelon has been ruined. O remnant of their valley, How long will you gash yourself? “Ah, sword of the Lord, How long will you not be quiet? Withdraw into your sheath; Be at rest and stay still. “How can it be quiet, When the Lord has given it an order? Against Ashkelon and against the seacoast— There He has assigned it.”

 

Jeremiah 48

Prophecy against Moab

48 Concerning Moab. Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel,

“Woe to Nebo, for it has been destroyed; Kiriathaim has been put to shame, it has been captured; The lofty stronghold has been put to shame and shattered. “There is praise for Moab no longer; In Heshbon they have devised calamity against her: ‘Come and let us cut her off from being a nation!’ You too, Madmen, will be silenced; The sword will follow after you. “The sound of an outcry from Horonaim, ‘Devastation and great destruction!’ “Moab is broken, Her little ones have sounded out a cry of distress. “For by the ascent of Luhith They will ascend with continual weeping; For at the descent of Horonaim They have heard the anguished cry of destruction. “Flee, save your lives, That you may be like a juniper in the wilderness. “For because of your trust in your own achievements and treasures, Even you yourself will be captured; And Chemosh will go off into exile Together with his priests and his princes. “A destroyer will come to every city, So that no city will escape; The valley also will be ruined And the plateau will be destroyed, As the Lord has said. “Give wings to Moab, For she will flee away; And her cities will become a desolation, Without inhabitants in them. 10 “Cursed be the one who does the Lord’s work negligently, And cursed be the one who restrains his sword from blood.

11 “Moab has been at ease since his youth; He has also been undisturbed, like wine on its dregs, And he has not been emptied from vessel to vessel, Nor has he gone into exile. Therefore he retains his flavor, And his aroma has not changed.

12 Therefore behold, the days are coming,” declares the Lord, “when I will send to him those who tip vessels, and they will tip him over, and they will empty his vessels and shatter his jars. 13 And Moab will be ashamed of Chemosh, as the house of Israel was ashamed of Bethel, their confidence.

14 “How can you say, ‘We are mighty warriors, And men valiant for battle’? 15 “Moab has been destroyed and men have gone up to his cities; His choicest young men have also gone down to the slaughter,” Declares the King, whose name is the Lord of hosts. 16 “The disaster of Moab will soon come, And his calamity has swiftly hastened. 17 “Mourn for him, all you who live around him, Even all of you who know his name; Say, ‘How has the mighty scepter been broken, A staff of splendor!’ 18 “Come down from your glory And sit on the parched ground, O daughter dwelling in Dibon, For the destroyer of Moab has come up against you, He has ruined your strongholds. 19 “Stand by the road and keep watch, O inhabitant of Aroer; Ask him who flees and her who escapes And say, ‘What has happened?’ 20 “Moab has been put to shame, for it has been shattered. Wail and cry out; Declare by the Arnon That Moab has been destroyed.

21 “Judgment has also come upon the plain, upon Holon, Jahzah and against Mephaath, 22 against Dibon, Nebo and Beth-diblathaim, 23 against Kiriathaim, Beth-gamul and Beth-meon, 24 against Kerioth, Bozrah and all the cities of the land of Moab, far and near. 25 The horn of Moab has been cut off and his arm broken,” declares the Lord. 26 “Make him drunk, for he has become arrogant toward the Lord; so Moab will wallow in his vomit, and he also will become a laughingstock. 27 Now was not Israel a laughingstock to you? Or was he caught among thieves? For each time you speak about him you shake your head in scorn.

28 “Leave the cities and dwell among the crags, O inhabitants of Moab, And be like a dove that nests Beyond the mouth of the chasm. 29 “We have heard of the pride of Moab—he is very proud— Of his haughtiness, his pride, his arrogance and his self-exaltation. 30 “I know his fury,” declares the Lord, “But it is futile; His idle boasts have accomplished nothing. 31 “Therefore I will wail for Moab, Even for all Moab will I cry out; I will moan for the men of Kir-heres. 32 “More than the weeping for Jazer I will weep for you, O vine of Sibmah! Your tendrils stretched across the sea, They reached to the sea of Jazer; Upon your summer fruits and your grape harvest The destroyer has fallen. 33 “So gladness and joy are taken away From the fruitful field, even from the land of Moab. And I have made the wine to cease from the wine presses; No one will tread them with shouting, The shouting will not be shouts of joy.

34 From the outcry at Heshbon even to Elealeh, even to Jahaz they have raised their voice, from Zoar even to Horonaim and to Eglath-shelishiyah; for even the waters of Nimrim will become desolate. 35 I will make an end of Moab,” declares the Lord, “the one who offers sacrifice on the high place and the one who burns incense to his gods.

36 “Therefore My heart wails for Moab like flutes; My heart also wails like flutes for the men of Kir-heres. Therefore they have lost the abundance it produced. 37 For every head is bald and every beard cut short; there are gashes on all the hands and sackcloth on the loins. 38 On all the housetops of Moab and in its streets there is lamentation everywhere; for I have broken Moab like an undesirable vessel,” declares the Lord. 39 “How shattered it is! How they have wailed! How Moab has turned his back—he is ashamed! So Moab will become a laughingstock and an object of terror to all around him.”

40 For thus says the Lord:

“Behold, one will fly swiftly like an eagle And spread out his wings against Moab. 41 “Kerioth has been captured And the strongholds have been seized, So the hearts of the mighty men of Moab in that day Will be like the heart of a woman in labor. 42 “Moab will be destroyed from being a people Because he has become arrogant toward the Lord. 43 “Terror, pit and snare are coming upon you, O inhabitant of Moab,” declares the Lord. 44 “The one who flees from the terror Will fall into the pit, And the one who climbs up out of the pit Will be caught in the snare; For I shall bring upon her, even upon Moab, The year of their punishment,” declares the Lord.

45 “In the shadow of Heshbon The fugitives stand without strength; For a fire has gone forth from Heshbon And a flame from the midst of Sihon, And it has devoured the forehead of Moab And the scalps of the riotous revelers. 46 “Woe to you, Moab! The people of Chemosh have perished; For your sons have been taken away captive And your daughters into captivity. 47 “Yet I will restore the fortunes of Moab In the latter days,” declares the Lord.

Thus far the judgment on Moab.

Scripture quotations taken from the NASB © The Lockman Foundation (www.lockman.org)

Lamentations

 

Thoughts About What We’re Reading…

 

Today we turn to the Book of Lamentations.  Most scholars attribute this book to Jeremiah. We will address this book from that point of view.

We can consider Lamentations as an addendum to the Book of Jeremiah. Through the use of five funeral laments, Jeremiah is grieving, lamenting over the fate of Jerusalem, because of her sin.

Lamentations would have been written after the actual fall of Jerusalem, a desperate time following the long siege the people of Jerusalem had experienced.

After breaching the city, the armies of Babylon burned the temple, the king’s palace, and all the other major buildings in the city; and they tore down the walls of the city, which provided her protection.

Jeremiah would have witnessed these events (cf. Jeremiah 39:1-14; 52:12-14).

The once-proud capital had been destroyed. Her people were now under the harsh hand of a cruel taskmaster – the Babylonians. With this on his mind, Jeremiah sat down to compose his series of laments.

Lamentations both mourns the fall of the city and offers reproof, instruction, and hope to its survivors.

When you read Lamentations you should lay it side by side with Deuteronomy 28.

Read together, you see the sovereignty and mercy of God  – Moses had predicted all of this 900 years earlier.

God had warned of the fearful consequences of disobedience and, as Jeremiah carefully noted, God faithfully carried out those curses. Israel was punished for disobedience, but she was not consumed because God’s covenant was still in force.

Throughout the Bible we see God faithfully working with His remnant, the people of God.

Jeremiah’s message to the Israelites in captivity was to learn the lessons of Deuteronomy 28 and turn back to their Lord.

The prayer of Lamentations 5:21-22 was not a doubting cry from a discouraged remnant. Rather it was the response of faith from those captives who had mastered the lessons of Deuteronomy 28 and the Book of Lamentations. They were calling on God to fulfill the final part of His covenant and to restore them as a nation from captivity.

The book of Lamentations shows that God is a fierce enemy to those who trample on His Word and despise His grace. But He is also rich in mercy and unfailingly faithful to His covenant promises.

Lamentations is a confronting book, showing us the seriousness of rebellion against God. It spares no detail in revealing the radical sinfulness of sin and its awful consequences.

But it also points beyond itself to the mercy of the God of the new covenant in Christ who, despite everything, fulfills God’s covenant promises to His people, wayward though they are.

Until next time…  keep reading!

Jim

Excerpts for this blog were taken extensively from: The Bible Knowledge Commentary and The Gospel Transformation Bible Study notes.

November 6 – OT Reading

Jeremiah 41-45

Jeremiah 41

Gedaliah Is Murdered

41 In the seventh month Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, the son of Elishama, of the royal family and one of the chief officers of the king, along with ten men, came to Mizpah to Gedaliah the son of Ahikam. While they were eating bread together there in Mizpah, Ishmael the son of Nethaniah and the ten men who were with him arose and struck down Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, the son of Shaphan, with the sword and put to death the one whom the king of Babylon had appointed over the land. Ishmael also struck down all the Jews who were with him, that is with Gedaliah at Mizpah, and the Chaldeans who were found there, the men of war.

Now it happened on the next day after the killing of Gedaliah, when no one knew about itthat eighty men came from Shechem, from Shiloh, and from Samaria with their beards shaved off and their clothes torn and their bodies gashed, having grain offerings and incense in their hands to bring to the house of the Lord. Then Ishmael the son of Nethaniah went out from Mizpah to meet them, weeping as he went; and as he met them, he said to them, “Come to Gedaliah the son of Ahikam!” Yet it turned out that as soon as they came inside the city, Ishmael the son of Nethaniah and the men that were with him slaughtered them and cast them into the cistern. But ten men who were found among them said to Ishmael, “Do not put us to death; for we have stores of wheat, barley, oil and honey hidden in the field.” So he refrained and did not put them to death along with their companions.

Now as for the cistern where Ishmael had cast all the corpses of the men whom he had struck down because of Gedaliah, it was the one that King Asa had made on account of Baasha, king of Israel; Ishmael the son of Nethaniah filled it with the slain. 10 Then Ishmael took captive all the remnant of the people who were in Mizpah, the king’s daughters and all the people who were left in Mizpah, whom Nebuzaradan the captain of the bodyguard had put under the charge of Gedaliah the son of Ahikam; thus Ishmael the son of Nethaniah took them captive and proceeded to cross over to the sons of Ammon.

Johanan Rescues the People

11 But Johanan the son of Kareah and all the commanders of the forces that were with him heard of all the evil that Ishmael the son of Nethaniah had done. 12 So they took all the men and went to fight with Ishmael the son of Nethaniah and they found him by the great pool that is in Gibeon. 13 Now as soon as all the people who were with Ishmael saw Johanan the son of Kareah and the commanders of the forces that were with him, they were glad. 14 So all the people whom Ishmael had taken captive from Mizpah turned around and came back, and went to Johanan the son of Kareah. 15 But Ishmael the son of Nethaniah escaped from Johanan with eight men and went to the sons of Ammon. 16 Then Johanan the son of Kareah and all the commanders of the forces that were with him took from Mizpah all the remnant of the people whom he had recovered from Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, after he had struck down Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, that is, the men who were soldiers, the women, the children, and the eunuchs, whom he had brought back from Gibeon. 17 And they went and stayed in Geruth Chimham, which is beside Bethlehem, in order to proceed into Egypt 18 because of the Chaldeans; for they were afraid of them, since Ishmael the son of Nethaniah had struck down Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, whom the king of Babylon had appointed over the land.

 

Jeremiah 42

Warning against Going to Egypt

42 Then all the commanders of the forces, Johanan the son of Kareah, Jezaniah the son of Hoshaiah, and all the people both small and great approached and said to Jeremiah the prophet, “Please let our petition come before you, and pray for us to the Lord your God, that is for all this remnant; because we are left but a few out of many, as your own eyes now see us, that the Lord your God may tell us the way in which we should walk and the thing that we should do.” Then Jeremiah the prophet said to them, “I have heard you. Behold, I am going to pray to the Lord your God in accordance with your words; and I will tell you the whole message which the Lord will answer you. I will not keep back a word from you.” Then they said to Jeremiah, “May the Lord be a true and faithful witness against us if we do not act in accordance with the whole message with which the Lord your God will send you to us. Whether it is pleasant or unpleasant, we will listen to the voice of the Lord our God to whom we are sending you, so that it may go well with us when we listen to the voice of the Lord our God.”

Now at the end of ten days the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah. Then he called for Johanan the son of Kareah and all the commanders of the forces that were with him, and for all the people both small and great, and said to them, “Thus says the Lord the God of Israel, to whom you sent me to present your petition before Him: 10 ‘If you will indeed stay in this land, then I will build you up and not tear you down, and I will plant you and not uproot you; for I will relent concerning the calamity that I have inflicted on you. 11 Do not be afraid of the king of Babylon, whom you are now fearing; do not be afraid of him,’ declares the Lord, ‘for I am with you to save you and deliver you from his hand. 12 I will also show you compassion, so that he will have compassion on you and restore you to your own soil.13 But if you are going to say, “We will not stay in this land,” so as not to listen to the voice of the Lord your God, 14 saying, “No, but we will go to the land of Egypt, where we will not see war or hear the sound of a trumpet or hunger for bread, and we will stay there”; 15 then in that case listen to the word of the Lord, O remnant of Judah. Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, “If you really set your mind to enter Egypt and go in to reside there, 16 then the sword, which you are afraid of, will overtake you there in the land of Egypt; and the famine, about which you are anxious, will follow closely after you there in Egypt, and you will die there. 17 So all the men who set their mind to go to Egypt to reside there will die by the sword, by famine and by pestilence; and they will have no survivors or refugees from the calamity that I am going to bring on them.”’”

18 For thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, “As My anger and wrath have been poured out on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so My wrath will be poured out on you when you enter Egypt. And you will become a curse, an object of horror, an imprecation and a reproach; and you will see this place no more.” 19 The Lord has spoken to you, O remnant of Judah, “Do not go into Egypt!” You should clearly understand that today I have testified against you. 20 For you have only deceived yourselves; for it is you who sent me to the Lord your God, saying, “Pray for us to the Lord our God; and whatever the Lord our God says, tell us so, and we will do it.” 21 So I have told you today, but you have not obeyed the Lord your God, even in whatever He has sent me to tell you. 22 Therefore you should now clearly understand that you will die by the sword, by famine and by pestilence, in the place where you wish to go to reside.

 

Jeremiah 43

In Egypt Jeremiah Warns of Judgment

43 But as soon as Jeremiah, whom the Lord their God had sent, had finished telling all the people all the words of the Lord their God—that is, all these words— Azariah the son of Hoshaiah, and Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the arrogant men said to Jeremiah, “You are telling a lie! The Lord our God has not sent you to say, ‘You are not to enter Egypt to reside there’; but Baruch the son of Neriah is inciting you against us to give us over into the hand of the Chaldeans, so they will put us to death or exile us to Babylon.” So Johanan the son of Kareah and all the commanders of the forces, and all the people, did not obey the voice of the Lord to stay in the land of Judah. But Johanan the son of Kareah and all the commanders of the forces took the entire remnant of Judah who had returned from all the nations to which they had been driven away, in order to reside in the land of Judah— the men, the women, the children, the king’s daughters and every person that Nebuzaradan the captain of the bodyguard had left with Gedaliah the son of Ahikam and grandson of Shaphan, together with Jeremiah the prophet and Baruch the son of Neriah— and they entered the land of Egypt (for they did not obey the voice of the Lord) and went in as far as Tahpanhes.

Then the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah in Tahpanhes, saying, “Take some large stones in your hands and hide them in the mortar in the brick terrace which is at the entrance of Pharaoh’s palace in Tahpanhes, in the sight of some of the Jews; 10 and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, “Behold, I am going to send and get Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, My servant, and I am going to set his throne right over these stones that I have hidden; and he will spread his canopy over them. 11 He will also come and strike the land of Egypt; those who are meant for death will be given over to death, and those for captivity to captivity, and those for the sword to the sword. 12 And I shall set fire to the temples of the gods of Egypt, and he will burn them and take them captive. So he will wrap himself with the land of Egypt as a shepherd wraps himself with his garment, and he will depart from there safely. 13 He will also shatter the obelisks of Heliopolis, which is in the land of Egypt; and the temples of the gods of Egypt he will burn with fire.”’”

 

Jeremiah 44

Conquest of Egypt Predicted

44 The word that came to Jeremiah for all the Jews living in the land of Egypt, those who were living in Migdol, Tahpanhes, Memphis, and the land of Pathros, saying, “Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, ‘You yourselves have seen all the calamity that I have brought on Jerusalem and all the cities of Judah; and behold, this day they are in ruins and no one lives in them, because of their wickedness which they committed so as to provoke Me to anger by continuing to burn sacrifices and to serve other gods whom they had not known, neither they, you, nor your fathers. Yet I sent you all My servants the prophets, again and again, saying, “Oh, do not do this abominable thing which I hate.” But they did not listen or incline their ears to turn from their wickedness, so as not to burn sacrifices to other gods. Therefore My wrath and My anger were poured out and burned in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem, so they have become a ruin and a desolation as it is this day. Now then thus says the Lord God of hosts, the God of Israel, “Why are you doing great harm to yourselves, so as to cut off from you man and woman, child and infant, from among Judah, leaving yourselves without remnant, provoking Me to anger with the works of your hands, burning sacrifices to other gods in the land of Egypt, where you are entering to reside, so that you might be cut off and become a curse and a reproach among all the nations of the earth? Have you forgotten the wickedness of your fathers, the wickedness of the kings of Judah, and the wickedness of their wives, your own wickedness, and the wickedness of your wives, which they committed in the land of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? 10 But they have not become contrite even to this day, nor have they feared nor walked in My law or My statutes, which I have set before you and before your fathers.”’

11 “Therefore thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, ‘Behold, I am going to set My face against you for woe, even to cut off all Judah. 12 And I will take away the remnant of Judah who have set their mind on entering the land of Egypt to reside there, and they will all meet their end in the land of Egypt; they will fall by the sword and meet their end by famine. Both small and great will die by the sword and famine; and they will become a curse, an object of horror, an imprecation and a reproach. 13 And I will punish those who live in the land of Egypt, as I have punished Jerusalem, with the sword, with famine and with pestilence. 14 So there will be no refugees or survivors for the remnant of Judah who have entered the land of Egypt to reside there and then to return to the land of Judah, to which they are longing to return and live; for none will return except a few refugees.’”

15 Then all the men who were aware that their wives were burning sacrifices to other gods, along with all the women who were standing by, as a large assembly, including all the people who were living in Pathros in the land of Egypt, responded to Jeremiah, saying, 16 “As for the message that you have spoken to us in the name of the Lord, we are not going to listen to you! 17 But rather we will certainly carry out every word that has proceeded from our mouths, by burning sacrifices to the queen of heaven and pouring out drink offerings to her, just as we ourselves, our forefathers, our kings and our princes did in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem; for then we had plenty of food and were well off and saw no misfortune. 18 But since we stopped burning sacrifices to the queen of heaven and pouring out drink offerings to her, we have lacked everything and have met our end by the sword and by famine.” 19 “And,” said the women, “when we were burning sacrifices to the queen of heaven and were pouring out drink offerings to her, was it without our husbands that we made for her sacrificial cakes in her image and poured out drink offerings to her?”

Calamity for the Jews

20 Then Jeremiah said to all the people, to the men and women—even to all the people who were giving him such an answer—saying, 21 “As for the smoking sacrifices that you burned in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem, you and your forefathers, your kings and your princes, and the people of the land, did not the Lord remember them and did not all this come into His mind? 22 So the Lord was no longer able to endure it, because of the evil of your deeds, because of the abominations which you have committed; thus your land has become a ruin, an object of horror and a curse, without an inhabitant, as it is this day. 23 Because you have burned sacrifices and have sinned against the Lord and not obeyed the voice of the Lord or walked in His law, His statutes or His testimonies, therefore this calamity has befallen you, as it has this day.”

24 Then Jeremiah said to all the people, including all the women, “Hear the word of the Lord, all Judah who are in the land of Egypt, 25 thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, as follows: ‘As for you and your wives, you have spoken with your mouths and fulfilled it with your hands, saying, “We will certainly perform our vows that we have vowed, to burn sacrifices to the queen of heaven and pour out drink offerings to her.” Go ahead and confirm your vows, and certainly perform your vows!’26 Nevertheless hear the word of the Lord, all Judah who are living in the land of Egypt, ‘Behold, I have sworn by My great name,’ says the Lord, ‘never shall My name be invoked again by the mouth of any man of Judah in all the land of Egypt, saying, “As the Lord God lives.” 27 Behold, I am watching over them for harm and not for good, and all the men of Judah who are in the land of Egypt will meet their end by the sword and by famine until they are completely gone. 28 Those who escape the sword will return out of the land of Egypt to the land of Judah few in number. Then all the remnant of Judah who have gone to the land of Egypt to reside there will know whose word will stand, Mine or theirs. 29 This will be the sign to you,’ declares the Lord, ‘that I am going to punish you in this place, so that you may know that My words will surely stand against you for harm.’ 30 Thus says the Lord, ‘Behold, I am going to give over Pharaoh Hophra king of Egypt to the hand of his enemies, to the hand of those who seek his life, just as I gave over Zedekiah king of Judah to the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, who was his enemy and was seeking his life.’”

 

Jeremiah 45

Message to Baruch

45 This is the message which Jeremiah the prophet spoke to Baruch the son of Neriah, when he had written down these words in a book at Jeremiah’s dictation, in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, saying: “Thus says the Lord the God of Israel to you, O Baruch: ‘You said, “Ah, woe is me! For the Lord has added sorrow to my pain; I am weary with my groaning and have found no rest.”’ Thus you are to say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord, “Behold, what I have built I am about to tear down, and what I have planted I am about to uproot, that is, the whole land.” But you, are you seeking great things for yourself? Do not seek them; for behold, I am going to bring disaster on all flesh,’ declares the Lord, ‘but I will give your life to you as booty in all the places where you may go.’”

Scripture quotations taken from the NASB © The Lockman Foundation (www.lockman.org)

November 3 – OT Reading

Jeremiah 35-37

Jeremiah 35

The Rechabites’ Obedience

35 The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord in the days of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, saying, “Go to the house of the Rechabites and speak to them, and bring them into the house of the Lord, into one of the chambers, and give them wine to drink.” Then I took Jaazaniah the son of Jeremiah, son of Habazziniah, and his brothers and all his sons and the whole house of the Rechabites, and I brought them into the house of the Lord, into the chamber of the sons of Hanan the son of Igdaliah, the man of God, which was near the chamber of the officials, which was above the chamber of Maaseiah the son of Shallum, the doorkeeper. Then I set before the men of the house of the Rechabites pitchers full of wine and cups; and I said to them, “Drink wine!” But they said, “We will not drink wine, for Jonadab the son of Rechab, our father, commanded us, saying, ‘You shall not drink wine, you or your sons, forever. You shall not build a house, and you shall not sow seed and you shall not plant a vineyard or own one; but in tents you shall dwell all your days, that you may live many days in the land where you sojourn.’ We have obeyed the voice of Jonadab the son of Rechab, our father, in all that he commanded us, not to drink wine all our days, we, our wives, our sons or our daughters, nor to build ourselves houses to dwell in; and we do not have vineyard or field or seed. 10 We have only dwelt in tents, and have obeyed and have done according to all that Jonadab our father commanded us. 11 But when Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came up against the land, we said, ‘Come and let us go to Jerusalem before the army of the Chaldeans and before the army of the Arameans.’ So we have dwelt in Jerusalem.”

Judah Rebuked

12 Then the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah, saying, 13 “Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, ‘Go and say to the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, “Will you not receive instruction by listening to My words?” declares the Lord. 14 “The words of Jonadab the son of Rechab, which he commanded his sons not to drink wine, are observed. So they do not drink wine to this day, for they have obeyed their father’s command. But I have spoken to you again and again; yet you have not listened to Me. 15 Also I have sent to you all My servants the prophets, sending them again and again, saying: ‘Turn now every man from his evil way and amend your deeds, and do not go after other gods to worship them. Then you will dwell in the land which I have given to you and to your forefathers; but you have not inclined your ear or listened to Me. 16 Indeed, the sons of Jonadab the son of Rechab have observed the command of their father which he commanded them, but this people has not listened to Me.’”’ 17 Therefore thus says the Lord, the God of hosts, the God of Israel, ‘Behold, I am bringing on Judah and on all the inhabitants of Jerusalem all the disaster that I have pronounced against them; because I spoke to them but they did not listen, and I have called them but they did not answer.’”

18 Then Jeremiah said to the house of the Rechabites, “Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, ‘Because you have obeyed the command of Jonadab your father, kept all his commands and done according to all that he commanded you; 19 therefore thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, “Jonadab the son of Rechab shall not lack a man to stand before Me always.”’”

 

Jeremiah 36

Jeremiah’s Scroll Read in the Temple

36 In the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, this word came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying, “Take a scroll and write on it all the words which I have spoken to you concerning Israel and concerning Judah, and concerning all the nations, from the day I first spoke to you, from the days of Josiah, even to this day. Perhaps the house of Judah will hear all the calamity which I plan to bring on them, in order that every man will turn from his evil way; then I will forgive their iniquity and their sin.”

Then Jeremiah called Baruch the son of Neriah, and Baruch wrote on a scroll at the dictation of Jeremiah all the words of the Lord which He had spoken to him. Jeremiah commanded Baruch, saying, “I am restricted; I cannot go into the house of the Lord. So you go and read from the scroll which you have written at my dictation the words of the Lord to the people in the Lord’s house on a fast day. And also you shall read them to all the people of Judah who come from their cities.Perhaps their supplication will come before the Lord, and everyone will turn from his evil way, for great is the anger and the wrath that the Lord has pronounced against this people.” Baruch the son of Neriah did according to all that Jeremiah the prophet commanded him, reading from the book the words of the Lord in the Lord’s house.

Now in the fifth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, in the ninth month, all the people in Jerusalem and all the people who came from the cities of Judah to Jerusalem proclaimed a fast before the Lord. 10 Then Baruch read from the book the words of Jeremiah in the house of the Lord in the chamber of Gemariah the son of Shaphan the scribe, in the upper court, at the entry of the New Gate of the Lord’s house, to all the people.

11 Now when Micaiah the son of Gemariah, the son of Shaphan, had heard all the words of the Lord from the book, 12 he went down to the king’s house, into the scribe’s chamber. And behold, all the officials were sitting there—Elishama the scribe, and Delaiah the son of Shemaiah, and Elnathan the son of Achbor, and Gemariah the son of Shaphan, and Zedekiah the son of Hananiah, and all the other officials. 13 Micaiah declared to them all the words that he had heard when Baruch read from the book to the people. 14 Then all the officials sent Jehudi the son of Nethaniah, the son of Shelemiah, the son of Cushi, to Baruch, saying, “Take in your hand the scroll from which you have read to the people and come.” So Baruch the son of Neriah took the scroll in his hand and went to them. 15 They said to him, “Sit down, please, and read it to us.” So Baruch read it to them. 16 When they had heard all the words, they turned in fear one to another and said to Baruch, “We will surely report all these words to the king.” 17 And they asked Baruch, saying, “Tell us, please, how did you write all these words? Was it at his dictation?” 18 Then Baruch said to them, “He dictated all these words to me, and I wrote them with ink on the book.” 19 Then the officials said to Baruch, “Go, hide yourself, you and Jeremiah, and do not let anyone know where you are.”

The Scroll Is Burned

20 So they went to the king in the court, but they had deposited the scroll in the chamber of Elishama the scribe, and they reported all the words to the king. 21 Then the king sent Jehudi to get the scroll, and he took it out of the chamber of Elishama the scribe. And Jehudi read it to the king as well as to all the officials who stood beside the king. 22 Now the king was sitting in the winter house in the ninth month, with a fire burning in the brazier before him. 23 When Jehudi had read three or four columns, the king cut it with a scribe’s knife and threw it into the fire that was in the brazier, until all the scroll was consumed in the fire that was in the brazier. 24 Yet the king and all his servants who heard all these words were not afraid, nor did they rend their garments. 25 Even though Elnathan and Delaiah and Gemariah pleaded with the king not to burn the scroll, he would not listen to them. 26 And the king commanded Jerahmeel the king’s son, Seraiah the son of Azriel, and Shelemiah the son of Abdeel to seize Baruch the scribe and Jeremiah the prophet, but the Lord hid them.

The Scroll Is Replaced

27 Then the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah after the king had burned the scroll and the words which Baruch had written at the dictation of Jeremiah, saying, 28 “Take again another scroll and write on it all the former words that were on the first scroll which Jehoiakim the king of Judah burned.29 And concerning Jehoiakim king of Judah you shall say, ‘Thus says the Lord, “You have burned this scroll, saying, ‘Why have you written on it that the king of Babylon will certainly come and destroy this land, and will make man and beast to cease from it?’” 30 Therefore thus says the Lord concerning Jehoiakim king of Judah, “He shall have no one to sit on the throne of David, and his dead body shall be cast out to the heat of the day and the frost of the night. 31 I will also punish him and his descendants and his servants for their iniquity, and I will bring on them and the inhabitants of Jerusalem and the men of Judah all the calamity that I have declared to them—but they did not listen.”’”

32 Then Jeremiah took another scroll and gave it to Baruch the son of Neriah, the scribe, and he wrote on it at the dictation of Jeremiah all the words of the book which Jehoiakim king of Judah had burned in the fire; and many similar words were added to them.

 

Jeremiah 37

Jeremiah Warns against Trust in Pharaoh

37 Now Zedekiah the son of Josiah whom Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon had made king in the land of Judah, reigned as king in place of Coniah the son of Jehoiakim. But neither he nor his servants nor the people of the land listened to the words of the Lord which He spoke through Jeremiah the prophet.

Yet King Zedekiah sent Jehucal the son of Shelemiah, and Zephaniah the son of Maaseiah, the priest, to Jeremiah the prophet, saying, “Please pray to the Lord our God on our behalf.” Now Jeremiah was still coming in and going out among the people, for they had not yet put him in the prison. Meanwhile, Pharaoh’s army had set out from Egypt; and when the Chaldeans who had been besieging Jerusalem heard the report about them, they lifted the siege from Jerusalem.

Then the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah the prophet, saying, “Thus says the Lord God of Israel, ‘Thus you are to say to the king of Judah, who sent you to Me to inquire of Me: “Behold,Pharaoh’s army which has come out for your assistance is going to return to its own land of Egypt. The Chaldeans will also return and fight against this city, and they will capture it and burn it with fire.”’ Thus says the Lord, ‘Do not deceive yourselves, saying, “The Chaldeans will surely go away from us,” for they will not go. 10 For even if you had defeated the entire army of Chaldeans who were fighting against you, and there were only wounded men left among them, each man in his tent, they would rise up and burn this city with fire.’”

Jeremiah Imprisoned

11 Now it happened when the army of the Chaldeans had lifted the siege from Jerusalem because of Pharaoh’s army, 12 that Jeremiah went out from Jerusalem to go to the land of Benjamin in order to take possession of some property there among the people. 13 While he was at the Gate of Benjamin, a captain of the guard whose name was Irijah, the son of Shelemiah the son of Hananiah was there; and he arrested Jeremiah the prophet, saying, “You are going over to the Chaldeans!” 14 But Jeremiah said, “A lie! I am not going over to the Chaldeans”; yet he would not listen to him. So Irijah arrested Jeremiah and brought him to the officials. 15 Then the officials were angry at Jeremiah and beat him, and they put him in jail in the house of Jonathan the scribe, which they had made into the prison.16 For Jeremiah had come into the dungeon, that is, the vaulted cell; and Jeremiah stayed there many days.

17 Now King Zedekiah sent and took him out; and in his palace the king secretly asked him and said, “Is there a word from the Lord?” And Jeremiah said, “There is!” Then he said, “You will be given into the hand of the king of Babylon!” 18 Moreover Jeremiah said to King Zedekiah, “In what way have I sinned against you, or against your servants, or against this people, that you have put me in prison?19 Where then are your prophets who prophesied to you, saying, ‘The king of Babylon will not come against you or against this land’? 20 But now, please listen, O my lord the king; please let my petition come before you and do not make me return to the house of Jonathan the scribe, that I may not die there.” 21 Then King Zedekiah gave commandment, and they committed Jeremiah to the court of the guardhouse and gave him a loaf of bread daily from the bakers’ street, until all the bread in the city was gone. So Jeremiah remained in the court of the guardhouse.

Scripture quotations taken from the NASB © The Lockman Foundation (www.lockman.org)