New King James Version
Jeremiah in the Dungeon
38 Now Shephatiah the son of Mattan, Gedaliah the son of Pashhur, (A)Jucal[a] the son of Shelemiah, and (B)Pashhur the son of Malchiah (C)heard the words that Jeremiah had spoken to all the people, saying, 2 “Thus says the Lord: (D)‘He who remains in this city shall die by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence; but he who goes over to the Chaldeans shall live; his life shall be as a prize to him, and he shall live.’ 3 Thus says the Lord: (E)‘This city shall surely be (F)given into the hand of the king of Babylon’s army, which shall take it.’ ”
4 Therefore the princes said to the king, “Please, (G)let this man be put to death, for thus he [b]weakens the hands of the men of war who remain in this city, and the hands of all the people, by speaking such words to them. For this man does not seek the [c]welfare of this people, but their harm.”
5 Then Zedekiah the king said, “Look, he is in your hand. For the king can do nothing against you.” 6 (H)So they took Jeremiah and cast him into the dungeon of Malchiah [d]the king’s son, which was in the court of the prison, and they let Jeremiah down with ropes. And in the dungeon there was no water, but mire. So Jeremiah sank in the mire.
7 (I)Now Ebed-Melech the Ethiopian, one of the [e]eunuchs, who was in the king’s house, heard that they had put Jeremiah in the dungeon. When the king was sitting at the Gate of Benjamin, 8 Ebed-Melech went out of the king’s house and spoke to the king, saying: 9 “My lord the king, these men have done evil in all that they have done to Jeremiah the prophet, whom they have cast into the dungeon, and he is likely to die from hunger in the place where he is. For there is (J)no more bread in the city.” 10 Then the king commanded Ebed-Melech the Ethiopian, saying, “Take from here thirty men with you, and lift Jeremiah the prophet out of the dungeon before he dies.” 11 So Ebed-Melech took the men with him and went into the house of the king under the treasury, and took from there old clothes and old rags, and let them down by ropes into the dungeon to Jeremiah. 12 Then Ebed-Melech the Ethiopian said to Jeremiah, “Please put these old clothes and rags under your armpits, under the ropes.” And Jeremiah did so. 13 So they pulled Jeremiah up with ropes and lifted him out of the dungeon. And Jeremiah remained (K)in the court of the prison.
Zedekiah’s Fears and Jeremiah’s Advice
14 Then Zedekiah the king sent and had Jeremiah the prophet brought to him at the third entrance of the house of the Lord. And the king said to Jeremiah, “I will (L)ask you something. Hide nothing from me.”
15 Jeremiah said to Zedekiah, “If I declare it to you, will you not surely put me to death? And if I give you advice, you will not listen to me.”
16 So Zedekiah the king swore secretly to Jeremiah, saying, “As the Lord lives, (M)who made our very souls, I will not put you to death, nor will I give you into the hand of these men who seek your life.”
17 Then Jeremiah said to Zedekiah, “Thus says the Lord, the God of hosts, the God of Israel: ‘If you surely (N)surrender[f] (O)to the king of Babylon’s princes, then your soul shall live; this city shall not be burned with fire, and you and your house shall live. 18 But if you do not [g]surrender to the king of Babylon’s princes, then this city shall be given into the hand of the Chaldeans; they shall burn it with fire, and (P)you shall not escape from their hand.’ ”
20 But Jeremiah said, “They shall not deliver you. Please, obey the voice of the Lord which I speak to you. So it shall be (S)well with you, and your soul shall live. 21 But if you refuse to [h]surrender, this is the word that the Lord has shown me: 22 ‘Now behold, all the (T)women who are left in the king of Judah’s house shall be surrendered to the king of Babylon’s princes, and those women shall say:
23 ‘So they shall surrender all your wives and (U)children to the Chaldeans. (V)You shall not escape from their hand, but shall be taken by the hand of the king of Babylon. And you shall cause this city to be burned with fire.’ ”
24 Then Zedekiah said to Jeremiah, “Let no one know of these words, and you shall not die. 25 But if the princes hear that I have talked with you, and they come to you and say to you, ‘Declare to us now what you have said to the king, and also what the king said to you; do not hide it from us, and we will not put you to death,’ 26 then you shall say to them, (W)‘I presented my request before the king, that he would not make me return (X)to Jonathan’s house to die there.’ ”
27 Then all the princes came to Jeremiah and asked him. And he told them according to all these words that the king had commanded. So they stopped speaking with him, for the conversation had not been heard. 28 Now (Y)Jeremiah remained in the court of the prison until the day that Jerusalem was taken. And he was there when Jerusalem was taken.
New International Version
Jeremiah Thrown Into a Cistern
38 Shephatiah son of Mattan, Gedaliah son of Pashhur(A), Jehukal[a](B) son of Shelemiah, and Pashhur son of Malkijah heard what Jeremiah was telling all the people when he said, 2 “This is what the Lord says: ‘Whoever stays in this city will die by the sword, famine or plague,(C) but whoever goes over to the Babylonians[b] will live. They will escape with their lives; they will live.’(D) 3 And this is what the Lord says: ‘This city will certainly be given into the hands of the army of the king of Babylon, who will capture it.’”(E)
4 Then the officials(F) said to the king, “This man should be put to death.(G) He is discouraging(H) the soldiers who are left in this city, as well as all the people, by the things he is saying to them. This man is not seeking the good of these people but their ruin.”
6 So they took Jeremiah and put him into the cistern of Malkijah, the king’s son, which was in the courtyard of the guard.(K) They lowered Jeremiah by ropes(L) into the cistern; it had no water in it,(M) only mud, and Jeremiah sank down into the mud.(N)
7 But Ebed-Melek,(O) a Cushite,[c] an official[d](P) in the royal palace, heard that they had put Jeremiah into the cistern. While the king was sitting in the Benjamin Gate,(Q) 8 Ebed-Melek went out of the palace and said to him, 9 “My lord the king, these men have acted wickedly in all they have done to Jeremiah the prophet. They have thrown him into a cistern,(R) where he will starve to death when there is no longer any bread(S) in the city.”
10 Then the king commanded Ebed-Melek the Cushite, “Take thirty men from here with you and lift Jeremiah the prophet out of the cistern before he dies.”
11 So Ebed-Melek took the men with him and went to a room under the treasury in the palace. He took some old rags and worn-out clothes from there and let them down with ropes(T) to Jeremiah in the cistern. 12 Ebed-Melek the Cushite said to Jeremiah, “Put these old rags and worn-out clothes under your arms to pad the ropes.” Jeremiah did so, 13 and they pulled him up with the ropes and lifted him out of the cistern. And Jeremiah remained in the courtyard of the guard.(U)
Zedekiah Questions Jeremiah Again
14 Then King Zedekiah sent(V) for Jeremiah the prophet and had him brought to the third entrance to the temple of the Lord. “I am going to ask you something,” the king said to Jeremiah. “Do not hide(W) anything from me.”
15 Jeremiah said to Zedekiah, “If I give you an answer, will you not kill me? Even if I did give you counsel, you would not listen to me.”
17 Then Jeremiah said to Zedekiah, “This is what the Lord God Almighty, the God of Israel, says: ‘If you surrender(AA) to the officers of the king of Babylon, your life will be spared and this city will not be burned down; you and your family will live.(AB) 18 But if you will not surrender to the officers of the king of Babylon, this city will be given into the hands(AC) of the Babylonians and they will burn(AD) it down; you yourself will not escape(AE) from them.’”
20 “They will not hand you over,” Jeremiah replied. “Obey(AH) the Lord by doing what I tell you. Then it will go well(AI) with you, and your life(AJ) will be spared. 21 But if you refuse to surrender, this is what the Lord has revealed to me: 22 All the women(AK) left in the palace of the king of Judah will be brought out to the officials of the king of Babylon. Those women will say to you:
23 “All your wives and children(AN) will be brought out to the Babylonians. You yourself will not escape(AO) from their hands but will be captured(AP) by the king of Babylon; and this city will[e] be burned down.”(AQ)
24 Then Zedekiah said to Jeremiah, “Do not let anyone know(AR) about this conversation, or you may die. 25 If the officials hear that I talked with you, and they come to you and say, ‘Tell us what you said to the king and what the king said to you; do not hide it from us or we will kill you,’ 26 then tell(AS) them, ‘I was pleading with the king not to send me back to Jonathan’s house(AT) to die there.’”
27 All the officials did come to Jeremiah and question him, and he told them everything the king had ordered him to say. So they said no more to him, for no one had heard his conversation with the king.
28 And Jeremiah remained in the courtyard of the guard(AU) until the day Jerusalem was captured.
The Fall of Jerusalem(AV)
This is how Jerusalem(AW) was taken: