Contemporary English Version
Jerusalem Is Captured by the Babylonians
39 1-3 In the tenth month[a] of the ninth year that Zedekiah[b] was king of Judah, King Nebuchadnezzar[c] and the Babylonian army began their attack on Jerusalem. They kept the city surrounded for a year and a half. Then, on the ninth day of the fourth month[d] of the eleventh year that Zedekiah was king, they broke through the city walls.
After Jerusalem was captured,[e] Nebuchadnezzar’s highest officials,[f] including Nebo Sarsechim[g] and Nergal Sharezer from Simmagir,[h] took their places at Middle Gate to show they were in control of the city.[i]
4 When King Zedekiah and his troops saw that Jerusalem had been captured, they tried to escape from the city that same night. They went to the king’s garden, where they slipped through the gate between the two city walls[j] and headed toward the Jordan River valley. 5 But the Babylonian troops caught up with them near Jericho. They arrested Zedekiah and took him to the town of Riblah in the land of Hamath, where Nebuchadnezzar put him on trial, then found him guiltyRead full chapter
- 39.1-3 the tenth month: Tebeth, the tenth month of the Hebrew calendar, from about mid-December to mid-January.
- 39.1-3 Zedekiah: See the note at 1.3.
- 39.1-3 Nebuchadnezzar: See the note at 21.2.
- 39.1-3 fourth month: Tammuz, the fourth month of the Hebrew calendar, from about mid-June to mid-July.
- 39.1-3 After Jerusalem was captured: This phrase is from 38.28.
- 39.1-3 highest officials: The Hebrew text gives Nergal Sharezer’s title as “the Rabmag,” and Nebo Sarsechim’s title as “the Rabsaris,” but the exact meaning of the titles and the duties of these offices are not known.
- 39.1-3 Nebo Sarsechim: Probably another form of the name Nebushazban (see verse 13).
- 39.1-3 Nergal Sharezer from Simmagir: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text. Probably Nebuchadnezzar’s son-in-law, who was king of Babylonia 560-556 B.C. It is also possible that the Hebrew text mentions a second official named Nergal Sharezer.
- 39.1-3 took their places. . . control of the city: The rulers and leaders often sat in the broad open area at the gate of a city to take care of official business and hold trials.
- 39.4 the gate between the two city walls: The construction of the city walls at this point is not known.