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Then he had Zedekiah’s eyes put out and had him bound in chains[a] to be led off to Babylon. The Babylonians[b] burned down the royal palace, the temple of the Lord, and the people’s homes,[c] and they tore down the wall of Jerusalem.[d] Then Nebuzaradan, the captain of the royal guard,[e] took captive the rest of the people who were left in the city. He carried them off to Babylon along with the people who had deserted to him.[f]

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  1. Jeremiah 39:7 tn Heb “fetters of bronze.” The more generic “chains” is used in the translation because “fetters” is a word unfamiliar to most modern readers.
  2. Jeremiah 39:8 tn Heb “Chaldeans.” See the study note on 21:4 for explanation.
  3. Jeremiah 39:8 tc The reading here is based on an emendation following the parallels in Jer 52:13 and 2 Kgs 25:9. The Hebrew text here does not have “the temple of the Lord” and reads merely “house of the people.” The text here is probably corrupt. It reads וְאֶת בֵּית הָעָם (veʾet bet haʿam, “and the house of the people”), which many explain as a collective use of בַּיִת (bayit). However, no parallels are cited by any of the commentaries, grammars, or lexicons for such a use. It is more likely that the words יְהוָה וְאֶת־בָּתֵּי (yehvah veʾet bate) have fallen out of the text due to similar beginnings. The words וְאֶת בֵּית יהוה (veʾet bet yhwh) are found in the parallel texts cited above. The Greek version is no help here because vv. 4-13 are omitted, probably due to the similarities in ending of vv. 3 and 13 (i.e., homoioteleuton of מֶלֶךְ בָּבֶל, melekh bavel).
  4. Jeremiah 39:8 sn According to the parallels in 2 Kgs 25:8-9 and Jer 52:12-13, this occurred almost a month after the wall was breached and Zedekiah was caught in flight. The destruction took place under the direction of Nebuzaradan, the captain of the king’s special guard who is mentioned in the next verse.
  5. Jeremiah 39:9 tn For the meaning of this phrase see BDB 371 s.v. טַבָּח 2 and compare the usage in Gen 39:1.
  6. Jeremiah 39:9 tc The translation is based on an emendation of the text which leaves out “the rest of the people who were left” as a double writing of the same phrase at the beginning of the verse. Some commentators emend the phrase “the rest of the people who were left” (וְאֵת יֶתֶר הָעָם הַנִּשְׁאָרִים, veʾet yeter haʿam hannishʾarim) to “the rest of the craftsmen who were left” (וְאֵת יֶתֶר הָאָמוֹן הַנִּשְׁאָרִים, veʾet yeter haʾamon hannishʾarim) on the basis of the parallel in Jer 52:15 (which does not have הַנִּשְׁאָרִים, hannishʾarim). However, it is easier to explain the phrase as a dittography of the phrase at the beginning (which is exactly the same except הָעִיר [haʿir] follows it). The text is redundant because it refers twice to the same group of people. The Hebrew text reads, “And the rest of the people who were left in the city and the deserters who had deserted to him and the rest of the people Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, carried into exile to Babylon.” The text has also been divided up to create two shorter sentences that better conform with contemporary English style.

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