II Kings 25
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1  And in the ninth year of his reign, on the tenth day of the tenth month, Nebuchadnezzar moved against Yerushalayim with his whole army. He besieged it; and they built towers against it all around.

א  וַיְהִי בִשְׁנַת הַתְּשִׁיעִית לְמָלְכוֹ בַּחֹדֶשׁ הָעֲשִׂירִי בֶּעָשׂוֹר לַחֹדֶשׁ בָּא נְבֻכַדְנֶאצַּר מֶלֶךְ־בָּבֶל הוּא וְכָל־חֵילוֹ עַל־יְרוּשָׁלִַם וַיִּחַן עָלֶיהָ וַיִּבְנוּ עָלֶיהָ דָּיֵק סָבִיב׃

2  The city continued in a state of siege until the eleventh year of King Tzidkiyahu.

ב  וַתָּבֹא הָעִיר בַּמָּצוֹר עַד עַשְׁתֵּי עֶשְׂרֵה שָׁנָה לַמֶּלֶךְ צִדְקִיָּהוּ׃

3  By the ninth day [of the fourth month] the famine had become acute in the city; there was no food left for the common people.

ג  בְּתִשְׁעָה לַחֹדֶשׁ וַיֶּחֱזַק הָרָעָב בָּעִיר וְלֹא־הָיָה לֶחֶם לְעַם הָאָרֶץ׃

4  Then [the wall of] the city was breached. All the soldiers [left the city] by night through the gate between the double walls, which is near the king’s garden—the Chaldeans were all around the city; and [the king] set out for the Arabah.

ד  וַתִּבָּקַע הָעִיר וְכָל־אַנְשֵׁי הַמִּלְחָמָה הַלַּיְלָה דֶּרֶךְ שַׁעַר בֵּין הַחֹמֹתַיִם אֲשֶׁר עַל־גַּן הַמֶּלֶךְ וְכַשְׂדִּים עַל־הָעִיר סָבִיב וַיֵּלֶךְ דֶּרֶךְ הָעֲרָבָה׃

5  But the Chaldean troops pursued the king, and they overtook him in the steppes of Yericho as his entire force left him and scattered.

ה  וַיִּרְדְּפוּ חֵיל־כַּשְׂדִּים אַחַר הַמֶּלֶךְ וַיַּשִּׂגוּ אֹתוֹ בְּעַרְבוֹת יְרֵחוֹ וְכָל־חֵילוֹ נָפֹצוּ מֵעָלָיו׃

6  They captured the king and brought him before the king of Babylon at Riblah; and they put him on trial.

ו  וַיִּתְפְּשׂוּ אֶת־הַמֶּלֶךְ וַיַּעֲלוּ אֹתוֹ אֶל־מֶלֶךְ בָּבֶל רִבְלָתָה וַיְדַבְּרוּ אִתּוֹ מִשְׁפָּט׃

7  They slaughtered Tzidkiyahu‘s sons before his eyes; then Tzidkiyahu‘s eyes were put out. He was chained in bronze fetters and he was brought to Babylon.

ז  וְאֶת־בְּנֵי צִדְקִיָּהוּ שָׁחֲטוּ לְעֵינָיו וְאֶת־עֵינֵי צִדְקִיָּהוּ עִוֵּר וַיַּאַסְרֵהוּ בַנְחֻשְׁתַּיִם וַיְבִאֵהוּ בָּבֶל׃

8  On the seventh day of the fifth month—that was the nineteenth year of King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon—Nebuzaradan, the chief of the guards, an officer of the king of Babylon, came to Yerushalayim.

ח  וּבַחֹדֶשׁ הַחֲמִישִׁי בְּשִׁבְעָה לַחֹדֶשׁ הִיא שְׁנַת תְּשַׁע־עֶשְׂרֵה שָׁנָה לַמֶּלֶךְ נְבֻכַדְנֶאצַּר מֶלֶךְ־בָּבֶל בָּא נְבוּזַרְאֲדָן רַב־טַבָּחִים עֶבֶד מֶלֶךְ־בָּבֶל יְרוּשָׁלִָם׃

9  He burned the House of Hashem, the king’s palace, and all the houses of Yerushalayim; he burned down the house of every notable person.

va-yis-ROF et bayt a-do-NAI v’-et BAYT ha-ME-lekh v’-ayt kol ba-TAY y’-ru-sha-LA-im v’-et kol BAYT ga-DOL sa-RAF ba-AYSH

ט  וַיִּשְׂרֹף אֶת־בֵּית־יְהֹוָה וְאֶת־בֵּית הַמֶּלֶךְ וְאֵת כָּל־בָּתֵּי יְרוּשָׁלִַם וְאֶת־כָּל־בֵּית גָּדוֹל שָׂרַף בָּאֵשׁ׃

 25:9   He burned the House of Hashem

At the time, this is the greatest calamity to have ever occurred to the Children of Israel. Hashem permits Nebuchadnezzar to destroy His Beit Hamikdash, the spiritual center of the universe. He also allows the burning of the king’s house, which represents the monarchy, and the houses of prayer and study in Yerushalayim. The nation is exiled, and only a small group of poor people remains in the land under the leadership of Gedalya the son of Achikam. When Gedalya is killed and the rest of the people flee to Egypt, it seems that all ties between the Children of Israel and their land have been lost, as there isn’t even a small Jewish presence left in Eretz Yisrael. However, despite the utter desecration, destruction and despair, the People of Israel will again rise and the Beit Hamikdash will be rebuilt. Sefer Melachim hints to this renewal as it ends on a somewhat positive note with the release of King Yehoyachin from prison and his rise in stature.2 comments

10  The entire Chaldean force that was with the chief of the guard tore down the walls of Yerushalayim on every side.

י  וְאֶת־חוֹמֹת יְרוּשָׁלִַם סָבִיב נָתְצוּ כָּל־חֵיל כַּשְׂדִּים אֲשֶׁר רַב־טַבָּחִים׃

11  The remnant of the people that was left in the city, the defectors who had gone over to the king of Babylon—and the remnant of the population—were taken into exile by Nebuzaradan, the chief of the guards.

יא  וְאֵת יֶתֶר הָעָם הַנִּשְׁאָרִים בָּעִיר וְאֶת־הַנֹּפְלִים אֲשֶׁר נָפְלוּ עַל־הַמֶּלֶךְ בָּבֶל וְאֵת יֶתֶר הֶהָמוֹן הֶגְלָה נְבוּזַרְאֲדָן רַב־טַבָּחִים׃

12  But some of the poorest in the land were left by the chief of the guards, to be vinedressers and field hands.

יב  וּמִדַּלַּת הָאָרֶץ הִשְׁאִיר רַב־טַבָּחִים לְכֹרְמִים וּלְיֹגְבִים׃

13  The Chaldeans broke up the bronze columns of the House of Hashem, the stands, and the bronze tank that was in the House of Hashem; and they carried the bronze away to Babylon.

יג  וְאֶת־עַמּוּדֵי הַנְּחֹשֶׁת אֲשֶׁר בֵּית־יְהֹוָה וְאֶת־הַמְּכֹנוֹת וְאֶת־יָם הַנְּחֹשֶׁת אֲשֶׁר בְּבֵית־יְהֹוָה שִׁבְּרוּ כַשְׂדִּים וַיִּשְׂאוּ אֶת־נְחֻשְׁתָּם בָּבֶלָה׃

14  They also took all the pails, scrapers, snuffers, ladles, and all the other bronze vessels used in the service.

יד  וְאֶת־הַסִּירֹת וְאֶת־הַיָּעִים וְאֶת־הַמְזַמְּרוֹת וְאֶת־הַכַּפּוֹת וְאֵת כָּל־כְּלֵי הַנְּחֹשֶׁת אֲשֶׁר יְשָׁרְתוּ־בָם לָקָחוּ׃

15  The chief of the guards took whatever was of gold and whatever was of silver: firepans and sprinkling bowls.

טו  וְאֶת־הַמַּחְתּוֹת וְאֶת־הַמִּזְרָקוֹת אֲשֶׁר זָהָב זָהָב וַאֲשֶׁר־כֶּסֶף כָּסֶף לָקַח רַב־טַבָּחִים׃

16  The two columns, the one tank, and the stands that Shlomo provided for the House of Hashem—all these objects contained bronze beyond weighing.

טז  הָעַמּוּדִים שְׁנַיִם הַיָּם הָאֶחָד וְהַמְּכֹנוֹת אֲשֶׁר־עָשָׂה שְׁלֹמֹה לְבֵית יְהֹוָה לֹא־הָיָה מִשְׁקָל לִנְחֹשֶׁת כָּל־הַכֵּלִים הָאֵלֶּה׃

17  The one column was eighteen amot high. It had a bronze capital above it; the height of the capital was three amot, and there was a meshwork [decorated] with pomegranates about the capital, all made of bronze. And the like was true of the other column with its meshwork.

יז  שְׁמֹנֶה עֶשְׂרֵה אַמָּה קוֹמַת הָעַמּוּד הָאֶחָד וְכֹתֶרֶת עָלָיו נְחֹשֶׁת וְקוֹמַת הַכֹּתֶרֶת שָׁלֹשׁ אמה [אַמּוֹת] וּשְׂבָכָה וְרִמֹּנִים עַל־הַכֹּתֶרֶת סָבִיב הַכֹּל נְחֹשֶׁת וְכָאֵלֶּה לַעַמּוּד הַשֵּׁנִי עַל־הַשְּׂבָכָה׃

18  The chief of the guards also took Seraya, the chief Kohen, Tzefanya, the deputy Kohen, and the three guardians of the threshold.

יח  וַיִּקַּח רַב־טַבָּחִים אֶת־שְׂרָיָה כֹּהֵן הָרֹאשׁ וְאֶת־צְפַנְיָהוּ כֹּהֵן מִשְׁנֶה וְאֶת־שְׁלֹשֶׁת שֹׁמְרֵי הַסַּף׃

19  And from the city he took a eunuch who was in command of the soldiers; five royal privy councillors who were present in the city; the scribe of the army commander, who was in charge of mustering the people of the land; and sixty of the common people who were inside the city.

יט  וּמִן־הָעִיר לָקַח סָרִיס אֶחָד אֲ‍שֶׁר־הוּא פָקִיד עַל־אַנְשֵׁי הַמִּלְחָמָה וַחֲמִשָּׁה אֲנָשִׁים מֵרֹאֵי פְנֵי־הַמֶּלֶךְ אֲשֶׁר נִמְצְאוּ בָעִיר וְאֵת הַסֹּפֵר שַׂר הַצָּבָא הַמַּצְבִּא אֶת־עַם הָאָרֶץ וְשִׁשִּׁים אִישׁ מֵעַם הָאָרֶץ הַנִּמְצְאִים בָּעִיר׃

20  Nebuzaradan, the chief of the guards, took them and brought them to the king of Babylon at Riblah.

כ  וַיִּקַּח אֹתָם נְבוּזַרְאֲדָן רַב־טַבָּחִים וַיֹּלֶךְ אֹתָם עַל־מֶלֶךְ בָּבֶל רִבְלָתָה׃

21  The king of Babylon had them struck down and put to death at Riblah, in the region of Hamath. Thus Yehuda was exiled from its land.

כא  וַיַּךְ אֹתָם מֶלֶךְ בָּבֶל וַיְמִיתֵם בְּרִבְלָה בְּאֶרֶץ חֲמָת וַיִּגֶל יְהוּדָה מֵעַל אַדְמָתוֹ׃

22  King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon put Gedalya son of Achikam son of Shafan in charge of the people whom he left in the land of Yehuda.

כב  וְהָעָם הַנִּשְׁאָר בְּאֶרֶץ יְהוּדָה אֲשֶׁר הִשְׁאִיר נְבוּכַדְנֶאצַּר מֶלֶךְ בָּבֶל וַיַּפְקֵד עֲלֵיהֶם אֶת־גְּדַלְיָהוּ בֶּן־אֲחִיקָם בֶּן־שָׁפָן׃

23  When the officers of the troops and their men heard that the king of Babylon had put Gedalya in charge, they came to Gedalya at Mitzpa with Ishmael son of Nethaniah, Yochanan son of Kareah, Seraya son of Tanhumeth the Netophathite, and Jaazaniah son of the Maachite, together with their men.

כג  וַיִּשְׁמְעוּ כָל־שָׂרֵי הַחֲיָלִים הֵמָּה וְהָאֲנָשִׁים כִּי־הִפְקִיד מֶלֶךְ־בָּבֶל אֶת־גְּדַלְיָהוּ וַיָּבֹאוּ אֶל־גְּדַלְיָהוּ הַמִּצְפָּה וְיִשְׁמָעֵאל בֶּן־נְתַנְיָה וְיוֹחָנָן בֶּן־קָרֵחַ וּשְׂרָיָה בֶן־תַּנְחֻמֶת הַנְּטֹפָתִי וְיַאֲזַנְיָהוּ בֶּן־הַמַּעֲכָתִי הֵמָּה וְאַנְשֵׁיהֶם׃

24  Gedalya reassured them and their men, saying, “Do not be afraid of the servants of the Chaldeans. Stay in the land and serve the king of Babylon, and it will go well with you.”

כד  וַיִּשָּׁבַע לָהֶם גְּדַלְיָהוּ וּלְאַנְשֵׁיהֶם וַיֹּאמֶר לָהֶם אַל־תִּירְאוּ מֵעַבְדֵי הַכַּשְׂדִּים שְׁבוּ בָאָרֶץ וְעִבְדוּ אֶת־מֶלֶךְ בָּבֶל וְיִטַב לָכֶם׃

25  In the seventh month, Ishmael son of Nethaniah son of Elishama, who was of royal descent, came with ten men, and they struck down Gedalya and he died; [they also killed] the Judeans and the Chaldeans who were present with him at Mitzpa.

כה  וַיְהִי בַּחֹדֶשׁ הַשְּׁבִיעִי בָּא יִשְׁמָעֵאל בֶּן־נְתַנְיָה בֶּן־אֱלִישָׁמָע מִזֶּרַע הַמְּלוּכָה וַעֲשָׂרָה אֲנָשִׁים אִתּוֹ וַיַּכּוּ אֶת־גְּדַלְיָהוּ וַיָּמֹת וְאֶת־הַיְּהוּדִים וְאֶת־הַכַּשְׂדִּים אֲשֶׁר־הָיוּ אִתּוֹ בַּמִּצְפָּה׃

26  And all the people, young and old, and the officers of the troops set out and went to Egypt because they were afraid of the Chaldeans.

כו  וַיָּקֻמוּ כָל־הָעָם מִקָּטֹן וְעַד־גָּדוֹל וְשָׂרֵי הַחֲיָלִים וַיָּבֹאוּ מִצְרָיִם כִּי יָרְאוּ מִפְּנֵי כַשְׂדִּים׃

27  In the thirty-seventh year of the exile of King Yehoyachin of Yehuda, on the twenty-seventh day of the twelfth month, King Evilmerodach of Babylon, in the year he became king, took note of King Yehoyachin of Yehuda and released him from prison.

כז  וַיְהִי בִשְׁלֹשִׁים וָשֶׁבַע שָׁנָה לְגָלוּת יְהוֹיָכִין מֶלֶךְ־יְהוּדָה בִּשְׁנֵים עָשָׂר חֹדֶשׁ בְּעֶשְׂרִים וְשִׁבְעָה לַחֹדֶשׁ נָשָׂא אֱוִיל מְרֹדַךְ מֶלֶךְ בָּבֶל בִּשְׁנַת מָלְכוֹ אֶת־רֹאשׁ יְהוֹיָכִין מֶלֶךְ־יְהוּדָה מִבֵּית כֶּלֶא׃

28  He spoke kindly to him, and gave him a throne above those of other kings who were with him in Babylon.

כח  וַיְדַבֵּר אִתּוֹ טֹבוֹת וַיִּתֵּן אֶת־כִּסְאוֹ מֵעַל כִּסֵּא הַמְּלָכִים אֲשֶׁר אִתּוֹ בְּבָבֶל׃

29  His prison garments were removed, and [Yehoyachin] received regular rations by his favor for the rest of his life.

כט  וְשִׁנָּא אֵת בִּגְדֵי כִלְאוֹ וְאָכַל לֶחֶם תָּמִיד לְפָנָיו כָּל־יְמֵי חַיָּיו׃

30  A regular allotment of food was given him at the instance of the king—an allotment for each day—all the days of his life.

ל  וַאֲרֻחָתוֹ אֲרֻחַת תָּמִיד נִתְּנָה־לּוֹ מֵאֵת הַמֶּלֶךְ דְּבַר־יוֹם בְּיוֹמוֹ כֹּל יְמֵי חַיָּו׃

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II Kings 24

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II Kings 25

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