Jeremiah 36
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Listen to this chapter in Hebrew:

1  Tzidkiyahu son of Yoshiyahu became king instead of Coniah son of Yehoyakim, for King Nebuchadrezzar of Babylon set him up as king over the land of Yehuda.

א  וַיִּמְלָךְ־מֶלֶךְ צִדְקִיָּהוּ בֶּן־יֹאשִׁיָּהוּ תַּחַת כָּנְיָהוּ בֶּן־יְהוֹיָקִים אֲשֶׁר הִמְלִיךְ נְבוּכַדְרֶאצַּר מֶלֶךְ־בָּבֶל בְּאֶרֶץ יְהוּדָה׃

2  Neither he nor his courtiers nor the people of the land gave heed to the words which Hashem spoke through the navi Yirmiyahu.

ב  וְלֹא שָׁמַע הוּא וַעֲבָדָיו וְעַם הָאָרֶץ אֶל־דִּבְרֵי יְהוָה אֲשֶׁר דִּבֶּר בְּיַד יִרְמְיָהוּ הַנָּבִיא׃

3  Yet King Tzidkiyahu sent Jehucal son of Shelemiah and Tzefanya son of the kohen Maaseiah to the navi Yirmiyahu, to say, “Please pray on our behalf to Hashem our God.”

ג  וַיִּשְׁלַח הַמֶּלֶךְ צִדְקִיָּהוּ אֶת־יְהוּכַל בֶּן־שֶׁלֶמְיָה וְאֶת־צְפַנְיָהוּ בֶן־מַעֲשֵׂיָה הַכֹּהֵן אֶל־יִרְמְיָהוּ הַנָּבִיא לֵאמֹר הִתְפַּלֶּל־נָא בַעֲדֵנוּ אֶל־יְהוָה אֱלֹהֵינוּ׃

4  (Yirmiyahu could still go in and out among the people, for they had not yet put him in prison.

ד  וְיִרְמְיָהוּ בָּא וְיֹצֵא בְּתוֹךְ הָעָם וְלֹא־נָתְנוּ אֹתוֹ בֵּית הכליא [הַכְּלוּא׃]

5  The army of Pharaoh had set out from Egypt; and when the Chaldeans who were besieging Yerushalayim heard the report, they raised the siege of Yerushalayim.)

ה  וְחֵיל פַּרְעֹה יָצָא מִמִּצְרָיִם וַיִּשְׁמְעוּ הַכַּשְׂדִּים הַצָּרִים עַל־יְרוּשָׁלִַם אֶת־שִׁמְעָם וַיֵּעָלוּ מֵעַל יְרוּשָׁלִָם׃

6  Then the word of Hashem came to the navi Yirmiyahu:

ו  וַיְהִי דְּבַר־יְהוָה אֶל־יִרְמְיָהוּ הַנָּבִיא לֵאמֹר׃

7  Thus said Hashem, the God of Yisrael: Thus shall you say to the king of Yehuda who sent you to Me to inquire of Me: “The army of Pharaoh, which set out to help you, will return to its own land, to Egypt.

ז  כֹּה־אָמַר יְהוָה אֱלֹהֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל כֹּה תֹאמְרוּ אֶל־מֶלֶךְ יְהוּדָה הַשֹּׁלֵחַ אֶתְכֶם אֵלַי לְדָרְשֵׁנִי הִנֵּה חֵיל פַּרְעֹה הַיֹּצֵא לָכֶם לְעֶזְרָה שָׁב לְאַרְצוֹ מִצְרָיִם׃

8  And the Chaldeans will come back and attack this city and they will capture it and destroy it by fire.”

ח  וְשָׁבוּ הַכַּשְׂדִּים וְנִלְחֲמוּ עַל־הָעִיר הַזֹּאת וּלְכָדֻהָ וּשְׂרָפֻהָ בָאֵשׁ׃

9  Thus said Hashem: Do not delude yourselves into thinking, “The Chaldeans will go away from us.” They will not.

ט  כֹּה אָמַר יְהוָה אַל־תַּשִּׁאוּ נַפְשֹׁתֵיכֶם לֵאמֹר הָלֹךְ יֵלְכוּ מֵעָלֵינוּ הַכַּשְׂדִּים כִּי־לֹא יֵלֵכוּ׃

10  Even if you defeated the whole army of the Chaldeans that are fighting against you, and only wounded men were left lying in their tents, they would get up and burn this city down!

י  כִּי אִם־הִכִּיתֶם כָּל־חֵיל כַּשְׂדִּים הַנִּלְחָמִים אִתְּכֶם וְנִשְׁאֲרוּ בָם אֲנָשִׁים מְדֻקָּרִים אִישׁ בְּאָהֳלוֹ יָקוּמוּ וְשָׂרְפוּ אֶת־הָעִיר הַזֹּאת בָּאֵשׁ׃

11  When the army of the Chaldeans raised the siege of Yerushalayim on account of the army of Pharaoh,

יא  וְהָיָה בְּהֵעָלוֹת חֵיל הַכַּשְׂדִּים מֵעַל יְרוּשָׁלִָם מִפְּנֵי חֵיל פַּרְעֹה׃

12  Yirmiyahu was going to leave Yerushalayim and go to the territory of Binyamin to share in some property there among the people.

va-yay-TZAY yir-m’-YA-hu mee-ru-sha-LA-im la-LE-khet E-retz bin-ya-MIN la-kha-LIK mi-SHAM b’-TOKH ha-AM

יב  וַיֵּצֵא יִרְמְיָהוּ מִירוּשָׁלִַם לָלֶכֶת אֶרֶץ בִּנְיָמִן לַחֲלִק מִשָּׁם בְּתוֹךְ הָעָם׃

13  When he got to the Binyamin Gate, there was a guard officer there named Irijah son of Shelemiah son of Chananya; and he arrested the navi Yirmiyahu, saying, “You are defecting to the Chaldeans!”

יג  וַיְהִי־הוּא בְּשַׁעַר בִּנְיָמִן וְשָׁם בַּעַל פְּקִדֻת וּשְׁמוֹ יִרְאִיָּיה בֶּן־שֶׁלֶמְיָה בֶּן־חֲנַנְיָה וַיִּתְפֹּשׂ אֶת־יִרְמְיָהוּ הַנָּבִיא לֵאמֹר אֶל־הַכַּשְׂדִּים אַתָּה נֹפֵל׃

14  Yirmiyahu answered, “That’s a lie! I’m not defecting to the Chaldeans!” But Irijah would not listen to him; he arrested Yirmiyahu and brought him to the officials.

יד  וַיֹּאמֶר יִרְמְיָהוּ שֶׁקֶר אֵינֶנִּי נֹפֵל עַל־הַכַּשְׂדִּים וְלֹא שָׁמַע אֵלָיו וַיִּתְפֹּשׂ יִרְאִיָּיה בְּיִרְמְיָהוּ וַיְבִאֵהוּ אֶל־הַשָּׂרִים׃

15  The officials were furious with Yirmiyahu; they beat him and put him into prison, in the house of the scribe Yehonatan—for it had been made into a jail.

טו  וַיִּקְצְפוּ הַשָּׂרִים עַל־יִרְמְיָהוּ וְהִכּוּ אֹתוֹ וְנָתְנוּ אוֹתוֹ בֵּית הָאֵסוּר בֵּית יְהוֹנָתָן הַסֹּפֵר כִּי־אֹתוֹ עָשׂוּ לְבֵית הַכֶּלֶא׃

16  Thus Yirmiyahu came to the pit and the cells, and Yirmiyahu remained there a long time.

טז  כִּי בָא יִרְמְיָהוּ אֶל־בֵּית הַבּוֹר וְאֶל־הַחֲנֻיוֹת וַיֵּשֶׁב־שָׁם יִרְמְיָהוּ יָמִים רַבִּים׃

17  Then King Tzidkiyahu sent for him, and the king questioned him secretly in his palace. He asked, “Is there any word from Hashem?” “There is!” Yirmiyahu answered, and he continued, “You will be delivered into the hands of the king of Babylon.”

יז  וַיִּשְׁלַח הַמֶּלֶךְ צִדְקִיָּהוּ וַיִּקָּחֵהוּ וַיִּשְׁאָלֵהוּ הַמֶּלֶךְ בְּבֵיתוֹ בַּסֵּתֶר וַיֹּאמֶר הֲיֵשׁ דָּבָר מֵאֵת יְהוָה וַיֹּאמֶר יִרְמְיָהוּ יֵשׁ וַיֹּאמֶר בְּיַד מֶלֶךְ־בָּבֶל תִּנָּתֵן׃

18  And Yirmiyahu said to King Tzidkiyahu, “What wrong have I done to you, to your courtiers, and to this people, that you have put me in jail?

יח  וַיֹּאמֶר יִרְמְיָהוּ אֶל־הַמֶּלֶךְ צִדְקִיָּהוּ מֶה חָטָאתִי לְךָ וְלַעֲבָדֶיךָ וְלָעָם הַזֶּה כִּי־נְתַתֶּם אוֹתִי אֶל־בֵּית הַכֶּלֶא׃

19  And where are those neviim of yours who prophesied to you that the king of Babylon would never move against you and against this land?

יט  ואיו [וְאַיֵּה] נְבִיאֵיכֶם אֲשֶׁר־נִבְּאוּ לָכֶם לֵאמֹר לֹא־יָבֹא מֶלֶךְ־בָּבֶל עֲלֵיכֶם וְעַל הָאָרֶץ הַזֹּאת׃

20  Now, please hear me, O lord king, and grant my plea: Don’t send me back to the house of the scribe Yehonatan to die there.”

כ  וְעַתָּה שְׁמַע־נָא אֲדֹנִי הַמֶּלֶךְ תִּפָּל־נָא תְחִנָּתִי לְפָנֶיךָ וְאַל־תְּשִׁבֵנִי בֵּית יְהוֹנָתָן הַסֹּפֵר וְלֹא אָמוּת שָׁם׃

21  So King Tzidkiyahu gave instructions to lodge Yirmiyahu in the prison compound and to supply him daily with a loaf of bread from the Bakers’ Street—until all the bread in the city was gone. Yirmiyahu remained in the prison compound.

 

כא  וַיְצַוֶּה הַמֶּלֶךְ צִדְקִיָּהוּ וַיַּפְקִדוּ אֶת־יִרְמְיָהוּ בַּחֲצַר הַמַּטָּרָה וְנָתֹן לוֹ כִכַּר־לֶחֶם לַיּוֹם מִחוּץ הָאֹפִים עַד־תֹּם כָּל־הַלֶּחֶם מִן־הָעִיר וַיֵּשֶׁב יִרְמְיָהוּ בַּחֲצַר הַמַּטָּרָה׃

22  Now the king was sitting in the winter-house in the ninth month; and the brazier was burning before him.

v’-ha-ME-lekh yo-SHAYV bayt ha-KHO-ref ba-KHO-desh ha-t’-shee-EE v’-ET ha-AKH l’-fa-NAV m’-vo-A-ret

כב  וְהַמֶּלֶךְ יוֹשֵׁב בֵּית הַחֹרֶף בַּחֹדֶשׁ הַתְּשִׁיעִי וְאֶת הָאָח לְפָנָיו מְבֹעָרֶת.

36:22   The king was sitting in the winter house 

The dramatic showdown between the word of God, as dictated to Baruch by Yirmiyahu, and the unrepentant Yehoyakim, takes place in the king’s winter palace. The ninth month on the Hebrew calendar, the month of Kislev, occurs in the dead of winter. Kislev can be a cold, bitter month, with fierce rains and snow.  The aristocracy and the wealthy class could afford to build winter homes heated by coal stoves. In this fire Yehoyakim mockingly burns Yirmiyahu’s scroll, sealing his own fate. Ruins of a palace found in Ramat Rachel, in south-east Jerusalem, have been identified as the winter palace of Yehoyakim.

 Comment

23  And it came to pass, when Jehudi had read three or four columns, that he cut it with the penknife, and cast it into the fire that was in the brazier, until all the roll was consumed in the fire that was in the brazier.

כג  וַיְהִי כִּקְרוֹא יְהוּדִי שָׁלֹשׁ דְּלָתוֹת וְאַרְבָּעָה יִקְרָעֶהָ בְּתַעַר הַסֹּפֵר וְהַשְׁלֵךְ אֶל הָאֵשׁ אֲשֶׁר אֶל הָאָח עַד תֹּם כָּל הַמְּגִלָּה עַל הָאֵשׁ אֲשֶׁר עַל הָאָח.

24  Yet they were not afraid, nor rent their garments, neither the king, nor any of his servants that heard all these words.

כד  וְלֹא פָחֲדוּ וְלֹא קָרְעוּ אֶת בִּגְדֵיהֶם הַמֶּלֶךְ וְכָל עֲבָדָיו הַשֹּׁמְעִים אֵת כָּל הַדְּבָרִים הָאֵלֶּה.

25  Moreover Elnathan and Delaiah and Gemariah had entreated the king not to burn the roll; but he would not hear them.

כה  וְגַם אֶלְנָתָן וּדְלָיָהוּ וּגְמַרְיָהוּ הִפְגִּעוּ בַמֶּלֶךְ לְבִלְתִּי שְׂרֹף אֶת הַמְּגִלָּה וְלֹא שָׁמַע אֲלֵיהֶם.

26  And the king commanded Jerahmeel the king’s son, and Seraiah the son of Azriel, and Shelemiah the son of Abdeel, to take Baruch the scribe and Yirmiyahu the navi; but Hashem hid them.

כו  וַיְצַוֶּה הַמֶּלֶךְ אֶת יְרַחְמְאֵל בֶּן הַמֶּלֶךְ וְאֶת שְׂרָיָהוּ בֶן עַזְרִיאֵל וְאֶת שֶׁלֶמְיָהוּ בֶּן עַבְדְּאֵל לָקַחַת אֶת בָּרוּךְ הַסֹּפֵר וְאֵת יִרְמְיָהוּ הַנָּבִיא וַיַּסְתִּרֵם יְהוָה.

27  Then the word of Hashem came to Yirmiyahu, after that the king had burned the roll, and the words which Baruch wrote at the mouth of Yirmiyahu, saying:

כז  וַיְהִי דְבַר יְהוָה אֶל יִרְמְיָהוּ אַחֲרֵי שְׂרֹף הַמֶּלֶךְ אֶת הַמְּגִלָּה וְאֶת הַדְּבָרִים אֲשֶׁר כָּתַב בָּרוּךְ מִפִּי יִרְמְיָהוּ לֵאמֹר.

28  ‘Take thee again another roll, and write in it all the former words that were in the first roll, which Yehoyakim the king of Yehudah hath burned.

כח  שׁוּב קַח לְךָ מְגִלָּה אַחֶרֶת וּכְתֹב עָלֶיהָ אֵת כָּל הַדְּבָרִים הָרִאשֹׁנִים אֲשֶׁר הָיוּ עַל הַמְּגִלָּה הָרִאשֹׁנָה אֲשֶׁר שָׂרַף יְהוֹיָקִים מֶלֶךְ יְהוּדָה.

29  And concerning Yehoyakim king of Yehudah thou shalt say: Thus saith Hashem: Thou hast burned this roll, saying: Why hast thou written therein, saying: The king of Bavel shall certainly come and destroy this land, and shall cause to cease from thence man and beast?

כט  וְעַל יְהוֹיָקִים מֶלֶךְ יְהוּדָה תֹאמַר כֹּה אָמַר יְהוָה אַתָּה שָׂרַפְתָּ אֶת הַמְּגִלָּה הַזֹּאת לֵאמֹר מַדּוּעַ כָּתַבְתָּ עָלֶיהָ לֵאמֹר בֹּא יָבוֹא מֶלֶךְ בָּבֶל וְהִשְׁחִית אֶת הָאָרֶץ הַזֹּאת וְהִשְׁבִּית מִמֶּנָּה אָדָם וּבְהֵמָה.

30  Therefore thus saith Hashem concerning Yehoyakim king of Yehudah: He shall have none to sit upon the throne of David; and his dead body shall be cast out in the day to the heat, and in the night to the frost.

ל  לָכֵן כֹּה אָמַר יְהוָה עַל יְהוֹיָקִים מֶלֶךְ יְהוּדָה לֹא יִהְיֶה לּוֹ יוֹשֵׁב עַל כִּסֵּא דָוִד וְנִבְלָתוֹ תִּהְיֶה מֻשְׁלֶכֶת לַחֹרֶב בַּיּוֹם וְלַקֶּרַח בַּלָּיְלָה.

31  And I will visit upon him and his seed and his servants their iniquity; and I will bring upon them, and upon the inhabitants of Yerushalayim, and upon the men of Yehudah, all the evil that I have pronounced against them, but they hearkened not.’

לא  וּפָקַדְתִּי עָלָיו וְעַל זַרְעוֹ וְעַל עֲבָדָיו אֶת עֲוֹנָם וְהֵבֵאתִי עֲלֵיהֶם וְעַל יֹשְׁבֵי יְרוּשָׁלִַם וְאֶל אִישׁ יְהוּדָה אֵת כָּל הָרָעָה אֲשֶׁר דִּבַּרְתִּי אֲלֵיהֶם וְלֹא שָׁמֵעוּ.

32  Then took Yirmiyahu another roll, and gave it to Baruch the scribe, the son of Neriah; who wrote therein from the mouth of Yirmiyahu all the words of the book which Yehoyakim king of Yehudah had burned in the fire; and there were added besides unto them many like words.

לב  וְיִרְמְיָהוּ לָקַח מְגִלָּה אַחֶרֶת וַיִּתְּנָהּ אֶל בָּרוּךְ בֶּן נֵרִיָּהוּ הַסֹּפֵר וַיִּכְתֹּב עָלֶיהָ מִפִּי יִרְמְיָהוּ אֵת כָּל דִּבְרֵי הַסֵּפֶר אֲשֶׁר שָׂרַף יְהוֹיָקִים מֶלֶךְ יְהוּדָה בָּאֵשׁ וְעוֹד נוֹסַף עֲלֵיהֶם דְּבָרִים רַבִּים כָּהֵמָּה.

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Jeremiah 35
Jeremiah 37

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Jeremiah 36

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