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Jeremiah 34

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 1 The word which came to Jeremiah from the LORD, when Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, and all his army, and all the kingdoms of the earth of his dominion, and all the people, fought against Jerusalem, and against all the cities of it, saying,

 2 "Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: Go and speak to Zedekiah king of Judah, and tell him, 'Thus says the Lord: Behold, I will give this city into the hand of the king of Babylon, and he shall burn it with fire;

 3 And you shall not escape out of his hand, but shall surely be taken, and delivered into his hand; and your eyes shall behold the eyes of the king of Babylon, and he shall speak with you mouth to mouth, and you shall go to Babylon.

 4 Yet hear the word of the LORD, O Zedekiah king of Judah; Thus says the Lord of you, You shall not die by the sword:

 5 But you shall die in peace; and with the burnings of your fathers, the former kings which were before you, so shall they burn incense for you; and they will lament you, saying, Ah lord! for I have pronounced the word,' says the Lord."

 6 Then Jeremiah the prophet spoke all these words to Zedekiah king of Judah in Jerusalem,

 7 When the king of Babylon's army fought against Jerusalem, and against all the cities of Judah that were left, against Lachish, and against Azekah because these defensed cities remained of the cities of Judah.

 8 This is the word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD, after the king Zedekiah had made a covenant with all the people who were in Jerusalem, proclaiming liberty to them;

 9 That every man should let his manservant, and every man his maidservant, who were a Hebrew or a Hebrewess, to go free; so that no brother who is a Jew should be enslaved.

 10 Now when all the princes, and all the people, who had entered into the covenant, heard that everyone should let his manservant, and everyone his maidservant, go free, so that none should be enslaved any more, then they obeyed and freed them.

 11 But afterward they reneged, and caused the servants and the handmaids, whom they had let go free, to return, bringing them back into subjection for servants and for handmaids.

 12 Therefore the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying,

 13 "Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel; I made a covenant with your fathers in the day that I brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery, saying,

 14 At the end of seven years you shall free every man that is a brother Hebrew who has been sold to you; and when he has served you six years, you shall let him go free from you; but your fathers did not heed me, neither did they incline their ear to listen to me.

 15 You had repented and had done right in my sight in proclaiming liberty to every man that was his neighbor; and you had made a covenant before me in the house that is called by my name.

 16 But now you have you reversed your decision and polluted my name. You have caused every man, his servant, and every woman, his handmaid, whom he had set at liberty at their pleasure, to return to slavery. You have brought them into subjection to be to you for servants and for handmaids.

 17 Therefore thus says the Lord: You have not heeded me, to proclaim liberty, everyone to his brother, and every man to his neighbor. Behold, I proclaim a liberty for you," says the Lord, "to the sword, to the pestilence, and to the famine; and I will cause you to be exiled into all the kingdoms of the earth.

 18 And I will give the men that have transgressed my covenant, which have not performed the words of the covenant that they had made before me, when they cut the calf in two, and passed between the parts of it,

 19 The princes of Judah, and the princes of Jerusalem, the eunuchs, and the priests, and all the people of the land, who passed between the parts of the calf;

 20 I will even give them into the hand of their enemies, and into the hand of those who seek their life; and their dead bodies shall be for food to the fowls of the heaven, and to the beasts of the earth.

 21 And I will give Zedekiah king of Judah and his princes into the hand of their enemies, and into the hand of those who seek their life, and into the hand of the king of Babylon's army, which has withdrawn from you.

 22 Behold, I will command," says the Lord, "and cause them to return to this city; and they shall fight against it, and take it, and burn it with fire; and I will make the cities of Judah a desolation without an inhabitant."


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