Jeremiah Chapter 32 to 33 : Easy-to-Read Version  | SearchSearch | Next Version | Previous Page | Next Page |

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Jeremiah Buys a Field

32 This is the message from the Lord that came to Jeremiah during the tenth year that Zedekiah was king of Judah.* The tenth year of Zedekiah was the 18th year of Nebuchadnezzar. 2At that time, the army of the king of Babylon was surrounding the city of Jerusalem. And Jeremiah was under arrest in the courtyard of the guard. This courtyard was at the palace of the king of Judah. 3(Zedekiah king of Judah had put Jeremiah in prison in that place. Zedekiah didn’t like the things Jeremiah prophesied.* Jeremiah had said, “The Lord says: ‘I will soon give the city of Jerusalem to the king of Babylon. Nebuchadnezzar will capture this city. 4Zedekiah king of Judah will not escape from the army of the Babylonians. But he will surely be given to the king of Babylon. And Zedekiah will speak to the king of Babylon face to face. Zedekiah will see him with his own eyes. 5The king of Babylon will take Zedekiah to Babylon. Zedekiah will stay there until I have punished him.’ This message is from the Lord. ‘If you fight against the army of the Babylonians, you will not succeed.’”) 6While Jeremiah was prisoner, he said, “The message from the Lord came to me. This was the message: 7Jeremiah, your cousin, Hanamel, will come to you soon. He is the son of your uncle Shallum. Hanamel will say to you, ‘Jeremiah, buy my field near the town of Anathoth. Buy it because you are my nearest relative. It is your right and your responsibility to buy that field.’ 8“Then it happened just as the Lord said. My cousin Hanamel came to me in the courtyard of the guard. Hanamel said to me, ‘Jeremiah, buy my field near the town of Anathoth, in the land of the family group of Benjamin. Buy that land for yourself because it is your right to buy it and own it.’” So I knew that this was a message from the Lord. 9I bought the field at Anathoth from my cousin Hanamel. I weighed out 17 shekels* of silver for him. 10I signed the deed.* And I had a copy of the deed sealed up.* And I got some men to witness the things I had done. And I weighed out the silver on the scales. 11Then I took the sealed copy of the deed and the copy that was not sealed, 12and I gave them to Baruch. Baruch was the son of Neriah. Neriah was the son of Mahseiah. The sealed copy of the deed had all the terms and conditions of my purchase. I gave this deed to Baruch while my cousin Hanamel and the other witnesses were there. Those witnesses also signed the deed. There were also many people of Judah sitting in the courtyard that saw me give the deed to Baruch. 13With all the people watching, I said to Baruch: 14“The Lord All-Powerful, the God of Israel, says: ‘Take both copies of the deed—the sealed copy and the copy that was not sealed—and put them in a clay jar. Do this so that these deeds will last a long time.’ 15The Lord All- Powerful, the God of Israel, says: ‘In the future, my people will once again buy houses, fields, and vineyards in the land of Israel.’” 16After I gave the deed to Baruch son of Neriah I prayed to the Lord. I said: 17“Lord God, you made the skies and the earth. You made them with your great power. There is nothing too wonderful for you to do. 18Lord, you are loyal and kind to thousands of people. But you also bring punishment to children for their fathers’ sins. Great and powerful God, your name is the Lord All-Powerful. 19You plan and do great things, Lord. You see everything that people do. You give reward to people that do good things and you punish people that do bad things—you give them what they deserve. 20Lord, you did powerful miracles in the land of Egypt. You have done powerful miracles even until today. You did those things in Israel and you did those things wherever there are people. You have become famous because of these things. 21Lord, you used powerful miracles and brought your people Israel out of Egypt. You used your own powerful hand to do those things. Your power was amazing! 22“Lord, you gave this land to the people of Israel. This is the land you promised to give to their ancestors* long ago. It is a very good land. It is a good land with many good things. 23The people of Israel came into this land and took it for their own. But those people didn’t obey you. They didn’t follow your teachings. They didn’t do the things you commanded. So you made all these terrible things happen to the people of Israel. 24“And now, the enemy has surrounded the city. They are building ramps, so that they can get over the walls of Jerusalem and capture it. By using their swords, and hunger, and terrible sicknesses, the Babylonian army will defeat the city of Jerusalem. The Babylonian army is attacking the city now. Lord, you said this would happen—and now you see it is happening. 25“Lord my Master, all of those bad things are happening. But now you are telling me, ‘Jeremiah, buy the field with silver and choose some men to witness the purchase.’ You are telling me this while the Babylonian army is ready to capture the city. {Why should I waste my money like that?}” 26Then the message from the Lord came to Jeremiah: 27“Jeremiah, I am the Lord. I am the God of every person on the earth. Jeremiah, you know that nothing is impossible for me.” 28The Lord also said, “I will soon give the city of Jerusalem to the Babylonian army and to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon. That army will capture the city. 29The Babylonian army is already attacking the city of Jerusalem. They will soon enter the city and start a fire. They will burn this city down. There are houses in this city where the people of Jerusalem made me angry by offering sacrifices to the false god Baal* on the housetops. And the people poured out drink offerings to other idol gods. The Babylonian army will burn down those houses. 30I have watched the people of Israel and the people of Judah. Everything they do is evil. They have done evil things since they were young. The people of Israel have made me very angry. They have made me angry because they worship idols that they made with their own hands.” This message is from the Lord. 31“From the time that Jerusalem was built until now, the people of this city have made me angry. This city has made me so angry, I must remove it from my sight. 32I will destroy Jerusalem because of all the evil things the people of Israel and Judah have done. The people, their kings, leaders, their priests and prophets, the men of Judah, and the people of Jerusalem have all made me angry. 33“Those people should have come to me for help. But they turned their backs to me. I tried to teach those people again and again. But they would not listen to me. I tried to correct them, but they would not listen. 34Those people have made their idols—and I hate those idols. They put their idols in the temple* that is called by my name. In this way, they made my temple ‘dirty.’ 35“In the Valley of Ben Hinnom,* those people built high places* to the false god Baal.* They built those worship places so that they could burn their sons and daughters as child sacrifices. I never commanded them to do such a terrible thing. I never even thought the people of Judah would do such a terrible thing. 36“You people are saying, ‘The king of Babylon will capture Jerusalem. He will use swords, hunger, and terrible sicknesses to defeat this city.’ But the Lord, the God of the people of Israel, says: 37‘I have forced the people of Israel and Judah to leave their land. I was very angry with those people. But I will bring them back to this place. I will gather those people from the land where I forced them to go. I will bring them back to this place. I will let them live in peace and safety. 38The people of Israel and Judah will be my people. And I will be their God. 39I will give those people the desire to be truly one people. They will have one goal—they will truly want to worship me all their lives. They will truly want to do this, and so will their children. 40“‘I will make an Agreement with the people of Israel and Judah. This Agreement will last forever. In this Agreement, I will never turn away from those people. I will always be good to them. I will make them want to respect me. Then they will never turn away from me. 41They will make me happy. I will enjoy doing good to them. And I will surely plant them in this land and make them grow. I will do this with all my heart and soul.’” 42This is what the Lord says: “I have brought this great disaster to the people of Israel and Judah. In the same way, I will bring good things to them. I promise to do good things for them. 43You people are saying: ‘This land is an empty desert. There are no people or animals here. The Babylonian army defeated this country.’ But in the future, people will once again buy fields in this land. 44People will use their money and buy fields. They will sign and seal their agreements. People will witness the people signing their deeds.* People will again buy fields in the land where the family group of Benjamin lives. They will buy fields in the area around Jerusalem. They will buy fields in the towns of the land of Judah, in the hill country, in the western foothills, and in the area of the southern desert. That will happen because I will bring your people back home.” This message is from the Lord.

tenth year … Judah This was 588–587 B.C. This was the year Jerusalem was destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar. prophesied Spoke for God. shekel Or, “2/5 of an ounce.” deed(s)  A piece of paper that proves a person owns a certain piece of property. sealed up Important documents were rolled up and tied with a string. Then a piece of clay or wax was put on the string. Then a person’s mark was put in that clay or wax. This way, people could prove nothing in the document was changed. ancestors Literally, “fathers,” meaning a person’s parents, grandparents, and all the people they are descended from. Baal The Canaanite people believed that this false god brought the rain and storms. They also thought that he made the land produce good crops. temple The special building in Jerusalem for Jewish worship. Valley of Ben Hinnom This valley is also called, “Gehenna.” This name comes from the Hebrew name “Ge Hinnom—Hinnom’s Valley.” This place became an example of how God punishes wicked people. high places Special places where the people worshiped false gods. These places were often on hilltops, but not always. Some ‘high places’ were in valleys.

The Promise of God

33 The message from the Lord came to Jeremiah a second time. Jeremiah was still locked up in the courtyard* of the guards. 2The Lord made the earth, and he keeps it safe. The Lord is his name. The Lord says, 3“Judah, pray to me, and I will answer you. I will tell you important secrets. You have never heard these things before. 4The Lord is the God of Israel. The Lord says these things about the houses in Jerusalem and about the palaces* of the kings of Judah. The enemy will pull those houses down. The enemy will build ramps up to the top of the city walls. The enemy will use swords and fight the people in these cities. 5“The people in Jerusalem have done many bad things. I am angry at those people. I have turned against them. So I will kill many, many people there. The Babylonian army will come to fight against Jerusalem. There will be many, many dead bodies in the houses in Jerusalem. 6“But then I will heal the people in that city. I will let those people enjoy peace and safety. 7I will make good things happen to Judah and Israel again. I will make those people strong like in the past. 8They sinned against me—but I will wash away that sin. They fought against me—but I will forgive them. 9Then Jerusalem will be a wonderful place. People will be happy. And people from other nations will praise it. This will happen at the time those people hear about the good things happening there. They will hear about the good things I am doing for Jerusalem. 10“You people are saying, ‘Our country is an empty desert. There are no people or animals living there.’ It is now quiet in the streets of Jerusalem and in the towns of Judah. But it will be noisy there soon. 11There will be sounds of joy and happiness. There will be the happy sounds of a bride and groom. There will be the sounds of people bringing their gifts to the Lord’s temple.* Those people will say, ‘Praise the Lord All-Powerful! The Lord is good! The Lord’s kindness continues forever!’ The people will say these things because I will again do good things to Judah. It will be like in the beginning.” The Lord said these things. 12The Lord All-Powerful says, “This place is empty now. There are no people or animals living here. But there will be people in all the towns of Judah. There will be shepherds, and there will be pastures where they will let their flocks rest. 13Shepherds count their sheep as the sheep walk in front of them. People will be counting their sheep all around the country—in the hill-country, in the western foothills, in the Negev,* and in all the other towns of Judah.” The Good Branch 14This message is from the Lord: “I made a special promise to the people of Israel and Judah. The time is coming when I will do the things I promised. 15At that time, I will make a good ‘branch’ grow from David’s family. That good ‘branch’ will do the things that are good and right for the country. 16At the time of this ‘branch,’ the people of Judah will be saved. The people will live safely in Jerusalem. The branch’s name is: ‘The Lord is Good.’” 17The Lord says, “A person from David’s family will always sit on the throne and rule the family of Israel. 18And there will always be priests from the family of Levi. Those priests will always stand before me and offer burnt offerings and sacrifice grain offerings and give sacrifices to me.” 19This message from the Lord came to Jeremiah. 20The Lord says, “I have an agreement with day and night. I agreed that they will continue forever. You can’t change that agreement. Day and night will always come at the right time. If you could change that agreement, 21then you could change my Agreement with David and Levi. Then descendants* from David would not be the kings and the family of Levi would not be priests. 22But I will give many descendants to my servant David and to the family group of Levi. They will be as many as the stars in the sky—no person can count all those stars. And they will be as many as the pieces of sand on the seashore—no person can count those pieces of sand.” 23Jeremiah received this message from the Lord: 24“Jeremiah, have you heard what the people are saying? Those people are saying, ‘The Lord turned away from the two families of Israel and Judah. The Lord chose those people, but now he does not even accept them as a nation.’” 25The Lord says, “If my agreement with day and night does not continue, and if I didn’t make the laws for the sky and earth, then maybe I would leave those people. 26Then maybe I would turn away from Jacob’s* descendants.* And then maybe I would not let David’s descendants rule over the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. But David is my servant. And I will be kind to those people. And I will again cause good things to happen to those people.”

courtyard An area around the king’s house. palace(s) A large house for the king and his family. temple The special building in Jerusalem for Jewish worship. Negev The desert area south of Judah. descendants A person’s children and their future families. Jacob’s Another name for Israel. See Gen. 32:22–28.

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