בֶּן־עֶשְׂרִים וְאַחַת שָׁנָה צִדְקִיָּהוּ בְמָלְכֹו וְאַחַת עֶשְׂרֵה שָׁנָה מָלַךְ בִּירוּשָׁלִָם וְשֵׁם אִמֹּו (חֲמִיטַל 52:1 חֲמוּטַל] בַּת־יִרְמְיָהוּ מִלִּבְנָה׃]
Jere. 52:1 Zedekiah was twenty-one years of age on his becoming king, and he reigned in Jerusalem eleven years; and the name of his mother was Hamutal, daughter of Jeremiah, from Libnah.
We have already learned much of this in 2Kin. 23:31 and 2Kin. 24:18. In the first of these Jehoiahaz, who reigned for only three months when Nebuchadnezzar replaced him with Zedekiah was described. He was also identified as Hamutal’s son, so he and Zedekiah were brothers and he was two years older than Zedekiah.
Also the name of Hamutal is misspelled here, as it was before in 2Kin. 24:18. And again I have to ask your forgiveness for the missing left parenthesis.
וַיַּעַשׂ הָרַע בְּעֵינֵי יְהוָה כְּכֹל אֲשֶׁר־עָשָׂה יְהֹויָקִים׃ 52:2
Jere. 52:2 And he did the evil in the eyes of the Lord like all that Jehoiakim had done.
כִּי עַל־אַף יְהוָה הָיְתָה בִּירוּשָׁלִַם וִיהוּדָה עַד־הִשְׁלִיכֹו אֹותָם מֵעַל פָּנָיו וַיִּמְרֹד צִדְקִיָּהוּ בְּמֶלֶךְ 52:3 בָּבֶל׃
Jere. 52:3 So because of the “anger” of the Lord, it happened in Jerusalem and Judah until His removing them from His presence. So Zedekiah had rebelled against the king of Babylon.
יְהִי בַשָּׁנָה הַתְּשִׁעִית לְמָלְכֹו בַּחֹדֶשׁ הָעֲשִׂירִי בֶּעָשֹׂור לַחֹדֶשׁ בָּא נְבוּכַדְרֶאצַּר מֶלֶךְ־בָּבֶל הוּא 52:4 וְכָל־חֵילֹו עַל־יְרוּשָׁלִַם וַיַּחֲנוּ עָלֶיהָ וַיִּבְנוּ עָלֶיהָ דָּיֵק סָבִיב׃
Jere. 52:4 And it was in his reign's ninth year, in the tenth month, on the month's tenth day, Nebuchadrezzar, king of Babylon, came, he and his entire army, against Jerusalem, and they camped by it and built a wall of siege against it all around.
This happened in the year 589 BCE on the 10th day of what is now the month of Tevet.
וַתָּבֹא הָעִיר בַּמָּצֹור עַד עַשְׁתֵּי עֶשְׂרֵה שָׁנָה לַמֶּלֶךְ צִדְקִיָּהוּ׃ 52:5
Jere. 52:5 And the city continued in the siege until the eleventh year for king Zedekiah,
בַּחֹדֶשׁ הָרְבִיעִי בְּתִשְׁעָה לַחֹדֶשׁ וַיֶּחֱזַק הָרָעָב בָּעִיר וְלֹא־הָיָה לֶחֶם לְעַם הָאָרֶץ׃ 52:6
Jere. 52:6 in the fourth month on the month's ninth day. Then the famine in the city was so severe that there was no bread for the people of the land. [Return to 2Kin. 25:3]
The fall of Jerusalem actually occurred prior to the destruction of the Temple, “exactly” one month before (see my discussion relating to vss. 52:12 and 13). That is now the month of Tammuz.
תִּבָּקַע הָעִיר וְכָל־אַנְשֵׁי הַמִּלְחָמָה יִבְרְחוּ וַיֵּצְאוּ מֵהָעִיר לַיְלָה דֶּרֶךְ שַׁעַר בֵּין־הַחֹמֹתַיִם אֲשֶׁר עַל־גַּן 52:7 הַמֶּלֶךְ וְכַשְׂדִּים עַל־הָעִיר סָבִיב וַיֵּלְכוּ דֶּרֶךְ הָעֲרָבָה׃
Jere. 52:7 Then the city was broken into and all the men of war fled and departed from the city at night through the gate between the walls that were by the garden of the king, though the Chaldeans were upon the city all around, so they went by way of the Arabah.
וַיִּרְדְּפוּ חֵיל־כַּשְׂדִּים אַחֲרֵי הַמֶּלֶךְ וַיַּשִּׂיגוּ אֶת־צִדְקִיָּהוּ בְּעַרְבֹת יְרֵחֹו וְכָל־חֵילֹו נָפֹצוּ מֵעָלָיו׃ 52:8
Jere. 52:8 But the Chaldean army chased after the king, and they overtook Zedekiah on the plains of Jericho, and all of his army were scattered from him.
וַיִּתְפְּשׂוּ אֶת־הַמֶּלֶךְ וַיַּעֲלוּ אֹתֹו אֶל־מֶלֶךְ בָּבֶל רִבְלָתָה בְּאֶרֶץ חֲמָת וַיְדַבֵּר אִתֹּו מִשְׁפָּטִים׃ 52:9
Jere. 52:9 Then they seized the king and brought him up to the king of Babylon, to Riblah in the land of Hamath, and he promised him judgments.
וַיִּשְׁחַט מֶלֶךְ־בָּבֶל אֶת־בְּנֵי צִדְקִיָּהוּ לְעֵינָיו וְגַם אֶת־כָּל־שָׂרֵי יְהוּדָה שָׁחַט בְּרִבְלָתָה׃ 52:10
Jere. 52:10 Then the king of Babylon slew the sons of Zedekiah in his sight; then he also slew all the princes of Judah in Riblah.
וְאֶת־עֵינֵי צִדְקִיָּהוּ עִוֵּר וַיַּאַסְרֵהוּ בַנְחֻשְׁתַּיִם וַיְבִאֵהוּ מֶלֶךְ־בָּבֶל בָּבֶלָה וַיִּתְּנֵהוּ בְבֵית־הַפְּקֻדֹּת 52:11 עַד־יֹום מֹותֹו׃
Jere. 52:11 Then he put out the eyes of Zedekiah, and bound him in chains, and the king of Babylon carried him to Babylon, and put him in prison until the day of his death.
וּבַחֹדֶשׁ הַחֲמִישִׁי בֶּעָשֹׂור לַחֹדֶשׁ הִיא שְׁנַת תְּשַׁע־עֶשְׂרֵה שָׁנָה לַמֶּלֶךְ נְבוּכַדְרֶאצַּר מֶלֶךְ־בָּבֶל בָּא 52:12 נְבוּזַרְאֲדָן רַב־טַבָּחִים עָמַד לִפְנֵי מֶלֶךְ־בָּבֶל בִּירוּשָׁלִָם׃
Jere. 52:12 And in the fifth month on the month's tenth day (that was the year of the ninteenth year for king Nebuchadrezzar, king of Babylon) Nebuzaradan, captain of the guardsmen arrived, standing before the king of Babylon in Jerusalem.
וַיִּשְׂרֹף אֶת־בֵּית־יְהוָה וְאֶת־בֵּית הַמֶּלֶךְ וְאֵת כָּל־בָּתֵּי יְרוּשָׁלִַם וְאֶת־כָּל־בֵּית הַגָּדֹול שָׂרַף בָּאֵשׁ׃ 52:13
Jere. 52:13 And he burned the house of the Lord and the house of the king and all the houses of Jerusalem, and he burned every house of an important man with fire.
This is amazing to me. In v. 52:12 we are told that the destruction of the Temple happened on the 10th day of what is now the month of Av, not the ninth day. And in 2Kin. 25:8 we are told that the destruction happened on or after the seventh day of Av. Why do we observe the ninth of Av as the anniversary of that awful event? Is this a traditional compromise? Why aren’t we told the truth? Would it dilute the holiness of the day? Maybe, but that’s no excuse for withholding truth from the people.
וְאֶת־כָּל־חֹמֹות יְרוּשָׁלִַם סָבִיב נָתְצוּ כָּל־חֵיל כַּשְׂדִּים אֲשֶׁר אֶת־רַב־טַבָּחִים׃ 52:14
Jere. 52:14 And the whole Chaldean army that was with the captain of the guardsmen broke down all the walls surrounding Jerusalem.
וּמִדַּלֹּות הָעָם וְאֶת־יֶתֶר הָעָם הַנִּשְׁאָרִים בָּעִיר וְאֶת־הַנֹּפְלִים אֲשֶׁר נָפְלוּ אֶל־מֶלֶךְ בָּבֶל וְאֵת יֶתֶר 52:15 הָאָמֹון הֶגְלָה נְבוּזַרְאֲדָן רַב־טַבָּחִים׃
Jere. 52:15 Then Nebuzaradan, captain of the guardsmen, took into exile the poorest of the people and the remnant of the people remaining in the city and the fallen away who had surrendered to the king of Babylon and the remnant of the multitude.
וּמִדַּלֹּות הָאָרֶץ הִשְׁאִיר נְבוּזַרְאֲדָן רַב־טַבָּחִים לְכֹרְמִים וּלְיֹגְבִים׃ 52:16
Jere. 52:16 But of the poorest of the land, Nebuzaradan, captain of the guardsmen, spared to be vinedressers and husbandmen.
וְאֶת־עַמּוּדֵי הַנְּחֹשֶׁת אֲשֶׁר לְבֵית־יְהוָה וְאֶת־הַמְּכֹנֹות וְאֶת־יָם הַנְּחֹשֶׁת אֲשֶׁר בְּבֵית־יְהוָה שִׁבְּרוּ 52:17
כַשְׂדִּים וַיִּשְׂאוּ אֶת־כָּל־נְחֻשְׁתָּם בָּבֶלָה׃
Jere. 52:17 And the Chaldeans broke down the pillars of brass that were for the house of the Lord and the pedestals and the basin of brass that were in the house of the Lord and carried all their brass to Babylon.
וְאֶת־הַסִּרֹות וְאֶת־הַיָּעִים וְאֶת־הַמְזַמְּרֹות וְאֶת־הַמִּזְרָקֹת וְאֶת־הַכַּפֹּות וְאֵת כָּל־כְּלֵי הַנְּחֹשֶׁת 52:18 אֲשֶׁר־יְשָׁרְתוּ בָהֶם לָקָחוּ׃
Jere. 52:18 And they took away the pots and the shovels and the snuffers and the bowls and the pans and all the vessels of brass that were used to minister with them.
וְאֶת־הַסִּפִּים וְאֶת־הַמַּחְתֹּות וְאֶת־הַמִּזְרָקֹות וְאֶת־הַסִּירֹות וְאֶת־הַמְּנֹרֹות וְאֶת־הַכַּפֹּות 52:19 וְאֶת־הַמְּנַקִיֹות אֲשֶׁר זָהָב זָהָב וַאֲשֶׁר־כֶּסֶף כָּסֶף לָקַח רַב־טַבָּחִים׃
Jere. 52:19 And the captain of the guardsmen took away the goblets and the firepans and the basins and the pots and the candlesticks and the pans and the bowls that were of purest gold and that were of purest silver.
הָעַמּוּדִים שְׁנַיִם הַיָּם אֶחָד וְהַבָּקָר שְׁנֵים־עָשָׂר נְחֹשֶׁת אֲשֶׁר־תַּחַת הַמְּכֹנֹות אֲשֶׁר עָשָׂה הַמֶּלֶךְ 52:20 שְׁלֹמֹה לְבֵית יְהוָה לֹא־הָיָה מִשְׁקָל לִנְחֻשְׁתָּם כָּל־הַכֵּלִים הָאֵלֶּה׃
Jere. 52:20 The two pillars and the one basin, and the twelve brass bulls that were under the pedestals that king Solomon had made for the house of the Lord (there was no weight to their brass of all these articles);
וְהָעַמּוּדִים שְׁמֹנֶה עֶשְׂרֵה אַמָּה (קֹומָה) [קֹומַת] הָעַמֻּד הָאֶחָד וְחוּט שְׁתֵּים־עֶשְׂרֵה אַמָּה 52:21 יְסֻבֶּנּוּ וְעָבְיֹו אַרְבַּע אַצְבָּעֹות נָבוּב׃
Jere. 52:21 and of the pillars, eighteen cubits was the height of each of the pillars, and a twelve-cubit line encircled it with its thickness four fingers, hollow.
The word in parentheses is misspelled. It should end with a tav in place of the heh. The correction is in the brackets.
וְכֹתֶרֶת עָלָיו נְחֹשֶׁת וְקֹומַת הַכֹּתֶרֶת הָאַחַת חָמֵשׁ אַמֹּות וּשְׂבָכָה וְרִמֹּונִים עַל־הַכֹּותֶרֶת 52:22 סָבִיב הַכֹּל נְחֹשֶׁת וְכָאֵלֶּה לַעַמּוּד הַשֵּׁנִי וְרִמֹּונִים׃
Jere. 52:22 And a capital of brass was on it, and the height of each capital was five cubits, and a network with pomegranates on the capital all around, the whole of brass; and like these was the other pillar’s with pomegranates. [Return to 2Kin. 25:17]
וַיִּהְיוּ הָרִמֹּנִים תִּשְׁעִים וְשִׁשָּׁה רוּחָה כָּל־הָרִמֹּונִים מֵאָה עַל־הַשְּׂבָכָה סָבִיב׃ 52:23
Jere. 52:23 And ninety-six pomegranates were on its outside; and all the pomegranates were a hundred on the encircling network.
וַיִּקַּח רַב־טַבָּחִים אֶת־שְׂרָיָה כֹּהֵן הָרֹאשׁ וְאֶת־צְפַנְיָה כֹּהֵן הַמִּשְׁנֶה וְאֶת־שְׁלֹשֶׁת שֹׁמְרֵי הַסַּף׃ 52:24
Jere. 52:24 And the captain of the guardsmen took Seraiah, the high priest, and Zephaniah, the second ranking priest, and three of the keepers of the door,
וּמִן־הָעִיר לָקַח סָרִיס אֶחָד אֲשֶׁר־הָיָה פָקִיד עַל־אַנְשֵׁי הַמִּלְחָמָה וְשִׁבְעָה אֲנָשִׁים מֵרֹאֵיְ 52:25 פְנֵי־הַמֶּלֶך אֲשֶׁר נִמְצְאוּ בָעִיר וְאֵת סֹפֵר שַׂר הַצָּבָא הַמַּצְבִּא אֶת־עַם הָאָרֶץ וְשִׁשִּׁים אִישׁ מֵעַם הָאָרֶץ הַנִּמְצְאִים בְּתֹוךְ הָעִיר׃
Jere. 52:25 and from the city he took one officer who had been set over the men of war, and seven men, observers of the person of the king, who were found in the city, and the scribe of the captain of the host mustering the people of the land, and sixty men from the people of the land found in the midst of the city.
וַיִּקַּח אֹותָם נְבוּזַרְאֲדָן רַב־טַבָּחִים וַיֹּלֶךְ אֹותָם אֶל־מֶלֶךְ בָּבֶל רִבְלָתָה׃ 52:26
Jere. 52:26 And Nebuzaradan, captain of the guardsmen, took them and brought them to the king of Babylon, to Riblah.
וַיַּכֶּה אֹותָם מֶלֶךְ בָּבֶל וַיְמִתֵם בְּרִבְלָה בְּאֶרֶץ חֲמָת וַיִּגֶל יְהוּדָה מֵעַל אַדְמָתֹו׃ 52:27
Jere. 52:27 And the king of Babylon smote them and put them to death in Riblah in the land of Hamath. So Judah went into exile from his soil.
זֶה הָעָם אֲשֶׁר הֶגְלָה נְבוּכַדְרֶאצַּר בִּשְׁנַת־שֶׁבַע יְהוּדִים שְׁלֹשֶׁת אֲלָפִים וְעֶשְׂרִים וּשְׁלֹשָׁה׃ 52:28
Jere. 52:28 Here are the people whom Nebuchadrezzar took into exile: In the seventh year, three thousand and twenty-three Jews;
בִּשְׁנַת שְׁמֹונֶה עֶשְׂרֵה לִנְבוּכַדְרֶאצַּר מִירוּשָׁלִַם נֶפֶשׁ שְׁמֹנֶה מֵאֹות שְׁלֹשִׁים וּשְׁנָיִם׃ 52:29
Jere. 52:29 in the eighteenth year for Nebuchadrezzar, eight hundred thirty-two persons from Jerusalem;
בִּשְׁנַת שָׁלֹשׁ וְעֶשְׂרִים לִנְבוּכַדְרֶאצַּר הֶגְלָה נְבוּזַרְאֲדָן רַב־טַבָּחִים יְהוּדִים נֶפֶשׁ שְׁבַע מֵאֹות 52:30 אַרְבָּעִים וַחֲמִשָּׁה כָּל־נֶפֶשׁ אַרְבַּעַת אֲלָפִים וְשֵׁשׁ מֵאֹות׃
Jere. 52:30 in the twenty-third year for Nebuchadrezzar, Nebuzaradan, captain of the guardsmen, took Jews into exile, seven hundred forty-five persons. The total of the persons were four thousand and six hundred.
וַיְהִי בִשְׁלֹשִׁים וָשֶׁבַע שָׁנָה לְגָלוּת יְהֹויָכִן מֶלֶךְ־יְהוּדָה בִּשְׁנֵים עָשָׂר חֹדֶשׁ בְּעֶשְׂרִים וַחֲמִשָּׁה 52:31 לַחֹדֶשׁ נָשָׂא אֱוִיל מְרֹדַךְ מֶלֶךְ בָּבֶל בִּשְׁנַת מַלְכֻתֹו אֶת־רֹאשׁ יְהֹויָכִין מֶלֶךְ־יְהוּדָה וַיֹּצֵא אֹותֹו מִבֵּית (הַכְּלִיא) [הַכְּלוּא]׃
Jere. 52:31 And it was in the thirty-seventh year for the exile of Jehoiachin, king of Judah, in the twelfth month, on the month's twenty-fifth day, Evil-merodach, king of Babylon, in a year of his reign, lifted up the head of Jehoiachin, king of Judah, and brought him out from the prison.
See my remarks about the “error” and its “correction” in this verse at Jere. 37:4.
וַיְדַבֵּר אִתֹּו טֹבֹות וַיִּתֵּן אֶת־כִּסְאֹו מִמַּעַל לְכִסֵּא (מְלָכִים) [הַמְּלָכִים] אֲשֶׁר אִתֹּו בְּבָבֶל׃ 52:32
Jere. 52:32 And he spoke with him pleasantly; then he set his throne highest according to the thrones of the kings who were with him in Babylon.
The word in parentheses is probably in error, as it’s missing the heh prefix translated as the (kings). The correction is in the brackets.
וְשִׁנָּה אֵת בִּגְדֵי כִלְאֹו וְאָכַל לֶחֶם לְפָנָיו תָּמִיד כָּל־יְמֵי חַיָּו׃ 52:33
Jere. 52:33 And he changed the garments of his imprisonment, and he would eat bread before him continually all the days of his life.
וַאֲרֻחָתֹו אֲרֻחַת תָּמִיד נִתְּנָה־לֹּו מֵאֵת מֶלֶךְ־בָּבֶל דְּבַר־יֹום בְּיֹומֹו עַד־יֹום מֹותֹו כֹּל יְמֵי חַיָּיו׃ 52:34
Jere. 52:34 And he gave him an allowance; an ongoing allowance was given to him from the king of Babylon, a portion a day, in his days until the time of his death, all the days of his life.
These last four verses offer us clues as to whether Jeremiah wrote this chapter. It’s highly unlikely. This chapter was written about 26 years into the Babylonian exile. Jeremiah, as far as we know, did not live until then. Apparently someone who knew the book of Jeremiah (and perhaps Jeremiah himself) decided it was not finished yet, so he added this final chapter.
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