Jeremiah 39

Jeremiah 39 has the prophet in Jerusalem as it comes under siege of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon.  This happens during the 9th year of Zedekiah’s reign, and the siege lasts for about 18 months before “a breach was made against the city”.  The city was surrounded, preventing all business and trade from entering or leaving the city, and eventually starving the population into surrender – or the defenses of the city gave way and the surrounding army poured into the weakened city.  It was not a pretty sight.

Zedekiah and his solders saw what has happening.  “When Zedekiah king of Judah and all the soldiers saw them, they fled, going out of the city”.  Probably there was a private passage underground, leading without the walls, by which Zedekiah and his followers might escape unperceived.  They weren’t  interested in being captured, so they took off but “the army of the Chaldeans pursued them” and eventually run them down out in the plains of Jericho.  And as part of the work to be sure there was no question of who was in charge, another portion of the army “broke down the walls of Jerusalem”.

Zedekiah is captured along with his sons and leaders of the army.  He is brought to Nebuchadnezzar and while the rest of his leadership were killed before him, he had his eyes put out and was bound.  But the king of Babylon ordered the captain of his guard to find and care for Jeremiah. He had to wonder what would become of him when the Babylonians eventually conquered Jerusalem. God cared for His faithful servant, keeping him safe and in favor with Nebuchadnezzar and his captains.  “Take him, look after him well, and do him no harm, but deal with him as he tells you.”

So Jeremiah was able to dwell among the people and was protected by the Babylonians, being released from his captivity in Zedekiah’s kingdom.  He was able to live among the people once again after being isolated for some period of time by Judah’s king.  God had promised his safety, and God did exactly what he promised.  “For I will surely save you, and you shall not fall by the sword, but you shall have your life as a prize of war,  because you have put your trust in me”.  God is faithful.  Jeremiah believed and trusted God.  And God faithfully and fully delivered.  God never fails!

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