1. Title.—The book is named after its principal character, Jeremiah. In Hebrew the name appears in two forms: (1) Yirmeyahu (chs. 1:1, 11; 29:27; 36:4; etc.), and (2) Yirmeyah (chs. 27:1; 28:5, 6, 10, 11, 12, 15; 29:1; etc.). The Greek equivalent for both forms is Ieremias, from which our English, “Jeremiah,” is derived. The meaning of the name is uncertain. The second half, Yahu, or Yah, stands for Yahweh (see Vol. I, pp. 171–173; see on Ex. 15:2; Ps. 68:4). According to the Aramaic papyri of the 5th century b.c. Yahu was a regular form of the divine name among the Jewish colonists on the island of Elephantine in Upper Egypt (see Vol. III, pp. 79–83). The first half of the name has been variously interpreted as meaning “casts,” “exalts,” “establishes,” etc. Hence “Jeremiah” may mean “Yahweh establishes,” or “Yahweh casts,” etc.
The opening words of the prophecy constitute a title to the book: “The words of Jeremiah.” In the LXX the opening phrase reads: “The word of God that came to Jeremiah,” which is similar to the introductory phrases commonly used in other prophetic books of the OT (see Eze. 1:3; Hosea 1:1; Joel 1:1; etc.).
2. Authorship.—Jeremiah was the author of at least the major portion of the book. The actual writing was done by his trusted secretary, Baruch, the son of Neriah (see ch. 36:4, 27, 28, 32). Baruch may also have collected, edited, and preserved the material in the book, and may possibly have contributed to the biographical narratives it contains. His position as “the scribe” and secretary of Jeremiah implies that Baruch was well educated. According to Josephus (Antiquities x. 9. 1), Baruch came from a distinguished family in Judah. It appears that his brother was Zedekiah’s quartermaster, who went with the king to Babylon (see on Jer. 51:59). His high character and influence are shown by the fact that the remnant who wished to flee to Egypt charged Baruch with influencing the prophet against them (see ch. 43:3), also by the fact that some spurious writings were later issued under his name. One of these, the book of Baruch, is found in the Apocrypha. Ever loyal to Jeremiah, he went with him to the land of Egypt when the prophet was forced to accompany the remnant of Judah to that land (see ch. 43:5–7).
The closing chapter of the book (ch. 52) consists of a historical summary—not a prophecy—that extends to a time far beyond the known ministry of Jeremiah, and that was probably written by a later hand. Whoever the writer may have been, he was careful to make it clear that this chapter was not the work of the prophet Jeremiah. Before adding this historical appendix he wrote, “Thus far are the words of Jeremiah” (ch. 51:64).
The book of Jeremiah itself contains an account of how the first two editions of this prophecy were written (see ch. 36). For more than a score of years Jeremiah had been seeking to persuade the people of Judah to turn to God with real heart religion. In the fourth year of Jehoiakim (604 b.c.) he was commanded by God to put the main substance of his preaching into writing so that it could be read publicly by his secretary (ch. 36:1, 2). In response to this command, Jeremiah dictated to Baruch the words of the first edition on a roll of parchment (ch. 36:1–4, 17, 18; PK 432). Baruch was then given the dangerous task of reading these words to the people in the Temple on a fast day (ch. 36:5–8).
Later, when one of Jehoiakim’s officers, Jehudi, read the scroll to the king, Jehoiakim angrily snatched it, cut it with a penknife, and threw it into the fire (ch. 36:20–23). This made necessary the rewriting of the earlier messages (see ch. 36:27, 28, 32). Again, Baruch wrote the words at the dictation of Jeremiah. This second copy was a new and larger edition, containing not only the former messages, but additional messages as well (see ch. 36:32).
The book of Jeremiah strikingly reveals the rich personality of its author. His exquisitely sensitive nature is reflected in a number of passages which have been called his “confessions” (chs. 11:18–23; 12:1–5; 15:10–18; 17:14–18; 18:18–23; 20:7–18; cf. chs. 1:4–10; 6:11; 8:21 to 9:1). These passages give us a spiritual autobiography of this man of God. Jeremiah was naturally shy and retiring, and frequently struggled with great inner conflicts. But through divine power he developed a spiritual courage that made him a mighty hero for God.
In addition to this group of deeply personal passages the book of Jeremiah contains a series of biographical and historical narratives. More can be known of the life and ministry of Jeremiah than of the life and ministry of the writers of the other prophetic books. In fact one scholar, A. B. Davidson, has affirmed that this book “does not so much teach religious truths as present a religious personality” (Hastings, Dictionary of the Bible, vol. 2, p. 576).
Jeremiah lived at Anathoth (chs. 1:1; 29:27), the modern RaЖs elРKharruЖbeh, about 21/2 mi. (4 km.) northeast of Jerusalem. He was of priestly descent (ch. 1:1). His father was Hilkiah, who is doubtless to be distinguished from the high priest of that name who discovered the book of the law (see 2 Kings 22:8). Jeremiah’s father is designated as “of the priests” and not “the priest” or “the high priest.” The fact that Jeremiah lived at Anathoth implies that he was probably a descendant of Eli and belonged to the line of Abiathar, whom Solomon deposed from the high priesthood (see on 1 Kings 2:26, 27).
Jeremiah’s call to the prophetic office came in 627/626 b.c., the 13th year of Josiah’s reign (ch. 1:2; see pp. 18, 19; also Vol. II, p. 77). Soon thereafter God bade the prophet to preach in Jerusalem (ch. 2:2). He did not confine his ministry to Jerusalem, but conducted a preaching tour through the cities of Judah (ch. 11:6; PK 428). Upon his return to Anathoth his fellow townsmen formed a plot to take his life (ch. 11:18–23). To escape these persecutions he seems to have transferred his residence to Jerusalem. Here another attempt was made on his life. His bold prediction in the beginning of the reign of Jehoiakim, son of Josiah, that the Temple would become like Shiloh, angered the priests, false prophets, and people in Jerusalem, and they demanded that Jeremiah be put to death (ch. 26:6–11). However, the princes arose to his defense (ch. 26:16).
Later, when Nebuchadnezzar’s army withdrew from the final siege of Jerusalem for a time to meet the threat posed by the approach of the king of Egypt, Jeremiah was arrested when he attempted to go to Anathoth (ch. 37:11–15). The prophet was accused of deserting to the Chaldeans and was again beaten and imprisoned. In fact he nearly lost his life in the miry dungeon of Malchiah (see ch. 38:6), but was rescued by Ebed-melech the Ethiopian (see ch. 38:7–13). However, Zedekiah apparently kept him in prison, where he remained until Jerusalem fell (ch. 38:14–28).
After the desolation of Jerusalem, Nebuchadnezzar gave the prophet his freedom and allowed him the choice of remaining in Palestine or accompanying the captives to Babylon (see ch. 40:1–5). Jeremiah chose to remain with the remnant in Palestine, under their newly appointed governor, Gedaliah (ch. 40:6). After the murder of Gedaliah a remnant of the Jews under Johanan fled to Egypt, contrary to Jeremiah’s advice, and took the prophet with them (chs. 42; 43). There at Tahpanhes, Jeremiah predicted the invasion of Egypt by Nebuchadnezzar (ch. 43:8–13), and gave his last message of warning to the Jews who had fled there (ch. 44). It was apparently in this foreign land that the career of the great prophet came to an end.
A brief note on the differences between the text of the LXX and that of the Hebrew is in order. One striking difference is in the arrangement of the prophecies dealing with foreign nations. In the Hebrew text these prophecies are found in chs. 46 to 51, but in the LXX they are found in chs. 25:14 to 31:44. There is also a difference in the order of dealing with the various nations. In the Hebrew the order is: Egypt, Philistia, Moab, Ammon, Edom, Damascus, Kedar and Hazor, Elam, and Babylon; in the LXX the order is: Elam, Egypt, Babylon, Philistia, Edom, Ammon, Kedar and Hazor, Damascus, and Moab.
There are also variations in text. It has been estimated that the LXX is approximately 1/8, or about 2,700 words, shorter than the Hebrew. The LXX generally does not employ the phrase “saith the Lord” when it is used parenthetically, and such titles as “the prophet” after Jeremiah’s name, and “the king” after the name of the ruling monarch. In the main, the same is true of such divine titles as “the God of Israel” or “the God of hosts.”
Certain whole sections consisting of several verses also do not appear. The following are the most noteworthy of these: ch. 8:10b–13a; ch. 10:6–10; ch. 17:1–5a; (ch. 34 in LXX) ch. 27:1, 7, 13, 21; (ch. 36 in LXX) ch. 29:16–20; (ch. 40 in LXX) ch. 33:14–26; (ch. 46 in LXX) ch. 39:4–13; (ch. 31 in LXX) ch. 48:45–47; (ch. 28 in LXX) ch. 51:44c–49a; and ch. 52:27b–30. Besides these there are minor variations having to do mainly with phrases and single words.
To explain these textual variations some scholars have resorted to the theory of a double recension of the book of Jeremiah. They suppose that one of these was produced in Palestine, and the other in Egypt. Others think that the translator of the LXX deliberately shortened the text by omitting repetitions, simplifying the style, and abbreviating difficult readings. It is thought by conservative scholars that there may be some truth in this second theory. For example, that the omission of ch. 8:10b–12 in the LXX may be due to its similarly to ch. 6:12–15. Again, it is held that the omission of one or two passages may be due simply to the error of the eye in skipping from one line to another with a similar ending and thus leaving out the intervening material, an omission called homoeoteleuton.
The variations discussed above, although more extensive than in the other books of the OT, do not substantially affect the basic theme or pattern of the book. It may be that a careful study of some of the Dead Sea scrolls (see pp. 86–88; Vol. I, pp. 31, 32) will throw further light on the text of Jeremiah.
3. Historical Setting.—During the early days of Jeremiah’s ministry three great powers, Assyria, Egypt, and Babylon, were struggling for supremacy. Under Ashurbanipal (669–627? b.c.) Assyria had reached its peak, and was now on the decline (see Vol. II, pp. 65, 66). Egypt had thrown off the Assyrian yoke and was endeavoring to regain its former dominance in Near Eastern affairs (see Vol. II, pp. 89–92). With Nabopolassar’s accession to the throne of Babylon in 626 b.c., the rise to power of the Neo-Babylonian Empire began. The fate of Assyria was sealed by the fall of Nineveh (612 b.c.), and the new Babylonian Empire became the dominant power in Western Asia. Under Necho II, Egypt challenged the sudden rise of Babylon to power. Nebuchadnezzar II, Nabopolassar’s son, successfully met that challenge at the battle of Carchemish, 605 b.c., and Babylon replaced Assyria as a world empire (see pp. 505, 506; Vol. II, pp. 93, 94).
Jeremiah, during the last 40 years of Judah’s existence as a kingdom, bore messages of reform and revival to five kings: Josiah, Jehoahaz, Jehoiakim, Jehoiachin, and Zedekiah. A brief summary of each reign follows:
a. Josiah (640–609 b.c.). After more than a half century of moral and spiritual deterioration under Manasseh (see 2 Kings 21:1–18; 2 Chron. 33:1–20) and Amon (see 2 Kings 21:19–25; 2 Chron. 33:21–25), Judah had once again a king noted for his piety and religious zeal for God. Josiah was only eight years of age when he began to reign (2 Kings 22:1). When he was only about 20 years of age, he introduced a number of reforms, abolishing first the high places of idol worship (see 2 Chron. 34:3). He was aided in his work by Jeremiah, who received his call to public ministry in the king’s 13th year. Josiah aimed to rid the land of idolatry by force and to re-establish the worship of God (2 Chron. 34). In connection with the cleansing and repairing of the Temple in the 18th year of Josiah’s reign, a copy of “the book of the law” was discovered (2 Kings 22:3–20). The discovery led to an intensification of Josiah’s reform movement throughout the land. This reform was even extended to former territory of the northern kingdom (2 Kings 23:15–20; 2 Chron. 34:6, 7), the decline of the Assyrian Empire making such an extension possible.
King Josiah met an untimely death as a result of his presumptuous interference with Necho II of Egypt at Megiddo, 609 b.c. (see p. 505; also Vol. II, pp. 94, 95; 2 Kings 23:29, 30; 2 Chron. 35:20–24). His death was a real loss to the nation and he was deeply mourned by the people of Judah (2 Chron. 35:24, 25).
b. Jehoahaz (609 b.c.). Also known as Shallum (see on 1 Chron. 3:15). After Josiah died the people of the land placed Jehoahaz on the throne, presumably because of his pro-Babylonian sympathies (see on 2 Kings 23:30; 2 Chron. 36:1). After Jehoahaz had reigned only three months Necho II, evidently returning from his campaign to the north, deposed him and carried him to Egypt, where he died (see 2 Kings 23:31–34; Jer. 22:10–12).
c. Jehoiakim (609–598 b.c.). Earlier called Eliakim (2 Kings 23:34). After deposing Jehoahaz, Necho II placed Jehoiakim, second son of Josiah (see on 1 Chron. 3:15), on the throne (2 Kings 23:34). Judah was now under Egyptian suzerainty and paid a heavy tribute for Egyptian friendship (see on 2 Kings 23:35). In 605 b.c. Nebuchadnezzar invaded Palestine, took part of the Temple vessels, and deported some of the royal family and nobility to Babylon. Among these captives were Daniel and his three companions (see Dan. 1:1–6; Vol. II, p. 95). Jehoiakim was thus forced to switch his allegiance from Egypt to Babylon. At that time (see pp. 505, 506), in the battle of Carchemish, Egypt was severely beaten, and Necho II made a hasty retreat to Egypt with the remnant of his army. In spite of solemn assurances of fidelity to Babylon (see 2 Kings 24:1), Jehoiakim, who was pro-Egyptian at heart, openly rebelled in 598 b.c. This led to the second invasion of Judah and the capture and death of Jehoiakim. The king seems to have met a tragic end (see on 2 Kings 24:5).
d. Jehoiachin (598–597 b.c.). Also called Coniah (Jer. 22:24) and Jeconiah (1 Chron. 3:16; Jer. 24:1). After a brief reign of some three months this son and successor of Jehoiakim surrendered to the besieging Babylonians and was deported to Babylon with his mother, wives, sons, and palace officials (see 2 Kings 24:10–16). Ten thousand captives were taken to Babylon in this second deportation, which included the chief men and the craftsmen of the city. The prophet Ezekiel was among these captives (see Eze. 1:1–3). For the light thrown by archeology on this captivity see pp. 575, 756; (Vol. II, pp. 96, 97, 99).
During at least a part of the time, Jehoiachin was kept in prison, from which, in the 37th year of his exile, he was freed by Nebuchadnezzar’s successor, Amel-Marduk, the Biblical Evil-Merodach (2 Kings 25:27–30).
e. Zedekiah (597–586 b.c.). Earlier called Mattaniah (2 Kings 24:17). After deporting Jehoiachin, Nebuchadnezzar made this 21-year-old son of Josiah puppet king over Judah. Zedekiah faced a difficult task. The upper classes of Judah had been deported and the people who were left behind were hard to manage. Jeremiah compared them to bad figs unfit for food (Jer. 24:8–10). To add to the difficulty of the situation, ambassadors from Edom, Moab, Ammon, Tyre, and Sidon were in Jerusalem (see Jer. 27:3) presumably for the purpose of inciting Zedekiah to join them in revolt against Babylon. Jeremiah warned Judah against their intrigue, and admonished not only Judah but these nations as well to submit to the yoke of Babylon (see Jer. 27; 28:14). He warned that the failure of Judah to submit would result in the utter ruin of Jerusalem. But contrary to all this instruction, Zedekiah revolted (see Vol. II, p. 97).
Nebuchadnezzar acted swiftly and terribly to crush the revolt. His invasion filled Zedekiah and all Jerusalem with apprehension and terror (Jer. 21:1–10). In a desperate attempt to gain the favor of God, the king and people joined in a solemn covenant with Him promising to free all Hebrew slaves in Jerusalem (ch. 34:8–10). But when Nebuchadnezzar temporarily lifted the siege because of the threat of Pharaoh’s army (ch. 37:5), the covenant was forgotten and the freed men were cruelly re-enslaved (ch. 34:11–22). Jeremiah was seized and imprisoned as a traitor (ch. 37:11–15). Soon, however, the siege was resumed. The Jews fought desperately to save the city and themselves from the fate that threatened them. The city held out for 30 months (see Vol. II, p. 98; Vol. III, p. 92). But in July, 586 b.c., the Babylonians made a breach in the walls. With a small bodyguard Zedekiah managed to escape, but he was overtaken and captured near Jericho (see ch. 39:2–5). Jerusalem was sacked and burned (ch. 39:8), and nearly all of the remaining Jews taken into captivity (ch. 39:9, 10).
f. Gedaliah. Nebuchadnezzar appointed Gedaliah the son of Ahikam and the grandson of Shaphan (Jer. 26:24) to govern the remnant left behind (2 Kings 25:22). Gedaliah made his headquarters at Mizpah, near Jerusalem. The Babylonians granted Jeremiah his freedom, and he joined the new governor at Mizpah (Jer. 40:1–6). After the murder of Gedaliah (Jer. 41) a remnant of the Jews under Johanan fled to Egypt, compelling Jeremiah to go with them (Jer. 43).
Tentative Chronological Table of the Prophecies of Jeremiah
PK 409, 410
ch. 13:1, 18
ch. 35:1, 11
chs. 2:1; 14:1
chs. 2:1; 15:1
chs. 2:1; 16:2
ch. 39:1, 2
(cf. ch. 39:2, 9)
ch. 22:1, 10, 18
ch. 22:20, 24
c. 586–c. 576(?)
chs. 46:2; 47:1;
ch. 52:1, 31;
Vol. III, pp.
A sequential reading of the book of Jeremiah based on this tentative chronology would be arranged as follows:
Josiah (640–609): chs. 1–6; 14–16.
Jehoiakim (609–598): chs. 17; 7–11; 26; 35; 22:1–19; 25; 18–20; 36:1–4; 45; 36:5–32; 12.
Jehoiachin (598–597): chs. 22:20–30; 13; 23.
Zedekiah (597–586): chs. 24; 29–31; 46–51 (?); 27; 28; 21; 34; 32; 33; 37–39.
After the fall of J
4. Theme.—The book of Jeremiah is made up of a series of prophetic sermons combined with historical and biographical data concerning the last days of the kingdom of Judah. By every means at his command Jeremiah sought to halt Judah’s rapid descent down the declivity of moral depravity to ruin. But his efforts for the nation were largely fruitless. His calls to repentance fell on deaf ears.
Jeremiah was the prophet of heart religion. His messages were a call away from that which is external and superficial to that which is inward and real. He taught that corruption has its source in a wicked heart (ch. 17:9) and that without a new heart, new intentions, and a new spirit, man is incapable of goodness (ch. 13:23). Such a change, he emphasized, could be wrought only by the creative act of God (chs. 24:7; 31:31–34).
Like other prophets, Jeremiah warned against entangling foreign alliances (ch. 2:36). He admonished Judah to submit to the Babylonian yoke and warned that revolt would bring the nation to ruin.
Beyond the inevitable doom of the present the prophet envisioned a glorious future for those “who should prove true” to the Lord (PK 464). There would be a return for both houses of Israel; they were to be reunited as one people (PK 474). They would again be God’s people and He would be their God (Jer. 32:37–41). If Israel would heed the messages of reform, the nation would be reconstituted under a new covenant (ch. 31:31–34). A righteous Branch from the stock of David would be their king (ch. 33:14–17).
I. The Prophet’s Call and Commission, 1:1–19.
A. Identity of the prophet, 1:1–3.
B. The call of Jeremiah, 1:4–6.
C. The investment with authority, 1:7–10.
D. The vision of the almond branch, 1:11, 12.
E. The vision of the boiling caldron, 1:13–16.
F. The prophet’s commission, with promises of protection, 1:17–19.
II. Prophecies Concerning Judah and Jerusalem, 2:1 to 35:19.
A. A description and denunciation of the evil in Judah, 2:1–37.
1. Judah’s ingratitude and unfaithfulness in return for God’s love, 2:1–13.
2. Judah’s sin and obstinacy under punishment, 2:14–28.
3. Judah’s disregard of God’s past corrections, 2:29–37.
B. The call to the faithless people of Israel to return, 3:1 to 4:4.
1. Her shameful unfaithfulness and forfeited privileges, 3:1–5.
2. Judah’s guilt exceeds that of the ten tribes, 3:6–11.
3. A renewed call to both houses of Israel to repent, with promises of reunion and restoration, 3:12–20.
4. A prayer of confession for Israel, 3:21–25.
5. The demand for true heart conversion, 4:1–4.
C. Judgment by an invading nation, 4:5 to 6:30.
1. A description of the approaching danger, 4:5–31.
2. Causes of the impending judgments, 5:1–31.
a. The universal lack of integrity making judgment inevitable and pardon impossible, 5:1–9.
b. Unbelief in the prophetic messages and false trust in fortified cities, 5:10–19.
c. Obstinacy, deceitfulness, and flagrant disobedience, 5:20–31.
3. A description of the doom and its causes, 6:1–30.
D. The Temple discourse, 7:1 to 10:25.
1. Denunciation of Judah’s shameless idolatry and pollution of the Temple, 7:1 to 8:3.
2. Announcement of fearful punishment because of the people’s impudent wickedness, 8:4–22.
3. Lamentation over the people’s treachery and deceit and the resulting calamities, 9:1–26.
4. The folly of idolatry, 10:1–16.
5. The invasion of Judah and the exile of its inhabitants, 10:17–22.
6. Jeremiah’s plea for moderation in punishment, 10:23–25.
E. Preaching the covenant, 11:1 to 13:27.
1. The broken covenant, 11:1–17.
2. Reactions to Jeremiah’s preaching, 11:18 to 12:6.
a. The plot of the men of Anathoth against him, 11:18–23.
b. The plot in the prophet’s own family, 12:1–6.
3. Punishment and redemption, 12:7–17.
4. Reproof of pride in Judah, the chosen people, 13:1–27.
a. The symbolic action with the girdle and the interpretation, 13:1–11.
b. A symbolic utterance concerning wine flagons and the interpretation, 13:12–17.
c. A message to the king and queen mother, 13:18, 19.
d. A lamentation for the calamity coming upon Jerusalem, 13:20–27.
F. Personal experiences of the prophet, 14:1 to 16:9.
1. The drought; Jeremiah’s intercession denied, 14:1 to 15:9.
2. Jeremiah’s inner conflict, 15:10–21.
3. Jeremiah forbidden to marry or to participate in mourning and festal assemblies, 16:1–9.
G. The causes of Judah’s calamities and messages of comfort, 16:10 to 17:18.
H. Exhortation regarding the observance of the Sabbath, 17:19–27.
I. Symbols of the destruction of the nation, 18:1 to 19:13.
1. The potter’s vessel, 18:1–23.
2. The broken potter’s vessel, 19:1–13.
J. Jeremiah persecuted, 19:14 to 20:18.
1. Jeremiah beaten and placed in the stocks by Pashur, 19:14 to 20:6.
2. Jeremiah’s inner conflict,20:7–18.
K. Denunciation of Judah’s civil and spiritual leaders, 21:1 to 24:10.
1. Zedekiah’s appeal to Jeremiah and the prophet’s announcement of the capture of Jerusalem, 21:1–14.
2. An appeal to the royal house, 22:1–9.
3. Judgments upon the royal house, 22:10 to 23:8.
a. The fate of Jehoahaz, 22:10–12.
b. The sinful conduct and the fate of Jehoiakim, 22:13–19.
c. The effect of the loss of her kings upon Judah, 22:20–23.
d. The fate of Jehoiachin, 22:24–30.
e. Promises of Israel’s restoration, 23:1–8.
4. Denunciation of the false prophets, 23:9–40.
5. The vision of two baskets of figs and its interpretation, 24:1–10.
L. The announcement of judgment, 25:1–38.
1. Judgment on Judah; the seventy years of exile, 25:1–14.
2. Judgment on all nations, 25:15–38.
M. Conflicts with professed prophets, 26:1 to 29:32.
1. Conflict regarding the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple, 26:1–24.
a. Prediction of the fall of Jerusalem and the destruction of the Temple, 26:1–6.
b. The demand for Jeremiah’s death and his defense, 26:7–15.
c. The princes’ and elders’ defense of Jeremiah, 26:16–24.
2. Conflict regarding the yoke of Babylon, 27:1 to 28:17>28:17.
a. Warning to the nations not to revolt against Babylon, 27:1–11.
b. Counsel to Zedekiah to submit to Babylon’s yoke, 27:12–22.
c. The conflict with Hananiah, 28:1–17.
3. Conflict with the false prophets in Babylon 29:1–32.
a. Jeremiah’s letter to the exiles, 29:1–23.
b. A message against the false prophet Shemaiah, 29:24–32.
N. Prophecies of restoration, 30:1 to 33:26.
1. The deliverance and restoration of Israel, 30:1–24.
2. The restoration and reunion of both houses under a new covenant, 31:1–40.
a. Israel’s share in the coming restoration, 31:1–22.
b. Judah’s share in the coming restoration, 31:23–26.
c. The new covenant made with both houses, 31:27–40.
3. The purchase of the field and its significance, 32:1–44.
4. Promises of a glorious future for Israel, 33:1–26.
a. Renewed promises of the elevation of Jerusalem to a place of honor among the nations, 33:1–13.
b. Promises of the re-establishment of the kingly and priestly office, 33:14–26.
O. The infidelity and punishment of Judah, 34:1 to 35:19.
1. Prediction of the fate of Jerusalem and Zedekiah, 34:1–7.
2. A denunciation of Judah’s breach of faith in re-enslaving freed men, 34:8–22.
3. A lesson from the fidelity of the Rechabites, 35:1–19.
III. Biographical and Historical Narratives, 36:1 to 45:5.
A. Events preceding the desolation of Jerusalem, 36:1 to 39:18.
1. The writing of Jeremiah’s prophecies, 36:1–32.
a. The dictation of the first edition to Baruch, 36:1–8.
b. The reading of the scroll in the Temple courts by Baruch, 36:9–19.
c. The burning of the scroll by Jehoiakim, 36:20–26.
d. The production of the new scroll, 36:27–32.
2. The imprisonment of Jeremiah, 37:1 to 38:28.
a. The temporary lifting of the final siege, 37:1–5.
b. A prediction of the return of the Chaldeans, 37:6–10.
c. Jeremiah falsely accused and imprisoned, 37:11–15.
d. The prophet in the court of the guard, 37:16–21.
e. Jeremiah cast into a miry dungeon, 38:1–6.
f. The prophet’s rescue by Ebed-melech, 38:7–13.
g. Zedekiah’s secret interview with Jeremiah, 38:14–23.
h. The prophet’s confinement in the court of the guard, 38:24–28.
B. The captivity of Judah, 39:1–18.
1. The capture of Jerusalem and the fate of Zedekiah and the people, 39:1–10.
2. The release of Jeremiah, 39:11–14.
3. The promises of the Lord to Ebed-melech, 39:15–18.
C. Events after the desolation of Jerusalem, 40:1 to 44:30.
1. The release of Jeremiah and his return to Gedaliah, 40:1–6.
2. The governorship of Gedaliah, 40:7–16.
3. The murder of Gedaliah and its consequences, 41:1–18.
4. The flight into Egypt, 42:1 to .
5. Warnings against idolatry in Egypt, 44:1–30.
D. The promises of the Lord to Baruch, 45:1–5.
IV. Prophecies Concerning Foreign Nations, 46:1 to 51:64.
A. The superscription to the messages, 46:1.
B. Prophecy concerning Egypt, 46:2–28.
1. The discomfiture of Necho II at the second battle of Carchemish, 46:2–12.
2. A prediction of Nebuchadnezzar’s invasion of Egypt, 46:13–26.
3. A message of consolation to Israel, 46:27, 28.
C. Prophecy concerning Philistia, 47:1–7.
D. Prophecy concerning Moab, 48:1–47.
1. The destruction proceeding from city to city, 48:1–10.
2. The judgment and its causes, 48:11–30.
3. The utter destruction of Moab, 48:31–47.
E. Prophecy concerning Ammon, 49:1–6.
F. Prophecy concerning Edom, 49:7–22.
G. Prophecy concerning Damascus, 49:23–27.
H. Prophecy concerning Kedar and Hazor, 49:28–33.
I. Prophecy concerning Elam, 49:34–39.
J. Prophecy concerning Babylon, 50:1 to 51:64.
1. The fall of Babylon and the deliverance of Israel, 50:1–20.
2. Babylon’s punishment, corresponding to her crimes, 50:21–28.
3. The completeness of Babylon’s destruction, 50:29–40.
4. The instruments of Babylon’s fall, 50:41 to 51:5.
5. The call of God’s people to flee from Babylon to escape her doom, 51:6–14.
6. God contrasted with idols, 51:15–19.
7. Israel, the Lord’s hammer, 51:20–26.
8. The fall and desolation of Babylon, 51:27–37.
9. The joy of the world at the fall of Babylon, 51:38–49.
10. A final description of Babylon’s fall, 51:50–58.
11. Seraiah and the history of the prophecy regarding Babylon, 51:59–64.
V. Historical Appendix, 52:1–34.
A. Introduction to the appendix, 51:64b.
B. The final capture of Jerusalem, 52:1–11.
C. Events connected with the destruction of Jerusalem, 52:12–27.
1. The desolation of the city and the deportation of the people, 52:12–16.
2. The carrying away of the sacred vessels of the Temple, 52:17–23.
3. The execution of the representatives of the people, 52:24–27.
D. A statement concerning the number of captives, 52:28–30.
E. Jehoiachin’s release from prison, 52:31–34.