Jeremiah writes his prophecies on a scroll. His secretary Baruch read them from a window to the people in the temple. King Jehoiakim burns the scroll.
VERSE 1. In the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, this word came to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying,
in the fourth year of King Jehoiakim. That is, 605-604 BC.
VERSE 2. “Take a scroll of a book, and write in it all the words that I have spoken to you against Israel, and against Judah, and against all the nations, from the day I spoke to you, from the days of Josiah, even to this day.
Take a scroll of a book, and write in it. Jeremiah was to preserve what the LORD God had shown him. In our own lives, it is really worthwhile to keep a spiritual journal. This preserves what God has shown us.
VERSE 3. It may be that the house of Judah will hear all the evil which I intend to do to them; that they may each return from his evil way; that I may forgive their iniquity and their sin.”
NIV translation. Perhaps when the people of Judah hear about every disaster I plan to inflict on them, each of them will turn from his wicked way; then I will forgive their wickedness and their sin.
Perhaps. The value of Jeremiah’s writing these things is captured in the word “perhaps.” Perhaps somebody will benefit.
That’s a great motivation for Christian ministry. We are not to be results-oriented. We should be willing to minister to other people even if only “perhaps” somebody will benefit.
VERSE 4. Then Jeremiah called Baruch the son of Neriah; and Baruch wrote from the mouth of Jeremiah all the LORD’s words, which he had spoken to him, on a scroll of a book.
Baruch the son of Neriah. Baruch was the scribe of the prophet Jeremiah.
Baruch wrote from the mouth of Jeremiah. Jeremiah dictated his prophecies to Baruch.
Baruch was saddened about the coming judgment of the nation. In Jeremiah chapter 45, the LORD God will give Jeremiah a message to encourage Baruch.
I can’t go into the LORD’s house. Jeremiah was barred from the temple. This may have been due to his earlier addresses there. They were quite unpopular.
VERSE 6. Therefore you go, and read from the scroll which you have written from my mouth, the LORD’s words, in the ears of the people in the LORD’s house on the fast day. Also you shall read them in the ears of all Judah who come out of their cities.
on the fast day. Baruch was to go on a day of fasting. In those days, they were only called in times of emergency.
VERSE 7. It may be they will present their supplication before the LORD, and will each return from his evil way; for the LORD has pronounced great anger and wrath against this people.”
VERSE 8. Baruch the son of Neriah did according to all that Jeremiah the prophet commanded him, reading in the book the LORD’s words in the LORD’s house.
VERSE 9. Now in the fifth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, in the ninth month, all the people in Jerusalem, and all the people who came from the cities of Judah to Jerusalem, proclaimed a fast before the LORD.
VERSE 10. Then Baruch read the words of Jeremiah from the book in the LORD’s house, in the room of Gemariah the son of Shaphan, the scribe, in the upper court, at the entry of the new gate of the LORD’s house, in the ears of all the people.
in the room of Gemariah. Gemariah had access to a room in the upper court of the New Gate to the temple.
Gemariah the son of Shaphan, the scribe. The household of Gemariah was supportive of Jeremiah.
in the ears of all the people. From a window in Gemariah’s room, Baruch read Jeremiah’s words to the people in the temple.
VERSE 11. When Micaiah the son of Gemariah, the son of Shaphan, had heard out of the book all the LORD’s words,
Micaiah. He was the son of Gemariah, from whose room Baruch was reading the prophecies of Jeremiah.
VERSE 12. he went down into the king’s house, into the scribe’s room: and behold, all the princes were sitting there, Elishama the scribe, Delaiah the son of Shemaiah, Elnathan the son of Achbor, Gemariah the son of Shaphan, Zedekiah the son of Hananiah, and all the princes.
the king’s house. Micaiah went from the temple to the royal palace.
the scribe’s room. This was the office of the royal secretary.
VERSE 13. Then Micaiah declared to them all the words that he had heard, when Baruch read the book in the ears of the people.
Micaiah declared to them. Micaiah was a tattle-tale.
VERSE 14. Therefore all the princes sent Jehudi the son of Nethaniah, the son of Shelemiah, the son of Cushi, to Baruch, saying, “Take in your hand the scroll in which you have read in the ears of the people, and come.” So Baruch the son of Neriah took the scroll in his hand, and came to them.
Baruch … came to them. The political leaders had summoned Baruch.
VERSE 15. They said to him, “Sit down now, and read it in our hearing.” So Baruch read it in their hearing.
VERSE 16. Now when they had heard all the words, they turned in fear one toward another, and said to Baruch, “We will surely tell the king of all these words.”
VERSE 17. They asked Baruch, saying, “Tell us now, how did you write all these words at his mouth?”
VERSE 18. Then Baruch answered them, “He dictated all these words to me with his mouth, and I wrote them with ink in the book.”
VERSE 19. Then the princes said to Baruch, “You and Jeremiah go hide. Don’t let anyone know where you are.”
You and Jeremiah go hide. Baruch and Jeremiah had to go into hiding.
VERSE 20. They went in to the king into the court; but they had laid up the scroll in the room of Elishama the scribe. Then they told all the words in the hearing of the king.
VERSE 21. So the king sent Jehudi to get the scroll; and he took it out of the room of Elishama the scribe. Jehudi read it in the hearing of the king, and in the hearing of all the princes who stood beside the king.
VERSE 22. Now the king was sitting in the winter house in the ninth month; and there was a fire in the brazier burning before him.
in the winter house. King Jehoiakim was in his winter palace.
VERSE 23. When Jehudi had read three or four leaves, the king cut it with the penknife, and cast it into the fire that was in the brazier, until all the scroll was consumed in the fire that was in the brazier.
the king … cast it into the fire. King Jehoiakim was a fool.
were not afraid. In contrast with his godly father Josiah, Jehoiakim had no fear of the LORD God.
VERSE 25. Moreover Elnathan and Delaiah and Gemariah had made intercession to the king that he would not burn the scroll; but he would not listen to them.
VERSE 26. The king commanded Jerahmeel the king’s son, and Seraiah the son of Azriel, and Shelemiah the son of Abdeel, to arrest Baruch the scribe and Jeremiah the prophet; but the LORD hid them.
the LORD hid them. In verse 19 above, Baruch and Jeremiah had to go into hiding. Now we see that the LORD God kept them hidden.
VERSE 27. Then the LORD’s word came to Jeremiah, after the king had burned the scroll, and the words which Baruch wrote at the mouth of Jeremiah, saying,
VERSE 28. “Take again another scroll, and write in it all the former words that were in the first scroll, which Jehoiakim the king of Judah has burned.
Take again another scroll, and write. Foolish king Jehoiakim had burned the scroll. But he could not destroy the Word of God.
VERSE 29. Concerning Jehoiakim king of Judah you shall say, ‘The LORD says: “You have burned this scroll, saying, “Why have you written therein, saying, ‘The king of Babylon will certainly come and destroy this land, and will cause to cease from there man and animal?’ ” ’
VERSE 30. Therefore the LORD says concerning Jehoiakim king of Judah: “He will have no one to sit on David’s throne. His dead body will be cast out in the day to the heat, and in the night to the frost.
VERSE 31. I will punish him, his offspring, and his servants for their iniquity. I will bring on them, on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and on the men of Judah, all the evil that I have pronounced against them, but they didn’t listen.” ’ ”
VERSE 32. Then took Jeremiah another scroll, and gave it to Baruch the scribe, the son of Neriah, who wrote therein from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the book which Jehoiakim king of Judah had burned in the fire; and many similar words were added to them.
Then took Jeremiah another scroll. Jeremiah did as the LORD God directed. He is a hero of obedience.
Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.