Thursday, 28 June 2012

Prophet Jeremiah Prophesied


The Biblical narrative portrays Jeremiah as being subject to additional persecutions. After Jeremiah prophesied that Jerusalem would be handed over to the Babylonian army, the king’s officials, including Pashur the priest, tried to convince King Zedekiah that Jeremiah should be put to death because he was discouraging the soldiers as well as the people. Zedekiah answered that he would not oppose them. Consequently, the king’s officials took Jeremiah and put him down into a cistern, where he sank down into the mud. The intent seemed to be to kill Jeremiah by allowing him to starve to death in a manner designed to allow the officials to claim to be innocent of his blood.[59] A Cushite rescued Jeremiah by pulling him out of the cistern, but Jeremiah remained imprisoned until Jerusalem fell to the Babylonian army in 587 BC.[60]
The Babylonians released Jeremiah, and showed him great kindness, allowing Jeremiah to choose the place of his residence, according to a Babylonian edict. Jeremiah accordingly went to Mizpah in Benjamin with Gedaliah, who had been made governor of Judea.[61]


Johanan succeeded Gedaliah, who had been assassinated by an Israelite prince in the pay of Ammon "for working with the Babylonians." Refusing to listen to Jeremiah's counsel, Johanan fled to Egypt, taking with him Jeremiah and Baruch, Jeremiah's faithful scribe and servant, and the king's daughters.[62] There, the prophet probably
spent the remainder of his life, still seeking in vain to turn the people to God from whom they had so long revolted.[63] There is no authentic record of his death.

Prophetic parables

The biblical narrative includes a number of cases of Jeremiah being given unusual instructions requiring him to act out parables or behave in ways contrary to expectations of prophetic office. Much like the prophet Isaiah who had to walk stripped and barefoot for three years[64] and the prophet Ezekiel who had to lie on his side for 390 days and eat measured food,[65] Jeremiah is instructed to perform a number of prophetic parables[66] to illustrate the Lord’s message to his people. For example, Jeremiah buys a clay jar and smashes it in the Valley of Ben Hinnom in front of elders and priests to illustrate that the Lord will smash the nation of Judah and the city of Judah beyond repair.[67] The Lord instructs Jeremiah to make a yoke from wood and leather straps and to put it on his own neck to demonstrate how the Lord will put the nation under the yoke of the king of Babylon.[68]


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