By April 8, 2008 0 Comments Read More →

Baruch 1-2: The Destruction of the Temple and the Exile

1These are the words of the book that Baruch son of Neriah son of Mahseiah son of
Zedekiah son of Hasadiah son of Hilkiah wrote in Babylon, 2 in the fifth year, on the
seventh day of the month, at the time when the Chaldeans took Jerusalem and burned it
with fire.

3 Baruch read the words of this book to Jeconiah son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, and to
all the people who came to hear the book, 4 and to the nobles and the princes, and to the
elders, and to all the people, small and great, all who lived in Babylon by the river Sud.
5 Then they wept, and fasted, and prayed before the Lord; 6 they collected as much money
as each could give, 7 and sent it to Jerusalem to the high priest * Jehoiakim son of Hilkiah
son of Shallum, and to the priests, and to all the people who were present with him in
Jerusalem. 8 At the same time, on the tenth day of Sivan, Baruch * took the vessels of the
house of the Lord, which had been carried away from the temple, to return them to the
land of Judah—the silver vessels that Zedekiah son of Josiah, king of Judah, had made,
9 after King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon had carried away from Jerusalem Jeconiah and
the princes and the prisoners and the nobles and the people of the land, and brought them
to Babylon.

10 They said- Here we send you money; so buy with the money burnt-offerings and sin-
offerings and incense, and prepare a grain-offering, and offer them on the altar of the
Lord our God; 11 and pray for the life of King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, and for the
life of his son Belshazzar, so that their days on earth may be like the days of heaven.
12 The Lord will give us strength, and light to our eyes; we shall live under the protection
of King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, and under the protection of his son Belshazzar, and
we shall serve them for many days and find favour in their sight. 13 Pray also for us to the
Lord our God, for we have sinned against the Lord our God, and to this day the anger of
the Lord and his wrath have not turned away from us. 14 And you shall read aloud this
scroll that we are sending you, to make your confession in the house of the Lord on the
days of the festivals and at appointed seasons.

15 And you shall say- The Lord our God is in the right, but there is open shame on us
today, on the people of Judah, on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, 16 and on our kings, our
rulers, our priests, our prophets, and our ancestors, 17 because we have sinned before the
Lord. 18 We have disobeyed him, and have not heeded the voice of the Lord our God, to
walk in the statutes of the Lord that he set before us. 19 From the time when the Lord
brought our ancestors out of the land of Egypt until today, we have been disobedient to
the Lord our God, and we have been negligent, in not heeding his voice. 20 So to this day
there have clung to us the calamities and the curse that the Lord declared through his
servant Moses at the time when he brought our ancestors out of the land of Egypt to give
to us a land flowing with milk and honey. 21 We did not listen to the voice of the Lord our
God in all the words of the prophets whom he sent to us, 22 but all of us followed the
intent of our own wicked hearts by serving other gods and doing what is evil in the sight
of the Lord our God.

2So the Lord carried out the threat he spoke against us- against our judges who ruled
Israel, and against our kings and our rulers and the people of Israel and Judah. 2 Under the
whole heaven there has not been done the like of what he has done in Jerusalem, in
accordance with the threats that were * written in the law of Moses. 3 Some of us ate the
flesh of their sons and others the flesh of their daughters. 4 He made them subject to all the
kingdoms around us, to be an object of scorn and a desolation among all the surrounding
peoples, where the Lord has scattered them. 5 They were brought down and not raised up,
because our nation * sinned against the Lord our God, in not heeding his voice.

6 The Lord our God is in the right, but there is open shame on us and our ancestors this
very day. 7 All those calamities with which the Lord threatened us have come upon us.
8 Yet we have not entreated the favour of the Lord by turning away, each of us, from the
thoughts of our wicked hearts. 9 And the Lord has kept the calamities ready, and the Lord
has brought them upon us, for the Lord is just in all the works that he has commanded us
to do. 10 Yet we have not obeyed his voice, to walk in the statutes of the Lord that he set
before us.

11 And now, OLord God of Israel, who brought your people out of the land of Egypt
with a mighty hand and with signs and wonders and with great power and outstretched
arm, and made yourself a name that continues to this day, 12 we have sinned, we have
been ungodly, we have done wrong, O Lord our God, against all your ordinances. 13 Let
your anger turn away from us, for we are left, few in number, among the nations where
you have scattered us. 14 Hear, O Lord, our prayer and our supplication, and for your own
sake deliver us, and grant us favour in the sight of those who have carried us into exile;
15 so that all the earth may know that you are the Lord our God, for Israel and his
descendants are called by your name.

16 O Lord, look down from your holy dwelling, and consider us. Incline your ear, O Lord,
and hear; 17 open your eyes, O Lord, and see, for the dead who are in Hades, whose spirit
has been taken from their bodies, will not ascribe glory or justice to the Lord; 18 but the
person who is deeply grieved, who walks bowed and feeble, with failing eyes and
famished soul, will declare your glory and righteousness, O Lord.

19 For it is not because of any righteous deeds of our ancestors or our kings that we bring
before you our prayer for mercy, O Lord our God. 20 For you have sent your anger and
your wrath upon us, as you declared by your servants the prophets, saying- 21 Thus says
the Lord- Bend your shoulders and serve the king of Babylon, and you will remain in the
land that I gave to your ancestors. 22 But if you will not obey the voice of the Lord and
will not serve the king of Babylon, 23 I will make to cease from the towns of Judah and
from the region around Jerusalem the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice
of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride, and the whole land will be a desolation
without inhabitants.

24 But we did not obey your voice, to serve the king of Babylon; and you have carried
out your threats, which you spoke by your servants the prophets, that the bones of our
kings and the bones of our ancestors would be brought out of their resting-place; 25 and
indeed they have been thrown out to the heat of day and the frost of night. They perished
in great misery, by famine and sword and pestilence. 26 And the house that is called by
your name you have made as it is today, because of the wickedness ofthe house of Israel
and the house of Judah.

27 Yet you have dealt with us, O Lord our God, in all your kindness and in all your great
compassion, 28 as you spoke by your servant Moses on the day when you commanded him
to write your law in the presence of the people of Israel, saying, 29 ‘If you will not obey
my voice, this very great multitude will surely turn into a small number among the
nations, where I will scatter them. 30 For I know that they will not obey me, for they are a
stiff-necked people. But in the land of their exile they will come to themselves 31 and
know that I am the Lord their God. I will give them a heart that obeys and ears that hear;
32 they will praise me in the land of their exile, and will remember my name 33 and turn
from their stubbornness and their wicked deeds; for they will remember the ways of their
ancestors, who sinned before the Lord. 34 I will bring them again into the land that I swore
to give to their ancestors, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and they will rule over it; and I
will increase them, and they will not be diminished. 35 I will make an everlasting covenant
with them to be their God and they shall be my people; and I will never again remove my
people Israel from the land that I have given them.’

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