|Born||c. 650 BC|
|Died||c. 570 BC|
Jeremiah(probably after 650 - c. 570 BC), also called the "weeping prophet", was one of the major prophets of the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament of Christian Bible). According to Jewish tradition, Jeremiah authored the Book of Jeremiah, the Books of Kings and the Book of Lamentations, with the assistance and under the editorship of Baruch ben Neriah, his scribe and disciple.
In addition to detailing many statements attributed by Jeremiah to God, the book of Jeremiah goes into detail regarding physical actions taken by Jeremiah (e.g. the purchase of a field belonging to his uncle as a part of the right of redemption, Jer. 32:6-25 ) as well as actions which happen to him (e.g. imprisonment, Jer. 37:15-18 , 38:6 ). Greater detail is known about Jeremiah's life than for that of any other prophet. In spite of such great detail, an opinion expressed is that no biography of him can be written, as there are few facts available.
Judaism considers the Book of Jeremiah part of its canon, and regards Jeremiah as the second of the major prophets. Christianity and Islam also regard Jeremiah as a prophet, and he is respectively quoted in the New Testamentand his narrative is given in Islamic tradition.
Jeremiah's ministry was active from the thirteenth year of Josiah, king of Judah (626 BC), until after the fall of Jerusalem and the destruction of Solomon's Temple in 587 BC. This period spanned the reigns of five kings of Judah: Josiah, Jehoahaz, Jehoiakim, Jehoiachin, and Zedekiah.
Jeremiah was the son of Hilkiah, a kohen (Jewish priest) from the Benjamite village of Anathoth.The difficulties he encountered, as described in the books of Jeremiah and Lamentations, have prompted scholars to refer to him as "the weeping prophet".
Jeremiah was called to prophetic ministry c. 626 BC by YHWH to give prophecy of Jerusalem's destruction that would occur by invaders from the north. This was because Israel had been unfaithful to the laws of the covenant and had forsaken God by worshiping Baal. Jeremiah condemned people burning their children as offerings to Moloch. This nation had deviated so far from God that they had broken the covenant, causing God to withdraw his blessings. Jeremiah was guided by God to proclaim that the nation of Judah would be faced with famine, plundered and taken captive by foreigners who would exile them to a foreign land.
The prophetess Huldah was a relative and contemporary of Jeremiah while the prophet Zephaniah was his mentor.
According to Jeremiah 1:2 –3, Yahweh called Jeremiah to prophetic ministry in about 626 BC, about five years before Josiah king of Judah turned the nation toward repentance from idolatrous practices (2 Kings 22:3-13). According to the Books of Kings, and Jeremiah, Josiah's reforms were insufficient to save Judah and Jerusalem from destruction, because of the sins of Manasseh, Josiah's grandfather, and Judah's return to idolatry (Jeremiah 11:10ff.). Such was the lust of the nation for false gods that after Josiah's death, the nation would quickly return to the gods of the surrounding nations. Jeremiah was said to have been appointed to reveal the sins of the people and the coming consequences.
Jeremiah resisted the call by complaining that he was only a child and did not know how to speak.However, the Lord insisted that Jeremiah go and speak, and he touched Jeremiah's mouth to place the word of the Lord there. God told Jeremiah to "Get yourself ready!" The character traits and practices Jeremiah was to acquire are specified in Jeremiah 1 and include not being afraid, standing up to speak, speaking as told, and going where sent. Since Jeremiah is described as emerging well trained and fully literate from his earliest preaching, the relationship between him and the Shaphan family has been used to suggest that he may have trained at the scribal school in Jerusalem over which Shaphan presided.
In his early ministry, Jeremiah was primarily a preaching prophet,preaching throughout Israel. He condemned idolatry, the greed of priests, and false prophets. Many years later, God instructed Jeremiah to write down these early oracles and his other messages.
Jeremiah's ministry prompted plots against him (Jeremiah 11:21–23). Unhappy with Jeremiah's message, possibly for concern that it would shut down the Anathoth sanctuary, his priestly kin and the men of Anathoth conspired to kill him. However, the Lord revealed the conspiracy to Jeremiah, protected his life, and declared disaster for the men of Anathoth.When Jeremiah complains to the Lord about this persecution, he is told that the attacks on him will become worse.
A priest Pashur the son of ben Immer, a temple official in Jerusalem, had Jeremiah beaten and put in the stocks at the Upper Gate of Benjamin for a day. After this, Jeremiah expresses lament over the difficulty that speaking God's word has caused him and regrets becoming a laughingstock and the target of mockery.He recounts how if he tries to shut the word of the Lord inside and not mention God's name, the word becomes like fire in his heart and he is unable to hold it in.
Whilst Jeremiah was prophesying the coming destruction, a number of other prophets were prophesying peace.Jeremiah spoke against these other prophets.
According to the book of Jeremiah, during the reign of King Zedekiah, The Lord instructed Jeremiah to make a yoke of the message that the nation would be subject to the king of Babylon. The prophet Hananiah opposed Jeremiah's message. He took the yoke off Jeremiah's neck, broke it, and prophesied to the priests and all the people that within two years the Lord would break the yoke of the king of Babylon, but the Lord spoke to Jeremiah saying "Go and speak to Hananiah saying, you have broken the yoke of wood, but you have made instead a yoke of iron." (see: Jeremiah 28:13)
Jeremiah was sympathetic to, as well as descended from, the Northern Kingdom. Many of his first reported oracles are about, and addressed to, the Israelites at Samaria. He resembles the northern prophet Hosea, in his use of language, and examples of God's relationship to Israel. Hosea seems to have been the first prophet to describe the desired relationship as an example of ancient Israelite marriage, where a man might be polygynous, while a woman was only permitted one husband. Jeremiah often repeats Hosea's marital imagery (Jeremiah 2:2b–2:3; 3:1–5, 3:19–25; 4:1–2).
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. BC.A Cushite rescued Jeremiah by pulling him out of the cistern, but Jeremiah remained imprisoned until Jerusalem fell to the Babylonian army in 587
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.
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.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. There is no authentic record of his death.
In Jewish rabbinic literature, especially the aggadah, Jeremiah and Moses are often mentioned together;their life and works being presented in parallel lines. The following ancient midrash is especially interesting, in connection with Deuteronomy 18:18, in which "a prophet like Moses" is promised: "As Moses was a prophet for forty years, so was Jeremiah; as Moses prophesied concerning Judah and Benjamin, so did Jeremiah; as Moses' own tribe [the Levites under Korah] rose up against him, so did Jeremiah's tribe revolt against him; Moses was cast into the water, Jeremiah into a pit; as Moses was saved by a slave (the slave of Pharaoh's daughter); so, Jeremiah was rescued by a slave (Ebed-melech); Moses reprimanded the people in discourses; so did Jeremiah." The prophet Ezekiel was a son of Jeremiah according to rabbinic literature.
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The Book of Jeremiah plays a foundational role in Christian thought as it presages the inauguration of a new covenant (cf. Jeremiah 31:31ff.), to which the New Testament testifies. There are about forty direct quotations of the book in the New Testament, most in Revelation in connection with the destruction of Babylon (e.g., 50:8 in Revelation 18:4; 50:32 in Revelation 18:8; 51:49-50 in Revelation 18:24).Of the Gospel writers, Matthew is especially mindful of how the events in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth fulfill Jeremianic prophecies (cf. Matthew 2:17, 27:9). The writer to the Hebrews also picks up the fulfilment of the prophetic expectation of the new covenant (Hebrews 8:8-12; 10:16-17).
As with many other prophets of the Hebrew Bible, Jeremiah is also regarded as a prophet in Islam. Although Jeremiah is not mentioned in the Quran, Muslim exegesis and literature narrates many instances from the life of Jeremiah and fleshes out his narrative, which closely corresponds with the account given in the Hebrew Bible. In Arabic, Jeremiah's name is usually vocalised Irmiyā, Armiyā or Ūrmiyā,. Classical historians such as Wahb ibn Munabbih gave accounts of Jeremiah which turned "upon the main points of the Old Testament story of Jeremiah: his call to be a prophet, his mission to the king of Judah, his mission to the people and his reluctance, the announcement of a foreign tyrant who is to rule over Judah." Moreover, some hadiths and tafsirs narrate that the Parable of the Hamlet in Ruins is about Jeremiah. Also, in Sura 17(Al-Isra), Ayah 4–7, that is about the two corruptions of children of Israel on the earth, some hadith and tafsir cite that one of these corruptions is the imprisonment and persecution of Jeremiah.
Muslim literature narrates a detailed account of the destruction of Jerusalem, which parallels the account given in the Book of Jeremiah.
Scholars differ widely in their views on the likelihood of there being an actual prophet named Jeremiah. There is one extra-biblical occurrence of his name in the Book of Mormon, 1 Nephi 7:14. Views differ from the belief that the narratives and poetic sections in Jeremiah are contemporary with his life (W.L. Holladay), to the view that Jeremiah is no more than a fictional character (R. P. Carroll).
Scholars cannot prove the authorship of Jeremiah with any certainty, although consensus has gathered around a thesis of multiple sources, mainly because of the contrast between the poetic discourses and the prose narrative. Some modern scholars think the Deuteronomist edited Jeremiah because of the similarity of phrasing between the books of Jeremiah and Deuteronomy. For example, Egypt is referred to as an "iron furnace" in both Jeremiah 11:4 and Deuteronomy 4:20.They also share a similar view of divine justice.
Emanuel Tov believes that the Septuagint version of Jeremiah is earlier, and the Masoretic Text version is a later, longer version.
In July 2007, Assyrologist Michael Jursa translated a cuneiform tablet dated to 595 BC, as describing a Nabusharrussu-ukin as "the chief eunuch" of Nebuchadnezzar II of Babylon. Jursa hypothesized that this reference might be to the same individual as the Nebo-Sarsekim mentioned in Jeremiah 39:3.
A 7th-century BCE seal of Jehucal, son of Shelemiah and another of Gedaliah, son of Pashhur (mentioned together in Jeremiah 38:1; Jehucal also mentioned in Jeremiah 37:3) were found during excavation by Eilat Mazar in the city of David, Jerusalem, in 2005 and 2008, respectively.
Pottery shards at Tel Arad were unearthed in the 1970s that mention Pashhur, and this reference may be the same individual mentioned in Jeremiah 20:1
Jeremiah inspired the French noun jérémiade, and subsequently the English jeremiad, meaning "a lamentation; mournful complaint,"or further, "a cautionary or angry harangue."
Jeremiah has periodically been a popular first name in the United States, beginning with the early Puritan settlers, who often took the names of biblical prophets and apostles. The names Jeremy and Dermot also derive from Jeremiah (the latter by way of Irish Diarmaid).
The Book of Jeremiah is the second of the Latter Prophets in the Hebrew Bible, and the second of the Prophets in the Christian Old Testament. The superscription at chapter Jeremiah 1:1–3 identifies the book as "the words of Jeremiah son of Hilkiah". Of all the prophets, Jeremiah comes through most clearly as a person, ruminating to his scribe Baruch about his role as a servant of God with little good news for his audience. His book is intended as a message to the Jews in exile in Babylon, explaining the disaster of exile as God's response to Israel's pagan worship: the people, says Jeremiah, are like an unfaithful wife and rebellious children, their infidelity and rebelliousness made judgement inevitable, although restoration and a new covenant are foreshadowed. Authentic oracles of Jeremiah are probably to be found in the poetic sections of chapters 1–25, but the book as a whole has been heavily edited and added to by the prophet's followers and later generations of Deuteronomists. It has come down in two distinct though related versions, one in Hebrew, the other known from a Greek translation. The date of the two can be suggested by the fact that the Greek shows concerns typical of the early Persian period, while the Masoretic shows perspectives which, although known in the Persian period, did not reach their realisation until the 2nd century BC.
The Book of Obadiah is an oracle concerning the divine judgment of Edom and the restoration of Israel. The text consists of a single chapter, divided into 21 verses, making it the shortest book in the Hebrew Bible.
In religion, a prophet is an individual who is regarded as being in contact with a divine being and is said to speak on that entity's behalf, serving as an intermediary with humanity by delivering messages or teachings from the supernatural source to other people. The message that the prophet conveys is called a prophecy.
Zephaniah is the name of several people in the Hebrew Bible and Jewish Tanakh; the most prominent one being the prophet who prophesied in the days of Josiah, king of Judah and is attributed a book bearing his name among the Twelve Minor Prophets. His name is commonly transliterated Sophonias in Bibles translated from the Vulgate or Septuagint. The name might mean "YHWH (YH), phonetically (IAH), has concealed", "[he whom] YH has hidden", or "YH lies in wait".
Zedekiah, also written Tzidkiyahu, originally called Mattanyahu or Mattaniah, was a biblical character, the last king of Judah before the destruction of the kingdom by Babylon. Zedekiah had been installed as king of Judah by Nebuchadnezzar II, king of Babylon, after a siege of Jerusalem in 597 BC, to succeed his nephew, Jeconiah, who was overthrown as king after a reign of only three months and ten days.
Jehoiakim was a king of Judah from 609 to 598 BC. He was the second son of king Josiah and Zebidah, the daughter of Pedaiah of Rumah. His birth name was Eliakim.
Josiah or Yoshiyahu was a seventh-century BCE king of Judah who, according to the Hebrew Bible, instituted major religious reforms. Josiah is credited by most biblical scholars with having established or compiled important Hebrew Scriptures during the "Deuteronomic reform" which probably occurred during his rule. Josiah became king of Judah at the age of eight, after the assassination of his father, King Amon, and reigned for thirty-one years, from 641/640 to 610/609 BCE. Josiah is known only from biblical texts; no reference to him exists in other surviving texts of the period from Egypt or Babylon, and no clear archaeological evidence, such as inscriptions bearing his name, has ever been found. Nevertheless, most scholars believe that he existed historically and that the absence of documents is due to few documents of any sort surviving from this very early period, and to Jerusalem having been occupied, conquered, and rebuilt for thousands of years.
According to the Hebrew Bible, Micah was a prophet in Judaism and is the author of the Book of Micah. He is considered one of the Twelve Minor Prophets of the Hebrew Bible and was a contemporary of the prophets Isaiah, Amos and Hosea. Micah was from Moresheth-Gath, in southwest Judah. He prophesied during the reigns of kings Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah of Judah.
Jeremiah 1 is the first chapter of the Book of Jeremiah in the Hebrew Bible or the Old Testament of the Christian Bible. This book, one of the Nevi'im or Books of the Prophets, contains the prophecies attributed to the prophet Jeremiah. This chapter serves as an introduction to the Book of Jeremiah and relates Jeremiah's calling as a prophet.
Jeremiah 52 is the fifty-second chapter of the Book of Jeremiah in the Hebrew Bible or the Old Testament of the Christian Bible. This book contains prophecies attributed to the prophet Jeremiah, and is one of the Books of the Prophets. This chapter contains a "historical appendix", matching the account in 2 Kings 24:18-25:30 of the end of national life in Judah, and also serving as a vindication of Jeremiah's message.
Jeremiah 29 is the twenty-ninth chapter of the Book of Jeremiah in the Hebrew Bible or the Old Testament of the Christian Bible. It is numbered as Jeremiah 36 in the Septuagint. This book compiles prophecies attributed to the prophet Jeremiah, and is one of the Books of the Prophets. This chapter records several "letters reported by the third-person narrator": from Jerusalem, Jeremiah sent a letter to the people in the Babylonia exile and he responded to a letter about him from Shemaiah.
Jeremiah 39 is the thirty-ninth chapter of the Book of Jeremiah in the Hebrew Bible or the Old Testament of the Christian Bible. It is numbered as Jeremiah 46 in the Septuagint. This book contains prophecies attributed to the prophet Jeremiah, and is one of the Books of the Prophets. This chapter is part of a narrative section consisting of chapters 37 to 44. Chapter 39 records the fall of Jerusalem, verses 1-10, and Jeremiah's fate, verses 11-18.
Ezekiel 19 is the nineteenth chapter of the Book of Ezekiel in the Hebrew Bible or the Old Testament of the Christian Bible. This book contains the prophecies spoken by the prophet/priest Ezekiel, and is one of the Books of the Prophets. This chapter contains a kinah or lamentation for the rulers of Israel. Two princes are lamented, one captured and carried to Egypt, i.e. Jehoahaz, son and successor of Josiah, and another carried to Babylon, who must be Jehoiachin.
Jeremiah 22 is the twenty-second chapter of the Book of Jeremiah in the Hebrew Bible or the Old Testament of the Christian Bible. This book contains prophecies attributed to the prophet Jeremiah, and is one of the Books of the Prophets.
Jeremiah 24 is the twenty-fourth chapter of the Book of Jeremiah in the Hebrew Bible or the Old Testament of the Christian Bible. This book contains prophecies attributed to the prophet Jeremiah, and is one of the Books of the Prophets. This chapter concerns Jeremiah's vision of two baskets of figs.
Jeremiah 25 is the twenty-fifth chapter of the Book of Jeremiah in the Hebrew Bible or the Old Testament of the Christian Bible. This book contains prophecies attributed to the prophet Jeremiah, and is one of the Books of the Prophets. Chapter 25 is the final chapter in the first section of the Book of Jeremiah, which deals with the earliest and main core of Jeremiah's message. In this chapter, Jeremiah identified the length of the time of exile as seventy years.
Jeremiah 28 is the twenty-eighth chapter of the Book of Jeremiah in the Hebrew Bible or the Old Testament of the Christian Bible. The material found in Jeremiah 28 of the Hebrew Bible appears in Jeremiah 35 in the Septuagint. This book contains prophecies attributed to the prophet Jeremiah, and is one of the Books of the Prophets. This chapter contains a confrontation between prophets Jeremiah and Hananiah: Hananiah's false prophecy is responded by Jeremiah's answer, Jeremiah 28:1-9. Hananiah breaks Jeremiah's yoke, Jeremiah foretells an iron yoke, and Hananiah's death, Jeremiah 28:10-17.
Jeremiah 34 is the thirty-fourth chapter of the Book of Jeremiah in the Hebrew Bible or the Old Testament of the Christian Bible. It is numbered as Jeremiah 41 in the Septuagint. This book contains prophecies attributed to the prophet Jeremiah, and is one of the Books of the Prophets. This chapter anticipates the final moments in the assault of the Babylonian army against Jerusalem, when Jeremiah foretold the destruction of the city and the captivity of King Zedekiah, and sharply criticized the treacherous dealings of the princes and people with the slaves that provoked the punishment from God.
Jeremiah 35 is the thirty-fifth chapter of the Book of Jeremiah in the Hebrew Bible or the Old Testament of the Christian Bible. It is numbered as Jeremiah 42 in the Septuagint. This book contains prophecies attributed to the prophet Jeremiah, and is one of the Books of the Prophets. This chapter records the meeting of Jeremiah with the Rechabites, a nomadic clan, in which the prophet "contrast[s] their faithfulness to the commands of a dead ancestor with the faithlessness of the people of Judah to the commands of a living God".
Jeremiah 37 is the thirty-seventh chapter of the Book of Jeremiah in the Hebrew Bible or the Old Testament of the Christian Bible. It is numbered as Jeremiah 44 in the Septuagint. This book contains prophecies attributed to the prophet Jeremiah, and is one of the Books of the Prophets. This chapter is the start of a narrative section consisting of chapters 37 to 44. Chapter 37 records King Zedekiah's request for prayer, Jeremiah's reply to the king, and Jeremiah's arrest and imprisonment.
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