Jeremiah, by a false suggestion, is put into the dungeon of Malchiah.
Jeremiah 38:1 And Shephatiah son of Mattan, and Gedaliah son of Pashhur, and Jucal son of Shelemiah, and Pashhur son of Malchiah, hear the words that Jeremiah is speaking unto all the people, saying, Jeremiah 38:2 'Thus said Jehovah: He who is remaining in this city dieth, by sword, by famine, and by pestilence, and he who is going forth unto the Chaldeans liveth, and his soul hath been to him for a prey, and he liveth. Jeremiah 38:3 Thus said Jehovah: This city is certainly given into the hand of the force of the king of Babylon, and he hath captured it.' Jeremiah 38:4 And the heads say unto the king, 'Let, we pray thee, this man be put to death, because that he is making feeble the hands of the men of war, who are left in this city, and the hands of all the people, by speaking unto them according to these words, for this man is not seeking for the peace of this people, but for its evil.' Jeremiah 38:5 And the king Zedekiah saith, 'Lo, he [is] in your hand: for the king is not able for you [in] anything.' Jeremiah 38:6 And they take Jeremiah, and cast him into the pit of Malchiah son of the king, that [is] in the court of the prison, and they send down Jeremiah with cords; and in the pit there is no water, but mire, and Jeremiah sinketh in the mire.
Ebed-melech, by suit, getteth him some enlargement.
Jeremiah 38:7 And Ebed-Melech the Cushite, a eunuch who [is] in the king's house, heareth that they have put Jeremiah into the pit; and the king is sitting at the gate of Benjamin, Jeremiah 38:8 and Ebed-Melech goeth forth from the king's house, and speaketh unto the king, saying, Jeremiah 38:9 'My lord, O king, these men have done evil [in] all that they have done to Jeremiah the prophet, whom they have cast into the pit, and he dieth in his place because of the famine, for there is no more bread in the city.' Jeremiah 38:10 And the king commandeth Ebed-Melech the Cushite, saying, 'Take with thee from this thirty men, and thou hast brought up Jeremiah the prophet from the pit, before he dieth.' Jeremiah 38:11 And Ebed-Melech taketh the men with him, and entereth the house of the king, unto the place of the treasury, and taketh thence worn-out clouts, and worn-out rags, and sendeth them unto Jeremiah unto the pit by cords. Jeremiah 38:12 And Ebed-Melech the Cushite saith unto Jeremiah, 'Put, I pray thee, the worn-out clouts and rags under thine arm-holes, at the place of the cords,' and Jeremiah doth so, Jeremiah 38:13 and they draw out Jeremiah with cords, and bring him up out of the pit, and Jeremiah dwelleth in the court of the prison.
Upon secret conference he counselleth the king by yielding to save his life.
Jeremiah 38:14 And the king Zedekiah sendeth, and taketh Jeremiah the prophet unto him, unto the third entrance that [is] in the house of Jehovah, and the king saith unto Jeremiah, 'I am asking thee a thing, do not hide from me anything.' Jeremiah 38:15 And Jeremiah saith unto Zedekiah, 'When I declare to thee, dost thou not surely put me to death? and when I counsel thee, thou dost not hearken unto me.' Jeremiah 38:16 And the king Zedekiah sweareth unto Jeremiah in secret, saying, 'Jehovah liveth, He who made for us this soul, I do not put thee to death, nor give thee unto the hand of these men who are seeking thy soul.' Jeremiah 38:17 And Jeremiah saith unto Zedekiah, 'Thus said Jehovah, God of Hosts, God of Israel: If thou dost certainly go forth unto the heads of the king of Babylon, then hath thy soul lived, and this city is not burned with fire, yea, thou hast lived, thou and thy house. Jeremiah 38:18 And if thou dost not go forth unto the heads of the king of Babylon, then hath this city been given into the hand of the Chaldeans, and they have burnt it with fire, and thou dost not escape from their hand.' Jeremiah 38:19 And the king Zedekiah saith unto Jeremiah, 'I am fearing the Jews who have fallen unto the Chaldeans, lest they give me into their hand, and they have insulted me.' Jeremiah 38:20 And Jeremiah saith, 'They do not give thee up; hearken, I pray thee, to the voice of Jehovah, to that which I am speaking unto thee, and it is well for thee, and thy soul doth live. Jeremiah 38:21 'And if thou art refusing to go forth, this [is] the thing that Jehovah hath shewn me: Jeremiah 38:22 That, lo, all the women who have been left in the house of the king of Judah are brought forth unto the heads of the king of Babylon, and lo, they are saying: Persuaded thee, and prevailed against thee, Have thine allies, Sunk into mire have thy feet, They have been turned backward. Jeremiah 38:23 'And all thy wives, and thy sons, are brought forth unto the Chaldeans, and thou dost not escape from their hand, for by the hand of the king of Babylon thou art caught, and this city is burnt with fire.'
By the king's instructions he concealeth the conference from the princes.
Jeremiah 38:24 And Zedekiah saith unto Jeremiah, 'Let no man know of these words, and thou dost not die; Jeremiah 38:25 and when the heads hear that I have spoken with thee, and they have come in unto thee, and have said unto thee, Declare to us, we pray thee, what thou didst speak unto the king, do not hide [it] from us, and we do not put thee to death, and what the king spake unto thee, Jeremiah 38:26 then thou hast said unto them, I am causing my supplication to fall before the king, not to cause me to return to the house of Jonathan, to die there.' Jeremiah 38:27 And all the heads come in unto Jeremiah, and ask him, and he declareth to them according to all these words that the king commanded, and they keep silent from him, for the matter was not heard; Jeremiah 38:28 and Jeremiah dwelleth in the court of the prison till the day that Jerusalem hath been captured, and he was [there] when Jerusalem was captured.