Jeremiah in the Dungeon

Scripture Passage: 
Jeremiah 38:1-28
Attached audio files: 

INTRODUCTION: This chapter occurred at the time when the Babylonians had been besieging Jerusalem but were called away for a time (Jeremiah 37:5). During this time of relief, Jeremiah was seen going out into the land and was falsely accused of falling out to the enemy (Jeremiah 37:11-15). Jeremiah was proclaiming the word of the Lord as he was called to do, but it seemed that all men were turning against him.

  1. THE PLOT AGAINST JEREMIAH (Jeremiah 38:1-6)
    1. The Words of Jeremiah (Jeremiah 38:1-3)
      1. The audience of Jeremiah’s message (Jeremiah 38:1)
      2. The content of Jeremiah’s message (Jeremiah 38:2-3)
        1. He that remaineth in this city shall die (Jeremiah 38:2).
        2. He that goeth forth to the Chaldeans shall live (Jeremiah 38:2).
        3. This city shall be given into the hand of the king of Babylon’s army (Jeremiah 38:3)
    2. The Persecution of Jeremiah (Jeremiah 38:4-6)
      1. The request of the princes (Jeremiah 38:4)
        1. For the life of Jeremiah
          1. He weakeneth the hands of the men of war.
          2. He weakeneth the hands of all the people.
        2. For the cessation of Jeremiah’s words
          1. He seeketh not the welfare of this people.
          2. But the hurt
      2. The response of Zedekiah (Jeremiah 38:5)
        1. Jeremiah is in your hand.
        2. The king cannot do anything against you.
      3. The confinement of Jeremiah (Jeremiah 38:6)
        1. The place of confinement
          1. They cast him into the dungeon of Malchiah.
          2. It was in the court of the prison.
        2. The conditions of confinement
          1. They let Jeremiah down with cords.
          2. There was no water, but mire.
          3. Jeremiah sunk in the mire.
  2. THE RESCUE OF JEREMIAH (Jeremiah 38:7-13)
    1. The Concern for Jeremiah’s Life (Jeremiah 38:7-9)
      1. The voice of concern (Jeremiah 38:7)
        1. His name – Ebedmelech
        2. His nativity – an Ethiopian
        3. His place – A eunuch in the king’s house
      2. The expression of concern (Jeremiah 38:7-8)
        1. The king sat in the gate of Benjamin (Jeremiah 38:7).
        2. Ebedmelech went forth to the king (Jeremiah 38:8).
      3. The cause for concern (Jeremiah 38:9)
        1. The evil done by the princes
        2. The well-being of Jeremiah - He is like to die for hunger.
    2. The Deliverance of Jeremiah (Jeremiah 38:10-13)
      1. The participants of deliverance (Jeremiah 38:10)
        1. The leadership of Ebedmelech
        2. The word of the king
        3. Thirty unnamed men
      2. The means of deliverance (Jeremiah 38:11-13)
        1. The resources implemented (Jeremiah 38:11)
          1. Old cast clouts
          2. Old rotten rags
          3. Cords
        2. The plan implemented (Jeremiah 38:12-13)
          1. Jeremiah placed the old cast clouts and old rotten rags under his armholes (Jeremiah 38:12).
          2. They drew up Jeremiah with the cords and took him up out of the dungeon (Jeremiah 38:13).
      3. The place of deliverance--He remained in the prison court (Jeremiah 38:13).
    1. Jeremiah’s Hesitancy (Jeremiah 38:14-16)
      1. Zedekiah’s desire to ask a question of Jeremiah (Jeremiah 38:14)
      2. Jeremiah’s concern in responding (Jeremiah 38:15)
        1. If I declare it unto thee, wilt thou not surely put me to death?
        2. If I give thee counsel, wilt thou not hearken unto me?
      3. Zedekiah assured Jeremiah of safety (Jeremiah 38:16).
        1. He will not be put to death.
        2. He will not be delivered into the hands of those who seek his life.
    2. Jeremiah’s Message for Zedekiah (Jeremiah 38:17-18)
      1. If he goes forth unto the king of Babylon’s princes (Jeremiah 38:17)
        1. He and his family shall live.
        2. Jerusalem shall not be burned with fire.
      2. If he goes not forth to the king of Babylon’s princes (Jeremiah 38:18)
        1. The city will be burned with fire.
        2. He will not escape out of the hand of the Chaldeans.
    3. Zedekiah’s Fear (Jeremiah 38:19)
      1. The people of his fear – “the Jews that are fallen to the Chaldeans”
      2. The specifics of his fear
        1. Being delivered into the hand of the Chaldeans
        2. Being mocked
    4. Jeremiah’s Response (Jeremiah 38:20-23)
      1. If Zedekiah obeyed (Jeremiah 38:20)
        1. It shall be well unto him.
        2. His soul shall live.
      2. If Zedekiah refused (Jeremiah 38:21-23)
        1. The women shall be brought to the Chaldeans (Jeremiah 38:22).
        2. The children shall be brought to the Chaldeans (Jeremiah 38:23).
        3. The city shall be burned with fire (Jeremiah 38:23).
    1. Zedekiah’s Counsel to Jeremiah (Jeremiah 38:24-26)
      1. He advised secrecy (Jeremiah 38:24).
      2. He advised caution with the princes (Jeremiah 38:25-26).
    2. The Visit from the Princes (Jeremiah 38:27)
      1. The princes came to Jeremiah as expected.
      2. Jeremiah responded as instructed by the king.
    3. Jeremiah’s Location (Jeremiah 38:28)
      1. He abode in the court of the prison.
      2. He remained there until Jerusalem was taken.

CONCLUSION: God protected His prophet though so many were against him. It is true that Jeremiah went through many trials. We do not know the trials that we will have to face for the sake of the Lord, but we can be sure that God will be with us in those trials.

David Reagan and Andrew Ray

Daily Proverb

Proverbs 20:30

The blueness of a wound cleanseth away evil: so do stripes the inward parts of the belly.