New English Translation
The Survivors Ask the LORD for Advice but Refuse to Follow It
1 Then all the army officers, including Johanan son of Kareah and Jezaniah son of Hoshaiah and all the people of every class, went to the prophet Jeremiah. 2 They said to him, "Please grant our request and pray to the LORD your God for all those of us who are still left alive here. For, as you yourself can see, there are only a few of us left out of the many there were before. 3 Pray that the LORD your God will tell us where we should go and what we should do." 4 The prophet Jeremiah answered them, "Agreed! I will indeed pray to the LORD your God as you have asked. I will tell you everything the LORD replies in response to you. I will not keep anything back from you." 5 They answered Jeremiah, "May the LORD be a true and faithful witness against us if we do not do just as the LORD sends you to tell us to do. 6 We will obey what the LORD our God to whom we are sending you tells us to do. It does not matter whether we like what he tells us or not. We will obey what he tells us to do so that things will go well for us."
7 Ten days later the LORD spoke to Jeremiah. 8 So Jeremiah summoned Johanan son of Kareah and all the army officers who were with him and all the people of every class. 9 Then Jeremiah said to them, "You sent me to the LORD God of Israel to make your request known to him. Here is what he says to you: 10 'If you will just stay in this land, I will build you up. I will not tear you down. I will firmly plant you. I will not uproot you. For I am filled with sorrow because of the disaster that I have brought on you. 11 Do not be afraid of the king of Babylon whom you now fear. Do not be afraid of him because I will be with you to save you and to rescue you from his power. I, the LORD, affirm it! 12 I will have compassion on you so that he in turn will have mercy on you and allow you to return to your land.'
13 "You must not disobey the LORD your God by saying, 'We will not stay in this land.' 14 You must not say, 'No, we will not stay. Instead we will go and live in the land of Egypt where we will not face war, or hear the enemy's trumpet calls, or starve for lack of food.' 15 If you people who remain in Judah do that, then listen to what the LORD says. The LORD God of Israel who rules over all says, 'If you are so determined to go to Egypt that you go and settle there, 16 the wars you fear will catch up with you there in the land of Egypt. The starvation you are worried about will follow you there to Egypt. You will die there. 17 All the people who are determined to go and settle in Egypt will die from war, starvation, or disease. No one will survive or escape the disaster I will bring on them.' 18 For the LORD God of Israel who rules over all says, 'If you go to Egypt, I will pour out my wrath on you just as I poured out my anger and wrath on the citizens of Jerusalem. You will become an object of horror and ridicule, an example of those who have been cursed and that people use in pronouncing a curse. You will never see this place again.'
19 "The LORD has told you people who remain in Judah, 'Do not go to Egypt.' Be very sure of this: I warn you here and now. 20 You are making a fatal mistake. For you sent me to the LORD your God and asked me, 'Pray to the LORD our God for us. Tell us what the LORD our God says and we will do it.' 21 This day I have told you what he said. But you do not want to obey the LORD by doing what he sent me to tell you. 22 So now be very sure of this: You will die from war, starvation, or disease in the place where you want to go and live."
King James Version
1 Then all the captains of the forces, and Johanan the son of Kareah, and Jezaniah the son of Hoshaiah, and all the people from the least even unto the greatest, came near,
2 And said unto Jeremiah the prophet, Let, we beseech thee, our supplication be accepted before thee, and pray for us unto the LORD thy God, even for all this remnant; (for we are left but a few of many, as thine eyes do behold us:)
3 That the LORD thy God may shew us the way wherein we may walk, and the thing that we may do.
4 Then Jeremiah the prophet said unto them, I have heard you; behold, I will pray unto the LORD your God according to your words; and it shall come to pass, that whatsoever thing the LORD shall answer you, I will declare it unto you; I will keep nothing back from you.
5 Then they said to Jeremiah, The LORD be a true and faithful witness between us, if we do not even according to all things for the which the LORD thy God shall send thee to us.
6 Whether it be good, or whether it be evil, we will obey the voice of the LORD our God, to whom we send thee; that it may be well with us, when we obey the voice of the LORD our God.
7 ¶ And it came to pass after ten days, that the word of the LORD came unto Jeremiah.
8 Then called he Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the captains of the forces which were with him, and all the people from the least even to the greatest,
9 And said unto them, Thus saith the LORD, the God of Israel, unto whom ye sent me to present your supplication before him;
10 If ye will still abide in this land, then will I build you, and not pull you down, and I will plant you, and not pluck you up: for I repent me of the evil that I have done unto you.
11 Be not afraid of the king of Babylon, of whom ye are afraid; be not afraid of him, saith the LORD: for I am with you to save you, and to deliver you from his hand.
12 And I will shew mercies unto you, that he may have mercy upon you, and cause you to return to your own land.
13 ¶ But if ye say, We will not dwell in this land, neither obey the voice of the LORD your God,
14 Saying, No; but we will go into the land of Egypt, where we shall see no war, nor hear the sound of the trumpet, nor have hunger of bread; and there will we dwell:
15 And now therefore hear the word of the LORD, ye remnant of Judah; Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; If ye wholly set your faces to enter into Egypt, and go to sojourn there;
16 Then it shall come to pass, that the sword, which ye feared, shall overtake you there in the land of Egypt, and the famine, whereof ye were afraid, shall follow close after you there in Egypt; and there ye shall die.
17 So shall it be with all the men that set their faces to go into Egypt to sojourn there; they shall die by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence: and none of them shall remain or escape from the evil that I will bring upon them.
18 For thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; As mine anger and my fury hath been poured forth upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem; so shall my fury be poured forth upon you, when ye shall enter into Egypt: and ye shall be an execration, and an astonishment, and a curse, and a reproach; and ye shall see this place no more.
19 ¶ The LORD hath said concerning you, O ye remnant of Judah; Go ye not into Egypt: know certainly that I have admonished you this day.
20 For ye dissembled in your hearts, when ye sent me unto the LORD your God, saying, Pray for us unto the LORD our God; and according unto all that the LORD our God shall say, so declare unto us, and we will do it.
21 And now I have this day declared it to you; but ye have not obeyed the voice of the LORD your God, nor any thing for the which he hath sent me unto you.
22 Now therefore know certainly that ye shall die by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence, in the place whither ye desire to go and to sojourn.