1 The word which came to Jeremiah from the LORD, after that Nebuzar-adan the captain of the guard had let him go from Ramah, when he had taken him being bound in chains among all that were carried away captive of Jerusalem and Judah, who were carried away captive to Babylon.
2 And the captain of the guard took Jeremiah, and said to him, The LORD thy God hath pronounced this evil upon this place.
3 Now the LORD hath brought it, and done according as he hath said: because ye have sinned against the LORD, and have not obeyed his voice, therefore this thing is come upon you.
4 And now, behold, I loose thee this day from the chains which were upon thy hand. If it seemeth good to thee to come with me into Babylon, come; and I will look well to thee: but if it seemeth ill to thee to come with me into Babylon, forbear: behold, all the land is before thee: whither it seemeth good and convenient for thee to go, thither go.
5 Now while he had not yet gone back, he said, Go back also to Gedaliah the son of Ahikam the son of Shaphan, whom the king of Babylon had made governor over the cities of Judah, and dwell with him among the people: or go wherever it seemeth convenient to thee to go. So the captain of the guard gave him provisions and a reward, and let him go.
6 Then Jeremiah went to Gedaliah the son of Ahikam to Mizpah; and dwelt with him among the people that were left in the land.
7 Now when all the captains of the forces who were in the fields, even they and their men, heard that the king of Babylon had made Gedaliah the son of Ahikam governor in the land, and had committed to him men, and women, and children, and of the poor of the land, of them that were not carried away captive to Babylon;
8 Then they came to Gedaliah to Mizpah, even Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, and Johanan and Jonathan the sons of Kareah, and Seraiah the son of Tanhumeth, and the sons of Ephai the Netophathite, and Jezaniah the son of a Maachathite, they and their men.
9 And Gedaliah the son of Ahikam the son of Shaphan, swore to them and to their men, saying, Fear not to serve the Chaldeans: dwell in the land, and serve the king of Babylon, and it shall be well with you.
10 As for me, behold, I will dwell at Mizpah, to serve the Chaldeans, who will come to us: but ye, gather ye wine, and summer fruits, and oil, and put them in your vessels, and dwell in your cities that ye have taken.
11 Likewise when all the Jews that were in Moab, and among the Ammonites, and in Edom, and that were in all the countries, heard that the king of Babylon had left a remnant of Judah, and that he had set over them Gedaliah the son of Ahikam the son of Shaphan;
12 Even all the Jews returned out of all places whither they were driven, and came to the land of Judah, to Gedaliah, to Mizpah, and gathered wine and summer fruits in abundance.
13 Moreover Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the captains of the forces, that were in the fields, came to Gedaliah to Mizpah,
14 And said to him, Dost thou certainly know that Baalis the king of the Ammonites hath sent Ishmael the son of Nethaniah to slay thee? But Gedaliah the son of Ahikam believed them not.
15 Then Johanan the son of Kareah spoke to Gedaliah in Mizpah secretly, saying, Let me go, I pray thee, and I will slay Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, and no man shall know it: why should he slay thee, that all the Jews who are gathered to thee should be scattered, and the remnant of Judah perish?
16 But Gedaliah the son of Ahikam said to Johanan the son of Kareah, Thou shalt not do this thing: for thou speakest falsely of Ishmael.