The last days of the kingdom of Judah. As most of the kings and priests have been wicked, God brings judgement on them from the surrounding nations.
1. What are we told about the reign of Jehoiakim ?
v 5 and 6 Jehoiakim was twenty-five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned eleven years in Jerusalem. He did that which was evil in the LORD his God’s sight. Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came up against him, and bound him in fetters to carry him to Babylon.
2. How is the reign of Zedekiah summarised?
v 12 and 13 He did that which was evil in the LORD his God’s sight. He didn’t humble himself before Jeremiah the prophet speaking from the LORD’s mouth. He also rebelled against king Nebuchadnezzar, who had made him swear by God; but he stiffened his neck, and hardened his heart against turning to the LORD, the God of Israel.
3. What happened after the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus?
v 22 and 23 ... the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and put it also in writing, saying, 23 “Cyrus king of Persia says, ‘The LORD, the God of heaven, has given all the kingdoms of the earth to me; and he has commanded me to build him a house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Whoever there is amongst you of all his people, the LORD his God be with him, and let him go up.’ ”
- v 1 to 4 Joahaz is deposed, after only 3 months on the throne, and taken to Egypt
- v 5 to 10 His brother, Jehoiakim, reigns for 11 years before being taken captive by the Babylonians., They also remove some of the vessels of the LORD's house. His son Jehoiachin is also taken after reigning for three months
- v 11 to 13 Zedekiah, the last king, reigns for 11 years. He rebels against king Nebuchadnezzar
- v 14 to 21 The people ignore God's message through his prophets. The city of Jerusalem and God's house are destroyed. The treasures are taken to Babylon together with the people who have not been killed. They serve the kings of Babylon until the kingdom of Persia replaces Babylon 70 years later
- v 22 and 23 Cyrus king of Persia issues a decree allowing the Jews to return to their land to rebuild the house of the LORD