The wordwhichcame to Jeremiah from the LORDafterKingZedekiah had 1made a covenant with all the peoplewho were in Jerusalem to 2proclaimarelease to them:
that eachman should setfree his maleservant and eachman his femaleservant, a 3Hebrewman or a Hebrew woman; so that 4noone should keep them, a Jew his brother, in bondage.
And all the 5officials and all the peopleobeyedwho had entered into the covenant that eachman should setfree his maleservant and eachman his femaleservant, so that noone should keep them anylonger in bondage; they obeyed, and set them free.
But afterward they turnedaround and tookback the maleservants and the femaleservantswhom they had setfree, and brought them into subjection for maleservants and for femaleservants.
Then the word of the LORDcame to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying,
13"Thussays the LORDGod of Israel, 'I 6made a covenant with your forefathers in the day that I 7brought them out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage, saying,
"8At the end of sevenyearseach of you shall setfree his Hebrewbrotherwhobhas been sold to you and has served you sixyears, you shall send him out free from you; but your forefathers9did not obey Me or incline their ear to Me.
"Although recently you had turned and 10donewhat is right in My sight, eachmanproclaimingcrelease to his neighbor, and you had 11made a covenantbefore Me 12in the housewhich is called by My name.
"Yet you 13turned and 14profaned My name, and eachmandtookback his maleservant and eachman his femaleservantwhom you had setfree according to their desire, and you brought them into subjection to be your maleservants and femaleservants."'
17"Thereforethussays the LORD, 'You have not obeyed Me in proclaimingereleaseeachman to his brother and eachman to his neighbor. Behold, I am 15proclaiming a frelease to you,' declares the LORD, 'to the 16sword, to the pestilence and to the famine; and I will make you a 17terror to all the kingdoms of the earth.
'I will give the men who have 18transgressed My covenant, who have not fulfilled the words of the covenantwhich they madebefore Me, when they 19cut the calf in two and passedbetween its parts -
the 20officials of Judah and the officials of Jerusalem, the courtofficers and the priests and all the people of the land who passedbetween the parts of the calf -
I will give them into the hand of their enemies and into the hand of those who 21seek their life. And their 22deadbodies will be food for the birds of the sky and the beasts of the earth.
'23Zedekiahking of Judah and his officials I will give into the hand of their enemies and into the hand of those who seek their life, and into the hand of the army of the king of Babylon which has 24goneaway from you.
22'Behold, I am going to command,' declares the LORD, 'and I will bring them back to thiscity; and they will fightagainst it and 25take it and burn it with fire; and I will make the cities of Judah a 26desolation27withoutinhabitant.' "