"My lord king, these men have acted wickedly in all they did to the prophet Jeremiah by throwing him into the cistern to die there of hunger, for there is no bread left in the city."
Then the king commanded Ebed-melech the Ethiopian, a "Take three men with you from here, and pull the prophet Jeremiah up from the cistern before he dies."
So Ebed-melech took the men with him and went to the house of the king, to a wardrobe of b the storehouse, and took from there old rags and worn-out clothes, which he let down to Jeremiah in the cistern by ropes.
Then Ebed-melech the Ethiopian c said to Jeremiah, "Just put the rags and clothes between your armpits and the ropes." Jeremiah did so.
Then they drew Jeremiah up by the ropes and pulled him out of the cistern. And Jeremiah remained in the court of the guard.
King Zedekiah sent for the prophet Jeremiah and received him at the third entrance of the temple of the Lord. The king said to Jeremiah, "I have something to ask you; do not hide anything from me."
Jeremiah said to Zedekiah, "If I tell you, you will put me to death, will you not? And if I give you advice, you will not listen to me."
So King Zedekiah swore an oath in secret to Jeremiah, "As the Lord lives, who gave us our lives, I will not put you to death or hand you over to these men who seek your life."
Then Jeremiah said to Zedekiah, "Thus says the Lord, the God of hosts, the God of Israel, If you will only surrender to the officials of the king of Babylon, then your life shall be spared, and this city shall not be burned with fire, and you and your house shall live.
But if you do not surrender to the officials of the king of Babylon, then this city shall be handed over to the Chaldeans, and they shall burn it with fire, and you yourself shall not escape from their hand."
King Zedekiah said to Jeremiah, "I am afraid of the Judeans who have deserted to the Chaldeans, for I might be handed over to them and they would abuse me."
New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. (New Revised Standard Bible Version Online)