Then Zedekiah the king sent, and took Jeremiah the prophet to him into the third entry that [is] in the house of the LORD: and the king said to Jeremiah, I will ask thee a thing; hide nothing from me.
Then Jeremiah said to Zedekiah, If I declare [it] to thee, wilt thou not surely put me to death? and if I give thee counsel, wilt thou not hearken to me?
So Zedekiah the king swore secretly to Jeremiah, saying, [As] the LORD liveth, that made us this soul, I will not put thee to death, neither will I give thee into the hand of these men that seek thy life.
Then said Jeremiah to Zedekiah, Thus saith the LORD, the God of hosts, the God of Israel; If thou wilt assuredly go forth to the king of Babylon's princes, then thy soul shall live, and this city shall not be burned with fire; and thou shalt live, and thy house:
But if thou wilt not go forth to the king of Babylon's princes, then shall this city be given into the hand of the Chaldeans, and they shall burn it with fire, and thou shalt not escape from their hand.
And Zedekiah the king said to Jeremiah, I am afraid of the Jews that have fallen to the Chaldeans, lest they deliver me into their hand, and they mock me.
But Jeremiah said, They shall not deliver [thee]. Obey, I beseech thee, the voice of the LORD, which I speak to thee: so it shall be well to thee, and thy soul shall live.
But if thou shalt refuse to go forth, this [is] the word that the LORD hath shown me:
And behold, all the women that are left in the king of Judah's house [shall be] brought forth to the king of Babylon's princes, and those [women] shall say, Thy friends have set thee on, and have prevailed against thee: thy feet are sunk in the mire, [and] they are turned away back.
So they shall bring out all thy wives and thy children to the Chaldeans: and thou shalt not escape out of their hand, but shalt be taken by the hand of the king of Babylon: and thou shalt cause this city to be burned with fire.
Then said Zedekiah to Jeremiah, Let no man know of these words, and thou shalt not die.
But if the princes hear that I have talked with thee, and they come to thee, and say to thee, Declare to us now what thou hast said to the king, hide it not from us, and we will not put thee to death; also what the king said to thee:
Then thou shalt say to them, I presented my supplication before the king, that he would not cause me to return to Jonathan's house, to die there.
Then came all the princes to Jeremiah, and asked him: and he told them according to all these words that the king had commanded. So they left off speaking with him; for the matter was not perceived.