Jeremiah 27

Listen to Jeremiah 27

The Yoke of Nebuchadnezzar

1 In the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah[a] the son of Josiah, king of Judah, this word came to Jeremiah from the LORD.
2 Thus the LORD said to me: 1"Make yourself straps and 2yoke-bars, and put them on your neck.
3 Send word[b] to the king of 3Edom, the king of 4Moab, the king of the sons of 5Ammon, the king of 6Tyre, and the king of Sidon by the hand of the envoys who have come to Jerusalem to Zedekiah king of Judah.
4 Give them this charge for their masters: 'Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: This is what you shall say to your masters:
5 "It is I who 7by my great power and my outstretched arm 8have made the earth, with the men and animals that are on the earth, 9and I give it to whomever it seems right to me.
6 10Now I have given all these lands into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon, 11my servant, 12and I have given him also the beasts of the field to serve him.
7 13All the nations shall serve him and 14his son and 15his grandson, 16until the time of his own land comes. 17Then many nations and great kings shall make him their slave.
8 "'"But if any nation or kingdom will not serve this Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, 18and put its neck under the yoke of the king of Babylon, I will punish that nation 19with the sword, with famine, and with pestilence, declares the LORD, until I have consumed it by his hand.
9 So 20do not listen to your 21prophets, your diviners, your dreamers, your 22fortune-tellers, or your sorcerers, who are saying to you, 'You shall not serve the king of Babylon.'
10 23For it is a lie that they are prophesying to you, with the result that you will be removed far from your land, and I will drive you out, and you will perish.
11 24But any nation that will bring its neck under the yoke of the king of Babylon and serve him, I will leave on its own land, to work it and dwell there, declares the LORD."'"
12 To 25Zedekiah king of Judah I spoke in like manner: 26"Bring your necks under the yoke of the king of Babylon, and 27serve him and his people and live.
13 28Why will you and your people die 29by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence, 30as the LORD has spoken concerning any nation that will not serve the king of Babylon?
14 31Do not listen to the words of the prophets who are saying to you, 'You shall not serve the king of Babylon,'32for it is a lie that they are prophesying to you.
15 I have not sent them, declares the LORD, but 33they are prophesying falsely in my name, with the result that I will drive you out and you will perish, you and the prophets who are prophesying to you."
16 Then I spoke to the priests and to all this people, saying, "Thus says the LORD: 34Do not listen to the words of your prophets who are prophesying to you, saying, 35'Behold, the vessels of the LORD's house will now shortly be brought back from Babylon,'36for it is a lie that they are prophesying to you.
17 37Do not listen to them; 38serve the king of Babylon and live. Why should this city 39become a desolation?
18 If they are prophets, and if the word of the LORD is with them, then 40let them intercede with the LORD of hosts, 41that the vessels that are left in the house of the LORD, in the house of the king of Judah, and in Jerusalem may not go to Babylon.
19 42For thus says the LORD of hosts concerning the pillars, the sea, the stands, and the rest of the vessels that are left in this city,
20 which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon did not take away, 43when he took into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon Jeconiah the son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, and all the nobles of Judah and Jerusalem--
21 thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, 44concerning the vessels that are left in the house of the LORD, in the house of the king of Judah, and in Jerusalem:
22 45They shall be carried to Babylon 46and remain there 47until the day when I visit them, declares the LORD. 48Then I will bring them back 49and restore them to this place."

Jeremiah 27 Commentary

Chapter 27

The neighbouring nations to be subdued. (1-11) Zedekiah is warned to yield. (12-18) The vessels of the temple to be carried to Babylon, but afterwards to be restored. (19-22)

Verses 1-11 Jeremiah is to prepare a sign that all the neighbouring countries would be made subject to the king of Babylon. God asserts his right to dispose of kingdoms as he pleases. Whatever any have of the good things of this world, it is what God sees fit to give; we should therefore be content. The things of this world are not the best things, for the Lord often gives the largest share to bad men. Dominion is not founded in grace. Those who will not serve the God who made them, shall justly be made to serve their enemies that seek to ruin them. Jeremiah urges them to prevent their destruction, by submission. A meek spirit, by quiet submission to the hardest turns of providence, makes the best of what is bad. Many persons may escape destroying providences, by submitting to humbling providences. It is better to take up a light cross in our way, than to pull a heavier on our own heads. The poor in spirit, the meek and humble, enjoy comfort, and avoid many miseries to which the high-spirited are exposed. It must, in all cases, be our interest to obey God's will.

Verses 12-18 Jeremiah persuades the king of Judah to surrender to the king of Babylon. Is it their wisdom to submit to the heavy iron yoke of a cruel tyrant, that they may secure their lives; and is it not much more our wisdom to submit to the pleasant and easy yoke of our Lord and Master, Jesus Christ, that we may secure our souls? It were well if sinners would be afraid of the destruction threatened against all who will not have Christ to reign over them. Why should they die the second death, infinitely worse than that by sword and famine, when they may submit and live? And those who encourage sinners to go on in sinful ways, will perish with them.

Verses 19-22 Jeremiah assures them that the brazen vessels should go after the golden ones. All shall be carried to Babylon. But he concludes with a gracious promise, that the time would come when they should be brought back. Though the return of the prosperity of the church does not come in our time, we must not despair, for it will come in God's time.

Cross References 49

  • 1. [1 Kings 22:11; Ezekiel 7:23]
  • 2. Jeremiah 28:10, 12, 13; See Leviticus 26:13
  • 3. Jeremiah 25:21, 22
  • 4. Jeremiah 25:21, 22
  • 5. Jeremiah 25:21, 22
  • 6. Jeremiah 25:21, 22
  • 7. See Jeremiah 21:5
  • 8. Psalms 115:15; Isaiah 45:12
  • 9. Psalms 115:16; Dan. 4:17, 25, 32
  • 10. [Ezekiel 30:21, 25]
  • 11. See Jeremiah 25:9
  • 12. Jeremiah 28:14; Daniel 2:38
  • 13. [Daniel 2:37, 38]
  • 14. Jeremiah 52:31
  • 15. Daniel 5:1, 30
  • 16. See Jeremiah 25:12
  • 17. See Jeremiah 25:14
  • 18. ver. 11, 12; [Jeremiah 30:8]
  • 19. See Jeremiah 14:12
  • 20. [Jeremiah 14:14]
  • 21. [Jeremiah 29:8]
  • 22. [Deuteronomy 18:10; Isaiah 2:6]
  • 23. See Jeremiah 5:31
  • 24. [ver. 2, 8]
  • 25. Jeremiah 28:1; [ver. 1]
  • 26. [See ver. 11 above]
  • 27. ver. 17; [Jeremiah 38:17]
  • 28. Ezekiel 18:31
  • 29. See Jeremiah 14:12
  • 30. ver. 8
  • 31. [Jeremiah 14:14]
  • 32. [See ver. 10 above]
  • 33. [See ver. 10 above]
  • 34. [See ver. 14 above]
  • 35. Jeremiah 28:3; 2 Kings 24:13; 2 Chr. 36:7, 10, 18
  • 36. [See ver. 10 above]
  • 37. [See ver. 14 above]
  • 38. [See ver. 11 above]
  • 39. See Jeremiah 7:34
  • 40. [Isaiah 59:16]
  • 41. Daniel 1:2
  • 42. [2 Kings 25:13]
  • 43. 2 Kings 24:14, 15; Matthew 1:11, 12; See Jeremiah 24:1
  • 44. [See ver. 19 above]
  • 45. Jeremiah 52:17, 20, 21; 2 Kings 25:13; 2 Chronicles 36:18
  • 46. Jeremiah 32:5
  • 47. Jeremiah 29:10; 2 Chronicles 36:22; Ezra 1:1
  • 48. Ezra 1:7, 8; Ezra 5:14; Ezra 7:19
  • 49. Jeremiah 52:17, 20, 21; 2 Kings 25:13; 2 Chronicles 36:18

Footnotes 2

Chapter Summary


This chapter contains a prophecy of the subjection of the king of Judah, with five neighbouring kings, to the king of Babylon; signified by bonds and yokes on the prophet's neck, which they are exhorted patiently to bear, as being most for their good; and not to give heed to false prophets, who would persuade them to the contrary. The date of the prophecy is in Jer 27:1; the order to make the yokes, and send them to the several neighbouring princes by their messengers at Jerusalem, Jer 27:2,3; what they should say to their masters from the God of Israel, who is described from his power in the creation of the earth, and the disposal of it, Jer 27:4,5; as that he had given all their lands into the hand of the king of Babylon, whom they should serve, or it would be worse for them, Jer 27:6-8; and therefore should not hearken to their prophets, who prophesied lies; if they did, it would be to their hurt; whereas, if they quietly submitted, they would dwell in their own land, Jer 27:9-11; particularly Zedekiah king of Judah is exhorted to submit; and both he, and the priests and the people, are advised not to hearken to the false prophets, Jer 27:12-15; particularly as to what they said concerning the speedy return of the vessels of the temple, which were carried away to Babylon; but might assure themselves they should remain there; and the rest also should be taken, and not returned until the end of the seventy years, Jer 27:16-22.

Jeremiah 27 Commentaries

The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.