Jeremiah 36

Listen to Jeremiah 36

Jehoiakim Burns Jeremiah's Scroll

1 In the 1fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, this word came to Jeremiah from the LORD:
2 "Take 2a scroll and 3write on it all the words that I have spoken to you against Israel and 4Judah 5and all the nations, 6from the day I spoke to you, from the days of Josiah until today.
3 7It may be that the house of Judah will hear all the disaster that I intend to do to them, 8so that every one may turn from his evil way, and 9that I may forgive their iniquity and their sin."
4 Then Jeremiah called 10Baruch the son of Neriah, and 11Baruch wrote on 12a scroll at the dictation of Jeremiah all the words of the LORD that he had spoken to him.
5 And Jeremiah ordered 13Baruch, saying, 14"I am banned from going to the house of the LORD,
6 so you are to go, and 15on a day of fasting in the hearing of all the people in the LORD's house you shall read the words of the LORD from the scroll that you have written at my dictation. You shall read them also in the hearing of all the men of Judah who come out of their cities.
7 16It may be that their plea for mercy will come before the LORD, 17and that every one will turn from his evil way, for great is the anger and wrath that the LORD has pronounced against this people."
8 And Baruch the son of Neriah did all that Jeremiah the prophet ordered him about reading from the scroll the words of the LORD in the LORD's house.
9 18In the fifth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, 19in the ninth month, all the people in Jerusalem and all the people who came from the cities of Judah to Jerusalem 20proclaimed a fast before the LORD.
10 Then, in the hearing of all the people, Baruch read the words of Jeremiah from the scroll, in the house of the LORD, in 21the chamber of Gemariah the son of Shaphan the secretary, which was in the upper court, at the entry of the New Gate of the LORD's house.
11 When Micaiah the son of Gemariah, son of 22Shaphan, heard all the words of the LORD from the scroll,
12 he went down to the king's house, into the secretary's chamber, and 23all the officials were sitting there: 24Elishama the secretary, 25Delaiah the son of Shemaiah, 26Elnathan 27the son of Achbor, 28Gemariah the son of 29Shaphan, Zedekiah the son of Hananiah, and all the officials.
13 And Micaiah told them all the words that he had heard, when Baruch read the scroll in the hearing of the people.
14 Then all the officials sent Jehudi the son of Nethaniah, son of 30Shelemiah, son of Cushi, to say to Baruch, "Take in your hand the scroll that you read in the hearing of the people, and come." So Baruch the son of Neriah took the scroll in his hand and came to them.
15 And they said to him, "Sit down and read it." So Baruch read it to them.
16 When they heard all the words, they turned one to another in fear. And they said to Baruch, 31"We must report all these words to the king."
17 Then they asked Baruch, "Tell us, please, how did you write all these words? Was it at his dictation?"
18 Baruch answered them, "He dictated all these words to me, 32while I wrote them with ink on the scroll."
19 Then the officials said to Baruch, "Go and hide, you and Jeremiah, and let no one know where you are."
20 So they went into the court to the king, having put the scroll in 33the chamber of Elishama the secretary, and they reported all the words to the king.
21 Then the king sent Jehudi to get the scroll, and he took it from the chamber of Elishama the secretary. And Jehudi read it to the king and all the officials who stood beside the king.
22 It was 34the ninth month, and the king was sitting in 35the winter house, and there was a fire burning in the fire pot before him.
23 As Jehudi read three or four columns, the king would cut them off with a knife and throw them into the fire in the fire pot, until the entire scroll was consumed in the fire that was in the fire pot.
24 Yet 36neither the king nor any of his servants who heard all these words was afraid, 37nor did they tear their garments.
25 Even when 38Elnathan and Delaiah and Gemariah 39urged the king not to burn the scroll, he would not listen to them.
26 And the king commanded Jerahmeel the 40king's son and Seraiah the son of Azriel and 41Shelemiah the son of Abdeel to seize 42Baruch the secretary and Jeremiah the prophet, but the LORD hid them.
27 Now after the king had burned the scroll with the words that Baruch wrote at Jeremiah's dictation, the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah:
28 "Take another scroll and write on it all the former words that were in the first scroll, which Jehoiakim the king of Judah has burned.
29 And concerning Jehoiakim king of Judah you shall say, 'Thus says the LORD, You have burned this scroll, saying, 43"Why have you written in it that the king of Babylon will certainly come and destroy this land, and will cut off from it man and beast?"
30 Therefore thus says the LORD concerning Jehoiakim king of Judah: 44He shall have none 45to sit on the throne of David, 46and his dead body shall be cast out to the heat by day and the frost by night.
31 47And I will punish him and his offspring and his servants for their iniquity. I will bring upon them and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem and upon the people of Judah all the disaster that I have pronounced against them, but they would not hear.'"
32 Then Jeremiah took another scroll and gave it to 48Baruch the scribe, the son of Neriah, who 49wrote on it at the dictation of Jeremiah all the words of the scroll that Jehoiakim king of Judah had burned in the fire. And many similar words were added to them.

Jeremiah 36 Commentary

Chapter 36

Baruch is to write the prophecies of Jeremiah. (1-8) The princes advise them to hide themselves. (9-19) The king having heard a part, burns the roll. (20-32)

Verses 1-8 The writing of the Scriptures was by Divine appointment. The Divine wisdom directed to this as a proper means; if it failed, the house of Judah would be the more without excuse. The Lord declares to sinners the evil he purposes to do against them, that they may hear, and fear, and return from their evil ways; and whenever any one makes this use of God's warnings, in dependence on his promised mercy, he will find the Lord ready to forgive his sins. All others will be left without excuse; and the consideration that great is the anger God has pronounced against us for sin, should quicken both our prayers and our endeavours.

Verses 9-19 Shows of piety and devotion may be found even among those, who, though they keep up forms of godliness, are strangers and enemies to the power of it. The princes patiently attended the reading of the whole book. They were in great fear. But even those who are convinced to the truth and importance of what they hear, and are disposed to favour those who preach it, often have difficulties and reserves about their safety, interest, or preferment, so that they do not act according to their convictions, and try to get rid of what they find troublesome.

Verses 20-32 Those who despise the word of God, will soon show, as this king did, that they hate it; and, like him, they would wish it destroyed. See what enmity there is against God in the carnal mind, and wonder at his patience. The princes showed some concern, till they saw how light the king made of it. Beware of making light of God's word!

Cross References 49

  • 1. Jeremiah 25:1; Jeremiah 45:1; [ver. 9]
  • 2. Ezra 6:2; Psalms 40:7; Ezekiel 2:9; Zechariah 5:1, 2
  • 3. Jeremiah 30:2; [Jeremiah 51:60]
  • 4. Jeremiah 25:2
  • 5. See Jeremiah 25:15-26; Jeremiah 46 - 51
  • 6. Jeremiah 1:2; Jeremiah 25:3
  • 7. Jeremiah 26:3; Ezekiel 12:3; Zephaniah 2:3; [Amos 5:15]
  • 8. [Jeremiah 18:8]
  • 9. See Jeremiah 31:34
  • 10. See Jeremiah 32:12
  • 11. See Jeremiah 32:12
  • 12. [See ver. 2 above]
  • 13. [See ver. 4 above]
  • 14. Jeremiah 32:2; Jeremiah 33:1; Jeremiah 39:15
  • 15. [ver. 9]
  • 16. [See ver. 3 above]
  • 17. [See ver. 3 above]
  • 18. [ver. 1]
  • 19. ver. 22
  • 20. [2 Chronicles 20:3]
  • 21. [Jeremiah 35:2]
  • 22. Jeremiah 26:24; Jeremiah 40:5; 2 Chr. 34:8, 15, 18
  • 23. Jeremiah 26:10
  • 24. ver. 20; Jeremiah 41:1; 2 Kings 25:25
  • 25. ver. 25
  • 26. ver. 25
  • 27. Jeremiah 26:22
  • 28. ver. 25
  • 29. Jeremiah 26:22
  • 30. ver. 26; Jeremiah 37:3, 13; Jeremiah 38:1
  • 31. ver. 20
  • 32. ver. 32; [Romans 16:22]
  • 33. ver. 12
  • 34. ver. 9; [John 10:22]
  • 35. Amos 3:15
  • 36. [ver. 16]
  • 37. See Joshua 7:6
  • 38. ver. 12
  • 39. [Isaiah 59:16]
  • 40. [1 Kings 22:26; Zephaniah 1:8]
  • 41. ver. 14
  • 42. See Jeremiah 45:1-3
  • 43. See Jeremiah 26:9
  • 44. [Jeremiah 22:30]
  • 45. [Jeremiah 22:2, 4]
  • 46. [Jeremiah 22:19]
  • 47. [Jeremiah 1:16]
  • 48. See ver. 4
  • 49. ver. 18

Chapter Summary


This chapter gives an account of an impious action of King Jehoiakim's burning the roll of Jeremiah's prophecies read unto him, and the consequence of it. The order to write this roll, the time when, the contents and use of it, are in Jer 36:1-3; the writing of it by Baruch, the order of the prophet to read it to the people on such a day, with the view he had in so doing, Jer 36:4-7; the reading of it by Baruch to the people first, Jer 36:8-10; then to the princes, being sent for by them, upon a report made to them, Jer 36:11-15; the king being acquainted with it, Jehudi was sent to fetch the roll, who read it to the king, Jer 36:16-21; who having heard part of it, burnt it, notwithstanding the intercession of some of his princes to the contrary, Jer 36:22-25; and who also ordered the apprehension of Jeremiah and Baruch, who could not be found, Jer 36:26; upon this a new roll is ordered to be written, Jer 36:27,28; which was done with some additions to it, respecting the destruction of the land, and the people in it, by the Chaldeans; and particularly the death of the king, and his want of burial, Jer 36:29-32.

Jeremiah 36 Commentaries

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