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Jeremiah - Chapter 41

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1 In the seventh month, however, Ishmael son of Nethaniah son of Elishama, who was of royal descent, came with officers of the king and ten men to Gedaliah son of Ahikam at Mizpah. And as they were taking their meal together, there at Mizpah,

2 Ishmael son of Nethaniah stood up with his ten men, and attacking Gedaliah son of Ahikam, son of Shaphan, with their swords, they killed the man whom the king of Babylon had made governor of the country.

3 And all the Judaeans who were with him, that is with Gedaliah at Mizpah, and the Chaldaean soldiers who happened to be there, Ishmael killed too.

4 On the day after the murder of Gedaliah, before the news had become known,

5 eighty men arrived from Shechem, Shiloh and Samaria, with their beards shaved off, their clothing torn, and covered in self-inflicted gashes; they were bringing cereal offerings and incense with them to present to the Temple of Yahweh.

6 Ishmael son of Nethaniah went out of Mizpah to meet them, weeping as he went. When he met them he said, 'Come to Gedaliah son of Ahikam.'

7 But once they were well inside the town, Ishmael son of Nethaniah slaughtered them, with the help of his men, and had them thrown into the storage-well.

8 There were ten of them, however, who said to Ishmael, 'Do not kill us: we have stocks of wheat and barley, oil and honey, hidden away in the fields.' So he spared them and did not kill them with their brothers.

9 The storage-well into which Ishmael threw the corpses of all the men he had killed was a large one, the one which King Asa had built as a precaution against Baasha king of Israel. Ishmael son of Nethaniah filled it with the slaughtered men.

10 Ishmael then took all the rest of the people prisoner who were at Mizpah, the king's daughters and all the remaining people in Mizpah, whom Nebuzaradan, commander of the guard, had entrusted to Gedaliah son of Ahikam. Ishmael son of Nethaniah took them prisoner and set out, intending to cross over to the Ammonites.

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11 When Johanan son of Kareah and all the military leaders who were with him heard about all the crimes committed by Ishmael son of Nethaniah,

12 they mustered all their men and set out to attack Ishmael son of Nethaniah. They caught up with him at the great Pool of Gibeon.

13 At the sight of Johanan son of Kareah and all the military leaders with him, all the people with Ishmael were delighted.

14 All the people whom Ishmael had taken as prisoners from Mizpah turned about, went back and joined Johanan son of Kareah.

15 Ishmael son of Nethaniah, however, escaped from Johanan with eight of his men and fled to the Ammonites.

16 Johanan son of Kareah and all the military leaders with him then rallied all the remaining people whom Ishmael son of Nethaniah had taken as prisoners from Mizpah after killing Gedaliah son of Ahikam: men -- fighting men-women, children and eunuchs, whom they brought back from Gibeon.

17 Setting off, they made a halt at Khan Kimham near Bethlehem, intending to go on to Egypt,

18 to get away from the Chaldaeans. They were now terrified of them, since Ishmael son of Nethaniah had killed Gedaliah son of Ahikam whom the king of Babylon had made governor of the country.




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