Chapter 28

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1 And it came to passe the same yeere, in the beginning of the reigne of Zedekiah king of Iudah, in the fourth yeere, and in the fift moneth, that Hananiah the sonne of Azur the prophet, which was of Gibeon, spake vnto mee in the house of the Lord, in the presence of the priests and of all the people, saying;

2 Thus speaketh the Lord of hostes, the God of Israel, saying; I haue broken the yoke of the king of Babylon.

3 Within two full yeeres will I bring againe into this place all the vessels of the Lords house, that Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon tooke away from this place, and caried them to Babylon.

4 And I will bring againe to this place Ieconiah the sonne of Iehoiakim king of Iudah, with all the captiues of Iudah, that went into Babylon, saith the Lord, for I will breake the yoke of the king of Babylon.

5 Then the prophet Ieremiah said vnto the prophet Hananiah in the presence of the priests, and in the presence of all the people, that stood in the house of the Lord,

6 Euen the prophet Ieremiah said; Amen: the Lord doe so, the Lord performe the words which thou hast prophecied, to bring againe the vessels of the Lords house, and all that is caried away captiue from Babylon into this place.

7 Neuerthelesse, heare thou now this word that I speake in thine eares, and in the eares of all the people.

8 The prophets that haue beene before mee, and before thee of old, prophecied both against many countries, and against great kingdoms, of warre, and of euill, and of pestilence.

9 The prophet which prophecieth of peace, when the word of the prophet shall come to passe, then shall the prophet be knowen, that the Lord hath truely sent him.

10 Then Hananiah the prophet tooke the yoke from off the prophet Ieremiahs necke, and brake it.

11 And Hananiah spake in the presence of all the people, saying; Thus saith the Lord, Euen so will I breake the yoke of Nebuchadnezzer king of Babylon from the necke of all nations within the space of two full yeeres: and the Prophet Ieremiah went his way.

12 Then the word of the Lord came vnto Ieremiah the Prophet (after that Hananiah the prophet had broken the yoke from off the necke of the Prophet Ieremiah) saying,

13 Goe, and tell Hananiah, saying, Thus saith the Lord, Thou hast broken the yokes of wood, but thou shalt make for them yokes of yron.

14 For thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, I haue put a yoke of yron vpon the neck of all these nations, that they may serue Nebuchad-nezzar king of Babylon, and they shall serue him, and I haue giuen him the beasts of the field also.

15 Then said the Prophet Ieremiah vnto Hananiah the prophet, Heare nowe Hananiah: the Lord hath not sent thee, but thou makest this people to trust in a lye.

16 Therefore thus saith the Lord, Beholde, I will cast thee from off the face of the earth: this yeere thou shalt die, because thou hast taught rebellion against the Lord.

17 So Hananiah the prophet died the same yeere, in the seuenth moneth.

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Commentary for Jeremiah 28

A false prophet opposes Jeremiah. (1-9) The false prophet warned of his approaching death. (10-17)1-9 Hananiah spoke a false prophecy. Here is not a word of good counsel urging the Jews to repent and return to God. He promises temporal mercies, in God's name, but makes no mention of the spiritual mercies which God always promised with earthly blessings. This was not the first time Jeremiah had prayed for the people, though he prophesied against them. He appeals to the event, to prove Hananiah's falsehood. The prophet who spake only of peace and prosperity, without adding that they must not by wilful sin stop God's favours, will be proved a false prophet. Those who do not declare the alarming as well as the encouraging parts of God's word, and call men to repentance, and faith, and holiness, tread in the steps of the false prophets. The gospel of Christ encourages men to do works meet for repentance, but gives no encouragement to continue in sin.

10-17 Hananiah is sentenced to die, and Jeremiah, when he has received direction from God, boldly tells him so; but not before he received that commission. Those have much to answer for, who tell sinners that they shall have peace, though they harden their hearts in contempt of God's word. The servant of God must be gentle to all men. He must give up even his right, and leave the Lord to plead his cause. Every attempt of ungodly men to make vain the purposes of God, will add to their miseries.

Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.

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