a Bible passage

Click a verse to see commentary
Select a resource above

Hananiah Opposes Jeremiah and Dies


In that same year, at the beginning of the reign of King Zedekiah of Judah, in the fifth month of the fourth year, the prophet Hananiah son of Azzur, from Gibeon, spoke to me in the house of the L ord, in the presence of the priests and all the people, saying, 2“Thus says the L ord of hosts, the God of Israel: I have broken the yoke of the king of Babylon. 3Within two years I will bring back to this place all the vessels of the L ord’s house, which King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon took away from this place and carried to Babylon. 4I will also bring back to this place King Jeconiah son of Jehoiakim of Judah, and all the exiles from Judah who went to Babylon, says the L ord, for I will break the yoke of the king of Babylon.”

5 Then the prophet Jeremiah spoke to the prophet Hananiah in the presence of the priests and all the people who were standing in the house of the L ord; 6and the prophet Jeremiah said, “Amen! May the L ord do so; may the L ord fulfill the words that you have prophesied, and bring back to this place from Babylon the vessels of the house of the L ord, and all the exiles. 7But listen now to this word that I speak in your hearing and in the hearing of all the people. 8The prophets who preceded you and me from ancient times prophesied war, famine, and pestilence against many countries and great kingdoms. 9As for the prophet who prophesies peace, when the word of that prophet comes true, then it will be known that the L ord has truly sent the prophet.”

10 Then the prophet Hananiah took the yoke from the neck of the prophet Jeremiah, and broke it. 11And Hananiah spoke in the presence of all the people, saying, “Thus says the L ord: This is how I will break the yoke of King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon from the neck of all the nations within two years.” At this, the prophet Jeremiah went his way.

12 Sometime after the prophet Hananiah had broken the yoke from the neck of the prophet Jeremiah, the word of the L ord came to Jeremiah: 13Go, tell Hananiah, Thus says the L ord: You have broken wooden bars only to forge iron bars in place of them! 14For thus says the L ord of hosts, the God of Israel: I have put an iron yoke on the neck of all these nations so that they may serve King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, and they shall indeed serve him; I have even given him the wild animals. 15And the prophet Jeremiah said to the prophet Hananiah, “Listen, Hananiah, the L ord has not sent you, and you made this people trust in a lie. 16Therefore thus says the L ord: I am going to send you off the face of the earth. Within this year you will be dead, because you have spoken rebellion against the L ord.”

17 In that same year, in the seventh month, the prophet Hananiah died.

It hence appears that Jeremiah had regard only to the common benefit of the people, and that he wisely kept silence for a time, that he might not throw pearls before swine, and thus expose in a manner the holy name of God to the insolence of the ungodly. He therefore waited until he might again go forth with new messages, and thus secure more credit to himself. For had he contended longer with Hananiah, contentions would have been kindled on every side, there would have been no hearing in a tumult, and the Jews would have wholly disregarded anything he might have then spoken. But as he had withdrawn from the crowd, and was afterwards sent by God, the Jews could not have so presumptuously despised him or his doctrine. This, then, was the reason why he was for a short time silent.

If he feared and trembled in the midst of these commotions, God in due time confirmed him by giving him new commands: The word of Jehovah, he says, came to Jeremiah, after Hananiah broke the band from his neck. By these words he intimates, that the ungodly, however insolently they may rise up against God, ever depart with shame and reproach. For Hananiah had not only opposed Jeremiah by his words and tongue, but had also broken the cords or bands from his neck. This, then, the Prophet now repeats, in order that he might shew, as it were by his finger, that Hananiah by his audacity gained nothing, except that he rendered his vanity more notorious.

VIEWNAME is study