Book of Jeremiah

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Light iron-age reading
The Bible
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Gabbin' with God

The Book of Jeremiah in the Old Testament is a collection of the writings of the prophet by the same name. Jeremiah foresaw the fall of Jerusalem to the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar II. Jeremiah said the disaster was ordained by God and recommended that the people offer no resistance. His messages of doom and gloom hurt morale so much that the rulers of the city threw him into a dry well. When Nebuchadnezzar sacked Jerusalem just like Jeremiah said he would, the Babylonian King was so grateful for the psychological warfare waged by Jeremiah to soften up the Jews that he had him taken up out of the cistern and Jeremiah was allowed to go anywhere he wished.

After continuing to be rather vague and unhelpful for the Jews, Jeremiah correctly predicted that they would fail if they resisted the Babylonians (a bit of a no-brainer). When this prediction came true, his compatriots forced him into exile in Egypt, where he presumably died.

Jeremiah 29:11 has been annoyingly overused as an inspirational quote. The verse comes from a letter Jeremiah wrote to the King, presumably dictated by God, essentially telling the Jews collectively that God would care for them in the future and bring them out of exile, and until then they should take care for themselves. The next time you see someone quoting it, you can remind them that it has absolutely nothing to do with either of you.

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