Jeremiah 51-52

Thursday Evening Bible Study

June 23, 2005


It’s time to finish the book.  Jeremiah 51 continues with the prophecies against Babylon.

Jeremiah 51

:1-4  Armies gathered against Babylon

:1 Thus says the LORD: "Behold, I will raise up against Babylon, Against those who dwell in Leb Kamai, A destroying wind.

Leb Kamai“The Midst of Those Who Rise Up Against Me”; a code word for Chaldea, Babylonia

:2 And I will send winnowers to Babylon, Who shall winnow her and empty her land. For in the day of doom They shall be against her all around.

Winnowers throw the grain and chaff up in the air and the wind carries the chaff away.  Babylon is the chaff that will be blown away with the wind.

:3 Against her let the archer bend his bow, And lift himself up against her in his armor. Do not spare her young men; Utterly destroy all her army.

:4 Thus the slain shall fall in the land of the Chaldeans, And those thrust through in her streets.

:5-10 To the Jews

:5 For Israel is not forsaken, nor Judah, By his God, the LORD of hosts, Though their land was filled with sin against the Holy One of Israel."

:6 Flee from the midst of Babylon, And every one save his life! Do not be cut off in her iniquity, For this is the time of the Lord's vengeance; He shall recompense her.

When Cyrus opened the door for them to go home, about 50,000 Jews returned to Judah to restore Jerusalem and the temple.

:7 Babylon was a golden cup in the Lord's hand, That made all the earth drunk. The nations drank her wine; Therefore the nations are deranged.

golden cupBabylon was used by God to bring judgment on many nations by making them act like drunks.

(Re 18:3 NKJV) 3 For all the nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth have become rich through the abundance of her luxury.”

:8 Babylon has suddenly fallen and been destroyed. Wail for her! Take balm for her pain; Perhaps she may be healed.

:9 We would have healed Babylon, But she is not healed.


Pray for our nation

God had instructed those in Babylon through Jeremiah to pray for Babylon while they were there:
(Je 29:7 NKJV)  And seek the peace of the city where I have caused you to be carried away captive, and pray to the Lord for it; for in its peace you will have peace.
Perhaps we ought to be weeping and praying for our nation as well:
(1 Tim 2:1-4 NKJV)  Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, {2} for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. {3} For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, {4} who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
We can get so caught up in politics, in arguing causes, in taking sides, that we forget the most basic responsibility we have as Christians toward our nation.
We need to pray for it.
Keep in mind, the kings and authorities in Paul’s day included the Herods and Caesar Nero.
We shouldn’t just pray for our president because he is a nice guy or because he believes what we believe.  We pray no matter what.
An Indiana farmer took his family to the nation’s capital to see how their government worked.  After visiting the House of Representatives, they went to the Senate gallery, where the chaplain of the Senate was speaking.
“Daddy,” asked the farmer’s ten-year-old daughter, “does the chaplain pray for the Senate?”
“No,” said the farmer.  “He comes in, looks at the Senators, and then prays for the country.”

-- From Quote Magazine, reprinted in Reader's Digest, March 1992, p. 50

I hope we aren’t quite feeling that hopeless about our nation.
They built a raunchy nightspot right next door to Saint Lukewarm Baptist Church of God in Christ. The good folks of SLBCOGIC decided to start a prayer vigil. Amazingly, the nightclub’s business dwindled so much they had to close the doors. This wasn’t altogether good news, you see; the owner of the nightclub brought a lawsuit against the members of SLBCOGIC, accusing them of ruining his business with their prayers. The attorneys for the church argued there was no way their prayers could have had any effect on the poor performance of the club. The judge agreed. He ruled in favor of Saint Lukewarm, saying, “While the nightclub owner strongly believes in the power of prayer, the church membership does not.”

   -- Dana Key, By Divine Design (Nashville, 1995), p. 13.

Could God move in our nation through us?

:9 Forsake her, and let us go everyone to his own country; For her judgment reaches to heaven and is lifted up to the skies.

When Cyrus opened the way for the Jews to go home, about 50,000 left to go home and rebuild the Temple and restore the city of Jerusalem.

:10 The LORD has revealed our righteousness. Come and let us declare in Zion the work of the LORD our God.

:11-14 Babylon should get ready

:11 Make the arrows bright! Gather the shields! The LORD has raised up the spirit of the kings of the Medes. For His plan is against Babylon to destroy it, Because it is the vengeance of the LORD, The vengeance for His temple.

:12 Set up the standard on the walls of Babylon; Make the guard strong, Set up the watchmen, Prepare the ambushes. For the LORD has both devised and done What He spoke against the inhabitants of Babylon.

:13 O you who dwell by many waters, Abundant in treasures, Your end has come, The measure of your covetousness.

:14 The LORD of hosts has sworn by Himself: "Surely I will fill you with men, as with locusts, And they shall lift up a shout against you."

Babylon will be swarming with the armies of it’s conquerors.

:15-19 A great God

:15 He has made the earth by His power; He has established the world by His wisdom, And stretched out the heaven by His understanding.

:16 When He utters His voice; There is a multitude of waters in the heavens: "He causes the vapors to ascend from the ends of the earth; He makes lightnings for the rain; He brings the wind out of His treasuries."

:17 Everyone is dull-hearted, without knowledge; Every metalsmith is put to shame by the carved image; For his molded image is falsehood, And there is no breath in them.

God is speaking about the people who make the idols that the Babylonians worship.

:18 They are futile, a work of errors; In the time of their punishment they shall perish.

:19 The Portion of Jacob is not like them, For He is the Maker of all things; And Israel is the tribe of His inheritance. The LORD of hosts is His name.


Fulfillment comes from serving a Great God

People are looking for meaning in life.
We look to all kinds of things to fill the emptiness.
Even as Christians, I think we can get caught up in the “latest thing”, looking for something or someone to make us happy.
The Babylonians thought that they were the rulers of the world because of their “things”, their “idols”.
In a way, we as Americans are very much like the Babylonians.  We place great value on “things”.  We think that the person who dies with the most toys wins.
Yet the idols were totally worthless.
It’s only God who counts.
Fulfillment comes from serving a Great God.
(Isa 40:12-31 NKJV)  Who has measured the waters in the hollow of His hand, Measured heaven with a span And calculated the dust of the earth in a measure? Weighed the mountains in scales And the hills in a balance? {13} Who has directed the Spirit of the LORD, Or as His counselor has taught Him? {14} With whom did He take counsel, and who instructed Him, And taught Him in the path of justice? Who taught Him knowledge, And showed Him the way of understanding? {15} Behold, the nations are as a drop in a bucket, And are counted as the small dust on the scales; Look, He lifts up the isles as a very little thing. {16} And Lebanon is not sufficient to burn, Nor its beasts sufficient for a burnt offering. {17} All nations before Him are as nothing, And they are counted by Him less than nothing and worthless. {18} To whom then will you liken God? Or what likeness will you compare to Him? {19} The workman molds an image, The goldsmith overspreads it with gold, And the silversmith casts silver chains. {20} Whoever is too impoverished for such a contribution Chooses a tree that will not rot; He seeks for himself a skillful workman To prepare a carved image that will not totter. {21} Have you not known? Have you not heard? Has it not been told you from the beginning? Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth? {22} It is He who sits above the circle of the earth, And its inhabitants are like grasshoppers, Who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, And spreads them out like a tent to dwell in. {23} He brings the princes to nothing; He makes the judges of the earth useless. {24} Scarcely shall they be planted, Scarcely shall they be sown, Scarcely shall their stock take root in the earth, When He will also blow on them, And they will wither, And the whirlwind will take them away like stubble. {25} "To whom then will you liken Me, Or to whom shall I be equal?" says the Holy One. {26} Lift up your eyes on high, And see who has created these things, Who brings out their host by number; He calls them all by name, By the greatness of His might And the strength of His power; Not one is missing. {27} Why do you say, O Jacob, And speak, O Israel: "My way is hidden from the LORD, And my just claim is passed over by my God"? {28} Have you not known? Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the LORD, The Creator of the ends of the earth, Neither faints nor is weary. His understanding is unsearchable. {29} He gives power to the weak, And to those who have no might He increases strength. {30} Even the youths shall faint and be weary, And the young men shall utterly fall, {31} But those who wait on the LORD Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint.
Satisfaction, peace, rest come from waiting on our Great God, not in idols.

:20-24 Cyrus and Alexander, the battle-axes

:20 "You are My battle-ax and weapons of war: For with you I will break the nation in pieces; With you I will destroy kingdoms;

Cyrus the Persian would conquer Babylon in 539 BC.  Alexander would conquer it from the Persians in 333 BC.

:21 With you I will break in pieces the horse and its rider; With you I will break in pieces the chariot and its rider;

:22 With you also I will break in pieces man and woman; With you I will break in pieces old and young; With you I will break in pieces the young man and the maiden;

:23 With you also I will break in pieces the shepherd and his flock; With you I will break in pieces the farmer and his yoke of oxen; And with you I will break in pieces governors and rulers.

:24 "And I will repay Babylon And all the inhabitants of Chaldea For all the evil they have done In Zion in your sight," says the LORD.

God will use these “battle-axes” to repay the Babylonians and give them back everything they gave to others.

A Psalm seems to have been written during the Babylonian captivity.

(Psa 137 NKJV)  By the rivers of Babylon, There we sat down, yea, we wept When we remembered Zion. {2} We hung our harps Upon the willows in the midst of it. {3} For there those who carried us away captive asked of us a song, And those who plundered us requested mirth, Saying, "Sing us one of the songs of Zion!" {4} How shall we sing the Lord's song In a foreign land? {5} If I forget you, O Jerusalem, Let my right hand forget its skill! {6} If I do not remember you, Let my tongue cling to the roof of my mouth; If I do not exalt Jerusalem Above my chief joy. {7} Remember, O LORD, against the sons of Edom The day of Jerusalem, Who said, "Raze it, raze it, To its very foundation!" {8} O daughter of Babylon, who are to be destroyed, Happy the one who repays you as you have served us! {9} Happy the one who takes and dashes Your little ones against the rock!

They will get what is coming to them.

:25-26 Babylon will be desolate

:25 "Behold, I am against you, O destroying mountain, Who destroys all the earth," says the LORD. "And I will stretch out My hand against you, Roll you down from the rocks, And make you a burnt mountain.

“burnt mountain” – could be a picture of an extinct volcano.

Even though the city of Babylon sat on a plain, it was like a “mountain” compared to the other nations.

It’s interesting that there are references to “mountains” in the book of Revelation:

(Rev 8:8 NKJV)  Then the second angel sounded: And something like a great mountain burning with fire was thrown into the sea, and a third of the sea became blood.

I wonder if there’s any similarities?

Daniel’s interpretation of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream involved a mountain of another kind:

(Dan 2:34-35 NKJV)  "You watched while a stone was cut out without hands, which struck the image on its feet of iron and clay, and broke them in pieces. {35} "Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver, and the gold were crushed together, and became like chaff from the summer threshing floors; the wind carried them away so that no trace of them was found. And the stone that struck the image became a great mountain and filled the whole earth.

There is another mountain.  This was talking about Jesus and His kingdom.
Note the use of “chaff” and “threshing” as pictures of judgment.
(Jer 51:33 NKJV)  For thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: "The daughter of Babylon is like a threshing floor When it is time to thresh her; Yet a little while And the time of her harvest will come."

:26 They shall not take from you a stone for a corner Nor a stone for a foundation, But you shall be desolate forever," says the LORD.

Even though Saddam Hussein tried to rebuild Babylon, we don’t know that he did it with the original stones.

:27-33 God describes the victory

:27 Set up a banner in the land, Blow the trumpet among the nations! Prepare the nations against her, Call the kingdoms together against her: Ararat, Minni, and Ashkenaz. Appoint a general against her; Cause the horses to come up like the bristling locusts.

Nations are called to war against Babylon.

Ararat – in modern Turkey

Minni – part of Armenia

Ashkenaz – Also a nation near Armenia

These are all nations directly to the north of Babylon, of modern Iraq.

:28 Prepare against her the nations, With the kings of the Medes, Its governors and all its rulers, All the land of his dominion.

:29 And the land will tremble and sorrow; For every purpose of the LORD shall be performed against Babylon, To make the land of Babylon a desolation without inhabitant.

:30 The mighty men of Babylon have ceased fighting, They have remained in their strongholds; Their might has failed, They became like women; They have burned her dwelling places, The bars of her gate are broken.

:31 One runner will run to meet another, And one messenger to meet another, To show the king of Babylon that his city is taken on all sides;

The Babylonians had an effective system of couriers.  This is what the messengers will be running to tell the king …

:32 The passages are blocked, The reeds they have burned with fire, And the men of war are terrified.

:33 For thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: "The daughter of Babylon is like a threshing floor When it is time to thresh her; Yet a little while And the time of her harvest will come."

It’s God’s Harvest Time and the city of Babylonian is being threshed.

:34-40 God revenges Zion’s people

:34 "Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon Has devoured me, he has crushed me; He has made me an empty vessel, He has swallowed me up like a monster; He has filled his stomach with my delicacies, He has spit me out.

This is what the Jews will be saying … the picture is of a huge animal swallowing a jar of food, chewing it up, swallowing it, then vomiting it.

:35 Let the violence done to me and my flesh be upon Babylon," The inhabitant of Zion will say; "And my blood be upon the inhabitants of Chaldea!" Jerusalem will say.

God’s people will be asking God to do to Babylon what the Babylonians did to them.

You can re-read about the destruction of Jerusalem – Jeremiah will be repeating it in Jeremiah 52 (we won’t be covering it, but for extra credit you can read it or look up the notes from 2 Kings 24:18-25:30)

:36 Therefore thus says the LORD: "Behold, I will plead your case and take vengeance for you. I will dry up her sea and make her springs dry.

:37 Babylon shall become a heap, A dwelling place for jackals, An astonishment and a hissing, Without an inhabitant.

It would become an uninhabitable place.  We’ve seen pictures of what it’s like today.

:38 They shall roar together like lions, They shall growl like lions' whelps.

:39 In their excitement I will prepare their feasts; I will make them drunk, That they may rejoice, And sleep a perpetual sleep And not awake," says the LORD.

:40 "I will bring them down Like lambs to the slaughter, Like rams with male goats.


:41 "Oh, how Sheshach is taken! Oh, how the praise of the whole earth is seized! How Babylon has become desolate among the nations!

Sheshach is a “code name” for Babylon.  Jeremiah has used this name before.

(Jer 25:26 NKJV)  all the kings of the north, far and near, one with another; and all the kingdoms of the world which are on the face of the earth. Also the king of Sheshach shall drink after them.

He uses a code system where the last letter of the alphabet is substituted for the first, the next to the last for the second, and so on.

What’s odd is that he uses Sheshach in the first line, but Babylon in the second.  Perhaps this verse was meant to be the “code breaker” for Jeremiah 25, in case the readers didn’t get it in Jer. 25.

:42 The sea has come up over Babylon; She is covered with the multitude of its waves.

The invading nations will wash over Babylon like a tidal wave.

:43 Her cities are a desolation, A dry land and a wilderness, A land where no one dwells, Through which no son of man passes.

When the wave goes back out to sea, all that’s left is a desert.

:44 I will punish Bel in Babylon, And I will bring out of his mouth what he has swallowed; And the nations shall not stream to him anymore. Yes, the wall of Babylon shall fall.

Even though Babylon “swallowed” many nations, God will cause it to vomit them out.

In a sense the “wall” came down when Cyrus allowed the Jews to return to their home land.  The wall would literally come down when Alexander would conquer Babylon.

:45-48 Flee

:45 "My people, go out of the midst of her! And let everyone deliver himself from the fierce anger of the LORD.

This is the third time God’s people are told to flee from Babylon.

(Jer 50:8 NKJV)  "Move from the midst of Babylon, Go out of the land of the Chaldeans; And be like the rams before the flocks.

(Jer 51:6 NKJV)  Flee from the midst of Babylon, And every one save his life! Do not be cut off in her iniquity, For this is the time of the Lord's vengeance; He shall recompense her.


Don’t get too cozy with the world.

Lot and his family was told to flee.
God told the family to flee because He didn’t want them caught up in the coming judgment.
(Gen 19:1-26 NKJV)  Now the two angels came to Sodom in the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gate of Sodom. When Lot saw them, he rose to meet them, and he bowed himself with his face toward the ground. {2} And he said, "Here now, my lords, please turn in to your servant's house and spend the night, and wash your feet; then you may rise early and go on your way." And they said, "No, but we will spend the night in the open square." {3} But he insisted strongly; so they turned in to him and entered his house. Then he made them a feast, and baked unleavened bread, and they ate. {4} Now before they lay down, the men of the city, the men of Sodom, both old and young, all the people from every quarter, surrounded the house. {5} And they called to Lot and said to him, "Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us that we may know them carnally." {6} So Lot went out to them through the doorway, shut the door behind him, {7} and said, "Please, my brethren, do not do so wickedly! {8} "See now, I have two daughters who have not known a man; please, let me bring them out to you, and you may do to them as you wish; only do nothing to these men, since this is the reason they have come under the shadow of my roof." {9} And they said, "Stand back!" Then they said, "This one came in to stay here, and he keeps acting as a judge; now we will deal worse with you than with them." So they pressed hard against the man Lot, and came near to break down the door. {10} But the men reached out their hands and pulled Lot into the house with them, and shut the door. {11} And they struck the men who were at the doorway of the house with blindness, both small and great, so that they became weary trying to find the door.

This was the kind of wicked place that Lot was living in.  It’s hard to know just how much Lot compromised with the world.  Peter says Lot was “vexed” (2Pet. 2:7) with the wickedness around him.  Yet the effect the world has on his family will be devastating.

{12} Then the men said to Lot, "Have you anyone else here? Son-in-law, your sons, your daughters, and whomever you have in the city; take them out of this place! {13} "For we will destroy this place, because the outcry against them has grown great before the face of the LORD, and the LORD has sent us to destroy it." {14} So Lot went out and spoke to his sons-in-law, who had married his daughters, and said, "Get up, get out of this place; for the LORD will destroy this city!" But to his sons-in-law he seemed to be joking.

To me this is one of the most heartbreaking things about Lot’s life.  His sons-in-law couldn’t tell that he was serious.

{15} When the morning dawned, the angels urged Lot to hurry, saying, "Arise, take your wife and your two daughters who are here, lest you be consumed in the punishment of the city." {16} And while he lingered, the men took hold of his hand, his wife's hand, and the hands of his two daughters, the LORD being merciful to him, and they brought him out and set him outside the city. {17} So it came to pass, when they had brought them outside, that he said, "Escape for your life! Do not look behind you nor stay anywhere in the plain. Escape to the mountains, lest you be destroyed." {18} Then Lot said to them, "Please, no, my lords! {19} "Indeed now, your servant has found favor in your sight, and you have increased your mercy which you have shown me by saving my life; but I cannot escape to the mountains, lest some evil overtake me and I die. {20} "See now, this city is near enough to flee to, and it is a little one; please let me escape there (is it not a little one?) and my soul shall live." {21} And he said to him, "See, I have favored you concerning this thing also, in that I will not overthrow this city for which you have spoken. {22} "Hurry, escape there. For I cannot do anything until you arrive there." Therefore the name of the city was called Zoar. {23} The sun had risen upon the earth when Lot entered Zoar. {24} Then the LORD rained brimstone and fire on Sodom and Gomorrah, from the LORD out of the heavens. {25} So He overthrew those cities, all the plain, all the inhabitants of the cities, and what grew on the ground. {26} But his wife looked back behind him, and she became a pillar of salt.

She looked back because she just couldn’t let go of the world.  She missed her “stuff” so much that she couldn’t help but look back at it longingly.

There may be a time when God will indeed tell us to “flee” a particular place – perhaps at work, something like that.
But for most of us the issue isn’t location of your body, but location of your heart.
(1 John 2:15-17 NKJV)  Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. {16} For all that is in the world; the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life; is not of the Father but is of the world. {17} And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.

:46 And lest your heart faint, And you fear for the rumor that will be heard in the land (A rumor will come one year, And after that, in another year A rumor will come, And violence in the land, Ruler against ruler),

:47 Therefore behold, the days are coming That I will bring judgment on the carved images of Babylon; Her whole land shall be ashamed, And all her slain shall fall in her midst.

:48 Then the heavens and the earth and all that is in them Shall sing joyously over Babylon; For the plunderers shall come to her from the north," says the LORD.

When the future form of “Babylon” is destroyed, there will be two different types of responses:

(Rev 18:17-20 NKJV)  'For in one hour such great riches came to nothing.' Every shipmaster, all who travel by ship, sailors, and as many as trade on the sea, stood at a distance {18} "and cried out when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, 'What is like this great city?' {19} "They threw dust on their heads and cried out, weeping and wailing, and saying, 'Alas, alas, that great city, in which all who had ships on the sea became rich by her wealth! For in one hour she is made desolate.' {20} "Rejoice over her, O heaven, and you holy apostles and prophets, for God has avenged you on her!"

Two different tunes.  The world’s tune and the tunes of heaven.  Which am I singing?  Do I sing with heaven’s perspective?


:49 As Babylon has caused the slain of Israel to fall, So at Babylon the slain of all the earth shall fall.

:50 You who have escaped the sword, Get away! Do not stand still! Remember the LORD afar off, And let Jerusalem come to your mind.

:51-58 It will really happen

:51 We are ashamed because we have heard reproach. Shame has covered our faces, For strangers have come into the sanctuaries of the Lord's house.

Perhaps God’s people were wondering that if the Babylonians were strong enough to destroy God’s Temple, how could God be strong enough to deal with Babylon?

Also, how if God’s people in Babylon to this point had been so comfortable, how could they leave the comfort of Babylon and go to a place like Jerusalem that was so desolate?

:52 "Therefore behold, the days are coming," says the LORD, "That I will bring judgment on her carved images, And throughout all her land the wounded shall groan.

:53 Though Babylon were to mount up to heaven, And though she were to fortify the height of her strength, Yet from Me plunderers would come to her," says the LORD.

:54 The sound of a cry comes from Babylon, And great destruction from the land of the Chaldeans,

:55 Because the LORD is plundering Babylon And silencing her loud voice, Though her waves roar like great waters, And the noise of their voice is uttered,

:56 Because the plunderer comes against her, against Babylon, And her mighty men are taken. Every one of their bows is broken; For the LORD is the God of recompense, He will surely repay.

:57 "And I will make drunk Her princes and wise men, Her governors, her deputies, and her mighty men. And they shall sleep a perpetual sleep And not awake," says the King, Whose name is the LORD of hosts.

:58 Thus says the LORD of hosts: "The broad walls of Babylon shall be utterly broken, And her high gates shall be burned with fire; The people will labor in vain, And the nations, because of the fire; And they shall be weary."

God will take care of it.  Be careful that you aren’t trusting in something that’s only going to burn.

:59-64 Note to Seraiah

Seraiah was the messenger that would take this message about Babylon’s destruction to Babylon.  He was told to read it in Babylon and then tie a stone to it and throw it into the Euphrates River.  Just as the scroll would sink, so would Babylon.

:59 The word which Jeremiah the prophet commanded Seraiah the son of Neriah, the son of Mahseiah, when he went with Zedekiah the king of Judah to Babylon in the fourth year of his reign. And Seraiah was the quartermaster.

:60 So Jeremiah wrote in a book all the evil that would come upon Babylon, all these words that are written against Babylon.

:61 And Jeremiah said to Seraiah, "When you arrive in Babylon and see it, and read all these words,

:62 "then you shall say, 'O LORD, You have spoken against this place to cut it off, so that none shall remain in it, neither man nor beast, but it shall be desolate forever.'

:63 "Now it shall be, when you have finished reading this book, that you shall tie a stone to it and throw it out into the Euphrates.

:64 "Then you shall say, 'Thus Babylon shall sink and not rise from the catastrophe that I will bring upon her. And they shall be weary.' " Thus far are the words of Jeremiah.

Jeremiah 52

This part seem to have been added by some later scribe.  The last chapter ended with the words:

…Thus far are the words of Jeremiah.

The chapter is mostly a copy of 2 Kings 24:18-25:30, recounting the destruction of Jerusalem.

He talks about the siege against the city, the fall of the city, and about how Zedekiah tried to escape but was captured.  He talks about how Zedekiah’s sons were killed in front of him and then his eyes were put out and he was carried off to Babylon.

Jeremiah recounts how the city was destroyed, the Temple was looted and burned, and all the valuable were carted off to Babylon.

Only a few poor people were allowed to stay in the land while the rest were either killed or taken to Babylon.

The chapter ends with a slight ray of hope as Jeremiah describes how King Jehoiachin, taken captive much earlier, was taken out of prison by the king of Babylon

(Jer 52:32-34 NKJV)  And he spoke kindly to him and gave him a more prominent seat than those of the kings who were with him in Babylon. {33} So Jehoiachin changed from his prison garments, and he ate bread regularly before the king all the days of his life. {34} And as for his provisions, there was a regular ration given him by the king of Babylon, a portion for each day until the day of his death, all the days of his life.

Even in the worst situations, there is hope.

(Heb 12:11 NKJV)  Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.