Jeremiah 36: Book burning

God told Jeremiah to write his book during the fourth year of Jehoiakim’s reign. So Jeremiah hired Baruch to be his scribe and when to work. When it was done, he told Baruch, Since I’ve been banned from the Temple, I’ll need you to go there and read the book on the next time a fast day is declared. And after you read it in the Temple, go out in the streets and read it to the crowds. Maybe after hearing it, people will turn from their evil ways and the impending disaster will be averted.

The next winter, Jehoiakim declared a fast day, so Baruch dutifully went and read the book. One of the places he read the book at was at gathering held at Gemariah’s house. Gemariah was the son of one of Jehoikaim’s secretary. Afterwards, Micaiah, Gemariah’s son, went and told his grandpa and the other officials about Baruch and the book. They ordered Baruch come before them and read the book. When they heard its contents, they were pretty freaked out and were all, Did you write this? We have to tell the king! Is this dictated by Jeremiah?

Baruch was all, Yeah, Jeremiah hired me to write and read it for him.  Then the officials were all, Look, we have to tell the king about this. Give us the book. But you and Jeremiah go into hiding in case the king becomes enraged.

After much ceremony, the book was read to Jehoiakim. But as it was read, he ripped out each page and burned it in the brazier at his knee while the officials begged him not to be so rash. Then he ordered the arrest of Jeremiah and Baruch.

Meanwhile, God was all, Hey Jeremiah, Jehoiakim is burning your book. You and Baruch get to work on another copy, only this time add that Jehoiakim will not have any heirs to sit on the throne and he will die a brutal death and be denied a state funeral. Instead his body will be left out to rot!

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