CLICK HERE to read Jeremiah 22.
The Lord tells Jeremiah to go to the king’s palace and speak to the people (verse 1). The Lord reminds the people that their kings are promised to keep their thrones only if they are obedient (verse 2), that they may teach the people righteousness (verse 3). As long as they keep their covenant, the Lord will keep His covenant to keep the line of David as king (verse 4). But if they will not keep this covenant, then they will be removed from the throne and lose their political power and cultural influence (because their power comes from God and He wants them to influence for good) (verse 5).
The Lord then warns the people that this is what they have done by forgetting their power comes from God and influencing others in evil ways (verse 6). Because of this, they have lost His protection and their country is going to be invaded (verse 7). Their destruction will be so great that people will see their cities and ask what sin they did for God to destroy them (verse 8), and everyone will know it is because they did not keep their covenants (verse 9). The Lord says that people will not even be sorry for them, because everyone will know the people earned these consequences (verse 10).
The Lord tells the people that even the king will be taken captive (verse 11) and die in captivity (verse 12). This is what happens, He says, when you live unrighteously and choosing wrong instead of right (verse 13). The people think they are safe and okay because of their wealth and personal power and fancy homes (verse 14), but their safety lies in the Lord’s protection (verse 15). It is better for them to trust in the Lord and care for those they have been given to protect; it is better for them to care for the poor and the needy instead of wasting their money on illusions of power (verse 16). But instead, the people covet and oppress (verse 17) until no one will feel sorry for them when they fall and are taken captive (verse 18).
The Lord says that the king will be buried like a donkey, not even given proper burial, and that he will be buried in Babylon instead of Jerusalem (verse 19). He says all the people will mourn because their false alliances did not save them (verse 20) and because their wealth and illusions of power could not protect them (verse 21). This will shame them and hold them accountable for their wickedness (verse 22), and will be the only thing to get their attention to warn them back to the Lord (verse 23).
Even the Lord’s chosen people will fall if they do not follow in His ways (verse 24), and suffer the consequences from their enemies the same as they have dished out to those they have oppressed (verse 25). Because they have not ruled their own land righteously, they will be removed and sent to live as strangers in another land where they are taught obedience by others ruling over them (verse 26). They have lost the privileges of their inheritance from the Lord, and so will not live in the promised land anymore (verse 27). Instead of being the favored nobility, they will be strangers and foreigners (verse 28).
Even the Earth testifies against the people, for she has seen what they have done (verse 29).
The people have rejected the Lord, and so must be removed from His holy places – even the land itself (verse 30).