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"Shepherds That Scattered "
Jeremiah 22:23-28

Wednesday AM Bible Study
January 19, 2005

This is a continuation of a section that began in chapter 21 in which God speaks to the house of David - the kings of Judah. In chapter 21, He spoke to the immediate situation; but in chapters 22-23:8, He lays out His long-term plan.

The rule of the kings of Judah is a sad story. Some were godly; but many were not. And each ungodly king brought the people of God further and further into judgment. They are likened in this section to shepherds who neglect and destroy and scatter the sheep of God (23:2). Examining the story would make one long for a king who would, one day, come and lead the people aright.

God promises this in chapter 23:5-6. What a glorious day that will be!! But before then, we read the story of the shame and sorrow brought upon the people by their ungodly rulers who forgot the God of their fathers.

A. God commands to the kings what He requires of them (vv. 1-5).

B. God warns them what will happen if they will not hear Him and choose instead to forsake His covenant with them and turn to other gods (vv. 6-9).


A. Jehoiahaz, the son of good king Josiah (vv. 10-17). God commands the people not to weep for the king who died (Josiah); but instead to weep for the one who will go into captivity (Jehoiahaz, here called "Shallum" (v. 11). He was characterized by materialism; but was sent into captivity to Egypt and died there (2 Chron. 36:1-4).

B. Jehoiakim, his brother, reigned in his place (vv. 18-23; see also 2 Chron. 36:4-8). He also was taken captive by the king of Egypt.

C. His son Jehoiachin reigned in his place (2 Chron. 36:9-10). He was taken captive by the king of Babylon (vv. 24-30). Although his brother reigned in his place, the lineage of the kings became cursed, and ended with him until the time of Jesus.

D. His brother Zedekiah reigned in his place (2 Chron. 36:11-21). He was the king at the time that Jeremiah spoke. Under him, all the nation was taken captive. The sad story is summed up in 23:1-2.


God did not abandon His people, however. He promises good shepherds (vv. 3-4), a good King (vv. 5-6), and a future deliverance (vv. 7-8).

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