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Now these are the words of the letter, that Ieremiah the prophet sent from Ierusalem vnto the residue of the elders which were caried away captiues, and to the priests, and to the prophets, and to all the people whom Nebuchad-nezzar had caried away captiue from Ierusalem to Babylon,
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(After that Ieconiah the king, and the queene, and the eunuches, the princes of Iudah and Ierusalem, and the carpenters and the smithes were departed from Ierusalem)
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By the hand of Elasah the sonne of Shaphan, and Gemariah the sonne of Hilkiah, whome Zedekiah king of Iudah sent vnto Babylon to Nebuchad-nezzar king of Babylon, saying,
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Thus saith the Lord of hosts the God of Israel vnto all that are caried away captiues, whom I haue caused to be caried away from Ierusalem vnto Babylon:
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Build ye houses and dwell in them, and plant gardens, and eate the fruit of them.
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Take ye wiues, and beget sonnes and daughters, and take wiues for your sonnes, and giue your daughters to husbands, that they may beare sonnes and daughters, that ye may bee increased there, and not diminished.
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And seeke the peace of the citie, whither I haue caused you to be caried away captiues, & pray vnto the Lord for it: for in the peace thereof shall yee haue peace.
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For thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, Let not your prophets and your diuiners, that bee in the midst of you, deceiue you, neither hearken to your dreames which yee cause to be dreamed.
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For they prophecie falsly vnto you in my name: I haue not sent them, saith the Lord.
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For thus saith the Lord, That after seuentie yeeres be accomplished at Babylon, I will visite you, and performe my good word towards you, in causing you to returne to this place.
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For I knowe the thoughts that I thinke towards you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of euill, to giue you an expected end.
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Then shall ye call vpon me, and ye shall goe and pray vnto mee, and I will hearken vnto you.
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And ye shall seeke me, and finde me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.
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And I will be found of you, saith the Lord, and I will turne away your captiuitie, and I will gather you from all the nations, and from all the places whither I haue driuen you, saith the Lord, and I will bring you againe into the place whence I caused you to be caried away captiue.
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Because yee haue said, The Lord hath raised vs vp prophets in Babylon:
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Know that thus saith the Lord, of the king that sitteth vpon the throne of Dauid, and of all the people that dwelleth in this citie, and of your brethren that are not gone foorth with you into captiuitie.
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Thus saith the Lord of hosts, Beholde, I will send vpon them the sword, the famine, and the pestilence, and will make them like vile figges, that cannot be eaten, they are so euill.
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And I will persecute them with the sword, with the famine, and with the pestilence, and will deliuer them to be remooued to all the kingdomes of the earth, to be a curse and an astonishment, and an hissing, and a reproch among all the nations, whither I haue driuen them.
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Because they haue not hearkened to my words, saith the Lord, which I sent vnto them by my seruants the Prophets, rising vp early, and sending them, but ye would not heare, saith the Lord.
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Heare yee therefore the word of the Lord, all ye of the captiuitie, whom I haue sent from Ierusalem to Babylon.
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Thus saith the Lord of hosts the God of Israel, of Ahab the sonne of Kolaiah, and of Zedekiah the sonne of Maaseiah, which prophecie a lye vnto you in my Name, Behold, I will deliuer them into the hand of Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon, and hee shall slay them before your eyes.
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And of them shall bee taken vp a eurse by all the captiuitie of Iudah which are in Babylon, saying, The Lord make thee like Zedekiah, and like Ahab, whom the king of Babylon rosted in the fire.
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Because they haue committed villanie in Israel, and haue committed adulterie with their neighbors wiues, and haue spoken lying wordes in my Name, which I haue not commanded them, euen I know, and am a witnesse, saith the Lord.
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Thus shalt thou also speake to Shemaiah the Nehelamite, saying:
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Thus speaketh the Lord of hostes the God of Israel, saying, Because thou hast sent letters in thy name vnto all the people that are at Ierusalem, and to Zephaniah the sonne of Maaseiah the Priest, and to all the priests, saying;
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The Lord hath made thee Priest in the stead of Iehoiada the Priest, that ye should be Officers in the house of the Lord, for euery man that is madde, and maketh himselfe a Prophet, that thou shouldest put him in prison, and in the stockes:
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Now therefore why hast thou not reproued Ieremiah of Anathoth, which maketh himselfe a Prophet to you?
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For therefore he sent vnto vs in Babylon, saying, This captiuitie is long, build ye houses and dwell in them, and plant gardens, and eate the fruit of them.
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And Zephaniah the Priest read this letter in the eares of Ieremiah the Prophet.
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Then came the word of the Lord vnto Ieremiah, saying;
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Send to all them of the captiuitie, saying, Thus saith the Lord, concerning Shemaiah the Nehelamite, Because that Shemaiah hath prophecied vnto you, and I sent him not, and he caused you to trust in a lye.
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Therefore thus saith the Lord, Behold, I will punish Shemaiah the Nehelamite and his seed: he shall not haue a man to dwell among this people, neither shall hee behold the good that I will doe for my people, saith the Lord, because he hath taught rebellion against the Lord.