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The fall of Jerusalem

2 Kings 24:1 – 25:26
The Babylonians lay siege to Jerusalem and the inhabitants are taken into exile.
Contributed by Sweet Publishing
1
When Jehoiachin became king at the age of 18 the kingdom of Judah was in grave danger. His father Jehoikim had ignored the warnings of the prophet Jeremiah, continued to disobey God, and had rebelled against Babylon. For a while King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon did nothing about it. – Slide 1
2
But three months after Jehoiachin became king, King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon invaded and put the city of Jerusalem under siege. The new king decided to surrender and let the Babylonians take what they wanted. – Slide 2
3
King Nebuchadnezzar took Jehoiachin, his mother and wives as prisoners. He also picked the most educated Jews and skilled craftsmen to be taken back to Babylon to work for him. Among them were Daniel and three Jews given the Babylonian names Meshach, Shadrach and Abednego. – Slide 3
4
King Nebuchadnezzar appointed a new King called Zedekiah to rule over Judah. He too ignored the warnings of the prophet Jeremiah to obey God. Nine years later he decided to rebel against Babylon and stop paying the high taxes they demanded. – Slide 4
5
King Nebuchadnezzar marched his army into Judah laying siege to all the towns and cities and destroying them. Then he moved on to lay siege to the city of Jerusalem. – Slide 5
6
King Zedekiah hoped that the Egyptians would come to their rescue. But when Egyptians gathered an army the Babylonians easily defeated them and then returned to lay siege to the city once more. – Slide 6
7
After two years of being surrounded and trapped inside the city the inhabitants began to run out of food. They began starving to death. – Slide 7
8
Finally the Babylonians broke down a section of the city walls. That night , King Zedekiah and many of his soldiers escaped out of the city and slipped through enemy lines in the darkness. – Slide 8
9
But the Babylonians gave chase and caught up with them in the Jordan valley. King Zedekiah was captured near Jericho. And his men deserted him and ran away. – Slide 9
10
The cruel Babylonians made Zedekiah watch as they put his sons to death. Then they put out Zedekiah’s eyes and led him off to Babylon in chains as a prisoner. – Slide 10
11
The Babylonians entered the city. They raided the Temple and took all items made of gold, silver and bronze. They looted the homes. Then they set fire to the Temple, the palace and other fine buildings. – Slide 11
12
The Babylonian generals took all the most important priests and officials, all of whom had been responsible for leading the people to disobey God, and took them to King Nebuchadnezzar’s camp. Here they were beaten and put to death. – Slide 12
13
Those that survived the siege were rounded up, chained as prisoners, and marched off to Babylon. Only a few of the poorest people were left to farm the land. – Slide 13
14
Jeremiah the prophet had warned these people for many years that unless they repented and started to live as God wanted, then they would be captured by the Babylonians. They had foolishly ignored all these warnings and now they would be prisoners living in exile. – Slide 14
15
Everything God had told Jeremiah happened just as He said. The city of Jerusalem lay in ruins and the temple was destroyed. God also told Jeremiah that the people of Judah would remain in Babylon for 70 years and then be able to return. <br/>God had punished His people but He still had plans for them in the future. – Slide 15
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Slide 16