Jeremiah 28


‘The following events occurred in that same year, early in the reign of King Zedekiah of Judah. To be more precise, it was the fifth month of the fourth year of his reign. The prophet Hananiah son of Azzur, who was from Gibeon, spoke to Jeremiah in the LORD’s temple in the presence of the priests and all the people. ‘The LORD God of Israel who rules over all1 says, ‘I will break the yoke of servitude to the king of Babylon. Before two years are over, I will bring back to this place everything that King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon took from it and carried away to Babylon. I will also bring back to this place Jehoiakim’s son King Jeconiah of Judah and all the exiles who were taken to Babylon.’ Indeed, the LORD affirms, ‘I will break the yoke of servitude to the king of Babylon.’ Jeremiah 28:1-4

Here we see the chief culprit of these prophesies, the prophet Hananiah. This takes place in the fourth year of Zedekiah and gives a brilliant example of divine facts. The lie is three-fold:

1. Within 2 years the Temple vessels will be brought back. But Jeremiah has already said that the captivity will be for 70 years. Jeremiah 25:11. It was a lie.

2. Jehoiachin will be returned to Jerusalem along with the captives within 2 years. Jeremiah has said that Jehoiachin will die in captivity. Jeremiah 22:24-27.

3. God is going to break the yoke of Babylon. In Jeremiah 27:7, we see that Jeremiah has already told them that the Babylonian captivity will last for three generations at least.

‘Then the prophet Jeremiah responded to the prophet Hananiah in the presence of the priests and all the people who were standing in the LORD’s temple. The prophet Jeremiah said, ‘Amen! May the LORD do all this! May the LORD make your prophecy come true! May he bring back to this place from Babylon all the valuable articles taken from the LORD’s temple and the people who were carried into exile. But listen to what I say to you and to all these people. From earliest times, the prophets who preceded you and me invariably prophesied war, disaster, and plagues against many countries and great kingdoms. So, if a prophet prophesied peace and prosperity, it was only known that the LORD truly sent him when what he prophesied came true.’ Jeremiah 28:5-9

In Jeremiah 18 the false prophets said that they would say the direct opposite to what Jeremiah said. That is exactly what this man Hananiah is doing. In Jeremiah 28:6, Jeremiah says, ‘Amen! May the Lord do so!’

He seems to be taking the mickey. He doesn’t hate his people or his country, He wishes the best for both. That is why he can say, ‘amen’, I wish it could be as Hananiah says. But he must accept the will of God. Despite how I feel, this is the fact.

Prophet’s words in general speak against the people, and everything that they said came to pass. He points back to other prophets to prove his message is true. Then he says to Hananiah, where is the proof?

Even here in the fourth year of Zedekiah famine and war was already happening, Things were in bad shape. From Josiah to Zedekiah he had prophesied. His word had come to pass. They had not cultivated the land. This is my proof. Where is yours? You talk of peace, prove it!

‘The prophet Hananiah then took the yoke off the prophet Jeremiah’s neck and broke it. Then he spoke up in the presence of all the people. ‘The LORD says, ‘In the same way I will break the yoke of servitude of all the nations to King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon before two years are over.’ After he heard this, the prophet Jeremiah departed and went on his way.’ Jeremiah 28:10-11

Hananiah could not answer that. He is stuck for words, so he puts on a show. He takes the yoke from Jeremiah’s neck and breaks it over his knee. God is going to break the yoke of Babylon. This was to show a bit of face. Jeremiah doesn’t retaliate. He went away and awaited God’s direction, so the yoke was on Hananiah!

Peter learnt the same lesson. He cut off a guard’s ear. He then waited until the Spirit came before he did anything else. He learnt the lesson, to wait.

‘But shortly after the prophet Hananiah had broken the yoke off the prophet Jeremiah’s neck, the LORD spoke to Jeremiah. ‘Go and tell Hananiah that the LORD says, ‘You have indeed broken the wooden yoke. But you have only succeeded in replacing it with an iron one! For the LORD God of Israel who rules over all says, ‘I have put an irresistible yoke of servitude on all these nations, so they will serve King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. And they will indeed serve him. I have even given him control over the wild animals.’ Then the prophet Jeremiah told the prophet Hananiah, ‘Listen, Hananiah! The LORD did not send you! You are making these people trust in a lie! So, the LORD says, ‘I will most assuredly remove you from the face of the earth. You will die this very year because you have counselled rebellion against the LORD.’ In the seventh month of that very same year the prophet Hananiah died.’ Jeremiah 28:12-17

God points out Hananiah’s mistake. He gets Jeremiah to wear a yoke of iron. Try breaking that across your knee, Hananiah! It was harnessed in a way that they could not take it off. God points a finger at this man, you have caused these people to rebel against me. I did not send you, though you spoke in my name. Your reward? A visit to the undertakers.

‘This very year, you are going to die, because you preached rebellion against the L0RD.’ In the seventh month of that same year, Hananiah the prophet died.

Go To Jeremiah 29



"For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God."

Ephesians 2:8