Dated Materials of the Book of Jeremiah

For family relationships of these rulers see Josiah and the last kings of Jerusalem
31 years (2 Kgs 22:1) (640-609)
13th year of Josiah’s rule (627)—Jeremiah’s ministry begins (1:3; cf. 25:3)
3:6 threat of judgment
(18th year of Josiah’s rule [622]—Hilkiah finds law [Deut] in temple [2 Kgs 22:3, 8])
Jehoahaz (Shallum)
3 months (2 Kgs 23:31) (609)
22:11 a word concerning Shallum
Jehoiakim (Eliakim)
11 years (2 Kgs 23:36) (609-598)
26:1 temple sermon at the beginning of the reign of Jehoiakim [two versions of temple sermon in 26:1-6 and 7:2-8:3]
25:1 a word against Judah in the 4th year of Jehoiakim
36:1 a scroll in the 4th year of Jehoiakim
45:1 a scroll in the 4th year of Jehoiakim (605 when Babylon bested Egypt at the battle of Carchemish, north of Palestine [46:2])
36:9 reading the scroll in the 5th year[1] of Jehoiakim
([c. 605]—Deportation of children of nobility [Dan 1:1])
35:1 the example of the Rechabite in the days of Jehoiakim (time unspecified)
Jehoiachin (Coniah)
3 months (2 Kgs 24:8; cf. 25:27-30) (598-597)
22:14, 24 a word against Coniah (time unspecified)
(8th year of Nebuchadnezzar’s rule [597]—besieged Jerusalem and took captive Jehoiachin and other rulers [2 Kgs 24:12])
Zedekiah (Mattaniah)
11 years (2 Kgs 24:18) (597-86)
27:1[2]; 28:1 a word and the sign of the yoke at the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah
29:1 letter of Jeremiah to the exiles from Jerusalem, after exile of Jehoiachin
24:1 a word against Zedekiah and the officials and remnant of Jerusalem after Jehoiachin had been exiled
51:59 a scroll from Jeremiah for Seraiah (brother of Baruch cf. 32:12; 36:14) to deliver in Babylon in the fourth year of Zedekiah when he went to Babylon
20:1 Pashhur responds to Jeremiah’s message in Jer 19; 21:1 the word comes to Jeremiah when Pashhur tries to persuade Zedekiah to rebel against Babylon [Jer 21:2 likely refers to events of 2 Kgs 18:13-19:37]
34:1-7 a warning for Zedekiah weeks before the siege of Jerusalem
37:1-10 (Jer 38) a word comes to Jeremiah when Jehucal and Zephaniah come to Jeremiah on behalf of the king to request prayer (Jer 38 may be an alternate account of the events of Jer 37)
34:8-22 a word of judgment after the covenant to release slaves was reversed
37:11-21 Jeremiah’s meeting with Zedekiah (as noted above, Jer 38 may be an alternate account of the events of Jer 37)
39:15-18 a word during Jeremiah’s imprisonment (continued from 38:27)
34:1 a warning for Zedekiah weeks before the siege of Jerusalem
32:1 10th year of Zedekiah during the siege of Jerusalem
33:1 (cf. 32:2) another word during Jeremiah’s imprisonment
39:1-14; Jer 52 narrative of the fall of Jerusalem beginning in 9th year of Zedekiah, (cf. 2 Kgs 25) (19th year of Nebuchadnezzar [5th month, 4th day, 586 BCE])
[Governor Gedaliah] 40-41 narrative of Jeremiah’s release at Ramah (cf. 40:1; 31:15) and accompaniment of Gedaliah to Mizpah (40:6)

42-44 narrative of flight to Egypt by remnant, and Jeremiah
(52 is an appendix, see 51:64; last part of chapter 52:31-34 in 27th year of exile during the reign of Evil-merodach of Babylon [562-560]—Jehoiachin released within Babylon [2 Kgs 25:27])

Undated materials include Jer 2-6; 8-23; 45-51.

[1] LXX “eighth year” (43:9); this still allows the three years for vassal state (2 Kgs 24:1) of Jehoiakim’s eleven years.
[2] LXX lacks 27:1 MT (see head of Jer 34 LXX); MT of 27:1 perhaps supplied from 28:1 MT=35:1 LXX.

Also see Selected Chronology of Empires of Assyria, Babylon, and Persia

Copyright 2009, 2010

Gary E. Schnittjer