LAW OF RETRIBUTION.
Zedekiah) one of these wicked prophets, " Hananiah, the
son of Azur the prophet, which was of Gibeon, (1 Chron.
xxi. 29. 1 Kings iii. 5,)"—" took the yoke from off the
prophet Jeremiah's neck, and biake it. And Hananiah
spake" (in the temple) " in the presence of all the people,
saying, thus saith the Lord ; even so will I break the yoke
of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon from the neck of all
nations within the space of two full years." Jer. xxviii. 1,
10, 11. Upon which, it seems, the prophet Jeremiah was
directed by God to reprove Hananiah with a severe sen¬
tence ; for he not only declared that " Yokes of Iron"
should be substituted instead of the " yokes of wood" (Jer.
xxviii. 12, 13,) which Hananiah had broken, as I be¬
fore remarked, but he also pointed out the lying prophet
himself to the public observation, as a notable and undeni¬
able token, that the prophecies of Jeremiah were of divine
authority !—" Hear now, Hananiah," (said the true pro¬
phet) : " the Lord" (i. e. Jehovah) " hath not sent thee ;
but thou makest this people to trust in a lie. Therefore
thus saith the Lord ;—Behold, I will cast thee forth 'from
the face of the earth: this year thou shalt die, because
thpu hast taught rebellion against the Lord. So Hana¬
niah the prophet died the same year, in the seventh month."
Jer. xxviii. 15—17. That is, he died exactly two months
after the prediction, which was made in the fifth month of
the fourth year of Zedekiah. Such evidence, added to
the former clear tokens of authenticity which this pro¬
phecy of the yokes carried with it, must render Zedekiah
and his courtiers totally inexcusable for neglecting the di-
vine warning, and relying upon false prophets.
Thus the propriety of considering the former part of the
27th chapter as a revelation in the time of Jehoiakim,
agreeable to the testimony of the Hebrew text, is rendered
apparent by the particular advantages which such a prior
revelation would afterwards give to the true prophet, when
he had to oppose the pretended prophecies delivered in the
fourth year of Zedekiah : and the remaining part of the
27th chapter, from the 12th verse, wherein the prophet
mentions his personal address to Zedekiah, must necessarily