Jeremiah Chapter 41

"Treachery. Avenged, Under Johanan in the Land."

This Bible Study is written by Roger Christopherson, and it's transcription/ location is provided by

We see from the last chapter that Gedaliah the son of Ahikam was placed in charge of the ones that were left behind in the land of Judaea and the people of Jerusalem. There was a man named Ishmael who was in the line of the throne, and of royal blood that was passed over, and caused him to plan the murder of Gedaliah the governor. Gedaliah was at a place called Mizpah, and it is important for us to understand who and what was happening at this place called Mizpah.

There were seven or eight places called Mizpah, and the word means "watchtower" in the Hebrew. It is a highpoint where watchman overlook a valley for their protection. Even vineyards had watchtowers, but this watchtower is interesting because it is on the mount of Olives, and there is a ridge extension that goes out and at the end of the ridge is the place that is called "Mizpah".

So what is going on here is taking place not the mount of Olives, but on the same elevation. On the ridge extension that goes out from it. Keep that thought in mind as we see these events take place. The lesson to be learned from this chapter is that you be careful who you trust in the flesh.

Gedeliah was a very trusting soul, and even after learning of the lies and deception in the plot to kill him, Gedaliah refused to believe them.

Jeremiah 41:1 "Now it came to pass in the seventh month, that Ishmael the son of Nethaniah the son of Elishama, of the seed royal, and the princes of the king, even ten men with him, came unto Gedaliah the son of Ahikam to Mizpah; and there they did eat bread together in Mizpah."

Ishmael is of the royal seed in line to receive the throne of over the House of Judah. You see also many of the royal family are with Ishmael. Anytime you invited someone to dine with you, that was a real privilege. Ishmael and these members of the royal family came to Gedaliah and Gedaliah invited them all in to eat with him. It is a form of extending your friendship to another, so we see that members of the royal family are having dinner with the governor of the land that is representing the king of Babylon.

Jeremiah 41:2 "Then arose Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, and the ten men that were with him, and smote Gedaliah the son of Ahikam the son of Shaphan with the sword, and slew him, whom the king of Babylon had made governor over the land."

At the dinner table Ishmael rose up, and with the help of the ten men that were with him, they kill Gedaliah. The message is that we be aware of who we trust after the king of Babylon of the Book of Revelation appears on this earth. He is the Antichrist, or "instead of Christ", and it is written that even family members will betray each other.

Mark 13:12 "Now the brother shall betray the brother to death, and the father the son; and children shall rise up against their parents, and shall cause them to be put to death."

Here we also see the number "10" which in Biblical numerics stands for testimony. But also we know that when the Antichrist [Satan] comes there will be ten rulers that will take charge of the entire world. So in a way, this is a preview of what we can expect from that one world system, of ten rulers, or agencies of government. That system today is called the "New Word Order", and it will come to it's fullness only after its deadly wound.

Immediately after the deadly wound, it would mean that the false messiah would have appeared, because that "instead of Christ" is the one that heals it.

Jeremiah 41:3 "Ishmael also slew all the Jews that were with him, even with Gedaliah, at Mizpah, and the Chaldeans that were found there, and the men of war."

Ishmael cleaned house of all that were there in authority, so how could he justify what he had done? Ishmael claimed to be of the royal seed, and the one that sat in the place of governing was only a commoner. He did not have the right under the law, and Ishmael claimed that it was his place to be ruling here. There was jealousy in his flesh.

However, there was one problem with this, Nebuchadnezzar is not going to be happy with what they have done with the man he has put in charge. This is a type of what shall happen in our generation, so lets refer to them as actors to teach us. What we have is some of our own people, because they are designated as seed royal, will go directly against the king of Babylon's orders, and the ones that the king had put in charge. All the people were suppose to be obeying the orders of the king. So we see a rebellion within the camp of our own people, that love God, and their plan goes against the very plan of God.

When the one world system, the religious system takes over from the fall of the political system, God has given Satan the right to rule and deceive to test His people to see if they will chose Him or the false Christ. Those that do not have the plan of God in their minds, will devise their own, that goes against God's plan written in His Word to us. That is why we must grow familiar with the plan of God, and abide by it.

Jeremiah 41:4 "And it came to pass the second day after he had slain Gedaliah, and no man knew it,"

Everybody knew that Gedaliah wasn't around, but they didn't know where he was. Ishmael had thrown Gedaliah and the other dead bodies in a cistern., a pit, and they were hidden.

Jeremiah 41:5 "That there came certain from Shechem, from Shiloh, and from Samaria, even fourscore men, having their beards shaven, and their clothes rent, and having cut themselves, with offerings and incense in their hand, to bring them to the house of the Lord."

We have here eighty strong people in Religion, the pillars of the community, and ones that try to look the part. They have cut themselves to show their concern for the condition of the city, but there is just one problem with this. God told them to go along with the Chaldeans into Babylon, and to stay there for seventy years. The order from God was that they were to live and work in Babylon, and he would take care of them there. But these religious types insist on keeping with the old. They heard those false prophets, and believed what they said, and now they are going to pay the price for their stupidity.

The point here is that it doesn't matter how much you want to play religion, if you don't want to do it by God's plan, then you are going to have trouble. 

Jeremiah 41:6 "And Ishmael the son of Nethaniah went froth from Mizpah to meet them, weeping all along as he went: and it came to pass, as he met them, he said unto them, "Come to Gedaliah the son of Ahikam."

Ishmael is on the watchtower, at Mizpah, and he can see these eighty men coming up the valley with all their religious form. Ishmael is now play acting, and weeping all the way to be in the midst of these eighty religious types, and he tells them, "come and see Gedaliah the son of Ahikam". Come and see Gedaliah? Ishamael has killed Gedaliah and all those with him. Ishmael is also playing the religious part in his tears, and the show he is giving them.

Jeremiah 41:7 "And it was so, when they came into the midst of the city, that Ishmael the son of Nethaniah slew them, and cast them into the midst of the pit, he, and the men that were with him."

Remember the city of Jerusalem was destroyed, and burned to the ground, and while they were in the city, Ishmael and his royals rose up and killed most of the religious men that came to do their sacrifices to God. Friend this is what you can expect from this same type, about the time you put your trust in them. As the men were being slaughtered, the others were taking a second thought of their religious position, and they were about to be bought out.

Jeremiah 41:8 "But ten men were found among them that said unto Ishmael, "Slay us not: for we have treasures in the field, of wheat, and of barley, and of oil, and of honey." So he forbare, and slew them not among their brethren."

Remember ten in biblical numerics, ten men of the religious eighty that cut themselves for their religion and now they see what is happening, and they don't want any more cutting on themselves. There were ten that sold out their great cause for a price, and they probably felt that the cause was right, but not worth their life. They had listened to those false preachers, the same ones that demanded the life of Jeremiah, and they had risked their entire life on those lies. There could have been many good souls in the eighty, that were misled, but only God knows and He is the judge.

Jeremiah 41:9 "Now the pit wherein Ishmael had cast all the dead bodies of the men, whom he had slain because of Gedaliah, was it which Asa the king had made for fear of Baasha king of Israel: and Ishmael the son of Nethaniah filled it with them that were slain."

So we have ten men that have sold out their cause to same their lives. The storage of grains underground was not uncommon then, nor now in the desert places. However in our land if it was done in America it would rot in most places. The question then is What is religion worth?

If God Himself is the head of it, and you are following the exact plan of God, it can be real good, but if you are just putting on a show, it just won't last. The point is that we do not play church and that we do not play at being a Christian. Christianity is a reality, and the very life we live. Spiritually we are to stand firm, and know that God's plan is exactly as it will come to pass, and we are to know the plan and prepare ourselves for it to come. The important thing is that you do not sell out.

King Asa had built this pit centuries before because of his war with the house of Israel, the ten nations to the north that had been scattered. There was a war going on between the two nations of the house of Judah and the house of Israel. Our own people fighting each other. The lesson then was that when you fight amongst yourselves, as children of God, then Satan will take you over, and both will end in the pit. Fighting within a family will always end up costing the family on both sides of the argument.

Jeremiah 41:10 "Then Ishmael carried away captive all the residue of the People that were in Mizpah, even the king's daughters, and all the People that remained in Mizpah, whom Nebuzar-adan the captain of the guard had committed to Gedaliah the son of Ahikam: and Ishmael the son of Nethaniah carried them away captive, and departed to go over to the Ammonites."

This verse is important because it establishes where the daughters of Zedekiah are, and later we will see that they will become Jeremiah's charge. Later Jeremiah will take these daughters to Spain and on to Ireland, and they will become the mothers of the king and queen lines of Christian nations. The lineage of these daughters are given at the end of Jeremiah 33. It is from this lineage the the Royals of England are descendants of, as well as all the other king lines. This can be confirmed from modern secular history.

Ishmael might be from the seed of royalty, but he is not going to sit on any throne, because he is going contrary to our Heavenly Father's plan. Ishmael has now taken even the daughters of Zedekiah with him on his way over to the Ammonites.

Jeremiah 41:11 "But when Johanan the son of Kareah, asnd all the captains of the forces that were with him, heard of all the evil that Ishamael the son of Nethaniah had done,"

Remember from the end of the last Chapter, Johanan was the personal friend that warned Gedaliah that Ishmael was out to kill him, and Gedaliah said to him, "Thou shalt not do this thing: for thou speakest falsely of Ishmael." Johanan knew that Ishmael was capable of murder, and now he knows that his delay has cost the life of the governor. Gedaliah was a very gullible man, and ignorant of the ways of the evil mind. He never wanted even the protection against the threat of attack, and when it came he was completely defenseless.

Johanan is becoming a champion of the people at this time, so how do we trust our champions? He is ready to get a group together and go after Ishmael.

Jeremiah 41:12 "Then they took all the men, and went to fight with Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, and found him by the great waters that are in Gibeon."

Jeremiah 41:13 "Now it came to pass, that when all the People which were with Ishmael saw Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the captains of the forces that were with him, then they were glad."

The people that were taken captive were glad that Johanan had come to the rescue.

Jeremiah 41:14 "So all the People that Ishmael had carried away captive from Mizpah cast about and returned, and went unto Johanan the son of Kareah."

So we have the champion establish, and the king's daughters are with him.

Jeremiah 41:15 "But Ishamael the son of Nethaniah escaped from Johanan with eight men, and went to the Ammonites."

Johanan let nine men get away.

Jeremiah 41:16 "Then took Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the captains of the forces that were with him, all the remnant of the People whom he had recovered from Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, from Mizpah, after that he had slain Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, even mighty men of war, and the women, and the children,and the eunuchs, whom he had brought again from Gibeon:"

We see that God's people are freed from the seed Royal, and are being brought back to Mizpah.

Jeremiah 41:17 "And they departed, and dwelt in the habitation of Chimham, which is by Bethlehem, to go to enter into Egypt,"

They have stopped near Bethlehem to camp, and while there, they have decided to flee into Egypt. This is a bad decision on the part of Johanan because God told the house of Judah that they were to remain under the rule of the king of Babylon for the seventy years. Though Johanan was a brave man in battle, he was very foolish and he closed his mind to God's Word.

Remember God said, lean on Me and not on Egypt, go to Babylon and you will be safe.

Jeremiah 41:18 "Because of the Chaldeans: for they were afraid of them, because Ishmael the son of Nethaniah had slain Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, whom the king of Babylon made governor of the land."

This group of people had a reason to be concerned, because when the king of Babylon hears what was done with his governor, he would come down hard of the others. Nebuchadnezzar would tie Ishmael to the others, and blame all the people for what had happened. At a time like this, honesty will always rule, however when you try to cover up, from one lie many more will grow out of it.

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