Jeremiah, CHAPTER 35
The Faithful Rechabites.
The word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD in the days of Jehoiakim, son of Josiah, king of Judah:
Go to the house of the Rechabites, speak to them, and bring them to the house of the LORD, to one of the rooms there, and give them wine to drink.
So I took Jaazaniah, son of Jeremiah, son of Habazziniah, his brothers and all his sons―the whole house of the Rechabites―
and I brought them to the house of the LORD, to the room of the sons of Hanan, son of Igdaliah, the man of God, next to the room of the princes above the room of Maaseiah, son of Shallum, the guard at the entrance.
I set before the Rechabites bowls full of wine, and cups, and said to them, “Drink some wine.”
“We do not drink wine,” they said to me; “Jonadab, Rechab’s son, our father, commanded us, ‘Neither you nor your children shall ever drink wine.
Build no house and sow no seed; do not plant vineyards or own any. You must dwell in tents all your lives, so that you may live long on the land where you live as resident aliens.’
We have obeyed Jonadab, Rechab’s son, our father, in everything that he commanded us: not drinking wine as long as we live―neither we nor our wives nor our sons nor our daughters;
not building houses to live in; not owning vineyards or fields or crops.
We live in tents, doing everything our father Jonadab commanded us.
But when Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, invaded this land, we said, ‘Come, let us go into Jerusalem to escape the army of the Chaldeans and the army of the Arameans.’ That is why we are now living in Jerusalem.”
Then the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah:
Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: Go, say to the people of Judah and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem: Will you not take correction and obey my words?―oracle of the LORD.
The words of Jonadab, Rechab’s son, by which he commanded his children not to drink wine, have been upheld: to this day they have not drunk wine; they obeyed their ancestor’s command. I, however, have spoken to you time and again. But you did not obey me!
Time and again I sent you all my servants the prophets, saying: Turn away, each of you, from your evil way and reform your actions! Do not follow other gods to serve them that you may remain in the land which I gave you and your ancestors. But you did not pay attention. You did not obey me.
Yes, the children of Jonadab, Rechab’s son, upheld the command which their father laid on them. But this people has not obeyed me!
Now, therefore, says the LORD God of hosts, the God of Israel: I will soon bring upon Judah and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem every evil with which I threatened them because I spoke but they did not obey, I called but they did not answer.
But to the house of the Rechabites Jeremiah said: Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: Since you have obeyed the command of Jonadab, your father, kept all his commands and done everything he commanded you,
therefore, thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: Never shall there fail to be a descendant of Jonadab, Rechab’s son, standing in my presence.