Enemies win the fight for Jerusalem
17 So, the Lord brought the king of Babylon to attack them. The king killed their young men with swords in their holy temple. He did not feel sorry for the young men or for the young women. He did not feel sorry for the old men or for the very old people. God let him take all those people away. 18 And he took all the things that were still in God's house. He took all the big things and he took all the small things too. He took the valuable things from the house of the Lord. And he took the valuable things of the king and of his officers. He took all those things to Babylon. 19 Nebuchadnezzar's men burned the house of God and they broke down the wall round Jerusalem. They burned all the king's houses in Jerusalem and they destroyed all the valuable things in Jerusalem.
36:17The army of Babylon surrounded Jerusalem. After one and a half years, there was no more food in Jerusalem. In 587 BC, the soldiers from Babylon broke down the walls of the city.
20 Nebuchadnezzar took all the people that he had not killed to Babylon. They became slaves for him and for his sons. They were slaves until the king of Persia began to rule everywhere. 21 So, what the Lord had told Israel's people by the mouth of his prophet Jeremiah happened. The country was empty until it had its Sabbath rest. It was empty and it had rest for 70 whole years.
22 But Cyrus, king of Persia, began to rule Babylon. And during his first year as king, the Lord did what he had promised by the mouth of Jeremiah. The Lord caused Cyrus, king of Persia to decide something. He wrote it down. And he sent servants to read it in every place that he ruled over. And this is what it said:
36:22In 539 BC, the army of Cyrus king of Persia fought against Babylon and won. So, Cyrus became king of Babylon.
23 ‘Cyrus, king of Persia says, “The Lord is the God of heaven. And he has caused me to rule over all the kingdoms on the earth. He has told me that I must build a temple for him at Jerusalem in Judah. I will let anyone among you who belongs to his people go to Jerusalem. I pray that the Lord their God will be with those people.” ’