The Holy Bible – Knox Translation
The Prophecy of Jeremias
In the reign of Josias’ son Joachim, word came to Jeremias from the Lord,
Go, make thyself acquainted with the men of Rechab’s clan; I would have thee entertain them in one of the treasury rooms at the temple, and there set wine before them.
So Jezonias, son of Jeremias, son of Habsanias was my guest, with his brethren and his sons and the whole Rechabite clan;
into the temple I brought them, to the apartment of Hanan’s sons, that come down from God’s servant Jegedelias. It was next to the apartment of the door-keeper, Maasias the son of Sellum.
Here I set a bowl and goblet of wine before the men of Rechab’s clan, and bade them drink,
but drink wine they would not. Our father Jonadab, said they, the son of Rechab gave us a rule to live by. Wine neither we should drink, nor any son of ours in perpetuity;
no house build, no crops sow, no vineyard plant or possess; in tents we were to live all our days, and long those days should last in this land that was none of ours.
As our father Jonadab son of Rechab bade us live, so live we, so our wives and sons and daughters live, drinking no wine at any time.
Houses we build none to dwell in, vineyards and fields and crops have none;
tent-dwellers we remain, true to every command of our father Jonadab;
it was only when king Nabuchodonosor of Babylon marched against us that we were fain to take shelter in Jerusalem from threats of Chaldaean and Syrian; that is why we make our abode in Jerusalem.
And now the Lord’s word came to Jeremias:
A message from the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel! Go and tell all the men of Juda, all the citizens of Jerusalem. Great marvel it is, the Lord says, you are so unruly still, and will not heed my bidding.
Here is Jonadab son of Rechab will have his sons drink no wine, and his word holds; wine they drink none to this day, for love of their father’s rule; and I, that send word early to your doors, can win no obedience.
Early I sent them to your doors, the prophets that were servants of mine, bidding you come back from your straying, and shape your thoughts anew; have recourse no longer to the worship of alien gods, if you would dwell securely in this land, my gift to you and to your fathers; but you gave me neither heed nor hearing.
So loyal the Rechabites to the commands of their father Jonadab, and my people so disobedient!
I mean, then, says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, to punish the citizens of Jerusalem for warnings unheeded, for calls refused, with all the punishments I have threatened.
To the clan of Rechab Jeremias gave this message from the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: For your obedience to your father Jonadab, for precept remembered and for duty done,
he, the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, promises that this line of Rechab and Jonadab, long as time lasts, shall never want a posterity to do him service.
The Holy Bible