Ok, this is driving me nuts for whatever reason I cant get past the bolded part. Can someone maybe explain that a little? If this even makes sense, Im usually not t his dense, I've been reading this for ever and for some reason I keep getting thrown off track at that part. Any help is appreciated
Next, let’s look at Jeremiah 29:10, as it is presented in several translations:
‘This is what the LORD says: ‘When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will come to you and fulfill my gracious promise to bring you back to this place.’ - NIV
‘For thus says the LORD, ‘When seventy years have been completed for Babylon, I will visit you and fulfill My good word to you, to bring you back to this place.’ - NASB
‘For thus says the Lord, When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will visit you and keep My good promise to you, causing you to return to this place.’ - AMP
‘After Babylonia has been the strongest nation for seventy years, I will be kind and bring you back to Jerusalem, just as I have promised.’ - CEV
The King James and other bibles have confused matters slightly by their incorrect use of the phrase ‘at Babylon’ rather than ‘for Babylon’, but that aside, a look at the context in Jeremiah 29:4-11 shows these words to be part of a letter sent from Jeremiah to those who were taken captive from Jerusalem in the second (of three) deportations. This second deportation happened eleven years before Jerusalem’s final destruction. Jeremiah is telling the captives they should settle themselves and not expect a quick return as some false prophets had predicted, for only after seventy years had been accomplished ‘for Babylon’ would they return. This only makes sense if the seventy years had already begun.
If the seventy years were to begin with the destruction of Jerusalem some ten years after Jeremiah’s words were written, it would mean the people Jeremiah was writing to would have to wait even longer than seventy years. Plus to do so would mean God had already decided that Jerusalem would be destroyed. And if this were this case, the later warnings recorded at Jeremiah 38:17, 18 would have no meaning. It reads:
‘Jeremiah now said to Zedekiah: ‘This is what Jehovah, the God of armies, the God of Israel, has said, ‘If you will without fail go out to the princes of the king of Babylon, your soul will also certainly keep living and this city itself will not be burned with fire , and you yourself and your household will certainly keep living. But if you will not go out to the princes of the king of Babylon, this city must also be given into the hand of the Chaldeans, and they will actually burn it with fire, and you yourself will not escape out of their hand.’
If God had already decided to burn the city ten years before he did it, such a warning would have been futile. However if we understand the seventy years to be years of servitude, then the warning to Zedekiah is clear, serve Babylon and the city and its inhabitants will be spared, rebel against God’s appointed agent, Nebuchadnezzar, and be destroyed.