Mary Answers the Angel

(Luke 1:38)
Mary Answers the Angel

And Mary said,
“I serve the Lord;
Let it be to
Me by your word.”


“Annunciation” by Leonardo da Vinci



1 In Zedekiah’s ninth year as the king,

Month ten and tenth day, King Nebuchadnezzar

Of Babylonia led his whole army

To strike against Jerusalem. The troops

Pitched camp outside the city and built ramps

Up to the city walls, 2-3 and after one

Year and a half, Jerusalem’s supply

Of food was gone, then on the ninth day of

The fourth month, 4 Babylonian troops broke through

The city wall. That same night, Zedekiah

And soldiers tried to break out through

The gate close by the royal garden, though

They knew the enemy had the whole city

Surrounded, and they headed toward the desert,

5 But Babylonian troops caught up with them

Near Jericho, where they arrested King

Zedekiah, but all his soldiers split

In every bearing; 6 Zedekiah was

Taken to Riblah, where Nebuchadnezzar

Put him on trial and found him to be

Guilty; 7 and Zedekiah’s sons were killed

In front of him; his eyes were then poked out,

And he was chained and dragged to Babylon.

8 About a month on, in Nebuchadnezzar’s

Nineteenth year as king, Nebuzaradan,

His officer in charge of guards, came to

Jerusalem. 9 Nebuzaradan burned

Down the Lord’s temple, the king’s palace, and

Every important building in the city,

As well as all the houses, 10 then he ordered

            The Babylonian soldiers to break down

The walls around Jerusalem, 11 and led

Away as prisoners the city folk,

            Including those who had sworn loyalty

To Nebuchadnezzar, 12 while only some—

The very poor—were left behind to work

The vineyards and the fields, 13 while soldiers

From Babylonia took the two bronze

Columns that stood before the temple, ten

Movable bronze stands, and the large bronze bowl

Known as the Sea. They broke them into pieces

So they could take the bronze to Babylonia.

14 They carried off the bronze things used for worship

Within the temple, even taking pans

For the hot ashes, and the shovels, snuffers,

And also incense dishes, 15 and fire pans

And sprinkling bowls, and Nebuzaradan

Commanded soldiers to take everything

Of gold or silver, 16 and the pile of bronze

From stands and columns and the large bowl that

Solomon had made for the temple was

Too large for weighing; 17 and each column had

been twenty-seven feet tall with a cap

Of bronze four and a half feet high. These caps

Were decorated with some bronze designs—

With some like chains and some like pomegranates.

18 Next, Nebuzaradan arrested Chief

Priest Seraiah, Zephaniah his

Assistant, and three temple ministers,

 19 And he arrested next one of the army

Commanders and the king’s five personal

Advisors, and the officer in charge

Of gathering the troops for battle; and

Found sixty soldiers more who were still in

Jerusalem; 20 and Nebuzaradan

Led all of them to Riblah 21 close to Hamath:

            Nebuchadnezzar executed them

            There; Judah’s people now no longer lived

In their own country. 22 King Nebuchadnezzar

Then took Ahikam’s son named Gedliah,

Appointing him to govern the few people

Residing still in Judah. 23 Army troops

            And officers heard that Gedaliah was

Their ruler, officers met him at Mizpah.

These men were Ishmael son of Nethaniah,

Johanan son of Kareah, the son

Of Tanhumeth, Seraiah, out of

Netophah, and Jaazaniah from

Maacah. 24 Gedaliah said to them,

“Everything will be fine, I promise. We

Don’t need to be afraid of Babylonian

Rulers, if we live here in peace and do

What Nebuchadnezzar says.” 25 Nearly two

Months after Gedaliah started his

Rule, Ishmael, from the royal family,

Traveled to Mizpah with ten other men.

And they killed Gedaliah and his staff,

Including those from Judah and those out

Of Babylonia, 26 but after that,

the army officers and all the people

In Mizpah, whether prominent or not,

Were scared of what the Babylonians

Might do, so they left Judah and they went

To Egypt, 27 while Jehoiachin remained

A prisoner for thirty-seven years

In Babylon, then Evil-Merodach

Became the king of Babylonia,

And in the first year of his rule, upon

The twenty-seventh day of the twelfth month,

He let Jehoiachin out of the prison,

28 And Evil-Merodach was kind to him

And honored him more than the other kings

Held prisoner there. 29 Jehoiachin was even

Allowed to wear his normal clothes; he ate

At the king’s table every day, 30 and as

Long as Jehoiachin lived, they agreed

He could have funds each day to meet his needs.