Verse 12 tells us that Jeremiah gave Baruch what we would call an envelope containing the two deeds. Thus the well-respected Baruch, whose lineage is given, was like Jeremiah’s secretary and treasurer. Evidently, too, he was a person of influence who backed up the prophet. Baruch was given the original deed (and the copy) in the sight of Hanameel and in the presence of the witnesses who had signed it and also of the Jews who sat in the prison courtyard. Zedekiah did not like Jeremiah, yet he permitted this transaction. The king was not taking any chances just in case there was something of substance going on here, so at this time, he treated Jeremiah quite well as a prisoner. (Earlier, however, Jeremiah was at the bottom of a cistern, in mire and water, until the eunuch pulled him out.)
Verses 13-15 tell what God’s purpose was. The deed was made out in duplicate. The official notarized, sealed deed, as well as the open one, was put in an earthen vessel to be hidden by Baruch. But why were there two deeds? One reason was to have two witnesses—the land purchase was confirmed and reaffirmed. Another reason was for the dramatic effect that will occur when the deeds are found in the Kingdom. The deeds will no doubt be found because the account states explicitly that they were put in an earthen vessel so that they would “continue many days,” suggesting the deeds were recorded for posterity.