Forgotten days without number — Jeremiah 1-3

Well, today, dear daily Bible readers, we begin reading the prophecies of Jeremiah. One of the things that you’ll notice about prophecy — we’ve noted this briefly before — is that it is not all about the future. Prophets are mouthpieces for God. Sometimes the mouthpieces speak of the future, what God intends to do, but even more often it is what we might call old-fashioned preaching — often of the Hell-fire and brimstone variety. Prophets were usually called to call God’s people to repent of their sin and unfaithfulness; and sometimes that included promises of punishment, if they refused to repent. Much of Jeremiah’s prophecy is like this

Jeremiah is sometimes called the “Weeping Prophet”, because of passages like this: “Oh that my head were waters And my eyes a fountain of tears, That I might weep day and night For the slain of the daughter of my people!” Jeremiah 9:1, NAS95. Of course, we can readily understand why, when we consider his life. Jeremiah experienced the conquest of Judah and Jerusalem by Babylon, a later siege of Jerusalem, and also the final razing of Jerusalem and the Temple. Imagine the heartache of watch your country sink to irresistible defeat before her enemies — and more than defeat, exile of her people and burning destruction of her cities. Jerusalem and Judah became a nation wiped clean like a dish (2 Kings 21:13). His life also included the persecution that usually accompanies bringing a prophetic message, including imprisonment and near starvation. This was Jeremiah’s tragic life and ministry.

Anyway, the first three chapters have a lot to say to us — so much that I’d like to simply point out the themes in these chapters and some of the best (in my humble opinion) verses in that theme…

The call of Jeremiah:

 

  • “See, I have appointed you this day over the nations and over the kingdoms, To pluck up and to break down, To destroy and to overthrow, To build and to plant.” Jeremiah 1:10
  • “The word of the LORD came to me saying, ‘What do you see, Jeremiah?’ And I said, ‘I see a rod of an almond tree.’ Then the LORD said to me, ‘You have seen well, for I am watching over My word to perform it.’” Jeremiah 1:11, 12 (The Hebrew for”almond” sounds like the Hebrew word for “watch”. God will always make sure His word comes to pass.)
  • “Now, gird up your loins and arise, and speak to them all which I command you. Do not be dismayed before them, or I will dismay you before them.” Jeremiah 1:17

The moral pollution of Judah

  • ““How well you prepare your way To seek love! Therefore even the wicked women You have taught your ways.” Jeremiah 2:33
  • “God says, ‘…But you are a harlot with many lovers; Yet you turn to Me,’ declares the LORD. ‘Lift up your eyes to the bare heights and see; Where have you not been violated? …’” Jeremiah 3:1, 2

The stubbornness of Judah

  • “’Yet in spite of all this her treacherous sister Judah did not return to Me with all her heart, but rather in deception,’declares the LORD.” Jeremiah 3:10
  • “’Why do you contend with Me? You have all transgressed against Me,’ declares the LORD. ‘In vain I have struck your sons; They accepted no chastening. Your sword has devoured your prophets Like a destroying lion.’” Jeremiah 2:29, 30

God’s incredulity about Judah’s stubbornness

  • “Has a nation changed gods When they were not gods? But My people have changed their glory For that which does not profit.” Jeremiah 2:11
  • “Now the word of the LORD came to me saying, ‘Go and proclaim in the ears of Jerusalem, saying, “Thus says the LORD, ‘I remember concerning you the devotion of your youth, The love of your betrothals,… Thus says the LORD, ‘What injustice did your fathers find in Me, That they went far from Me And walked after emptiness and became empty?’” Jeremiah 2:1-5
  • “Can a virgin forget her ornaments, Or a bride her attire? Yet My people have forgotten Me Days without number.” Jeremiah 2:32
  • “For My people have committed two evils: They have forsaken Me, The fountain of living waters, To hew for themselves cisterns, Broken cisterns That can hold no water.” Jeremiah 2:13

God’s intentions regarding Judah 

  • “From this place also you will go out With your hands on your head; For the LORD has rejected those in whom you trust, And you will not prosper with them.” Jeremiah 2:37
  • “The word of the LORD came to me a second time saying, “What do you see?” And I said, “I see a boiling pot, facing away from the north.” Then the LORD said to me, “Out of the north the evil will break forth on all the inhabitants of the land.… “I will pronounce My judgments on them concerning all their wickedness, whereby they have forsaken Me and have offered sacrifices to other gods, and worshiped the works of their own hands.” Jeremiah 1:13-16
  • “’Then I will give you shepherds after My own heart, who will feed you on knowledge and understanding. It shall be in those days when you are multiplied and increased in the land,’ declares the LORD, ‘they will no longer say, “The ark of the covenant of the LORD.” And it will not come to mind, nor will they remember it, nor will they miss it, nor will it be made again. At that time they will call Jerusalem “The Throne of the LORD,”and all the nations will be gathered to it, to Jerusalem, for the name of the LORD; nor will they walk anymore after the stubbornness of their evil heart. In those days the house of Judah will walk with the house of Israel, and they will come together from the land of the north to the land that I gave your fathers as an inheritance.” Jeremiah 3:15-18
  • ““Your own wickedness will correct you, And your apostasies will reprove you; Know therefore and see that it is evil and bitter For you to forsake the LORD your God, And the dread of Me is not in you,” declares the Lord GOD of hosts.” Jeremiah 2:19

See you tomorrow, Lord willing.

About parklinscomb

I'm a minister for the church of Christ in Manchester NH where I've worked since the 1970's. I'm a big fan of my family, archaeology, the Bible, the Lord's church, and Gander Brook Christian Camp.
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