Verse of the Day: V20 “We acknowledge, O LORD, our wickedness, and the iniquity of our fathers: for we have sinned against thee.”
How do you know the true prophets from the false prophets?
1. The False Prophets
V14 “Then the LORD said unto me, The prophets prophesy lies in my name: I sent them not, neither have I commanded them, neither spake unto them: they prophesy unto you a false vision and divination, and a thing of nought, and the deceit of their heart.”
The false prophets preach what people want to hear. They would preach on ways of getting rich and famous, and how God can prosper them as they give generously to Him. The false prophets would never preach on holiness, repentance of sins and the judgment of God as these are unpopular sermons for people in sins!
2 Timothy 4:3-4 “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.”
2. The True Prophets
V17 “Therefore thou shalt say this word unto them; Let mine eyes run down with tears night and day, and let them not cease: for the virgin daughter of my people is broken with a great breach, with a very grievous blow.”
The true prophets preach what is in the heart of God. They preach God’s holiness and righteousness and that the people of God must be holy and righteous. We will never fully understand and experience God’s sorrow and tears until we have rebellious children who have strayed away from us. We will pray day and night in sorrow and tears and even to the extent that God will chastise and punish them so that they will come back to God!
Hebrews 12:11 “Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercise thereby.”
3. The Forgiving God
V20 “We acknowledge, O LORD, our wickedness, and the iniquity of our fathers: for we have sinned against thee.”
As the true prophet Jeremiah preached to the people, they repented their sins and turned to God, and God forgave them!
Prayer of the Week
Dearest God, please help me to be righteous before You.
Verse of the Day: V15 “Hear ye, and give ear; be not proud: for the LORD hath spoken.”
1. The Linen Girdle
V1 “Thus saith the LORD unto me, Go and get thee a linen girdle, and put it upon thy loins, and put it not in water.”
In those days, the girdle was very useful as it was like a belt fastens to the loin or waist of a person wearing a long and flowing garment. Linen was an expensive material and as such a linen girdle was a prized possession. God through His prophet Jeremiah liken the linen girdle as a prized possession of God. However, instead of giving glory to God, the nation of Israel became proud and thought highly of themselves and refused to hear and obey God’s commandments. As a result, God had to humble His people by allowing their enemies to defeat them.
2. The Marred Girdle
V7 “Then I went to Euphrates, and digged, and took the girdle from the place where I had hid it: and, behold, the girdle was marred, it was profitable for nothing.”
God humbled Israel by allowing the Babylonians living in Euphrates, not only to attack and defeat them, but brought them as slaves to their nation. This was exactly prophesied by Jeremiah that the defeated Israel was like the expensive linen girdle which was hidden, marred and became unprofitable.
2 Kings 24:16 “And the men of might, even seven thousand, and the craftsmen and smiths a thousand, all that were strong and apt for war, even them the king of Babylon brought captive to Babylon.”
3. The Cleaned Girdle
V23 “Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? Then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil.”
Indeed, God can change a dark Ethiopian to a fair Ethiopian, a spotted leopard to an unspotted leopard, because He is the Creator and the Maker of all things! God can do anything and with Him, nothing is impossible! God shall surely change an evil and wicked heart to a kind and good heart if we humble ourselves and submit to Him!
John 15:5 “I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without Me ye can do nothing.”
James 4:10 “Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He shall lift you up.”
Prayer of the Week
Dearest God, please humble me and help me to know that without You, I am nothing.
Verse Of The Day: V5 “If thou hast run with the footmen, and they have wearied thee, then how canst thou contend with horses? And if in the land of peace, wherein thou trustedst, they wearied thee, then how wilt thou do in the swelling of Jordan?”
Like the common saying, “Hope for the best, prepare for the worst!” Indeed, Jeremiah was preparing Israel for the worst, the impending destruction of their lives, because of their sins and wickedness, unless they repent of their sins and turn to God.
1. Running with Horses
V5 “If thou hast run with the footmen, and they have wearied thee, then how canst thou contend with horses? ...”
Jeremiah challenged Israel not only to train to run with their footmen but with their horses as one day they would be fighting and running with both their enemies’ footmen and horses. Similarly, Christians must daily pray, read and study God’s Word and apply them in our life so that we are always prepared for the worst including illnesses and death.
1 Peter 4:12 “Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:”
2. Crossing the Rivers
V5 “… and if in the land of peace, wherein thou trustedst, they wearied thee, then how wilt thou do in the swelling of Jordan?”
Jeremiah also challenged Israel to prepare to trust God for the impossible such as the crossing of the swelling Jordan River as their forefathers did many years ago when they crossed the Jordan River dry!
Joshua 3:17 “And the priests that bare the ark of the covenant of the LORD stood firm on dry ground in the midst of Jordan, and all the Israelites passed over on dry ground, until all the people were passed clean over Jordan.”
3. Obeying the LORD
Jeremiah 12:17 “But if they will not obey, I will utterly pluck up and destroy that nation, saith the LORD.”
Indeed, there is no other way to prepare for the worst including death, except to trust and obey God, knowing that to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord!
2 Corinthians 5:8 “We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.”
Prayer Of The Week
Dearest God, please help me to prepare for the worst by trusting and obeying You.
Verse Of The Day: V2 “Hear ye the words of this covenant, and speak unto the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem;”
Jeremiah, the weeping prophet, had been preaching to the people to repent of their sins and obey the words of God’s covenant or laws, yet the people not only refused to believe and obey God’s laws, they conspired and plotted to kill the man of God, Jeremiah!
1. God was rejected by man
V19 “But I was like a lamb or an ox that is brought to the slaughter; and I knew not that they had devised devices against me, saying, Let us destroy the tree with the fruit thereof, and let us cut him off from the land of the living, that his name may be no more remembered.”
Jeremiah was like a lamb brought to the slaughter as he was not only rejected by man but was about to be killed by his own countrymen, the men of Anathoth.
John 4:44 “For Jesus Himself testified, that a prophet hath no honour in his own country.”
2. God was killed by man
V21 “Therefore thus saith the LORD of the men of Anathoth, that seek thy life, saying, Prophesy not in the name of the LORD, that thou die not by our hand:”
His people, the men of Anathoth, threatened to kill Jeremiah if he continued to preach to them to repent of their sins. Jesus was also crucified by His own people, the Jews, when He preached to them to repent of their sins and believe in Him, the Son of God.
John 19:15 “But they cried out, Away with Him, away with Him, crucify Him, Pilate saith unto them, Shall I crucify your King? The chief priests answered, We have no king but Caesar.”
3. God shall condemn man
V23 “And there shall be no remnant of them: for I will bring evil upon the men of Anathoth, even the year of their visitation.”
Jesus was buried but He rose again the third day conquering death, and those who believe in Him shall live forever, while those who rejected Him are already condemned.
John 3:18 “He that believeth on Him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”
Prayer Of The Week
Dearest God, please help me to believe in You, and the Lord Jesus, the Son of God.