Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Devotional Note for Jeremiah 6-10

Psalm 73:28: “It is good to be near God. I have made the Sovereign Lord my refuge; I will tell of all Your deeds.”

Mark 1:35: “Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where He prayed.”

Deuteronomy 8:3, Matthew 4:4: “Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.”

Text: Jeremiah 6-10

Discovery through A.C.T.I.O.N.S. (Psalm 119:18-Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in Your Law)

Adoration-for who God is

Jeremiah chapter 6-10 highlight God as being filled with wrath because of His people’s idolatry and stubbornness. Idols cannot compare with God of Israel who is great, mighty in power, the King of nations, true, living and eternal. He is the Portion of Jacob, Maker of all things, Lord Almighty (vv.6-7,10,12-13,16). He alone is worthy of Israel’s worship and loyalty!

Chapter 6 is the last chapter that records the earliest discourses of Jeremiah after he was appointed by God as a prophet in his young age (1:6-7). It highlights three ‘S’s:

Sins: The city of Jerusalem was filled with oppression (v.6), wickedness, violence, sickness and wounds (v.7), nobody listened to God, the word of God was offensive to the people (v.10), people were greedy for gain (v.13), prophets and priest practiced deceit (v.13), preaching was superficial (v.14), leaders were not ashamed of their loathsome conduct (v.15), people rejected God’s law (v.19). As a result, people’s burnt offerings were not acceptable (v.20), the refining goes on in vain (v.29).

Storm: God rejected and turned away from Jerusalem, making the land desolate (v.8,30), children, young men, husband and wife, the old would all be under God’s wrath (v.11), they would lose their houses and fields (v.12), all perished (v.21), great and cruel army from the north would attack and bring tremendous anguish (v.22-25).

Solemn Calling of God: God had called His people to ask where the good way was and walked in it (the tried and true ways of Judah’s godly ancestors, Dt.32:7), in order to find rest for their souls (v.16), but rejected by the stubborn people. God also appointed watchmen (prophets) over them to warm them of the approaching danger, but was not noted (v.17).

After the record of these saddening 3 ‘S’s, the book continues with the message of prophet Jeremiah preached at the gate of the Lord’s house (7:1): chapter 7-10---‘Temple Message’. These four chapters can be summarized by the word G.A.T.E.:

G: In chapter 7, God said that people had gone backward and not forward (v.24). God wanted them to reform their ways and actions (vv.3,5), so that they may continue to live in the promised land (v.3,7), but they did not listen, nor pay attention (vv.13,24,26). They had made God’s house a den of robbers (v.11). They worshipped idols (v.18,30). Truth had perished (v.28).

A: In chapter 8, God rebuked His people for ascribing homage and adoration to the heavenly bodies which were actually powerless to help (vv.1-2). People clung to deceit, refused to return (v.5), no one repented (v.6). People did not know the requirements of God (v.7), mistreated the written Law (v.8), rejected true wisdom (v.9), had no shame of their loathsome conduct (v.12). Judah in Babylonian exile was still perplexed at their fate, wondering how God could have permitted the destruction of His land and temple (vv.13-22).

T: In chapter 9, prophet Jeremiah’s eyes were depicted as a fountain of tears (v.1), he wept day and night for his nation (vv.2,10,18). There were adulterers and unfaithful people, deceiver and slanderer (v.4). They refused to acknowledge God (v.6), were not obedient (v.13-14), were uncircumcised in heart (vv.25-26). God would scatter them among nations (v.16), so that people would boast of nothing but understanding and knowing God as the Lord who exercised kindness, justice and righteous on earth (v.24).

E: In chapter 10, Jeremiah elaborated the vast difference between idols and the Lord (vv.2-16). Jeremiah condemned idols and their worshippers (vv.2-5,8-9,11,14-15), while praised God (vv.6-7,10,12-13,16). Destruction was approaching, senseless shepherds and ungodly people would be scattered as the result of a great commotion caused by the invaders from the north ---Babylonia (vv.17-22). Jeremiah prayed that God’s justice would be done in the world (vv.23-25).

Confession-for what I sin

6:14; 8:11: Spiritual leaders preached superficial sermon: “They dressed the wound of my people as though it were not serious. ‘Peace, peace,’ they say, when there is no peace.”

Thanksgiving-for what God does:

9:24: Thank You God for Your kindness and mercy on me everyday: “I am the Lord, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth.”

Inspiring verse(s)-for what help it gives

9:1: “My eyes a fountain of tears. I would weep day and night for the slain of my people.”

Obedience-for what it teaches or orders

10:23-25: Pray for divine justice on the earth among the nations.

Now-action-for what I must do

Pray with deep compassion for God’s mercy upon me and nations, like Jeremiah (9:1,10,18).

Supplication-for strength and wisdom to do


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