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Jeremiah 18-

Previous points:
"There is no hope in man"
"There is hope in God."

Picture of God's Sovereignty
-Clay: man or nations

-Turning wheel: circumstances of life under control of the potter - his foot on treadle that turns the wheel.

-Potter: God, his hands provide forming pressure.

God is sovereign. If the clay does not follow the guiding hand of pressure when it is released, the potter just crushes the clay down to a lump (judgment), and starts over.

The pattern continues - warnings, rejection of warnings.

Jer18:13 " Therefore this is what the LORD says:
"Inquire among the nations:
Who has ever heard anything like this?
A most horrible thing has been done
by Virgin Israel." NIV

"virgin" in Hebrew the root of word is "to separate". So it is a country set apart from others, supposedly not defiled by others - a "virgin".

Jer18:17 "Like a wind from the east,
I will scatter them before their enemies;
I will show them my back and not my face
in the day of their disaster."NIV

The Potter speaking before he smashes the clay down to a lump.

There is a conspiracy against Jeremish, and his prayer is a bit extreme.

Jer18:21 "So give their children over to famine;
hand them over to the power of the sword.
Let their wives be made childless and widows;
let their men be put to death,
their young men slain by the sword in battle."NIV

Jeremiah had grieved over Judah earlier in the Book, but now that Jeremiah is the target - there is a different attitude.

This is but confirmation of that word Jeremiah learned about himself in Chapter 17: "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately corrupt," {Jer 17:9a RSV}. Even a prophet's heart can give way to the temptations of the flesh. Rather than following his Lord, and praying, "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do" {Luke 23:34}, Jeremiah's cry is, "Wipe them out, Lord. They're after me, now. Lord, pay 'em back in full measure, in kind!" - Ray Stedman
======================================================
Jer 20

Jeremiah's complaint Vs. 7-18 actually happens between vs. 2 and 3.

Jeremiah's feeling while in the "stocks" seem to ebb and flow. He does seem to complain (contrary to what some commentators say), but he also recognizes and calls on God.

Jer20:11-12 " But the LORD is with me like a mighty warrior;
so my persecutors will stumble and not prevail.
They will fail and be thoroughly disgraced;
their dishonor will never be forgotten.

O LORD Almighty, you who examine the righteous
and probe the heart and mind,
let me see your vengeance upon them,
for to you I have committed my cause."NIV

At the end of the "lament" Jeremiah is wishing, he had not been born. between that point and the next morning something happens. It can only be guessed at, but:

"..the word of God, triumphed over the tremblings of his heart. The Word began to prove itself true. Jeremiah discovered what many of us have discovered in the hour of pressure, what the Word of God tells us -- "Greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world," {1 Jn 4:4 KJV}." - Ray Stedman

Jeremiah was steady and forthright when dealing with Pashhur in the morning.

I think Pashhur is symbolic of "satan". His name means "divider" - which is what Satan tries to do - divide people from God. Jeremiah says, "NO" - your name is "terror on every side" - which is truly what the devil is on earth (though he tries to disguise it).

satan tries to torture believers and get them to lose faith in God, but in the end - all who willingly live in his house (by rejecting God), those people who took in your lies. All will be dead and buried (in Gehenna - Hell).

Jer20:6 "And you, Pashhur, and all who live in your house will go into exile to Babylon. There you will die and be buried, you and all your friends to whom you have prophesied lies.' "
======================================================
Jer 21

Two things:

Zedekiah says:
"Inquire now of the LORD for us because Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon is attacking us. Perhaps the LORD will perform wonders for us as in times past so that he will withdraw from us."

1) We see the "bellop" approach to God again. No one wants the bellhop around them until they need him. then they ring a bell or make a call, and the bellhop is supposed to show up and do their bidding.

-or-

The genie in the bottle approach. God is to be kept in a bottle (box). When we are really in trouble we rub the lamp and we (as the genie's master) request Him to work His wonders and rescue us from the situation.

God is sovereign. He is not here to do our bidding, and we certainly are not His master. Zedekiah's request epitomizes the Jewish term "chutzpah" (Lot of nerve).

2) Jer21:8 ""Furthermore, tell the people, 'This is what the LORD says: See, I am setting before you the way of life and the way of death." NIV

I see this as again an illustration of salvation (God is very consistent:)

Those who leave the city (the place of evil and rejection of God) and goes forth and SURRENDERS (to God) will live.

Those who stay put in your attitude will experiance death (condemnation).

[NOTE: I know Babylonians are not God, but they are God's agent of judgment. So I think in a metaphorical sense the comparison to Salvation holds.]

Today in Jeremiah we read about the very last Old Testament era king to sit on the throne of David in Judah! This was King Jehoiachin and God makes it clear that this is the Judah's last Davidic king - well!

I read in the Bible that Zedekiah was the last King of Judah.
God bless.

Jeremiah 22 (NKJV)
21
I spoke to you in your prosperity, but you said, ‘I will not hear.’ This has been your manner from your youth, that you did not obey My voice.

Jeremiah 23 (NKJV)
4
I will set up shepherds over them who will feed them; and they shall fear no more, nor be dismayed, nor shall they be lacking,” says the LORD.
5
“ Behold, the days are coming,” says the LORD, “ That I will raise to David a Branch of righteousness; a King shall reign and prosper, and execute judgment and righteousness in the earth.
6
In His days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell safely; now this is His name by which He will be called:
THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS. [Hebrew: YHWH Tsidkenu]
16
Thus says the LORD of hosts: “ Do not listen to the words of the prophets who prophesy to you. They make you worthless; they speak a vision of their own heart, not from the mouth of the LORD.
17
They continually say to those who despise Me, ‘ The LORD has said, “You shall have peace”’; and to everyone who walks according to the dictates of his own heart, they say, ‘ No evil shall come upon you.’”

NOTE:
WOW! What a sobering and excellent challenge! What a wonderfully upward call to give ourselves to the Lord so that He can raise us up out of our “smallness”, our “littleness of vision” and our “complacency”.

Philippians 3 (Amplified)
12
Not that I have now attained [this ideal], or have already been made perfect, but I press on to lay hold of (grasp) and make my own, that for which Christ Jesus (the Messiah) has laid hold of me and made me His own.
13
I do not consider, brethren, that I have captured and made it my own [yet]; but one thing I do [it is my one aspiration]: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead,
14
I press on toward the goal to win the [supreme and heavenly] prize to which God in Christ Jesus is calling us upward.
15
So let those [of us] who are spiritually mature and full-grown have this mind and hold these convictions; and if in any respect you have a different attitude of mind, God will make that clear to you also.
~~~

This passage also clearly teaches that the true God is the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

This passage clearly also teaches from the true God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob there will be the “David a Branch of righteousness; a King [Who] shall reign and prosper, and [Who shall] execute judgment and righteousness in the earth.”

Matthew 1 (NKJV)
1
The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the Son of David, the Son of Abraham. . .

Luke 1 (NKJV)
31
And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name JESUS.
32
He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David.
33
And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.”
34
Then Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I do not know a man?”
35
And the angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God.

The Lord Jesus is this King! The Lord Jesus is this Branch!

So. . . in light of this, let us pray for our dear sister in the Lord, Diana:

Diana grew up in a strict Islamic family in Pakistan. Her life was pretty typical until she met a girl named Mary who was a Christian. Now Diana is also a Christian and on the run.

When Diana?s family learned that she had become a Christian, they repeatedly beat her and insisted she return to Islam. But Diana refused. She was then forced to a local canal where her uncle put a pistol to her head and gave her one last chance to return to Islam. Diana replied, "You can kill me if you want. I will not leave Christ."

It was then that Diana's uncle noticed an extremely poisonous black cobra swimming in the canal. Believing he could escape any prosecution for his niece's death, he threw her into the path of the cobra. He also knew she
could not swim.

Diana miraculously escaped from the canal and is in hiding today. She is a new Christian but has already learned what it means to suffer for Christ. She recently told The Voice of the Martyrs, "Jesus was crucified for us. Can we not endure some of the same for Him?"

Vance

good post Leroy! I should have better clarified my thoughts on why Jehoiachin was the true last king of the OT era. I'll post up more thoughts on this tonight (at work now :).

A quote from this link below (very bottom of the page) says this: "The real last king of Judah was Jehoiachin; Ezekiel's title for Zedekiah is "prince" (Ezek 12:10)." But then other parts of that link below of course say Zedekiah was last. :)

http://net.bible.org/dictionary.php?word=Zedekiah

I've got more info to share with you on this point later tonight. I'll post up again here in the comments. Thanks for the post!

Leroy,

Zedekiah was a vessel of and not a truly appointed king of Judah. Yes, he was in the Davidic line but he was not the true Davidic king.

Jehoiachin was eight years old when he began to reign, and he reigned three months and ten days in Jerusalem: and he did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD. And when the year was expired, king Nebuchadnezzar sent, and brought him to Babylon, with the goodly vessels of the house of the LORD, and made Zedekiah his brother king over Judah and Jerusalem. Zedekiah was one and twenty years old when he began to reign, and reigned eleven years in Jerusalem.
(2Ch 36:9-11)

Ramona

Re Ramona's comment yesterday on music and songs for worship - last weekend I was greatly blessed by participation in a worship concert given by Hillsong and Darlene Zschech in a stadium. It was a big event with thousands of people, so it was not all worship. But at the heart of the concert I believe we were worshipping. It is not often I have an opportunity to be among thousands of worshipping Christians - no mega churches here. It is messy and noisy and takes some stamina to survive - but we gave glory to God. I have been listening to the CD all week - glorious.

More blurb from me about the event at http://isthistheway.typepad.com/my_weblog/2006/10/hillsong_gelred.html

Andrew B

Zondervan's NIV Study Bible says this about our last king discussions earlier: "Jehoiachin was not childless in the sense of having no children at all (he had at least seven), but of having none to sit on the throne of David in Judah. Jehoiachin's grandson Zerubbabel became governor of Judah, but not king. Zedekiah was a son of Josiah, not of Jehoiachin, and he and his sons died before the latter. Jehoiachin therefore was Judah's last surviving Davidic king."

I think this all means Jehoiachin lived longer than Zedekiah - but I am now thinking you're right Leroy that Zedekiah was the last one on the throne - even if Jehoiachin lived longer. I need to further study this one. I'll get it figured out by the time we get back to this verse next year. :) Thanks again for the posts on this Leroy & Ramona!

You may want to check out this new series of Old Testament DVD's that are produced in Israel. They treat the bible as a documentary by interviewing people that would have witnessed the events. Veru entertaining and enlightening. There is a free episode streamed at the website www.asitwas.com. Hope you enjoy it.

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