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The sin, I think, that God is asking Jeremiah to repent of is the whole "what about me?" track. God was trying to warn Jeremiah that he couldn't hang if he didn't change his focus. Sin is not about a personal affront to God. It is about leaping headlong out of lawfulness, out of the protection of the promises of God into "beyond here be dragons" land. We can play it any way we want, but there is only one way to come through it without the smell of smoke on our clothes.

I can so relate to Jeremiah. Getting off-center after having received the word of the Lord, delivering it, then comes the emotional and spiritual "WHOOMP" that can be crushing. The confusion of wanting men's approval, the absolute terror when he was in the stocks, not so sure that he wasn't totally insane -- feeling like the heart in him to commune with God betrayed his own safety and interests. To have it well up in him and not be able to stop it up and then not be able to deal with the consequences -- Oh, I know that one well.

It takes such maturity to walk confidently before God. To just accept that we are not our own, to not judge ourselves but leave it to God who justifies us by faith -- not to abandon that faith in Him and wander off looking at our own nakedness instead of his face -- trying to cover ourselves -- Oh, it's just 'way beyond what I can consciously process. How many times have I wished the same thing -- a curse on my birth, wishing I had never seen the light -- it seems so melodramatic but it really is how painful it gets.

I think when the people of God experience this agony that comes with being one with Christ and speaking His word we automatically think we are crazy and run from the abandon into a more controlled atmosphere. The deception of the current culture as to what is "normal" is so thick that false prophets rise easily -- they don't have the same motives, so they don't experience the same withdrawl and confusion. They are focused on themselves, on their success, on their popularity, and they have CONTROL of themselves, worshipping the works of their own hands as divine, deceived into thinking the ease of their way is God's approval. It's hard not to believe that, too, when you are being whipped and put into stocks for your trouble.

It's so easy to forget that God is doing something but that if we just keep our eyes on his face we will be delivered out of the hands of men. That's a narrow line to walk, but it's the only line that will keep us safe. Oh, Lord, Have Mercy!

We just can't survive on the fence in this level of deception -- the only ones who can be delivered out of the hand of the enemy are the ones who are enrolled in the "though he slay me yet will I trust him" school of faith. Not because of God's vanity, but because we will lose our focus and therefore lose our joy. To lose our joy causes us to misjudge our circumstances then we sink like Peter walking on the water -- it's just the law.

No wonder the word says that except the days be shortened, even the elect would be deceived.

We can't be smart or together enough. We have to depend on the Faithful One to DO IT. Like Peter -- we have a Lord who teaches us lessons we can't process and holds onto us when we short-circuit.

Do it in Me, LORD! Don't bother with my kicking and squirming and whining and complaining! Do it anyway! Love through Me! Save through Me! Establish your Kingdom in me and just give me the grace not to get caught up in how naked I am before the world!

This really hits home with me.. We are going through just "stuff" at home. This is a great reminder of how we are to be in Christ. We are new creations designed by Him. Thank you.

Jeremiah 19:1-21:14

The foolishness of man subverts his way [ruins his affairs]; then his heart is resentful and frets against the Lord. (Pro 19:3 AMP)

The above Proverb came to mind when I read in the 21st chapter that King Zedekiah sent the priest, Pashhur, to Jeremiah to inquire of God. Scripture tells us that Zedekiah cared nothing about the things of neither God nor God’s people. More than likely, based on the assignments and the messages God has given to Jeremiah, most of the priesthood, Levites and priests, had abandoned the commands of Moses and God, and the offices became strictly political.

Zedekiah was twenty-one years old when he began his eleven-year reign in Jerusalem. His mother was Hamutal daughter of Jeremiah of Libnah. He did evil in the sight of the Lord, in keeping with all Jehoiakim had done.
(2Ki 24:18-19 AMP)
It is said that there are no atheist in “foxholes,” having never been in war I cannot attest to that truth, but having been in NYC on 9/11/01, I can tell you that people who were atheist were calling on “Something” in the aftermath of the planes being flown into the Twin Towers. Yet after they realized that they were not going to die that day, they went back to “raging” against the Lord. Faced with an advancing army, Zedekiah tried to reach out to Jeremiah’s God through a non-priestly priest. He had no interest in having a relationship with Jeremiah’s God so that God would become his God.

May we not be like those who seek God only during crises. May we not, after the crises has past and we find ourselves alive, rage against God and ask, “Where was God?”

I Thessalonians 5:4-28

14Brothers and sisters, we urge you to warn those who are lazy. Encourage those who are timid. Take tender care of those who are weak. Be patient with everyone.

We (the entire church body and society seem to have flipped the above admonishment. We try to encourage the lazy, instead of warning them about their laziness, and we oppress the timid instead of encouraging them. The bookshelves of bookstores are filled with books on motivating unmotivated people who are in truth, lazy. We oppress, intimidate and walk over the timid so that we can use them to get ahead. We put aside and step on those who are weak and we are impatient with everyone who is not like us because we are, after all, the epitome of righteousness, peach and joy in the Holy Spirit.

Psalm 82:1-8

The following verse has really caught my attention and I believe the writer used “irony” to make a point, a very big point,

"Give fair judgment to the poor and the orphan;
uphold the rights of the oppressed and the destitute.
Rescue the poor and helpless;
deliver them from the grasp of evil people.
But these oppressors know nothing;
they are so ignorant!
And because they are in darkness,
the whole world is shaken to the core.

Verse five is speaking to the same group that is being told to judge fairly so it must be addressing the judicial system. This seems to be a plea to those over the Israel’s legal system. This is saying that a corrupt judicial system shacks the very foundation of the world.

Jeremiah 19
The LORD said to me, "Go and buy a clay jar. Then ask some of the leaders of the people and of the priests to follow you.
Go out into the valley of the son of Hinnom by the entrance to the Potsherd Gate, and repeat to them the words that I give you.
Say to them, `Listen to this message from the LORD, you kings of Judah and citizens of Jerusalem! This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: I will bring such a terrible disaster on this place that the ears of those who hear about it will ring!
" `For Israel has forsaken me and turned this valley into a place of wickedness. The people burn incense to foreign gods--idols never before worshiped by this generation, by their ancestors, or by the kings of Judah. And they have filled this place with the blood of innocent children.
They have built pagan shrines to Baal, and there they burn their sons as sacrifices to Baal. I have never commanded such a horrible deed; it never even crossed my mind to command such a thing!

"As these men watch, Jeremiah, smash the jar you brought with you.
Then say to them, `This is what the LORD Almighty says: As this jar lies shattered, so I will shatter the people of Judah and Jerusalem beyond all hope of repair. They will bury the bodies in Topheth until there is no more room.
This is what I will do to this place and its people, says the LORD. I will cause this city to become defiled like Topheth.

Jeremiah 20
O LORD, you persuaded me, and I allowed myself to be persuaded.
And I can't stop! If I say I'll never mention the LORD or speak in his name, his word burns in my heart like a fire. It's like a fire in my bones! I am weary of holding it in!

I like this note:
I really like this - "his word burns in my heart like a fire." Does God's word burn in your heart like a fire? Should it? Could it?

This morning on the radio, I heard the testimony of a missionary by the name of Heather Jamison who, at the age of 18, allowed herself to become sexually active with her boyfriend before they were married. She has written a book entitled, “Reclaiming Intimacy”, about her journey of faith after this sin.

Partial summary of the book:
Our culture has rejected God's plan for intimacy by promoting sexual promiscuity of various kinds and, as a consequence, has brought upon itself sexual diseases and relational dysfunctions.

Satan may have deceived you that there would be no physical, spiritual, or emotional consequences to "sleeping around" or that sex with someone you love is not wrong. God's Word is clear, however, about the seriousness of sexual sin and that believers are to flee immorality (1 Corinthians 6). Rather than drawing a couple closer, sex outside of marriage destroys relationships.

If this describes you, know that there is hope for complete healing and freedom. Single people can regain purity before God, and married couples can reclaim the intimacy they lost. We hope one or more of the following resources will assist you through the healing process and guide you to healthy relationships that please God and are more fulfilling that anything you could have imagined.


Heather Jamison made this statement on the radio this morning which really spoke to me: “Having sex outside is marriage is having selfish pleasure at the expense of the other person’s honor.”

MY SUMMARY of what she said was: Since problems were never really dealt with because of having sex before marriage, it is harder to deal with problems in marriage because honor has been destroyed.

Last night I read part of the testimony of Andrew Murray, an excellent author and Christian missionary from South Africa:

"I had never learnt with all my theology that obedience was possible," writes Murray. "My justification was as clear as noonday. I knew the hour in which I received from God the joy of pardon. I remember in my little room at Bloemfontein how I used to sit and think, What is the matter? Here I am, knowing that God has justified me in the blood of Christ, but I have no power for service. My thoughts, my words, my actions, my unfaithfulness -everything troubled me."

Then, in his book The Two Covenants and The Second Blessing, Andrew Murray says this: (it is EXCELLENT !)

"One of the words of Scripture, which is almost going out of fashion, is the word Covenant. There was a time when it was the keynote of the theology and the Christian life of strong and holy men. It [covenant] will be found still to bring strength and purpose to those who will take the trouble to bring all their life under control of the inspiring assurance that they are living in covenant with a God who has sworn faithfully to fulfil in them every promise He has given.

[I am] coming to the conclusion that we may come boldly into God's presence, and not only ask, but claim a Covenant right through Christ Jesus to all the spiritual searching, and cleansing, and knowledge, and power promised in the three great Covenant promises[.]

As long as we expect God to do for us what we ask or think, we limit Him.

When we believe that as high as the heavens are above the earth, His thoughts are above our thoughts, and wait on Him as God to do unto us according to His Word, as He means it, we shall be prepared to live the truly supernatural, heavenly life the Holy Spirit can work in us [which is] the true Christ life."


We all will thirst and hunger for something; to NOT have longings, feelings, and desires is NOT an option.

Either we will hunger and thirst for the loving Father and the Lord Jesus and obedience (EXAMPLE: Jeremiah) OR we will hunger and thirst for disobedience (EXAMPLE: the disobedient people of Israel or Heather Jamison in her disobedient sexual sin).

I am not pointing fingers at her. We all have sinned and gone our own way. We all need to repent, so we can be forgiven and restored.

But we have to learn from what Jeremiah models for us:

Jeremiah 20:7
O LORD, you persuaded me, and I allowed myself to be persuaded.

We have to allow ourselves to be persuaded. The devil always seeks to force the world and sin on us.

Jesus will not. Jesus gives, but we must willingly receive.

Or, to put the same thought in the words of Andrew Murray:

"As long as we expect God to do for us what we ask or think, we limit Him.

When we believe that as high as the heavens are above the earth, His thoughts are above our thoughts, and wait on Him as God to do unto us according to His Word, as He means it, we shall be prepared to live the truly supernatural, heavenly life the Holy Spirit can work in us [which is] the true Christ life."


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.


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.]

1Thessalonians 5:16-22
16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
19 Do not quench the Spirit. 20 Do not despise prophecies. 21 Test all things; hold fast what is good. 22 Abstain from every form of evil.

thanks for drawing our attention to the plight of the poor--'Defend the weak and the fatherless; uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed. Rescue the weak and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked." Ps 82:2-4

in our city a few of us have banded together to use our sport of running and our facility with reading to identify an area of extreme poverty where we can go and provide 'hands on' educational and physical education aid to at risk kids. We do this on a weekly basis donating two hours a week to about 50 kids the school has identified as being 'poor' and underresourced.

So many awesome readings today! Speaks so much to me!:

20:9 "Then I said, “I will not make mention of Him, Nor speak anymore in His name.” But His word was in my heart like a burning fire Shut up in my bones;I was weary of holding it back, And I could not."

His despair in verses 14-18! I soooo have been there!

21:8 "Thus says the LORD: “Behold, I set before you the way of life and the way of death."
---This calling is still out to every person today. There are two roads, Jesus provides life, we choose.

1 Thess.
5:9 "For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ."
I love that!!

v. "10...that whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with Him."
---There is no in-between stage. Whether our bodies live or die, our soul will never depart His presence!

Verses 14-22 are awesome!!
"Now we exhort you, brethren, warn those who are unruly,
comfort the fainthearted,
uphold the weak, be patient with all.
See that no one renders evil for evil to anyone, but always pursue what is good both for yourselves and for all.
Rejoice always,
pray without ceasing,
in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
Do not quench the Spirit.
Do not despise prophecies.
Test all things; hold fast what is good.
Abstain from every form of evil."

1 Thessalonians 5

1Now, brothers, about times and dates we do not need to write to you, 2for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. 3While people are saying, "Peace and safety," destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.

The Lord's presence will come quickly and silently when people think all is safe and peaceful. Sudden Destruction will come on them (people of the "world"), and none will escape.

Remember Jesus' words:
Luke 17
26"Just as it was in the days of Noah, so also will it be in the days of the Son of Man. 27People were eating, drinking, marrying and being given in marriage up to the day Noah entered the ark. Then the flood came and destroyed them all.

28"It was the same in the days of Lot. People were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building. 29But the day Lot left Sodom, fire and sulfur rained down from heaven and destroyed them all. 30"It will be just like this on the day the Son of Man is revealed.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The people of the world were doing normal things - nothing wrong with eating, drinking, marrying, etc. But God's chosen ones, Noah, Lot and families were made safe (escaped), and the sudden destruction came and none survived. Just another reason to believe in Pre-Trib Rapture as Believers (church) - dead and alive - will be pulled out in rapture before sudden destruction where people of the "world" will not escape.

One more note:
Luke 17
34I tell you, on that night two people will be in one bed; one will be taken and the other left.

Matt 24
40Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left.

NOTE: It will happen quickly as some are taken at night and some in day - and of course worldwide it will be day in some places and night in others.
9For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Salvation here is in context the total package: salvation, justification and glorification (the end product).

The scene at the Mount of Transfiguration provides us of a picture of what is going to happen when Christ rules the earth. Moses who was dead and buried is in glorified body with Christ, Elijah who never dies but was lifted up to heaven is present in glorified body, three ordinary mortals - Peter, james, and John were present. Thus the dead and alive (Moses and Elijah) represent the church lifted up at rapture. Peter, James and john, represent the mortals who become believers during Tribulation (interesting that they are all of Jewish descent), and in the Middle and center of it all is the Lord - Jesus Christ - in all His GLORY.
Final Instructions

16Be joyful always; 17pray continually; 18give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.19Do not put out the Spirit's fire;

It is impossible to be joyful always (fruit of the Spirit), pray continually (in the will of God), give thanks always (how hard is that????) - unless we are connected to the Father in the Father-Child role, submitting to His will, and accessing the Holy Spirit. To not do that would be equivalent to putting out the fire that is the Holy Spirit in you (not accessing the Spirit). God is big enough for the job. We are to trust in, rely on, and depend on God to carry us on our Christian walk and ultimately conform us into the image of Christ.

What I noticed is that there is Jeremiah showing the people the dung heap and saying, "this is where you're going-"
And then in Psalms- the writer is just begging for God to come down and send them all there, now. They are bad people, and that's where they belong.

So we get to I Th verse and there is Paul admonishing us to behave. But it's not to be kept out of the dung heap, hell, because that's already been done by the blood of the cross. It's done because we are being conformed, like the potter conforms the clay.

It's an amazing reminder of salvation, redemption. I stand in awe of an awesome God

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