Words Of Truth

"That I might make thee know the certainty of the words of truth..." (Proverbs 22:21).


An Overview Of The Old Testament

Part 286 – Word Came To Him Through Thou Shalt Not Prosper (Jeremiah 2:1-37)         

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1. Whose fault was it that Israel and God were separated in this context?

Israels: (1) Moreover the word of the LORD came to me, saying, (2) Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem, saying, Thus saith the LORD; I remember thee, the kindness of thy youth, the love of thine espousals, when thou wentest after me in the wilderness, in a land that was not sown.  (3) Israel was holiness unto the LORD, and the firstfruits of his increase: all that devour him shall offend; evil shall come upon them, saith the LORD.  (4) Hear ye the word of the LORD, O house of Jacob, and all the families of the house of Israel: (5) Thus saith the LORD, What iniquity have your fathers found in me, that they are gone far from me, and have walked after vanity, and are become vain?  (6) Neither said they, Where is the LORD that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, that led us through the wilderness, through a land of deserts and of pits, through a land of drought, and of the shadow of death, through a land that no man passed through, and where no man dwelt?  (7) And I brought you into a plentiful country, to eat the fruit thereof and the goodness thereof; but when ye entered, ye defiled my land, and made mine heritage an abomination.  (8) The priests said not, Where is the LORD?  and they that handle the law knew me not: the pastors also transgressed against me, and the prophets prophesied by Baal, and walked after things that do not profit (Jeremiah 2:1-8).        


      As addressed in Jeremiah 1:11, the word of God came to Jeremiah (II Peter 1:20-21).

      Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem (Psalms 119:13, Isaiah 58:1, and Jonah 1:2).

      Israel did follow the Lord (Exodus 24:3) and even was told to remember the lessons He taught them when they rebelled (Deuteronomy 8:1-7).

      Israel was holiness unto the Lord (Deuteronomy 7:6) and the firstfruits of his increase (Romans 2:10 and James 1:18).

      The Lord did protect them (Exodus 14:14 and Deuteronomy 3:22).

      Hear the word (Isaiah 51:1 and Hosea 4:1).

      No one could find fault with God to cause this breach in relationship between He and them (Micah 6:3-5; cf. Isaiah 5:1-7).

      Those who handled the Law did not know God (Isaiah 56:10-12 and Hosea 4:1-6).

      Their leaders transgressed (Isaiah 3:12, Isaiah 9:16, Jeremiah 23:1-2, and Matthew 15:1-14).

      They walked after unprofitable things (Isaiah 30:1-5 and Habakkuk 2:18-20).


2. Who was working to repair this breach in relationship?

God: (9) Wherefore I will yet plead with you, saith the LORD, and with your childrens children will I plead.  (10) For pass over the isles of Chittim, and see; and send unto Kedar, and consider diligently, and see if there be such a thing (Jeremiah 2:9-10).


      God tried hard to restore His people (Jeremiah 44:4-6, Ezekiel 20:36, and Romans 10:21).

      This included punishments to future generations (Exodus 20:4-6).

      They could learn lessons even by observing the heathen if they were so willing to learn (Jeremiah 18:13-14).


3. What did God call the heavens to be astonished at?

That Israel had looked away from God to put their trust in their own gods: (11) Hath a nation changed their gods, which are yet no gods? but my people have changed their glory for that which doth not profit.  (12) Be astonished, O ye heavens, at this, and be horribly afraid, be ye very desolate, saith the LORD.  (13) For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water (Jeremiah 2:11-13).


      How do you turn from the REAL GOD to false gods (Psalms 115:3-9)?

      God has called heaven and earth to record at times past (Deuteronomy 30:19 and Deuteronomy 31:28; cf. Isaiah 1:1-2).

      My people followed by the negative (Isaiah 5:13 and Jeremiah 4:22).

      Truly, now, His people are no longer a physical nation; but an obedient people (Matthew 7:21-23).

      Evil # 1 – they forsook God (II Chronicles 34:24-25 and Jeremiah 19:3-6) as they had in the past (Judges 10:10-14, I Samuel 12:10, and II Chronicles 29:6).

      Evil # 2 – they dug wells that hold no water meaning they put their trust in vain things (Isaiah 44:8-18).


4. In consideration of the spoiling of Israel, what did God say would correct them?

Their own wickedness: (14) Is Israel a servant? is he a homeborn slave?  why is he spoiled?  (15) The young lions roared upon him, and yelled, and they made his land waste: his cities are burned without inhabitant.  (16) Also the children of Noph and Tahapanes have broken the crown of thy head.  (17) Hast thou not procured this unto thyself, in that thou hast forsaken the LORD thy God, when he led thee by the way?  (18) And now what hast thou to do in the way of Egypt, to drink the waters of Sihor? or what hast thou to do in the way of Assyria, to drink the waters of the river?  (19) Thine own wickedness shall correct thee, and thy backslidings shall reprove thee: know therefore and see that it is an evil thing and bitter, that thou hast forsaken the LORD thy God, and that my fear is not in thee, saith the Lord GOD of hosts (Jeremiah 2:14-19).


      Being spoiled and slavery are tied together here (cf. Deuteronomy 5:15).  God is asking them to consider why theyre spoiled seeing they werent born slaves (Isaiah 50:1).  Theyve sold themselves into bondage.

      The imagery of young lions roaring (Isaiah 5:26-29).

      Their being prey was brought on by themselves (Hosea 13:9).

      It made no sense that they looked to other nations for help (Isaiah 30:1, Isaiah 31:1, and Hosea 5:13).

      Their own wickedness would correct them (Proverbs 1:31, Proverbs 14:14, Job 4:8, Isaiah 3:10-11, and Jeremiah 6:19).

      The fact that they did not fear God stood in their way (Proverbs 1:7, Proverbs 1:29, and Philippians 2:12).


5. When God cared for Israel and tried to correct them, how did they respond?

They rebelled, played the spiritual harlot, and refused correction: (20) For of old time I have broken thy yoke, and burst thy bands; and thou saidst, I will not transgress; when upon every high hill and under every green tree thou wanderest, playing the harlot.  (21) Yet I had planted thee a noble vine, wholly a right seed: how then art thou turned into the degenerate plant of a strange vine unto me?  (22) For though thou wash thee with nitre, and take thee much soap, yet thine iniquity is marked before me, saith the Lord GOD.  (23) How canst thou say, I am not polluted, I have not gone after Baalim? see thy way in the valley, know what thou hast done: thou art a swift dromedary traversing her ways; (24) A wild ass used to the wilderness, that snuffeth up the wind at her pleasure; in her occasion who can turn her away? all they that seek her will not weary themselves; in her month they shall find her.  (25) Withhold thy foot from being unshod, and thy throat from thirst: but thou saidst, There is no hope: no; for I have loved strangers, and after them will I go.  (26) As the thief is ashamed when he is found, so is the house of Israel ashamed; they, their kings, their princes, and their priests, and their prophets, (27) Saying to a stock, Thou art my father; and to a stone, Thou hast brought me forth: for they have turned their back unto me, and not their face: but in the time of their trouble they will say, Arise, and save us.  (28) But where are thy gods that thou hast made thee? let them arise, if they can save thee in the time of thy trouble: for according to the number of thy cities are thy gods, O Judah.  (29) Wherefore will ye plead with me? ye all have transgressed against me, saith the LORD.  (30) In vain have I smitten your children; they received no correction: your own sword hath devoured your prophets, like a destroying lion (Jeremiah 2:20-30).


      God freed them from bondage and they promised to stay faithful (Exodus 19:1-8).

      However, the played the harlot (Isaiah 1:21 and Ezekiel 16:15-42).

      Though they tried to hide and clean up after their sins, they could not hide them from God (II Chronicles 16:9, Psalms 69:5, Psalms 90:8, Proverbs 5:21, Proverbs 15:3, Isaiah 29:15, Jeremiah 23:24, and Hebrews 4:13).

      God questioned how they could deny what He knows they did (Proverbs 28:13, Proverbs 30:12-13, and I John 1:8-10).

      He compared Israel to an wild ass in heat (Jeremiah 3:1 and Hosea 8:9).

      It is not a good idea to provoke God to jealousy (Deuteronomy 32:16-29).

      Their shame came not from their errors (Jeremiah 6:15), but that they were caught.

      They called a stock [tree] their father (Isaiah 44:19).

      God told them to find salvation from their handmade gods (Deuteronomy 32:37-38).

      They did not receive correction (Proverbs 15:10, Jeremiah 7:28, and Zephaniah 3:1-2).

      They devoured the prophets (II Chronicles 36:14-16 and Matthew 23:29-35).


6. Though the Lord was not a wilderness to His people, were they honest enough to confess their faults and repent of them?

No, they acted as though they did no wrong: (31) O generation, see ye the word of the LORD. Have I been a wilderness unto Israel? a land of darkness? wherefore say my people, We are lords; we will come no more unto thee?  (32) Can a maid forget her ornaments, or a bride her attire? yet my people have forgotten me days without number.  (33) Why trimmest thou thy way to seek love?  therefore hast thou also taught the wicked ones thy ways.  (34) Also in thy skirts is found the blood of the souls of the poor innocents: I have not found it by secret search, but upon all these.  (35) Yet thou sayest, Because I am innocent, surely his anger shall turn from me.  Behold, I will plead with thee, because thou sayest, I have not sinned (Jeremiah 2:31-35).


      God never forgot His people (Psalms 105:6-8).

      They forgot Him (Psalms 106:21 and Ezekiel 22:12).

      They trimmed their ways to seek spiritual adultery (Isaiah 57:7-8).

      They were worse than the heathen (II Chronicles 33:9).

      Their garments were filled with innocent blood (II Kings 24:3-4 and Isaiah 59:7).

      Yet, though caught with blood on them, they proclaimed innocence (cf. Jeremiah 2:23).


7. Though Israel had confidence [trust] in Egypt, what did God say about that?

That they would be ashamed of Egypt and not prosper in their confidence in Egypt: (36) Why gaddest thou about so much to change thy way?  thou also shalt be ashamed of Egypt, as thou wast ashamed of Assyria.  (37) Yea, thou shalt go forth from him, and thine hands upon thine head: for the LORD hath rejected thy confidences, and thou shalt not prosper in them (Jeremiah 2:36-37).


      Dont look to men (Psalms 118:8-9, Lamentations 4:17, and Hosea 7:11-16).

      God rejected their false confidences (Deuteronomy 28:29).




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