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 310 – Came This Word Through Jeremiah Not Put To Death (Jeremiah 26:1-24)   

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1. Does this chapter date before, during, or after Babylonian captivity (hint, research Jehoiakim)?

The chapter begins with saying this: “In the beginning of the reign of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah came this word from the Lord, saying” (Jeremiah 26:1). 


Š      According to II Kings 23:34-24:10 and II Chronicles 36:4-5 the beginning of the rein of Jehoiakim is before captivity.


2. How much of a license did God give Jeremiah to edit the message he was to deliver?

Diminish not a word: “Thus saith the LORD; Stand in the court of the LORD'S house, and speak unto all the cities of Judah, which come to worship in the LORD'S house, all the words that I command thee to speak unto them; diminish not a word” (Jeremiah 26:2).


Š      Stand in the court of the Lord’s house (Jeremiah 19:14).

Š      Jeremiah has proclaimed the word at the gates (Jeremiah 7:2, Jeremiah 17:19-20, and Acts 5:20).

Š      Speak what God commanded (Isaiah 8:20, Jeremiah 1:17, Ezekiel 3:1-10, Jonah 3:1-2, Acts 5:42, and II Timothy 4:1-5).

Š      Don’t diminish a word (Deuteronomy 4:2, Deuteronomy 12:32, Proverbs 30:5-6, Galatians 1:6-9, and Revelation 22:18-19)


3. What did God have Jeremiah present to Judah?

Repent or else: “(3) If so be they will hearken, and turn every man from his evil way, that I may repent me of the evil, which I purpose to do unto them because of the evil of their doings.  (4) And thou shalt say unto them, Thus saith the LORD; If ye will not hearken to me, to walk in my law, which I have set before you, (5) To hearken to the words of my servants the prophets, whom I sent unto you, both rising up early, and sending them, but ye have not hearkened; (6) Then will I make this house like Shiloh, and will make this city a curse to all the nations of the earth.  (7) So the priests and the prophets and all the people heard Jeremiah speaking these words in the house of the LORD” (Jeremiah 26:3-7).


Š      If you confess and truly repent, God won’t destroy you (II Chronicles 7:14, Proverbs 28:13, and Isaiah 55:6-7).

Š      If you refuse, it’s over (I Samuel 12:15 and II Chronicles 36:14-16).

Š      Either or (Isaiah 1:16-20, Ezekiel 18:19-32, and Luke 13:1-5).

Š      Sadly, we know they were beyond repentance (Jeremiah 5:3 and Jeremiah 13:21-27).

Š      Not of God’s choosing (Luke 15:1-24).

Š      Remember all of this when we get to verses 12-15.


4. How did the people respond to Jeremiah’s teaching?

Wanted to kill him: “(8) Now it came to pass, when Jeremiah had made an end of speaking all that the LORD had commanded him to speak unto all the people, that the priests and the prophets and all the people took him, saying, Thou shalt surely die.  (9) Why hast thou prophesied in the name of the LORD, saying, This house shall be like Shiloh, and this city shall be desolate without an inhabitant? And all the people were gathered against Jeremiah in the house of the LORD” (Jeremiah 26:8-9).


Š      Wanted to kill him (Jeremiah 11:19-21, Matthew 23:31-34, John 7:1, and I Thessalonians 2:14-16).

Š      The message of like Shiloh (I Samuel 4:1-22 and Psalms 78:58-64).


5. Did the priests and prophets of Judah stand with or against Jeremiah?

Against him: “(10) When the princes of Judah heard these things, then they came up from the king's house unto the house of the LORD, and sat down in the entry of the new gate of the LORD'S house.  (11) Then spake the priests and the prophets unto the princes and to all the people, saying, This man is worthy to die; for he hath prophesied against this city, as ye have heard with your ears” (Jeremiah 26:10-11).


Š      Consider their motives: Isaiah 56:10-12, Jeremiah 6:13-14, and Micah 3:11.


6. Though the response to Jeremiah wasn’t good, what message did he respond with?

A message of repentance and warning for THEIR sakes: “(12) Then spake Jeremiah unto all the princes and to all the people, saying, The LORD sent me to prophesy against this house and against this city all the words that ye have heard.  (13) Therefore now amend your ways and your doings, and obey the voice of the LORD your God; and the LORD will repent him of the evil that he hath pronounced against you.  (14) As for me, behold, I am in your hand: do with me as seemeth good and meet unto you.  (15) But know ye for certain, that if ye put me to death, ye shall surely bring innocent blood upon yourselves, and upon this city, and upon the inhabitants thereof: for of a truth the LORD hath sent me unto you to speak all these words in your ears” (Jeremiah 26:12-15).


Š      “Amend your ways” (Jeremiah 7:3-5).

Š      The response of Jeremiah reminds me of this from Paul: “And I will very gladly spend and be spent for you; though the more abundantly I love you, the less I be loved” (II Corinthians 12:15).

Š      Even when the faithful messenger has nothing but good intentions, the recipients can respond negatively (Galatians 4:16).

Š      He preached, as all good men to the erring, a message of repentance (Acts 26:18-20).

Š      Then, he gave himself into their hands (cf. Matthew 26:47-66).


7. Who disagrees with the priests and prophets and how did they make their argument?

The princes, all the people, and the elders of the land.  They argued, from their past, not to put him to death.  Ahikam the son of Shaphan stood for Jeremiah: “(16) Then said the princes and all the people unto the priests and to the prophets; This man is not worthy to die: for he hath spoken to us in the name of the LORD our God.  (17) Then rose up certain of the elders of the land, and spake to all the assembly of the people, saying, (18) Micah the Morasthite prophesied in the days of Hezekiah king of Judah, and spake to all the people of Judah, saying, Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Zion shall be plowed like a field, and Jerusalem shall become heaps, and the mountain of the house as the high places of a forest.  (19) Did Hezekiah king of Judah and all Judah put him at all to death? did he not fear the LORD, and besought the LORD, and the LORD repented him of the evil which he had pronounced against them? Thus might we procure great evil against our souls.  (20) And there was also a man that prophesied in the name of the LORD, Urijah the son of Shemaiah of Kirjath–jearim, who prophesied against this city and against this land according to all the words of Jeremiah: (21) And when Jehoiakim the king, with all his mighty men, and all the princes, heard his words, the king sought to put him to death: but when Urijah heard it, he was afraid, and fled, and went into Egypt; (22) And Jehoiakim the king sent men into Egypt, namely, Elnathan the son of Achbor, and certain men with him into Egypt.  (23) And they fetched forth Urijah out of Egypt, and brought him unto Jehoiakim the king; who slew him with the sword, and cast his dead body into the graves of the common people.  (24) Nevertheless the hand of Ahikam the son of Shaphan was with Jeremiah, that they should not give him into the hand of the people to put him to death” (Jeremiah 26:16-24).


Š      For the record, the Jews do end up imprisoning Jeremiah in the future from where we are studying (Jeremiah 32:1-3, Jeremiah 33:1, Jeremiah 37:21, and Jeremiah 38:1-6).

Š      There was a simple test to know if he was a false prophet (Deuteronomy 18:19-22).  As we know, Jeremiah passes the test easily.

Š      Learn from the past (I Corinthians 10:1-12).




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