Jeremiah

Jeremiah Index

Jeremiah Chapter 12

 

  • Jeremiah 12:1 Righteous art thou, O LORD, when I plead with thee: yet let me talk with thee of thy judgments: Wherefore doth the way of the wicked prosper?wherefore are all they happy that deal very treacherously?

This can be sometimes hard for a faithful believer to see the wicked prosper and the righteous not doing so well financially. We must always guard against covetousness and not get our eyes on these kind of things. There is a teaching in modern times that to gain is godliness. We must avoid this teaching and be content and thankful for the things that we have. We must not yield to that temptation to envy the rich. Socialism and Communism is gained by those that spread anger at the rich retoric among the poor. What happens is only those at the top gain. The poor just get poorer. They promise equality but freedom is lost completely. 

  • 1Timothy 6:6 But godliness with contentment is great gain. 
  • 7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.
  • 8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. 
  • 9 But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.
  • 10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. 
  • 11 But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness. 
  • 12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.

Our true inheritance is the Lord. Our treasure should be in heaven. We must not measure ourselves by the success of material things.

  • Matthew 6:19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: 
  • 20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: 
  • 21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

David also wondered about these things:

  • Psalms 73:12 Behold, these are the ungodly, who prosper in the world; they increase in riches.
  • 13 Verily I have cleansed my heart in vain, and washed my hands in innocency.
  • 14 For all the day long have I been plagued, and chastened every morning. 
  • 15 If I say, I will speak thus; behold, I should offend against the generation of thy children.
  • 16 When I thought to know this, it was too painful for me;
  • 17 Until I went into the sanctuary of God; then understood I their end.

In saying and recording all these things, we must remember too that the salvation of Jesus Christ is for both rich and poor. You can be rich in this world's goods if you use those riches to bless and help, not oppress. Jesus said that with God all things are possible. So its hard for the rich to be saved because they tend to trust in those riches but the gospel can reach all both small and great.

  • Jeremiah 12:2 Thou hast planted them, yea, they have taken root: they grow, yea, they bring forth fruit: thou art near in their mouth, and far from their reins.
  • 3 But thou, O LORD, knowest me: thou hast seen me, and tried mine heart toward thee: pull them out like sheep for the slaughter, and prepare them for the day of slaughter.

If one is faithful to the Lord, He will care for you. He knows where you are and He will never leave you or forsake you.

Again we hear from David:

  • Psalms 37:25 I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread.

Here are comforting words from our Lord Jesus Christ:

  • Luke 12:28 If then God so clothe the grass, which is to day in the field, and to morrow is cast into the oven; how much more will he clothe you, O ye of little faith?
  • 29 And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind. 
  • 30 For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things. 
  • 31 But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you. 
  • 32 Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom.

God is our friend, not our enemy. He wants good things for His people. We need to seek Him daily to find those good things. What we sometimes think is good things may not be. 

  • Jeremiah 12:4 How long shall the land mourn, and the herbs of every field wither, for the wickedness of them that dwell therein? the beasts are consumed, and the birds; because they said, He shall not see our last end.

How also it must have hurt Israel to see the evil nation of Babylon eat the fruit of their fields, take over their land and drive them away. Yet if they would have turned to the Lord, He would have taken care of them. One day all enemies of those that are good will be destroyed and the righteous shall reign with Jesus Christ. We need to get on the Lord's side and abide in Him.

  • Jeremiah 12:5 If thou hast run with the footmen, and they have wearied thee, then how canst thou contend with horses? and if in the land of peace, wherein thou trustedst, they wearied thee, then how wilt thou do in the swelling of Jordan?
  • 6 For even thy brethren, and the house of thy father, even they have dealt treacherously with thee; yea, they have called a multitude after thee: believe them not, though they speak fair words unto thee.
  • 7 I have forsaken mine house, I have left mine heritage; I have given the dearly beloved of my soul into the hand of her enemies.

The promise of, "I will never leave thee or forsake thee," are for those who abide faithfully in Jesus Christ. If we forsake God and ignore His word, then this is the result. Israel was warned time and time again to repent and turn back to God. God allowed the evil nations to come into their land and scatter them all over the earth only after continual warning from the prophets.

  • Jeremiah 12:8 Mine heritage is unto me as a lion in the forest; it crieth out against me: therefore have I hated it.
  • 9 Mine heritage is unto me as a speckled bird, the birds round about are against her; come ye, assemble all the beasts of the field, come to devour.
  • 10 Many pastors have destroyed my vineyard, they have trodden my portion under foot, they have made my pleasant portion a desolate wilderness.

Unfaithful pastors who do not warn and teach his flock the truth of God's word is pictured here. They are compared to someone who goes into a vineyard and tramples everything under foot so that it becomes a desolate wilderness instead of a fruitful field. This is a sad picture of an unfaithful pastor.

  • Jeremiah 12:11 They have made it desolate, and being desolate it mourneth unto me; the whole land is made desolate, because no man layeth it to heart.

What a responsibility a pastor has. If he does not really care for his people and care about their eternal souls, he needs to find another job. They must preach the truth and not just say words that people want to hear.

  • Jeremiah 12:12 The spoilers are come upon all high places through the wilderness: for the sword of the LORD shall devour from the one end of the land even to the other end of the land: no flesh shall have peace.

Perhaps if the prophets and priests had been faithful, they could have saved the people from this fate. There were only a few like Jeremiah that stayed faithful. Even though the prophets were hated and persecuted, some killed, they are now with God in heaven awaiting the resurrection. They are rewarded with good things now and no more can they ever suffer. They left everything and chose to follow God even though it may have cost them the riches of this present world but in the face of eternity that is a small thing. They have inherited eternal life and enjoy the presence of God forever.

  • Jeremiah 12:13 They have sown wheat, but shall reap thorns: they have put themselves to pain, but shall not profit: and they shall be ashamed of your revenues because of the fierce anger of the LORD.

The result of those who do not follow God is the opposite of those who make the choice to follow God. If they do happen to die before losing all their riches, the riches cannot be taken with them. They face eternity without God and suffer everlasting punishment in hell. They do not profit. Seeking riches is vain. We need to make a living and support our families but not to the point to where that is our god and we forsake the way of righteousness. If riches cause us to do evil and we are separate from the will of God, they are in vain and will profit nothing.

  • Jeremiah 12:14 Thus saith the LORD against all mine evil neighbours, that touch the inheritance which I have caused my people Israel to inherit; Behold, I will pluck them out of their land, and pluck out the house of Judah from among them.
  • 15 And it shall come to pass, after that I have plucked them out I will return, and have compassion on them, and will bring them again, every man to his heritage, and every man to his land.

What a comfort and rejoicing day this will be. Israel will be gathered in the last days and find out who their Messiah really is. They will be returned to God. We see now that Israel has become a nation again since 1948. This is the beginning of the prophecy of their return. However, more is to happen before that final fulfillment of prophecy comes to pass.

  • Jeremiah 12:16 And it shall come to pass, if they will diligently learn the ways of my people, to swear by my name, The LORD liveth; as they taught my people to swear by Baal; then shall they be built in the midst of my people.

They will learn the ways of God and find out the truth of God's word. They will forsake evil and learn the salvation God gave to all who believe in the Son, Jesus Christ. They will discover their Messiah and be saved.

  • Jeremiah 12:17 But if they will not obey, I will utterly pluck up and destroy that nation, saith the LORD.

All nations who refuse the plan of salvation given by God will be destroyed and only the righteous nations will remain. God will do this. This is not a mandate for some nations to take this upon themselves to destroy unbelievers.

We are to go into all the world and preach the gospel. We are not to go into all the world and destroy unbelievers of our particular faith. This type of judgment belongs to God alone because He only knows who is a faithful believer.

The wicked will be destroyed; but this is a job for God alone. We are to warn and tell all we can of the coming judgment of God. As believers in Jesus Christ, we are to be wise but harmless as doves. We are not to harm one person who believes different than we do.

We are to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. Judgment belongs to God. Any religion who kills people who do not believe the way they do are not doing the will of God. That is not the way we are to make converts. That is not love. We just leave judgment to God. We warn, God judges. Mankind is not capable of knowing who is good and who is evil. Only God knows what is in the heart.

God offers us love, joy, peace, and many good things. We can be free from sin and have our treasure in heaven that one one can take away. The choice is ours. This choice is by free will and must not be forced upon anyone. 


Study of Jeremiah 13

 

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