Jeremiah

Jeremiah Index

Jeremiah Chapter 14

 

  • Jeremiah 14:1 The word of the LORD that came to Jeremiah concerning the dearth.

Dearth is a famine caused by lack of rain.

  • Jeremiah 14:2 Judah mourneth, and the gates thereof languish; they are black unto the ground; and the cry of Jerusalem is gone up.
  • 3 And their nobles have sent their little ones to the waters: they came to the pits, and found no water; they returned with their vessels empty; they were ashamed and confounded, and covered their heads.

This was part of God's judgment upon them for their sin. The rain had ceased, the ground became dry and they couldn't grow food. A good shower of rain is a blessing from the Lord. To have it in season is a real treasure.

  • Jeremiah 14:4 Because the ground is chapt, for there was no rain in the earth, the plowmen were ashamed, they covered their heads.
  • 5 Yea, the hind also calved in the field, and forsook it, because there was no grass.

The grass dried up and the animals could not eat.

  • Jeremiah 14:6 And the wild asses did stand in the high places, they snuffed up the wind like dragons; their eyes did fail, because there was no grass.

This is so heartbreaking. Sin and forsaking God hurts everyone, even the animals.

  • Jeremiah 14:7 O LORD, though our iniquities testify against us, do thou it for thy name's sake: for our backslidings are many; we have sinned against thee.

If only all would say these words and not just Jeremiah. He and handful of others recognized the judgment of God and repented of sin.

Here is the prayer Daniel prayed when he was in captivity even though Daniel himself did not sin against God:

  • Daniel 9:1 In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, of the seed of the Medes, which was made king over the realm of the Chaldeans; 
  • 2 In the first year of his reign I Daniel understood by books the number of the years, whereof the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah the prophet, that he would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem. 
  • 3 And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes: 
  • 4 And I prayed unto the LORD my God, and made my confession, and said, O Lord, the great and dreadful God, keeping the covenant and mercy to them that love him, and to them that keep his commandments; 
  • 5 We have sinned, and have committed iniquity, and have done wickedly, and have rebelled, even by departing from thy precepts and from thy judgments: 
  • 6 Neither have we hearkened unto thy servants the prophets, which spake in thy name to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, and to all the people of the land. 
  • 7 O Lord, righteousness belongeth unto thee, but unto us confusion of faces, as at this day; to the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and unto all Israel, that are near, and that are far off, through all the countries whither thou hast driven them, because of their trespass that they have trespassed against thee.
  • 8 O Lord, to us belongeth confusion of face, to our kings, to our princes, and to our fathers, because we have sinned against thee.
  • 9 To the Lord our God belong mercies and forgivenesses, though we have rebelled against him;
  • 10 Neither have we obeyed the voice of the LORD our God, to walk in his laws, which he set before us by his servants the prophets. 
  • 11 Yea, all Israel have transgressed thy law, even by departing, that they might not obey thy voice; therefore the curse is poured upon us, and the oath that is written in the law of Moses the servant of God, because we have sinned against him.
  • 12 And he hath confirmed his words, which he spake against us, and against our judges that judged us, by bringing upon us a great evil: for under the whole heaven hath not been done as hath been done upon Jerusalem. 
  • 13 As it is written in the law of Moses, all this evil is come upon us: yet made we not our prayer before the LORD our God, that we might turn from our iniquities, and understand thy truth.
  • 14 Therefore hath the LORD watched upon the evil, and brought it upon us: for the LORD our God is righteous in all his works which he doeth: for we obeyed not his voice.
  • 15 And now, O Lord our God, that hast brought thy people forth out of the land of Egypt with a mighty hand, and hast gotten thee renown, as at this day; we have sinned, we have done wickedly. 
  • 16 O Lord, according to all thy righteousness, I beseech thee, let thine anger and thy fury be turned away from thy city Jerusalem, thy holy mountain: because for our sins, and for the iniquities of our fathers, Jerusalem and thy people are become a reproach to all that are about us.
  • 17 Now therefore, O our God, hear the prayer of thy servant, and his supplications, and cause thy face to shine upon thy sanctuary that is desolate, for the Lord's sake. 
  • 18 O my God, incline thine ear, and hear; open thine eyes, and behold our desolations, and the city which is called by thy name: for we do not present our supplications before thee for our righteousnesses, but for thy great mercies.
  • 19 O Lord, hear; O Lord, forgive; O Lord, hearken and do; defer not, for thine own sake, O my God: for thy city and thy people are called by thy name. 
  • 20 And whiles I was speaking, and praying, and confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my supplication before the LORD my God for the holy mountain of my God;
  • 21 Yea, whiles I was speaking in prayer, even the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning, being caused to fly swiftly, touched me about the time of the evening oblation.
  • 22 And he informed me, and talked with me, and said, O Daniel, I am now come forth to give thee skill and understanding.
  • 23 At the beginning of thy supplications the commandment came forth, and I am come to shew thee; for thou art greatly beloved: therefore understand the matter, and consider the vision.
  • 24 Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy. 
  • 25 Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times.
  • 26 And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined.
  • 27 And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.

Daniel read the prophecy that Jeremiah gave years before. In Daniel's day Babylon had been judged and taken over by the Medes and Persians. Daniel's reaction to the prophecy was not one of pride and rebellion. Instead it was an attitude of repentance which consumed him. He repented on Israel's behalf even though he did not sin against God himself.

As a result of his confession to God, God sent the angel Gabriel to show Daniel what was to come upon Israel in the latter days. He tells of a Messiah that was to come but was to be cut off for a season. He shows Daniel that 70 weeks of judgment was to come upon them. By studying Daniel and Revelation, we get a better picture of end time prophecies.

The reason so much bible prophecy is misunderstood is because we don't see the difference between prophecy for Israel and prophecy for the church age. There is a difference. My purpose in this lesson is not to get into bible prophecy except as it relates to the book of Jeremiah but it is a good study to get into later.

The Messiah that was cut off was Jesus Christ who was cut off by crucifixion. After that event, a few years later in 70 AD Israel lost their homeland and were scattered everywhere until 1948 when they became a nation again to fulfill the latter day prophecies in Daniel and Revelation.

The point I want to return to though is Daniel's repentant heart. This is the secret to salvation and finding the way to God's heart. Turning from sin and accepting the salvation God offers when we repent of sin. That salvation is through that Messiah mentioned above, Jesus Christ. We can't receive Christ and be saved from sin until we repent and recognize that we are lost and in need of God's salvation.

  • Jeremiah 14:8 O the hope of Israel, the saviour thereof in time of trouble, why shouldest thou be as a stranger in the land, and as a wayfaring man that turneth aside to tarry for a night?
  • 9 Why shouldest thou be as a man astonied, as a mighty man that cannot save? yet thou, O LORD, art in the midst of us, and we are called by thy name; leave us not.

Even though they were God's chosen people, God did not let them get by with sin. Sin will be judged. It has to be done away with some day. We can be free from sin and escape the coming judgment if we accept God's plan of salvation.

  • Jeremiah 14:10 Thus saith the LORD unto this people, Thus have they loved to wander, they have not refrained their feet, therefore the LORD doth not accept them; he will now remember their iniquity, and visit their sins.

They had a chance to repent by the teachings of the prophets but they did not hear. They refused to see themselves as sinners in need of repentance. This same thing keeps people from God's salvation today.

  • Jeremiah 14:11 Then said the LORD unto me, Pray not for this people for their good.

They had gone so far that the Lord told Jeremiah not to even pray for them. This may happen if one continually rejects God over and over that they get so hardened in their sin that they never hear God's word. It becomes useless even to pray for them. Imagine getting to the point in our sins that God doesn't even want someone to pray for us.

  • Jeremiah 14:12 When they fast, I will not hear their cry; and when they offer burnt offering and an oblation, I will not accept them: but I will consume them by the sword, and by the famine, and by the pestilence.

Outward religious rituals do not save. God does not want our sacrifices if our hearts are not right with Him. It does no good to sin everyday without repenting and then go do a bunch of religious outward worship in order to make up for our sins. God sees what is on the inside, deep within our souls. In vain is outward worship when the heart is not right.

  • Jeremiah 14:13 Then said I, Ah, Lord GOD! behold, the prophets say unto them, Ye shall not see the sword, neither shall ye have famine; but I will give you assured peace in this place.

False prophets both then and now preach good things and preach things people want to hear. These messages make people feel good but it doesn't save the soul and does not bring them everlasting life and freedom from sin.

  • Jeremiah 14:14 Then the LORD said unto me, The prophets prophesy lies in my name: I sent them not, neither have I commanded them, neither spake unto them: they prophesy unto you a false vision and divination, and a thing of nought, and the deceit of their heart.

We are to discern all preaching and prophecy to make sure it is really from God and lines up with the word of God. At that time they had the writings of Moses. They knew what sin was and how God hated sin. They knew not to follow idolatry and the sins of the nations around them. Israel above the rest of that known world knew right from wrong. They should have been able to discern the true prophets from the false ones by the words of Moses.

  • Jeremiah 14:15 Therefore thus saith the LORD concerning the prophets that prophesy in my name, and I sent them not, yet they say, Sword and famine shall not be in this land; By sword and famine shall those prophets be consumed.

Judgment eventually comes upon false prophets and teachers. We need to be so careful what we teach and preach in God's name.

  • Jeremiah 14:16 And the people to whom they prophesy shall be cast out in the streets of Jerusalem because of the famine and the sword; and they shall have none to bury them, them, their wives, nor their sons, nor their daughters: for I will pour their wickedness upon them.

Judgment also comes upon those who believe the false prophets over the true prophets of God. They should have sought God for discernment and cleaved to Him. I believe that if a heart is sincere and desires to know the real God, God will show them. We will be deceived if we want to be deceived. If we are seeking only "fire insurance" and do not really want to live for God, we will hear only what we want to hear.

  • Jeremiah 14:17 Therefore thou shalt say this word unto them; Let mine eyes run down with tears night and day, and let them not cease: for the virgin daughter of my people is broken with a great breach, with a very grievous blow.
  • 18 If I go forth into the field, then behold the slain with the sword! and if I enter into the city, then behold them that are sick with famine! yea, both the prophet and the priest go about into a land that they know not.
  • 19 Hast thou utterly rejected Judah? hath thy soul lothed Zion? why hast thou smitten us, and there is no healing for us? we looked for peace, and there is no good; and for the time of healing, and behold trouble!
  • 20 We acknowledge, O LORD, our wickedness, and the iniquity of our fathers: for we have sinned against thee.

Jeremiah repents on behalf of Judah. This is breaking his heart. He loves his country and hates to see its destruction. In other words. Jeremiah is not enjoying tell these people of their sin. When he saw judgment coming he was not the type to go around with, "See, I told you so."  He did not gloat, he cried rivers of tears. This is a true prophet of God. 

  • Jeremiah 14:21 Do not abhor us, for thy name's sake, do not disgrace the throne of thy glory: remember, break not thy covenant with us.

He asks God not to destroy them for His namesake. His name was upon Israel as being with them. Now the other nations would see and laugh at their calamity.

  • Jeremiah 14:22 Are there any among the vanities of the Gentiles that can cause rain? or can the heavens give showers? art not thou he, O LORD our God? therefore we will wait upon thee: for thou hast made all these things.

Jeremiah saw the vanity in trusting idols and false gods. The Lord God is the only one that can send the rain and the good blessings.

The message in Jeremiah's day is the same as in our day. Repent and return to God. Today though we have been given a savior, Jesus Christ who made the supreme sacrifice for all our sins in order that we might have eternal life and be free from sin. To accept this is to repent and turn to Him. We have to acknowledge our desperate need for Him in order to be saved.

The people today are the same as in Jeremiah's day. Only a narrow few receive the way of truth and many refuse to believe that they have sinned and are in need of a savior. As a result they will die in their sins and be lost in hell forever. This does not have to be. God made a way of escape. Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God is the only way to be free from sin and have eternal life.

Study of Jeremiah 15

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