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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Where Is Jeremiah Today?

Jeremiah 18:1-6 tells the story of God's message to Jeremiah as he watched the potter shape a vessel. The lesson is straightforward: God can craft the clay, but, if it is flawed, he can also reshape it to suit his purpose . Applying the lesson to Israel is easy enough, but the story doesn't end there. 

The guilty of Judah and Jerusalem heard Jeremiah's message but instead of the repentance God called for, they attacked Jeremiah and Jeremiah returned to God to complain. 

In bright light of day when all the people could hear Jeremiah's prophesy against them for the evil in their hearts, Judah and it's capital city Jerusalem did not repent or humble themselves. Actually they responded much as people do today. Instead of seeking forgiveness, they attacked the messenger. 

Jeremiah goes to God to complain about their response. "They have dug a pit for m," he says. Now Jeremiah goes on the offensive with God against the attack. He calls on God to leave the women childless widows and let the young men be killed with the sword.  In his defense against the unjust accusations against him, Jeremiah has become violent, too. Where will the sin end?

God told Jeremiah to take a clay jar to the Valley of Ben Hinnon and there he was to smash the jar as an illustration to the people of the coming destruction of Judah and Jerusalem. The clay was no longer pliable in the potters hands. When it became hardened and ridged, destruction was God's judgment, and the hardness of their hearts brought destruction on them. God called them a stiff-necked people. 

Not only Israel and Judah, but all nations that have once received light from God and blessing on their land, stand in jeopardy of judgment. It is still true.