Today: [Jeremiah 30] Jeremiah Writes a Book. Do you have a book in you? Today there are so many books being written that we wonder about the quality of what all these authors have to say. Yet, in Jeremiah’s case he is commanded by God to write the things he has heard in a book. Ezekiel 9 speaks of a writer with an inkhorn sent forth to seal the servants of God in their foreheads. There is in the earth a ministry of writing and there any many believers who have a burning desire to write but they don’t see themselves as capable. God says to Jeremiah and to us to write the things we have heard in a book, because He has much to say and too few willing to write what He gives them. Write the book!
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[Jer 30:1-24 KJV] 1 The word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying, 2 Thus speaketh the LORD God of Israel, saying, Write thee all the words that I have spoken unto thee in a book. 3 For, lo, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will bring again the captivity of my people Israel and Judah, saith the LORD: and I will cause them to return to the land that I gave to their fathers, and they shall possess it. 4 And these [are] the words that the LORD spake concerning Israel and concerning Judah. 5 For thus saith the LORD; We have heard a voice of trembling, of fear, and not of peace. 6 Ask ye now, and see whether a man doth travail with child? wherefore do I see every man with his hands on his loins, as a woman in travail, and all faces are turned into paleness? 7 Alas! for that day [is] great, so that none [is] like it: it [is] even the time of Jacob’s trouble; but he shall be saved out of it. 8 For it shall come to pass in that day, saith the LORD of hosts, [that] I will break his yoke from off thy neck, and will burst thy bonds, and strangers shall no more serve themselves of him: 9 But they shall serve the LORD their God, and David their king, whom I will raise up unto them. 10 Therefore fear thou not, O my servant Jacob, saith the LORD; neither be dismayed, O Israel: for, lo, I will save thee from afar, and thy seed from the land of their captivity; and Jacob shall return, and shall be in rest, and be quiet, and none shall make [him] afraid. 11 For I [am] with thee, saith the LORD, to save thee: though I make a full end of all nations whither I have scattered thee, yet will I not make a full end of thee: but I will correct thee in measure, and will not leave thee altogether unpunished.
In this chapter Jeremiah is specifically directed to write the prophecies he has received in a book. Writing is not just an afterthought in the things of God. Writing is a calling from God to those that He intends to distribute His messages to them beyond the current generation and their immediate locale. In Ezekiel 9:2-11, Ezekiel has a vision of six men sent from God into the earth. The first 5 represent the 5 fold ministry represented in Eph. 4:11-12. The 6th man is described as one who has an inkhorn by his side. In verse 4 of Ez. 9 this man is commanded by God to mark the foreheads of those who truly follow the Lord and seek His kingdom. Why would this writing ministry be singled out? Because as Daniel prophesied in Dan. 12:4, we are living in the day when knowledge has been increased greatly. Because we are in the information age, the calling of writing is coming more and more to the forefront, although it has been little recognizes as a viable, front line ministry in the body of Christ.
The promise in chapter 30 is God will turn again the captivity of His people. Do you feel captive in the situation you are in? Are you dealing with situations that are beyond your control? Are you being run over rough shod in dysfunctional relationships from which it seems there is no escape? Regardless of the situation, God will not leave you in captivity. The children of Israel went into captivity because of life choices that they have made. There are few difficult circumstances we find ourselves in that we haven’t contributed to in our own way. In spite of that God will have mercy on us. The captivity we may be suffering was never God’s first choice for us but choices have consequences, yet even from that perspective God’s promise is to turn our captivity and bring us once more into a place of possessing our possessions.
Verse 5 describes the people of God who have gone from saber rattling and bravado to deep fear and trembling. Now, after 100 years of warning from Isaiah, Jeremiah and other prophets, the people tremble and can see no way out of their problems. Before they would never admit that it seemed the Babylonian overthrow of Judah was inevitable. Even when the Babylonians plundered the city and the temple, the people refused to see the predicament they were in because of their sinful culture. Now, after the fact they cannot see anything but the negative. Notice the character of the voice the people are expressing and giving heed to: it is a voice of “trembling, fear and not of peace…” What is the character of the voice you are listening to? Are they preaching the kingdom or something else? Romans 14:17 says that the kingdom is “righteousness, peace and joy…”. If the preaching you are listening to is predominantly alarmist in nature then they are not preaching the kingdom. When the aftermath of the messages you are listening to is turbulence and concern then you haven’t heard the preaching of the kingdom because the preaching of the kingdom is all about bringing you into righteousness, peace and joy. Correction may be involved as Jeremiah points out that God has corrected but peace is the intended end result.
12 For thus saith the LORD, Thy bruise [is] incurable, [and] thy wound [is] grievous. 13 [There is] none to plead thy cause, that thou mayest be bound up: thou hast no healing medicines. 14 All thy lovers have forgotten thee; they seek thee not; for I have wounded thee with the wound of an enemy, with the chastisement of a cruel one, for the multitude of thine iniquity; [because] thy sins were increased. 15 Why criest thou for thine affliction? thy sorrow [is] incurable for the multitude of thine iniquity: [because] thy sins were increased, I have done these things unto thee. 16 Therefore all they that devour thee shall be devoured; and all thine adversaries, every one of them, shall go into captivity; and they that spoil thee shall be a spoil, and all that prey upon thee will I give for a prey. 17 For I will restore health unto thee, and I will heal thee of thy wounds, saith the LORD; because they called thee an Outcast, [saying], This [is] Zion, whom no man seeketh after. 18 Thus saith the LORD; Behold, I will bring again the captivity of Jacob’s tents, and have mercy on his dwellingplaces; and the city shall be builded upon her own heap, and the palace shall remain after the manner thereof. 19 And out of them shall proceed thanksgiving and the voice of them that make merry: and I will multiply them, and they shall not be few; I will also glorify them, and they shall not be small. 20 Their children also shall be as aforetime, and their congregation shall be established before me, and I will punish all that oppress them. 21 And their nobles shall be of themselves, and their governor shall proceed from the midst of them; and I will cause him to draw near, and he shall approach unto me: for who [is] this that engaged his heart to approach unto me? saith the LORD. 22 And ye shall be my people, and I will be your God. 23 Behold, the whirlwind of the LORD goeth forth with fury, a continuing whirlwind: it shall fall with pain upon the head of the wicked. 24 The fierce anger of the LORD shall not return, until he have done [it], and until he have performed the intents of his heart: in the latter days ye shall consider it.
Verse 7 describes this period in the nation of Judah as “Jacob’s trouble”. This is very telling. Many teachers and leaders suggest that no matter how godly you may be that sometimes the afflictions of the godly are necessary and in fact much more grievous than the afflictions of the godless. When reference is made to Jacob’s trouble, it speaks of the unredeemed, unregenerate nature of the people, just as Jacob was a supplanter and a “heel grabber” until his name was changed by the angel to “prince with God…” There is great hope in this for us because God is saying that though we are wrestling with our Jacob nature, that He will yet have mercy on us, and war against our enemies and bring us into our possessions that He has promised us. This is the mercy of God. God does not sit back and wait till we are perfect or perfected before He answers prayer. He moves in mercy upon us even as we are in process toward perfection, the important thing for us no matter what we are struggling with is that we continue to make ourselves vulnerable and obedient to Him lest we exclude OURSELVES from His patient dealings.
In verse 17 God promises that He will restore health to us. Sometimes when ill health takes hold of us we feel it is too late to pray. We ask for relief but many times fail to fully expect it in faith because physical problems increase and multiply until our health generally is in failure and we have trouble believing. To those with such chronic physical problems, here is your promise – even the things physicians cannot heal, God will restore our health in the midst of. Remember as well that this is a “Jacob” promise. You have to reject the lie that God is allowing the sickness in order to perfect you because in this chapter God acknowledges the Jacob nature of the people, yet promises, mercy, deliverance and healing nonetheless.
In verse 19 the Father says that He will punish those that oppress us. What if we are not perfect? Will He still punish those that oppress us? What if we brought it on ourselves? Will He still deliver us and defend us? Again, the promise is to the Jacob generation and there is great mercy seen here, available to us if we can receive it. This is not a license to go on our way without seeking transformation but it is a positive affirmation that God knows what we are made of and will bless us in process and not just hold back His word from us until we achieve sinless perfection.
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