Talks for Growing Christians
Jeremiah’s Description of God’s Punishment
Lesson Number 5
- God must punish his people’s failure to practice justice and failure to speak the truth.
- God must punish his people’s determination to practice wickedness and determination to love what is false.
- Praise God for His remnant policy!
- How many people could Jeremiah find when God asked him to look for someone who practiced justice and sought the truth?
- When Jeremiah spoke of wild beasts being used as part of his means of punishment, was he referring to allegorical beasts or literal beasts?
- In contrast to Jeremiah, how did God describe the false prophets of Israel?
- The prophesied (and actual) invasion by Nebuchadnezzar and the Babylonian army included a siege of Jerusalem. How long did the siege last?
- As in chapter 4, God in this chapter twice repeats the promise that He will not completely destroy His people or the nation of Israel. What term do we use to describe the portion of the Jewish people who will be restored to the Lord?
- Jeremiah could not find one single person who practiced justice and sought the truth from among the common people, and no one even when he looked among the leaders, educated people and the elite of Judah!
- Jeremiah here spoke of wild beasts both symbolically, representing the coming Babylonian invasion, and quite literally. We read from Deuteronomy 32:24, “I will also send against them the teeth of beasts with the poison of serpents of the dust.”
- God described the false prophets of Jeremiah’s day as having “become wind” (full of hot air), and the word (of truth) not being in them.
- The siege of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar and the Babylonian army lasted more than one year.
- The term we use here to describe the portion of the Jewish people who in the future will be restored to the Lord is the “remnant”, and the promise of God restoring these people as “His remnant policy”. The term remnant is used in many Bible translations in the Old Testament and quoted similarly in the New Testament.
- Jeremiah in this chapter gives several characteristics of the people of Israel when they turned away from the Lord. Do we find these characteristics among the people and governments today . . . in the churches?
1. They no longer practiced justice and no longer desired God’s truth.
2. They practiced evil and deceit with one another.
3. They took advantage of the poor and needy among them.
4. They not only practiced falsehood – they loved what was false.
5. Their false prophets lied and the people were eager to hear their lies.
- God’s “remnant policy” should be an encouragement to each believer and to the church today, when experiencing failure before the Lord and being under His discipline. God has not written you off, and He still has good plans for you.
“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11
- “Just as you have forsaken Me and served foreign gods in your land, so you shall serve aliens in a land that is not yours.” Jeremiah 5:19