Talks for Growing Christians
The Descriptions of God’s Discipline
Lesson Number 9
- The discipline of God may involve removal from position.
- The discipline of God may involve removal of life.
- Don’t boast in human wisdom and achievement!
- Don’t trust in religious rites and rituals!
- Here in chapter 9, Jeremiah continues the list of Judah’s sins. Can you identify three of them from verses 3-9?
- In this chapter, Jeremiah identifies a portion of God’s judgment upon Judah which was drastic and which would impact the kingdom and its people for years to come. What was this act of judgment?
- What were the reasons for God’s act of judgment noted in the previous question?
- God condemns the wise, mighty and rich men of Judah for boasting of themselves. God did, however, say there was one thing men could and should boast about. What was it?
- What did God mean by the phrase, “uncircumcised in the heart”?
- There were five reasons listed here: Spiritual and literal adultery, treachery and falsehood, deceit and slander, refusal to know God, and planning evil against people while hiding it behind friendly masks.
- In verses 10 and 11, we see that God’s punishment of Judah would involve their removal from the land that God had given them – the land of promise and blessing.
In the process of being removed from the land, thousands of people would be taken captive to Babylon, while thousands of others would be killed in Jerusalem. The once busy and beautiful city would be left in desolation and ruins (verse 11).
- As Jeremiah wrote in verses 13 and 14, the people had forsaken God’s law, disobeyed His voice, and walked according to their own heart.
- God said in verse 24, that he who boasts should boast only of God and His wonderful attributes of holiness, justice and righteousness.
- “Uncircumcised in the heart” would mean uncircumcised spiritually or uncommitted inwardly. The Jewish people had the physical sign of circumcision which was intended to be a sign of inward commitment to the Lord, but they were now only interested in outward rituals and rites, and were without any inner commitment at all. They were no better off than the surrounding pagan nations with their own rituals.
- As God disciplined unfaithful Judah with their removal from the land, so does His discipline today may involve the removal of unfaithful Christians from positions of leadership because of their sin. And as He disciplined Judah with the loss of life of many people who were not removed from Jerusalem as captives, so His discipline today may involve the removal of rebellious and sinful Christians through their deaths. Cite Scriptural references to support this divine principle.
- In verse 2, Jeremiah expresses his distress, concern and sadness for the sinful condition of Judah and its people. He yearns for a far away place to find separation from them and their sinful ways, to weep over them and to be alone with God. Have you felt this way at times in your walk? Is it a proper response? Would there be benefits from this response?
- “But let him who glories glory in this, that he understands and knows Me, That I am the LORD, exercising lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth, For in these things I delight.” Jeremiah 9:24