Read 207.) Jeremiah 3:6 thru 5:13. Jeremiah will be hard to read at times. He will be commanded by God to pronounce His harshest judgments upon the remaining Israelites of Judah. The 10-tribe kingdom of Israel is gone. Assyria took them away in 722. Only Judah and Benjamin are left, and it will not be long before, they too, are removed. God would spare them, if only they would heed the words of His prophet Jeremiah, and turn toward the Lord, their God, in repentance. His lengthy diatribes against his people, within the very capital city of Jerusalem have come to be known as Jeremiads, for their harsh rhetoric; like we read here, but with only a little comfort within.
Chapter 3, beginning with verse 5, Jeremiah starts in on Judah, for being worse than Israel had been, but, we do have this one passage of incredible hope, with verses 14 thru 18. This is clearly a Millennial passage, and the word clues are all throughout it. See them? “In those days,” “all nations,” and “No longer….” Words of finality, and words of all inclusiveness, along with mention of the day, or those days, in almost every instance speak to either the Tribulation, or the Millennium. What is described in the passage, as being either good or ill, tells us which period it is! After verse 18, a Jeremiad continues. Verses 22 to the end describe what God was looking for from them… true repentance! This idea of Judah repenting, and returning unto the Lord continues with the first 4 verses of chapter 4. Would they?
Chapter 4, now at verse 5. From here, the judgment is pronounced. In hindsight, we understand the whole picture being painted. It is Babylon. Nebuchadnezzar will be coming, and he will do them great harm. Knowing that, see the picture being painted, and know it is approaching Babylon, which God will use, as His chastening rod on the back of His people. Verse 27 leaves a glimmer of hope, and Nebuchadnezzar will leave a tiny remnant of people behind, from among the very poorest and least skilled. These few will be spared and left. We’ll learn more of this later.
Chapter 5 further paints the scene as even bleaker than might have been first thought, as God says He cannot find one righteous person in all Jerusalem. They have all become utterly corrupt as pagans. Verse 10, like verse 27 of chapter 4, gives this same glimmer of hope, the words are, “but… not… completely.” We will take this up again next time, beginning at 5:14, but keep in mind that not only is Jeremiah saying all this to the people who are left, in the one hope that they might turn back to the Lord, and be spared, but he will go on to see the utter fruitlessness of his ministry, and live through the very destructions that he prophesied. This will be the cause of his second written work, Lamentations. There’s special meaning there… when we get to it. It’s what the Book is all about!
Harold F Crowell