Saturday, December 26, 2020

Speaking Jeremiah & Lamentations


Jeremiah & Lamentations

Here are the "speaking the Bible" summaries for Jeremiah and Lamentations.

Jeremiah Summaries

This is the Word of the Lord to Jeremiah in the days of Josiah, Jehoiakim, and Zedekiah until the exile of Jerusalem. Judah and Jerusalem would not return to the Lord so disaster was proclaimed and destruction brought. They could have been a blessing to the nations. If just one man on the street would have sought justice and truth, He would have pardoned. The great and the prophets had also turned away--prophet and priest. They say peace when the Lord hasn't. There was greed, offering children on the fire, idols. If they would turn to the Lord, He would let them stay in His house. If they did justice--take care of orphans, widows, aliens. They refused and instead they shed innocent blood and worshiped idols. 

Jeremiah laments over the people. He tells them not to boast in their wisdom, might, or riches. They plot to kill him. The Lord says if the neighboring nations who seize Israel's inheritance really trust the Lord, He will build up them up among His people. The Lord told Jeremiah at times not to pray for them. No longer hope. Some were destined for the sword, death, famine or captivity. Because of Manasseh, they've polluted His land with their idols. They will be servants in a land they didn't know. If they would repent, He would relent, but they didn't. They beat Jeremiah and put him in prison.

Zedekiah released Jeremiah, asking him for a word. A king is not about building your kingdom, but righteousness and justice, taking care of the needy and afflicted. He will raise up a Righteous Branch. The prophet and priest are polluted. They could have turned the people to Him, but instead they speak their own dreams and words as God's. 

Jeremiah warned the people for 23 years. He said Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, would defeat them. They would serve him in Babylon for 70 years. Then Babylon would be judged and punished. The Lord told Jeremiah to speak His word. Perhaps they would listen, but they didn't. They wanted to kill him. The Lord had given all the nations to serve Nebuchadnezzar. All the vessels of the Lord's house would be taken. Hananiah prophesied they'd be returned in two years. He was wrong and died that year because of prophesying falsely.

Jeremiah sent a letter to the exiles in Babylon telling them to build houses, plant, marry, have children, and seek the welfare of the land. The Lord told Jeremiah to write all the words in a book. The Lord spoke of the day when Israel would return rejoicing. The book Jeremiah wrote was read by the king who burned it, so Jeremiah wrote another. He was imprisoned and taken out by Zedekiah. Then they put him in a cistern to die, but he was rescued.

Jeremiah told Zedekiah Egypt would not save them and how he could spare his own life. But Zedekiah was captured, blinded, and imprisoned until death. Once the city was captured, Jeremiah was free to go as he pleased. He stayed in Jerusalem but the appointed leader was murdered so the people fled to Egypt against what the Lord said. They would be destroyed but a few refugees would return to Judah.

 There were prophecies against the nations--The Philistines, Moab, Ammon, Edom, Damascus, Kedar, Hazor, Elam, and finally Babylon. Jerusalem is captured.

  • Ask the Lord what He had in mind for you before He formed you in the womb.
  • Stay faithful to His commands.
  • Maintain holiness in the land He's called you to.
  • Seek justice and truth.
  • Walk in His ways and instruct those who don't know the way.
  • Prophets, arise and speak the Word of the Lord, not wind.
  • Put away idols.
  • Serve the Lord and the land remains yours.
  • Know the times, seasons, and migrations.
  • It's time to return to the Lord. It is the only path to peace.
  • Why would you worship what you've made and not the One who made you? Is that thing worthy of your allegiance?
  • Lies and deceit do not bring stability and peace.
  • Follow eternal truths.
  • Can your wisdom, might, or riches save you?
  • The Lord made all things by His power, wisdom, understanding, and voice.
  • He executes justice, lovingkindness, and righteousness in the Earth.
  • Let times of trial strengthen you, not weaken.
  • Seek truth, not words of ease.
  • Evil pollutes the land. Idols pollute the heart, bringing destruction on the land and the people.
  • Return to the Lord and the land will return to you.
  • Yield to the Lord while they clay of your heart is still pliable.
  • The king is not to build his own kingdom, but do righteousness and justice.
  • The Lord our righteousness will reign.
  • He will gather the scattered sheep.
  • Prophet and priest--stand in the council of the Lord and announce to the people so they may turn from evil ways.
  • The Lord gives the nations to whom He pleases.
  • Seek the true word of the Lord--written and prophetic.
  • Submit to the Lord's plans for you--placement and positioning.
  • Times of distress will become times of building, planting, and growing.
  • The new, everlasting covenant of God is that He will place His laws within His people, written on their hearts. 
  • He will be their God. They will know Him and He will forgive their sin.
  • Proclaim the word of the Lord. Read from the book. Write His words.
  • Those who seek their own welfare try to silence the prophetic voice.
  • Stay faithful.
  • 30 men to rescue the prophetic voice.
  • A remnant will remain to sow in the land.
  • False gods only give false security.
  • The Lord's way is the only way. The only good way, true way, and way to peace.
  • Don't trust in your own achievements or treasures.
  • Pride, self-exaltation, sacrificing to other gods brings a pit, a snare, and terror.
  • Trust in the Lord. Your nation is in His hands, not yours.
  • Who is like God? Who can summon Him to court?
  • He will appoint whom He chooses.
  • His plans will prevail.
  • He upholds all things--the boundaries of the nations and the appointed times of man.
  • There is a consequence to sin and the Lord will bring correction, but woe to the one who is used to bring correction but does not show mercy.
  • There is a time to leave your captors who will be judged.
  • Run to the land, back to the land He promised you.
  • Remember Him.
  • Remember the Lord.
  • Find your place and honor Him in that place so others will not dishonor Him there.
Lamentations Summaries

Zion is separated from her people is like widow. The roads are in mourning because no one is coming to the feasts. Foreigners are in the sanctuary. Strongholds are thrown down. The meeting place is destroyed. God has rejected His altar and abandoned His sanctuary. Judah is in exile--has become a forced laborer. The priests are groaning, the virgins afflicted. She is afflicted and homeless and remembers the precious things of Jerusalem. Jerusalem greatly sinned and her young ones are in captivity. Her priests and elders have perished. The Lord has poured out His wrath. The little ones faint with hunger. The prophets see false and foolish visions. Cry aloud and lift up your hands to the Lord for your little ones.

Jeremiah recounts what his prophetic call has cost him, but then remembers his own sin and wanderings. He has hope in the Lord's lovingkindness. It is good to wait for Him. The Lord doesn't take pleasure in afflicting people. Who is able to speak and have it come to pass unless the Lord commanded it? From His mouth both good and ill come forth. Let us examine and probe our ways and return to Him. When he called from his lowest pit, He heard, drew near and said, Don't fear. The famine in Jerusalem was horrible. Infants thirst, children hungry, and no one feeding them. Women boiling their children to eat. Better to die of sword than famine. The Lord's anger consumed Zion's foundations. The punishment completed. He will exile no longer. A prayer--look what's happened to us--woe to us for we've sinned. Our fathers sinned and we bore their iniquities. You O Lord rule forever. Restore us. Renew us. Unless you've utterly rejected us.

  • Cry aloud for the meeting place where heaven and earth meet, where God and His people gather and feast, to be restored.
  • Seek Him and turn from the false and foolish prophets.
  • Examine your own heart and repent of your sin.
  • Cry aloud for your children.
  • What part do you play in the condition of your city? Your nation?
  • Look at yourself through the eyes of truth and repentance.
  • He is the Lord. He rules on high. 
  • He speaks and it comes to pass.

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