God is Setting All Things Right. So I am Blogging Through the Bible in a Year.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

August 13 - Jeremiah 23-25: Judah's Prophets Lead Judah to Disaster

Today’s Reading: Jeremiah 23-25

The Message

English Standard Version

Thought to Guide Your Reading

God would bring a true Heir to David's throne—one who could take the Promise of David and make it real forever.

Summary in 100 Words or Less

"You who mislead My People will be punished. My People will be unified around a Leader known only for God's Righteousness.
"Can you believe Judah's prophets speak of peace? It's like they make everything up and pass it off as My Word. Don't listen to them! They don't know Me! If they did you wouldn't be in this mess. Ask each other what My Way is, don't pretend to know it. Question your so-called prophets."
Judah never listened to any of God's prophets.
"Judah will be in captivity 70 years. Then I will punish her captors. Prepare for the worst."

How Today’s Reading Contributes to the Gospel: God is Setting All Things Right

God's new Leader's name would be God's Righteousness.

Among a group of people who cannot trust their leaders a new leader who only judges based on God's Word would be a breath of fresh air. This is why Eugene Peterson paraphrased His Name as "God-Who-Puts-Everything-Right" and why the Jews wanted Jesus to revive the nation of Israel. They needed someone to set things right.

Judah's prophets are leading them to disaster.

Yesterday I mentioned how people like prophets who say nice things. Judah is now filled with them. Because God's news to Judah is "go into captivity," the so-called prophets have decided to make up news of peace and tranquility, approving all Judah wants to do. Unfortunately for the so-called prophets, God punishment will come down on them, too. Leaders are commissioned to teach the truth, no matter how difficult it may be.

God's advice to Judah is to question their prophets in small groups and not to take what they say at face value.

God's advice is important for today. Judaism and Christianity are plagued with people unwilling to seek God's Way. They want an expert to tell them which way to go instead of reading in a group and allowing God to bring His Way to them. To be honest, it's not as difficult as it may seem. In groups you will have people who know the Word (thinkers), people who want to do God's Will (doers), and people who can reflect God's Love to others (lovers). (Note – this is adapted from David Murrow's "A Coaching-First Church" on his site Church for Men.) When we have groups getting together to question the prophet (or preacher) we can understand the truth. If they know God, we can learn. If they do not, we must reject their message. The spiritual health of God's Chosen People depends on the spiritual connectedness of their prophets to God and His Way. God's Chosen People must check their connectedness to understand the Truth.

No one listens to God's prophets.

Even when taking the previous points into consideration, we must also see how God's Chosen People rarely listen to His Messengers anyway. We saw earlier how God's Chosen People only want the blessings of the title and none of the responsibilities. Even Josiah, the greatest king since David, could not get Judah to return. If you are looking for a mass revival back to God, it's not going to happen. God's Chosen People will never fully return to God. It has never happened in the past.

Those who bring God's Judgment on others are not exempt from God's Judgment.

Another part of Jeremiah that depresses readers is that even God's Chosen Punishers are not righteous. God mentions unspeakable horrors that would happen to Judah because of their sin, but these were not sanction by God! He cannot control what nations do. Just as Assyria would be punished for their sin, Babylon would be punished for theirs. No one is exempt from God's Judgment. No one.

Do you question prophets and preachers who purport to speak for God?

Have something to add? Leave a comment on the Sonoma Mountain Parkway Church of Christ Facebook page.
If you missed a reading or want to go to a specific date, type the link as follows:
That will take you to the reading for that day.
Subscribe to receive the daily readings by email. See the top, right side of the page.
Share this post with others! See the links below the post to share on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+.