« AnteriorContinuar »
The general ruin of the Jews is foreshewn. i The word of the Lord came and the voice of gladness, the also unto me, saying,
voice of the bridegroom, and 2 Thou shalt not take thee a the voice of the bride. wife, neither shalt thou have 10 And it shall come to pass, sons or daughters in this place. when thou shalt shew this peo
3 For thus saith the LORD ple all these words, and they concerning the sons and con- shall say unto thee, Wherefore cerning the daughters that are hath the LORD pronounced all born in this place, and concern- this great evil against us? or ing their mothers that bare them, what is our iniquity? or what is and concerning their fathers that our sin that we have committed begat them in this land; against the Lord our God?
4 They shall die of grievous i Then shalt thou say unto them, deaths ; they shall not be la- Because your fathers have formented; neither shall they be saken me, saith the Lord, and buried; but they shall be as dung have walked after other gods, and upon the face of the earth : and have served them, and have worthey shall be consumed by the shipped them, and have forsaken sword, and by famine; and their me, and have not kept my law; carcases shall be meat for the
12 And ye have done worse fowls of heaven, and for the than your fathers; for, behold, beasts of the earth.
every one after the ima5 For thus saith the LORD, gination of his evil heart, that Enter not into the house of they may not hearken unto me: mourning, neither go to lament 13 Therefore will I cast you nor bemoan them: for I have out of this land into a land that taken away my peace from this ye know not, neither ye nor people, saith the Lord, even your fathers; and there shall ye lovingkindness and mercies. serve other gods day and night;
6 Both the great and the small where I will not shew you favour. shall die in this land: they shall 14 Therefore, behold, the days not be buried, neither shall men come, saith the Lord, that it shall lament for them, nor cut them- no more be said, The Lordliveth, selves, nor make themselves that brought up the children of bald for them :
Israel out of the land of Egypt; 7 Neither shall men tear them- 15 But, The Lord liveth, that selves for them in mourning, to brought up the children of Iscomfort them for the dead; nei- rael from the land of the north, ther shall men give them the cup and from all the lands whither of consolation to drink for their he bad driven them: and I will father or for their mother. bring them again into their land
8 Thou shalt not also go into that I gave unto their fathers, the house of feasting, to sit with 16 Behold, I will send for many them to eat and to drink. fishers, saith the Lord, and they
9 For thus saith the Lord of shall fish them; and after will í hosts, the God of Israel; Be- send for many hunters, and they hold, I will cause to cease out shall hunt them from every of this place in your eyes, and mountain, and from every hill, in your days, the voice of mirth, and out of the holes of the rocks. 17 For mine eyes are upon all the day of affliction, the Gentheir ways: they are not hid tiles shall come unto thee from from my face, neither is their the ends of the earth, and shall iniquity hid from mine eyes. say, Surely our fathers have in
18 And first I will recompense herited lies, vanity, and things their iniquity and their sin dou- wherein there is no profit. ble; because they have defiled 20 Shall a man make gods unto my land, they have filled mine himself, and they are no gods ? inheritance with the carcases of 21 Therefore, behold, I will this their detestable and abominable once cause them to know, I will things.
cause them to know mine hand 19 O Lord, my strength, and and my might; and they shall my fortress, and my refuge in know that my name is The Lord.
The good effects of a serious deportment. The conduct here prescribed to the prophet was well suited to impress the people with an apprehension of the calamity about to overtake them. If we would impress our fellow Christians with a sense of the certainty of those things which we believe, let us act as if we really were believing them. We need not like Jeremiah abstain from the connexions of domestic and social life. But let us enter into them in a self denying spirit, and behave ourselves as they whose home, whose treasure, and whole heart, are elsewhere, even in heaven. A seriousness amounting oftentimes to sadness cannot but become us whilst living in the midst of many, who are in the eyes of God no better than idolaters; who have forsaken Him, and are devoting all the ardour of their souls to their own pleasure, gain, or glory. Let us shew that we deeply feel for the perils to which such as these expose themselves. Let us speak and act as living in the sight of God most high, as sensible of his presence, and as persuaded that He is privy to the actions, words, and thoughts of those, who least think of his beholding them. Let the judgments which He brought upon his people of old be often present to our minds; and the words also of his prophets in which He foreshewed them, and the refusal of the people to believe them. And remembering that our own present actual position is a proof of the fulfilment of these threats, finding ourselves Gentiles reclaimed from idolatry, and occupying that place which the Jews have lost in the covenanted favour of the Lord, let us tremble to think, that we too are liable to fall as they, and sure, if like them we fall, to be like them cast out. God be praised that in the midst of the sentence of their exile there is a promise of their restoration! God grant that as that promise once has been fulfilled, so it may again have a glorious fulfilment! God help us both to watch with faith, and to wait with patience, for the fulfilment of all his promises! God give us grace to forward their fulfilment, by both living, and influencing others to live, as they that walk by faith, above the world of sense, to the glory of Christ Jesus !
Trust in man and trust in God are contrasted. 1 The sin of Judah is written 8 For he shall be as a tree with a pen of iron, and with the planted by the waters, and that point of a diamond: it is graven spreadeth out her roots by the upon the table of their heart, and river, and shall not see when heat upon the horns of your altars; cometh, but her leaf shall be
2 Whilst their children re- green; and shall not be careful member their altars and their in the year of drought, neither groves by the green trees upon shall cease from yielding fruit. the high hills.
9 The heart is deceitful above 3 O my mountain in the field, all things, and desperately wickI will give thy substance and ed: who can know it? all thy treasures to the spoil, 10 I the LORD search the heart, and thy high places for sin, I try the reins, even to give throughout all thy borders. every man according to his
4 And thou, even thyself, ways, and according to the fruit shalt discontinue from thine of his doings. heritage that I gave thee; and 11 As the partridge sitteth on I will cause thee to serve thine eggs, and hatcheth them not; so enemies in the land which thou he that getteth riches, and not knowest not: for ye have kin- by right, shall leave them in the dled a fire in mine anger, which midst of his days, and at his end shall burn for ever.
shall be a fool. 5 Thus saith the LORD; Cursed 12 A glorious high throne be the man that trusteth in man, from the beginning is the place and maketh flesh his arm, and of our sanctuary. whose heart departeth from the 13 O LORD, the hope of IsLORD.
rael, all that forsake thee shall 6 For he shall be like the heath be ashamed, and they that dein the desert, and shall not see part from me shall be written when good cometh ; but shall in the earth, because they have inhabit the parched places in forsaken the LORD, the founthe wilderness, in a salt land tain of living waters. and not inhabited.
14 Heal me, O LORD, and I 7 Blessed is the man that trust- shall be healed; save me, and eth in the Lord, and whose I shall be saved: for thou art hope the Lord is.
LECTURE 1210. The humility and glory of those whose trust is in God. See how indelibly those sins are written, in the sight of God, which are committed wilfully and obstinately, in defiance of light and knowledge. “A pen of iron," and “the point of a diamond," are figures not too strong to express the dreadful certainty, that such sins are noted by the Lord. And that sinners who thus sin will not be spared by Him, on the plea of their privileges as Christians, is clear from the judgments here denounced against those who thus offended being Jews. Under both dispensations, privileges abused aggravate sin, and increase condemnation. Alike under the Law, and under the Gospel, a curse awaits those who trust in man, and who in their hearts forsake the Lord. Under both there is a blessing for “the man that trusteth in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is.” And whilst a stunted plant in a parched wilderness is an apt figure of the case of such as make flesh their arm, instead of depending upon God, the devout believer, whether Jew or Christian, is “as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.”
The striking contrast here drawn may suggest to every one the solemn inquiry, to which of these two classes do I belong? Am I trusting in God, or in man? Do I seek for succour and look for happiness, from my Maker, or from my fellow creatures ? Do I rely for the justifying of my soul, on my Saviour, or on myself? In such an inquiry, how seasonable is the statement here set down, “ The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked !". No reason this against the practice of self examination. Only a very strong reason for being watchfully on our guard against self deceit. For there is One whom the heart cannot deceive. The question, “Who can know it?" is thus answered: “I the Lord search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.” Away then with all trust in riches whether gained by right or not; away with all false hope of pleasing God whilst wealth unjustly got is harboured! Away with confidence in the sanctuary of God, “a glorious high throne” though indeed it be “from the beginning,” and great as is the privilege of being members of his Church ; away with all confidence herein, on the part of those who forsake Him in their hearts ! Shame, and not glory, is their portion. Glory is for those who trust only in Himself; who enjoy his gifts, and use his ordinances, as precious for his sake. Deceitful as are their hearts by nature, God gives them grace to know the heart's deceitfulness, to own its desperate wickedness. And far from boasting, or praising themselves, they are thankful to be allowed to take into their mouths such words as these of the prophet, “ Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed; save me, and I shall be saved: for thou art my
The prophet's persecutors. The hallowing of the Sabbath. 15 Behold, they say unto me, day, as I commanded your faWhere is the word of the Loru thers. let it come now.
23 But they obeyed not, neither 16 As for me, I have not hast- inclined their ear, but made their ened from being a pastor to fol- neck stiff, that they might not low thee: neither have I desired hear, nor receive instruction. the woeful day; thou knowest : 24 And it shall come to pass, that which came out of my lips if ye diligently hearken unto was right before thee.
me, saith the LORD, to bring 17 Be not a terror unto me : in no burden through the gates thou art my liope in the day of of this city on the sabbath day, evil.
but hallow the sabbath day, to 18 Let them be confounded do no work therein; that persecute me, but let not 25 Then shall there enter into me be confounded : let them be the gates of this city kings and dismayed, but let not me be princes sitting upon the throne dismayed : bring upon them of David, riding in chariots and the day of evil, and destroy on horses, they, and their printhem with double destruction. ces, the men of Judah, and the
19 Thus said the LORD unto inhabitants of Jerusalem : and me; Go and stand in the gate this city shall remain for ever. of the children of the people, 26 And they shall come from whereby the kings of Judah the cities of Judah, and from come in, and by the which they the places about Jerusalem, and go out, and in all the gates of from the land of Benjamin, and Jerusalem;
from the plain, and from the 20 And say unto them, Hear mountains, and from the south, ye the word of the Lord, ye bringing burnt offerings, and kings of Judah, and all Judah, sacrifices, and meat offerings, and all the inhabitants of Jeru- and incense, and bringing sasalem, that enter in by these crifices of praise, unto the house gates :
of the Lord. 21 Thus saith the Lord; Take 27 But if ye will not hearken heed to yourselves, and bear no unto me to hallow the sabbath burden on the sabbath day, nor day, and not to bear a burden, bring it in by the gates of Je- even entering in at the gates of rusalem ;
Jerusalem on the sabbath day; 22 Neither carry forth a bur- then will I kindle a fire in the den out of your houses on the gates thereof, and it shall devour sabbath day, neither do ye any the palaces of Jerusalem, and it work, but hallow ye the sabbath shall not be quenched.
LECTURE 1211. The close connexion of all duties with one another. When the unbelieving Jews made light of Jeremiah's prophecies, he called God to witness, that he had not desired the coming