Today’s passage Jeremiah17:1-14
In this chapter the Prophet begins to describe the character and extent of Judah’s sin, he starts with a figure that emphasizes the hardness and strength of Judah’s rebellion against God. Their sins were engraved deeply upon them, as if written with an iron pen, and with the point of a diamond. Both the heart and the religious works were deeply etched with sin. For all this deeply ingrained sin– God promised to bring His judgment upon Judah.
We can identify three distinct blunders or Judah’s rebellion against God,.
1) The rebellion of trusting in man instead of God
2) The rebellion of trusting one’s own deceitful heart
3) The rebellion of trusting in riches by unjust means and not in the God of all glories
Jeremiah pictured a weak, dry shrub in the desert about to die from drought. This is the picture of the one who trusts in man instead of the LORD; they are dry and unsustainable. His heart departs from the Lord. And, he will not see prosperity when it comes. And all those who gain riches by unjust means, is compared to a partridge that sits upon the eggs of other birds. When they do hatch, the chicks leave the partridge because they don’t really belong to that bird. Even so, riches will leave a man when he stands before God, he will be shown to be a fool for trusting in his illegal gains.
But, the one who trusts in the LORD will be like a tree planted by the waters, whose leaf will be green. Whatever challenges come, this heart will not fear and this blessed one will always bear fruits (Vs 8).
Jeremiah contrasted the person who experience barrenness (verses 5-8), with the one who receives blessing. The difference in attitude is whether our “trust” is placed in man or is “trust” vested in the Lord. The man who trusts in the Lord is simply believing Him in all things - believing His Word, trusting His promises, and not allowing himself to be shaken by circumstance, sight, emotions, or feelings. Blessed indeed, is the man that trusts in the Lord. Favoured and fortunate, is the one whose hope is resting in the God of our Salvation; “whatsoever he does shall prosper." What a beautiful promise to those blessed of God!
God searches, tests, and knows the heart and mind.
Jeremiah in Vs 9-10 writes, it is the Lord who rewards each person according to their conduct, according to what their deeds deserve. In contrast to the foolish people of Judah who trusted in man, in their own heart, or in riches, Jeremiah looked to Yahweh, the covenant God of Israel. If we understand that we cannot ever rely on our own understanding or intuition to lead us in the best direction, Jesus becomes the obvious choice. With Him, we cannot fail.
Jeremiah writes, (Vs 12) A glorious throne, exalted from the beginning, is the place of our sanctuary. There is nothing more glorious than His throne, a place where His presence fills. It is a place where there is a genuine heart of worship, a place totally reserved for the Maker. Jeremiah seems to have learned that the place to begin prayer to God is with praise. If we substitute anything in His place, be it man, a selfish desire or love for riches, we diminish the glory of God in our lives. There is no one more worthy of this praise.
Reflect: What situation do you know the Lord is asking you to trust Him with?
Suggested Prayer: Loving Father, I realise more and more, I’m blessed when I trust in Your Word and place my hope in You. Help me to live by faith and not by sight, so that You become increasingly the focus of my heart and joy of my life. In Jesus' name I pray, AMEN.