• Jeremiah 22:10 "Weep not for the dead, nor bemoan him; Weep bitterly for him who goes away, For he shall return no more, Nor see his native country." When the people of Judah were taken into captivity, they were made slaves. They also could remember the glory of the temple, their homes, the palace, and could remember their freedom. But they were to die in captivity. If only they had lived according to their covenant with God.
    1. Jeremiah 22:8-9 [con't from 6-7] "And many nations will pass by this city; and everyone will say to his neighbor, 'Why has the Lord done so to this great city?' Then they will answer, 'Because they have forsaken the covenant of the Lord their God, and worshipped other gods and served them.'" It's so very interesting that the term 'many nations' is used to describe the people who would be passing by or through Jerusalem after it is destroyed. We American use nation to mean a country with borders. However, the rest of the world generally uses nation to refer to a group of people with certain traits being the same (simplified description). For instance, here in the US we often refer to a large group of Native Americans as a tribe or band, whereas they are really a nation. For example, The Cherokees are a nation, the Navaho are a nation. So in the above passage of Scripture, it makes sense that different nations would want the land of Judah at it was rich in producing abundant produce and sustained livestock. However, God had promised to bring the people of Judah, who had gone into captivity, back to Judah, so other nations did not move in to the land.
      1. Jeremiah 22:6-7 For thus says the Lord to the house of the king of Judah: "You are Gilead to Me, the head of Lebanon; Yet I will surely make you a wilderness, Cities which are not inhabited. I will prepare destroyers against you, Everyone with his weapons; They shall cut down your choice cedars and cast them into the fire." There is discussion as to the meaning of this passage. Some say it metaphorically means the mighty soldiers of Judah will be cut down like the forests of Lebanon where the wood is used to build places, such as the temple and palace in Jerusalem. Others say it refers to the burning of the temple and palace in Jerusalem by the Babylonians. I think both are right, and that it's not an either-or. This is a warning that the kings of Judah chose to ignore, and the people paid the consequences.
        1. Jeremiah 22:4-5 [con't from yesterday] "'"For if you indeed do this thing, then shall enter the gates of this house, riding on horses and in chariots, accompanied by servants and people, kings who sit on the throne of David. But if you will not hear these words, I swear by Myself, " says the Lord, "that this house shall become a desolation."'" When reading and studying Jeremiah, we need to remember that it wasn't put together chronologically. Chapter 22 contains messages written specifically for kings who ruled in Jerusalem over Jeremiah's lifetime. During the time period Jeremiah prophesied ( 626 bc - 586 bc) four separate kings ruled over Judah.
          1. Jeremiah 22:1-3 Thus says the Lord: "Go down to the house of the king of Judah, and there speak this word and say, "Hear the word of the Lord, O king of Judah, you who sit on the throne of David, you and your servants and your people who enter these gates! Thus says the Lord: "Execute judgment and righteousness, and deliver the plundered out of the hand of the oppressor. Do no wrong and do no violence to the stranger, the fatherless, or the widow, nor shed innocent blood in this place."'" At the time this event occurred, most likely Josiah, or Jehoahaz/Shallum sat on the throne. Josiah died in 609 bc, and the message here, delivered by Jeremiah, sounds like a message given to one newly sitting on the throne.
            1. Jeremiah 21:11-14 "And concerning the house of the king of Judah, say, 'Hear the word of the Lord, O house of David! Thus says the Lord: "Execute judgment in the morning; and deliver him who is plundered out of the hand of the oppressor lest My fury go forth like fire and burn so that no one can quench it, because of the evil of your doings. Behold, I am against you, O inhabitants of the valley, and rock of the plains" says the Lord, "who say 'who shall come down against us? Or who shall enter our dwellings?' But I shall punish you according to the fruit of your doings," says the Lord; "I will kindle a fire in its forest, and it shall devour all things around it."'" When Pashur, sent by King Zedekiah, went to Jeremiah looking for words of hope from God, he certainly didn't expect the words he received and told to take back to the king. For years and years Jeremiah had prophesied the penalties for worshipping idols, sacrificing children, and disobeying the Law. Now they are realizing the truth in what he said.
              1. Jeremiah 21:10 [God speaking through Jeremiah] "For I have set My face against this city for adversity and not for good," says the Lord. "It shall be given into the hand of the king of Babylon, and it shall burn with fire." In Deut. 17:18-20 it was stated that the king was responsible for learning and upholding the Law. He was to read the Law every day. So in not following or upholding the Law, as instructed in Deuteronomy 17, the king now has the responsibility for the destruction of Jerusalem, and the fall of Judah. God is holding him accountable.
                1. Jeremiah 21:8-9 "Now you shall say to this people, 'Thus says the Lord, "Behold, I set before you the way of life and the way of death. He who remains in this city shall die by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence; but he who goes out and defects to the Chaldeans who besiege you, he shall live and his life shall be as a prize to him."'" Had Jeremiah given this prophesy earlier, he probably would've been executed for treason, but for the fact God would protect him. But here we have Jeremiah giving prophesy that those who are on God's side would defect to the Babylonians (Chaldeans), further showing that God had turned his back on those of Judah due to their sin.
                  1. Jeremiah 21:6-7 ”I will strike the inhabitants of this city, both man and beast; they shall die of great pestilence. And afterward” says the Lord, I will deliver Zedekiah, king of Judah, his servants and the people, and such are left in this city from the pestilence and the sword and the famine, into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, into the hand of their enemies, and into the hands of those who seek their life; and he shall strike them down with the edge of the sword. He shall not spare them, or have pity or mercy.” This is the message God gave to Jeremiah, to give to Pashur, to give to King Zedekiah, after Pashur was sent to Jeremiah. It’s sad that after all the years that Jeremiah spent prophesying, it wasn’t until Babylon was at the walls that he was listened to. And if the king and the people had heeded him, they wouldn’t be in this position.
                    1. Jeremiah 21:3-5 [follows yesterday's verses] Then Jeremiah said to them, "Thus you shall say to Zedekiah, 'Thus says the Lord God of Israel: "Behold, I will turn back the weapons of war that are in your hands, with which you fight against the king of Babylon and the Chaldeans who besiege you outside the walls; and I will assemble in the midst of this city. I Myself will fight against you with an outstretched hand and with a strong arm, even in anger and fury and wrath."'" For decades, even a century, the prophets - Isaiah, Jeremiah, and others, warned the people of Judah what was going to happen. Jeremiah was beaten, jailed, ridiculed, humiliated, and more when he told the people what was going to happen. Now it is happening, and Pashur, as a representative of the king, comes and asks Jeremiah to ask god for help. God's reply - it's too late, I'm fighting against you.