October - Reading 14

Discussion in 'Bible Reading Plan 2016' started by Clint Kritzer, Oct 14, 2002.

  1. Clint Kritzer

    Clint Kritzer
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  2. Clint Kritzer

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    Good morning -

    In our reading of Jeremiah for the 14th of October we see Jerusalem in the final days, months, or years before the exile. The reading of chapters 37-39 give the reader a feel for how persistent this prophet was in the face of rebuke, chastisement and rejection. As Jeremiah had said in chapter 20, he was unable to contain the words of God when called upon to prophecy. The reading today gives us a glimpse into why God felt He needed to promise Jeremiah personal safety. We see the king, Jehoiakim, destroy the scroll that Jeremiah dictates to Baruch. Contrast this attitude and action to Josiah in 2Kings 22:11. The good king Josiah tore his clothes, The evil king Jehoiakim tore up the prophecy from God. Also how embarrassing for Jeremiah to be thrown into the muddy bottom of a cistern to await death by thirst and startvation covered in mud. The officials wanted Jeremiah dead but they lacked the nerve to do it quickly by the sword and in turn, the king lacked the nerve to stop them. What a miserable time for all involved with this beseiged city!

    In John we read what the author calls the "second miracle." A note of qualification here: this was not necessarily the second sign performed by Christ, but was the second performed since Christ came back from Judea to Galilee. Christ notes that all the Galilean people wanted to see were marvels. It was not the spectacular miracles that should have won them (and indeed did not win them) but rather the teachings and wonderment of the arrival of the Messiah.

    An interesting note in 1Peter tonight is in verses 10-12. The prophets, though they spoke with pure inspiration may very well have been completely unaware of the signifigance of their words. God revealed to them peices of the puzzle but being mere men, they probably did not grasp the whole picture.

    May God bless you

    - Clint
     
  3. mark brandwein

    mark brandwein
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    Clint, During the begining of Jesus miricles, were there a lot of Jews saved?
     
  4. Clint Kritzer

    Clint Kritzer
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    Hi Mark -

    That's a rather difficult question to answer for a couple of reasons.

    First of all, we see in John 2:23 that "many believed in His Name" because of the signs when Christ went to the first Passover during His ministry. In chapter 6 we will see that Jesus had amassed a following of 5000 men and an unnamed number of women and children. Yet look at verse 2:24.

    Generally speaking, in the Gospel of John, "belief" means redemption or salvation. However, in context of the Jews, I believe we must consider the Parable of the sower and the seeds in Luke 8. In verse 13 we see that some seeds fall on the rock and in time of testing, they fall away. This is what I thimk happened to most (not all) of the Jews. By the time we get to the Crucifixion, Christ is all but abandoned, even by the Disciples.

    So, were the "many" saved? Only God knows, my friend.

    Secondly, until the death and Resurrection of Christ, the Jews were still under the Law of Moses. The perfect sacrifice of Christ had not yet been accomplished (Matthew 5:17-20). Therefore, from a theological perspective, if they were obeying the Laws of the Torah, they were fulfilling their obligation to God. While the Law saves no one (Galatians 3:21-22), the obedience to such coupled with faith in the Promise of God did. Faith and obedience brought about righteousness and it was through righteousness that all were justified. That was true from Adam to now.

    John calls the Miracles "signs". They were not done for the purpose of sensationalism, though it is likely that many perceived them as such. Instead they were to teach lessons and impart truths. Christ said that it was a corrupt generation that sought signs (Matthew 12:38-39). While the Miracles certainly showed the Divinity of Christ, they saved no one. Salvation would only be obtained by faith (belief, loyalty, obedience) in Christ, not by mere intellectual belief (James 2:19). Did the Jews have this? Some did, some didn't. Only God kept score. [​IMG]

    [ October 14, 2003, 11:45 PM: Message edited by: Clint Kritzer ]
     
  5. mark brandwein

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    Thank you for expanding my mind, I know that all the answers are in the Bible. I have the utmost respect for you taking the time to answer my questions. If you need me to do anything just call on me, I will do whatever I can. I really do enjoy reading the Bible. Thank you and God Bless. [​IMG]
     
  6. Clint Kritzer

    Clint Kritzer
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    Sunday School lesson 5/1/05

    Jeremiah 36

    While the story told in Jeremiah 36 is rather self-explanatory and requires little commentary, the truth it reflects and the relevance of the characters’ actions to the modern man could fill volumes.

    Jeremiah is at this point in the narrative at a crucial hour in Judean and world history, the fourth year of Jehoiakim, 605 BC. The Babylonian Empire under the leadership of Nebuchadnezzar had crushed the Egyptian opposition at the battle of Carchemish and was now pressing southward towards Palestine. For twenty-three years Jeremiah had been preaching that divine judgment was coming from the north in the form of a foe of which they would not understand the language if his people refused to repent and return to a lifestyle that reflected their covenant with God. Now such a crisis was upon them and God once again hurled Jeremiah upon the people in a last ditch effort to make an appeal for genuine repentance.

    The religious leaders of his day had debarred him from the Temple, possibly because of his “Temple sermon” of perhaps his “Tophet sermon” of chapter 19 and 20. In any case, this prohibition of going to the Temple gave cause for Jeremiah to dictate his prophecies to his trusted amanuensis, Baruch. In this Passage we get a wonderful glimpse into part of the inner workings of the composition of the Bible we hold in our hands today.

    The writings of Baruch as dictated by Jeremiah and inspired by God are not named specifically but are simply referred to as “all the words” God had spoken to him against “Israel, Judah and all the nations.” Since Jeremiah is not chronologically arranged, we can only speculate as to which chapters this specifically means but it does refer to many of the very (translated) words we have here before us today. At no other point in the Old Testament do we have such a clear description of the method used by God to bring us the words He has preserved for us throughout the ages. (2Peter 1:19-21)

    Jeremiah 36:1-8 The Word Recorded

    Once again the student should be reminded that the “word” of God in Jewish conception had an entity in and of itself. Once sent forth, it became a thing that could not be recalled, that was a fulfillment. The word was an occurrence and in 605 BC the word of God again happened to Jeremiah.

    Verses 2-3 are a private oracle to the prophet in which he is instructed to obtain a “book-scroll” in which he was to record all of his previous prophecies from his calling to the present crisis. We see here a deliberate effort on the part of God to preserve His words as spoken through a prophet. The purpose of the recordation at that time was to try to persuade the people to “turn,” the literal meaning of “repent,” of their sins so that he could forgive them.

    As was his character, Jeremiah complied with God’s instructions but rather than writing the words himself, he dictated them to Baruch, his trusted secretary..

    Jeremiah 36:9-10 The Word Read in the Presence of the People

    From a literary standpoint, this is where the story starts to get suspenseful. This the first of three readings of the scroll and the account is the briefest. Throughout the rest of the chapter, the focus remains on the fate of the scroll.

    Jeremiah had been banned from the Temple but Baruch had not. Evidently Jeremiah was still free to roam elsewhere but it was imperative that this message be taken to the Temple during a fast. We are not told why the fast was occurring. It appears that fasts could be called at any time of crisis in the time of Jeremiah. After the exile they became fixed events. The occasion for the fast may have been because of the national emergency or maybe because of a drought or some other natural calamity, but certainly the hope was that it would somehow religiously justify the people to God. It is not religious acts, however, that mark repentance but a lifestyle that reflects a commitment to God

    The Scriptures tell us that Baruch went to the Temple in the ninth month, that is, December. This would be the month according to historical record that the Babylonians would sack the city of Ashkelon and the Philistine plain. It was cold and fearful in Jerusalem.

    The first reading of the scroll took place in the chamber of Gemariah (GHEM uh RIGH uh) which was in the upper court of the Temple near the New Gate, the same area in which Jeremiah had been put on trial in chapter 26. Gemariah was from a prominent family and obviously friendly towards Jeremiah. His father, Shaphan, is likely the same man who read the Book of the Law to Josiah in 2Kings 22:10. The comparison and contrast to that reading will not end here.

    Jeremiah 36:11-19 The Word Read in the Presence of the Cabinet

    Gemariah’s son, Micaiah, reported what he had heard read by Baruch to the heads of state who were in session in the secretary’s chamber of the palace, just on the other side of the gates on the Temple Mount. This created a stir in their ranks. They sent Jehudi to go get Baruch for them and they had him sit down and read it to them as well. When they heard the scroll, they responded with fear. They cross-examined Baruch as to the origin of the scroll. They wanted to know that it was authentic and not just Baruch’s words. Once they were convinced, they showed their loyalty to God, His prophet and His word by hiding Jeremiah and Baruch before they made a report to the king. They knew that a report must be made but they knew that it would likely endanger the lives of the two men.

    Notice the fuller account of this reading. Where the first reading had inspired one man to report it we now see these men respond with fear caution and counsel. As the suspense grows, the reader is left wondering what the king will do.

    Jeremiah 36:20-26 The Word Read in the Presence of Jehoiakim

    It is significant that Jehoiakim was the son of Josiah. A generation before word was brought to the king about the recovery of the written word and it had begun a reformation, a revival of the Covenant. But this was a new king with a new attitude and the results would not be the same.

    After securing the scroll, the ministers of state sought audience with the king and upon receiving it told him of the scroll and its contents. The king called for the scroll and had Jehudi read it to him. It was still December and he sat before a fire in his “winterhouse,” likely a special room in the palace that would be smaller and easier to heat.

    As Jehudi would read three or four columns, Jehoiakim would slice them off with a scribe’s knife. This was a tool used with a reed pen in the creation of scrolls. Jehoiakim was using it to destroy one. As the scroll was read, Jehoiakim in his arrogance and contempt attempted to destroy it. He felt that he could cancel out the effectiveness of the words. He made a fatal mistake. He thought the pen was mightier that the pen knife and that the acts of man can negate the will of God. He failed to recognize the Hebrew concept of the word. The comparison to Josiah’s reaction in a similar situation should not be overlooked at this point. (2Kings 22:10-13) Where Josiah rent his clothes, Jehoiakim rent the scroll. His companions were also of an unrepentant heart and showed no concern at the king’s actions. Jehoiakim then sought to destroy the medium through which the scroll had come as well, but through divine providence, Jeremiah and Baruch remained uncaptured. At verse 36 the reader is left wondering, “Now what?”

    Jeremiah 36:27-32 The Word Rewritten

    One man had destroyed a scroll intended for the entire House of Judah. It was an inexcusable act for which that one man would suffer. But it is not possible to extinguish God’s word. In a second private oracle, Jeremiah receives instructions to reproduce the destroyed scroll. Once again he obediently follows his instructions and adds “many similar words.” The first scroll’s purpose was to persuade the people to repent. The second scroll was dictated for preservation. It would serve as a reminder to future generations. The scroll documenting Jeremiah’s prophecies was God’s word. It was powerful and active. It remains relevant and must be passed on.

    This story is full of lessons from a variety of perspectives. We learn that God is present among His people, seeking to save and redeem them through grace. He is a God who speaks to man in various ways. Jehoiakim heard God through a Godly father, Josiah. He also heard God through trouble, of which he had his share in 605 BC. Our response to trial can make us either better or bitter. God also spoke to Jehoiakim through the written word. Yet for all this, we also learn the lesson that man has the right and privelege to choose. God’s word can be accepted or rejected and the sovereign will of God does not override the free will of man. We can say yes or no to God and His word. Unfortunately for him, Jehoiakim chose to say no.

    Most importantly, however, we learn from this lesson that though God’s word can be rejected, even rent and burned, it can not be destroyed. It is still a living entity, an occurrence, a thing that happens to us. This is true of the written word, the spoken word and the Living Word. This a reality reflected throughout our history from the recreation of the Ten Commandments to the martyrdom of the modern missionary.

    Isaiah 40:8
    1Peter 1:23-25
    Psalm 119:89

    http://www.godandscience.org/apologetics/bibleorg.html
     
  7. Clint Kritzer

    Clint Kritzer
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