Jeremiah 21-25 Wicked Rulers and False Prophets

Jeremiah 21-25 Wicked Rulers and False Prophets


Psalm 86:1-17 Trusting the Character of God
Psalm 86:1 “Hear, Yahweh, and answer me, for I am poor and needy. 2 Preserve my soul, for I am godly. You, my God, save your servant who trusts in You. 3 Be merciful to me, Lord, for I call to You all day long. 4 Bring joy to the soul of Your servant, for to You, Lord, do I lift up my soul. 5 For You, Lord, are good, and ready to forgive; abundant in hesed/loyal love to all those who call on You. 6 Hear, Yahweh, my prayer. Listen to the voice of my petitions. 7 In the day of my trouble I will call on You, for You will answer me. 8 There is no one like You among the gods, Lord, nor any deeds like Your deeds. 9 All nations You have made will come and worship before You, Lord. They shall glorify Your name. 10 For You are great, and do wondrous things. You are God alone.
11 Teach me Your way, Yahweh. I will walk in Your truth. Make my heart undivided to fear Your name. 12 I will praise You, Lord my God, with my whole heart. I will glorify Your name forevermore. 13 For Your hesed/loyal love is great toward me. You have delivered my soul from the lowest Sheol.
14 God, the proud have risen up against me. A company of violent men have sought after my soul, and they don’t hold regard for You before them. 15 But You, Lord, are a merciful and gracious God, slow to anger, and abundant in hesed/loyal love and faithfulness. 16 Turn to me, and have mercy on me! Give Your strength to Your servant. Save the son of Your handmaid. 17 Show me a sign of Your goodness, that those who hate me may see it, and be shamed, because You, Yahweh, have helped me, and comforted me.”

Observations: 86:1-7 David has gotten himself in difficulty because of his sin again, and as a consequence, proud violent men are seeking to destroy him. He calls to God to answer and deliver him, on the basis of God's goodness, willingness to forgive and hesed/loyal covenantal love (not his own righteousness this time).
86:8-10 David further appeals to God's greatness, which the nations will one day acknowledge as they glorify His name by their obedient submission.
86:11-13 David asks God to teach him His way, and unite his heart to fear God, so he too will glorify God by his obedient submission and praise for God's deliverance.
86:14-17 David continues to press his plea, citing the character of God as revealed to Moses in Exodus 34, and asks God to give him a token of His goodness, so those who are persecuting David (and opposing God) will be shamed.

Application: When our circumstances change from good to bad, trust and call out to the great God whose goodness never changes, for mercy, forgiveness, instruction, strengthening, and blessing.

Prayer: God, You are the one and only desire of my heart; help me be loyal to You so that You may be glorified by my life and praise. Amen.
Proverbs 21:5-8 Planning To Profit
Pr 21:5 “The plans of the diligent surely lead to profit; and everyone who is hasty surely rushes to poverty. 6 Getting treasures by a lying tongue is a fleeting vapor for those who seek death. 7 The violence of the wicked will drive them away, because they refuse to do what is right. 8 The way of the guilty is devious, but the conduct of the innocent is upright."

Observations: 21:5 In both the physical and spiritual world there are two paths to profit. The upright/righteous plan their work and diligently work their plan, resulting in enjoying both physical and spiritual gain, with a clear conscience.
21:6-8 The alternative short-cut is to be lying, violent, wicked and devious, which results in short-term gain, but being cut-off from God's blessing. The guilty will always be punished, eventually and inevitably.
Application: The word for “diligent” is most frequently translated “gold”. It comes from a root that means “sharp instrument”, and by extension, “decisive”. The ability to decide and do until done (execute) is precious. Develop it.
Prayer: God, may I diligently and patiently do Your will, and not take sinful short-cuts. Amen.

Jeremiah 21-25 In these chapters Jeremiah delivers a series of messages against civil and religious leaders who don't do what God put them on earth to do: execute justice and righteousness, and teach truth so people can please God and be blessed. Jeremiah prophesies against the last four kings of Judah before the exile, and specifies that Judah will serve the kings of Babylon for seventy years, and then God will regather them, and judge Babylon. He also speaks of God's future blessing of Israel with the New Covenant (elaborated upon in chapter 31), and future judgment of all nations (we're still waiting for it). God tells His people not to listen to prophets who don't speak according to the truth of Scripture, which means you need to learn what's true and false yourself (DailyTruthbase can help).


Jeremiah 21 Stay and Die or Go and Live
21:1 The word which came to Jeremiah from Yahweh, when king Zedekiah sent to him Pashhur the son of Malchijah, and Zephaniah the son of Maaseiah, the priest, saying, 2 Please inquire of Yahweh for us; for Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon makes war against us: perhaps Yahweh will deal with us according to all his wondrous works, that he may go up from us. 3 Then Jeremiah said to them, you shall tell Zedekiah: 4 Thus says Yahweh, the God of Israel, Behold, I will nullify the weapons of war that are in your hands, with which you fight against the king of Babylon, and against the Chaldeans who besiege you, outside the walls; and I will bring them into the midst of this city. 5 I myself will fight against you with an outstretched hand and with a strong arm, even in anger, and in wrath, and in great indignation. 6 I will strike the inhabitants of this city, both man and animal: they shall die of a great pestilence. 7 Afterward, says Yahweh, I will deliver Zedekiah king of Judah, and his servants, and the people, even such as are left in this city from the pestilence, from the sword, and from the famine, into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of their enemies, and into the hand of those who seek their life: and he shall strike them with the edge of the sword; he shall not spare them, neither have pity, nor have mercy.
8 To this people you shall say, Thus says Yahweh: Behold, I set before you the way of life and the way of death. 9 He who remains in this city shall die by the sword, and by the famine, and by the pestilence; but he who goes out, and passes over to the Chaldeans who besiege you, he shall live, and his life shall be to him for a prey. 10 For I have set my face on this city for evil, and not for good, says Yahweh: it shall be given into the hand of the king of Babylon, and he shall burn it with fire. 11 Touching the house of the king of Judah, hear the word of Yahweh: 12 House of David, thus says Yahweh, Execute justice in the morning, and deliver him who is robbed out of the hand of the oppressor, lest my wrath go forth like fire, and burn so that none can quench it, because of the evil of your doings. 13 Behold, I am against you, O inhabitant of the valley, and of the rock of the plain, says Yahweh; you that say, who shall come down against us? or who shall enter into our habitations? 14 I will punish you according to the fruit of your doings, says Yahweh; and I will kindle a fire in her forest, and it shall devour all that is around her.

Observations: 21:1-7 Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon was knocking on Jerusalem's gates, and last king Zedekiah (not in chronological order) seeks help from Yahweh, by sending officials to Jeremiah, as his ancestor did Hezekiah with Isaiah. Pashhur (different guy from last chapter, but the name links the two), and others get a scathing response. God is fighting with Judah's enemies against her.
21:8-14 God will punish “the House of David” for the king failing to be just and righteous. God gives the inhabitants a choice, to stay and die or be taken captive and live.
Application: God is totally just to punish the disloyal according to the fruit of their doings.
Prayer: God, may I abide in You, and do Your will, and yield blessable fruit. Amen.

Jeremiah 22 Selfish and Stupid Rulers
22:1 Thus said Yahweh: Go down to the house of the king of Judah, and speak there this word, 2 Say, Hear the word of Yahweh, king of Judah, who sits on the throne of David, you, and your servants, and your people who enter in by these gates. 3 Thus says Yahweh: Execute justice and righteousness, and deliver him who is robbed out of the hand of the oppressor: and do no wrong, do no violence, to the foreigner, the fatherless, nor the widow; neither shed innocent blood in this place. 4 For if you do this thing indeed, then shall there enter in by the gates of this house kings sitting on the throne of David, riding in chariots and on horses, he, and his servants, and his people. 5 But if you will not hear these words, I swear by myself, says Yahweh, that this house shall become a desolation. 6 For thus says Yahweh concerning the house of the king of Judah: you are Gilead to me, the head of Lebanon. Yet surely I will make you a wilderness, cities which are not inhabited. 7 I will prepare destroyers against you, everyone with his weapons; and they shall cut down your choice cedars, and cast them into the fire. 8 Many nations shall pass by this city, and they shall say every man to his neighbor, Why has Yahweh done thus to this great city? 9 Then they shall answer, Because they forsook the covenant of Yahweh their God, and worshiped other gods, and served them.
10 Don’t weep for the dead, neither bemoan him; but weep bitterly for him who goes away; for he shall return no more, nor see his native country. 11 For thus says Yahweh touching Shallum the son of Josiah, king of Judah, who reigned instead of Josiah his father, and who went forth out of this place: he shall not return there any more. 12 But in the place where they have led him captive, there shall he die, and he shall see this land no more. 13 Woe to him who builds his house by unrighteousness, and his rooms by injustice; who uses his neighbor’s service without wages, and doesn’t give him his hire; 14 who says, I will build me a wide house and spacious rooms, and cuts him out windows; and it is ceiling with cedar, and painted with vermilion. 15 Shall you reign, because you strive to excel in cedar? Didn’t your father eat and drink, and do justice and righteousness? then it was well with him. 16 He judged the cause of the poor and needy; then it was well. Wasn’t this to know me? says Yahweh. 17 But your eyes and your heart are not but for your covetousness, and for shedding innocent blood, and for oppression, and for violence, to do it. 18 Therefore thus says Yahweh concerning Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah: they shall not lament for him, saying, Ah my brother! or, Ah sister! They shall not lament for him, saying Ah lord! or, Ah his glory! 19 He shall be buried with the burial of a donkey, drawn and cast forth beyond the gates of Jerusalem.
20 Go up to Lebanon, and cry; and lift up your voice in Bashan, and cry from Abarim; for all your lovers are destroyed. 21 I spoke to you in your prosperity; but you said, I will not hear. This has been your way from your youth, that you didn’t obey my voice. 22 The wind shall feed all your shepherds, and your lovers shall go into captivity: surely then you will be ashamed and confounded for all your wickedness. 23 Inhabitant of Lebanon, who makes your nest in the cedars, how greatly to be pitied you will be when pangs come on you, the pain as of a woman in travail! 24 As I live, says Yahweh, though Coniah (Jehoiachin) the son of Jehoiakim king of Judah were the signet on my right hand, yet would I pluck you there; 25 and I will give you into the hand of those who seek your life, and into the hand of them of whom you are afraid, even into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of the Chaldeans. 26 I will cast you out, and your mother who bore you, into another country, where you were not born; and there you will die. 27 But to the land to where their soul longs to return, there shall they not return. 28 Is this man Coniah (Jehoiachin) a despised broken vessel? is he a vessel in which none delights? why are they cast out, he and his seed, and are cast into the land which they don’t know? 29 O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of Yahweh. 30 Thus says Yahweh, Write you this man childless, a man who shall not prosper in his days; for no more shall a man of his seed prosper, sitting on the throne of David, and ruling in Judah.

Observations: 22:1-19 Jumping back a few years to the reign of Shallum (Jehoahaz-see chart and 2Chronicles 36), Jeremiah recounts the time God told him to go to the king and warn him to execute justice and righteousness (just like the last chapter). He warns of the devastation that would follow if they forsook the covenant of Yahweh. Shallum succeeded good king Josiah, and was very evil, reigning three months before God had Pharaoh Necho depose and deport him to Egypt where he died according to Jeremiah's prophecy in verse 12. His brother Jehoiakim ruled selfishly (2Kg 23:35; 24), building palaces while his people starved to pay the tribute to Babylon, whose vassal he was. He died unlamented, also as Jeremiah predicted.
22:19-30 Judah wouldn't obey when God graciously blessed her, so she would reap covenantal curses. Coniah (Jehoiachin), the son of Jehoiakim would reign next, but be deported to Babylon. This will be fulfilled in future chapters. The Davidic throne would have remained had Judah's kings done justly and righteously, but like the people, they didn't heed the warnings.
Application: Selfish, rebellious, and stupid leaders, who don't listen to God's word nor warnings, will, like their people, suffer loss.
Prayer: God, I pray for the leaders of our country, that they would turn back to You wholeheartedly. Remind them that You are God, and they are not. Amen.

Jeremiah 23 Righteous Branch and Rotten Prophets
23:1 Woe to the shepherds/leaders who destroy and scatter the sheep of my pasture! says Yahweh. 2 Therefore thus says Yahweh, the God of Israel, against the shepherds who feed my people: you have scattered my flock, and driven them away, and have not visited them; behold, I will visit on you the evil of your doings, says Yahweh. 3 I will gather the remnant of my flock out of all the countries where I have driven them, and will bring them again to their folds; and they shall be fruitful and multiply. 4 I will set up shepherds over them, who shall feed them; and they shall fear no more, nor be dismayed, neither shall any be lacking, says Yahweh. 5 Behold, the days come, says Yahweh, that I will raise to David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land. 6 In his days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely; and this is his name by which he shall be called: Yahweh our righteousness. 7 Therefore, behold, the days come, says Yahweh, that they shall no more say, As Yahweh lives, who brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt; 8 but, As Yahweh lives, who brought up and who led the seed of the house of Israel out of the north country, and from all the countries where I had driven them. They shall dwell in their own land.
9 Concerning the prophets. My heart within me is broken, all my bones shake; I am like a drunken man, and like a man whom wine has overcome, because of Yahweh, and because of his holy words. 10 For the land is full of adulterers; for because of swearing the land mourns; the pastures of the wilderness are dried up. Their course is evil, and their might is not right; 11 for both prophet and priest are profane; yes, in my house have I found their wickedness, says Yahweh. 12 Therefore their way shall be to them as slippery places in the darkness: they shall be driven on, and fall therein; for I will bring evil on them, even the year of their visitation, says Yahweh. 13 I have seen folly in the prophets of Samaria; they prophesied by Baal, and caused my people Israel to err. 14 In the prophets of Jerusalem also I have seen a horrible thing: they commit adultery, and walk in lies; and they strengthen the hands of evildoers, so that none does return from his wickedness: they are all of them become to me as Sodom, and its inhabitants as Gomorrah. 15 Therefore thus says Yahweh of Hosts concerning the prophets: Behold, I will feed them with wormwood, and make them drink the water of gall; for from the prophets of Jerusalem is ungodliness gone forth into all the land. 16 Thus says Yahweh of Hosts, Don’t listen to the words of the prophets who prophesy to you: they teach you vanity; they speak a vision of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of Yahweh. 17 They say continually to those who despise me, Yahweh has said, you shall have peace; and to everyone who walks in the stubbornness of his own heart they say, No evil shall come on you. 18 For who has stood in the council of Yahweh, that he should perceive and hear his word? who has marked my word, and heard it? 19 Behold, the storm of Yahweh, his wrath, has gone forth. Yes, a whirling storm. It shall burst on the head of the wicked. 20 The anger of Yahweh shall not return, until he has executed, and until he have performed the intents of his heart: in the latter days you shall understand it perfectly. 21 I sent not these prophets, yet they ran: I didn’t speak to them, yet they prophesied. 22 But if they had stood in my council, then had they caused my people to hear my words, and had turned them from their evil way, and from the evil of their doings. 23 Am I a God at hand, says Yahweh, and not a God afar off? 24 Can any hide himself in secret places so that I shall not see him? says Yahweh. Don’t I fill heaven and earth? says Yahweh. 25 I have heard what the prophets have said, who prophesy lies in my name, saying, I have dreamed, I have dreamed. 26 How long shall this be in the heart of the prophets who prophesy lies, even the prophets of the deceit of their own heart? 27 who think to cause my people to forget my name by their dreams which they tell every man to his neighbor, as their fathers forgot my name for Baal. 28 The prophet who has a dream, let him tell a dream; and he who has my word, let him speak my word faithfully. What is the straw to the wheat? says Yahweh. 29 Isn’t my word like fire? says Yahweh; and like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces? 30 Therefore, behold, I am against the prophets, says Yahweh, who steal my words everyone from his neighbor. 31 Behold, I am against the prophets, says Yahweh, who use their tongues, and say, he says. 32 Behold, I am against those who prophesy lying dreams, says Yahweh, and do tell them, and cause my people to err by their lies, and by their vain boasting: yet I didn’t send them, nor commanded them; neither do they profit this people at all, says Yahweh.
33 When this people, or the prophet, or a priest, shall ask you, saying, What is the burden of Yahweh? Then you shall tell them, What burden! I will cast you off, says Yahweh. 34 As for the prophet, and the priest, and the people, who shall say, The burden of Yahweh, I will even punish that man and his house. 35 You shall say everyone to his neighbor, and everyone to his brother, What has Yahweh answered? and, What has Yahweh spoken? 36 You shall mention the burden of Yahweh no more: for every man’s own word shall be his burden; for you have perverted the words of the living God, of Yahweh of Hosts our God. 37 You shall say to the prophet, What has Yahweh answered you? and, What has Yahweh spoken? 38 But if you say, The burden of Yahweh; therefore thus says Yahweh: Because you say this word, The burden of Yahweh, and I have sent to you, saying, you shall not say, The burden of Yahweh; 39 therefore, behold, I will utterly forget you, and I will cast you off, and the city that I gave to you and to your fathers, away from my presence: 40 and I will bring an everlasting reproach on you, and a perpetual shame, which shall not be forgotten.

Observations: 23:1-8 God will judge wicked leaders. Then the Messiah, the Righteous Branch will rule on David's throne, righteously and justly, and righteous shepherds/leaders will rule over God's regathered people
23:9-40 This scathing denouncement of false prophets (preachers and “Bible” teachers) is as applicable today as it was then. They lead the people away from God's truth, into judgment. Those who say there are no consequences to how God's people live their lives, are demonically inspired, not divine. Ditto for those who say there is no future for the nation Israel.
Application: So what are people to do, if God says don't trust your prophets and preachers? DailyTruthbase to the rescue! Put the time and effort into learning and knowing God's word; obey it; verify that any conclusions drawn are directly from the text; and then faithfully proclaim it to others. There will be opposition (remember Jeremiah?), but divine consolation. Godspeed.
Prayer: God, may learning, living, and loving others with Your truth, consume any paltry temporal pursuits, so others may live in truth and freedom, and You be glorified. Silence and shame the proud and false teachers. Amen.

Jeremiah 24 Good and Bad Figs
24:1 Yahweh showed me, and behold, two baskets of figs set before the temple of Yahweh, after that Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon had carried away captive Jeconiah the son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, and the princes of Judah, with the craftsmen and smiths, from Jerusalem, and had brought them to Babylon. 2 One basket had very good figs, like the figs that are first-ripe; and the other basket had very bad figs, which could not be eaten, they were so bad. 3 Then Yahweh said to me, What do you see, Jeremiah? I said, Figs; the good figs, very good; and the bad, very bad, that can’t be eaten, they are so bad. 4 The word of Yahweh came to me, saying, 5 Thus says Yahweh, the God of Israel: Like these good figs, so will I regard the captives of Judah, whom I have sent out of this place into the land of the Chaldeans, for good. 6 For I will set my eyes on them for good, and I will bring them again to this land: and I will build them, and not pull them down; and I will plant them, and not pluck them up. 7 I will give them a heart to know me, that I am Yahweh: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God; for they shall return to me with their whole heart. 8 As the bad figs, which can’t be eaten, they are so bad, surely thus says Yahweh, So will I give up Zedekiah the king of Judah, and his princes, and the residue of Jerusalem, who remain in this land, and those who dwell in the land of Egypt, 9 I will even give them up to be tossed back and forth among all the kingdoms of the earth for evil; to be a reproach and a proverb, a taunt and a curse, in all places where I shall drive them. 10 I will send the sword, the famine, and the pestilence, among them, until they be consumed from off the land that I gave to them and to their fathers.

Observations: 24:1-10 The good figs are those who would choose to go to Babylon as God directed. The bad are those who wouldn't go, and would be destroyed. God will bring His people back to never again be uprooted. This hasn't happened yet, for the destruction of the Temple in AD 70, invalidates any claim to fulfillment. It will also be necessary for the Messiah to return and reign in justice and righteousness (this also hasn't happened). The new covenant (coming up in Jeremiah 31) with regathered Israel also hasn't happened, for Israel has not sought God wholeheartedly. Beware of false teachers who say otherwise.
Application: Those who obey God wholeheartedly will enjoy the pleasure of His company.
Prayer: Lord, You are my God, and I am your person. I will seek to know You wholeheartedly, and encourage others to do the same. Amen.

Jeremiah 25 Universal Judgment
25:1 The word that came to Jeremiah concerning all the people of Judah, in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah (the same was the first year of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon), 2 which Jeremiah the prophet spoke to all the people of Judah, and to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying: 3 From the thirteenth year of Josiah the son of Amon, king of Judah, even to this day, these twenty-three years, the word of Yahweh has come to me, and I have spoken to you, rising up early and speaking; but you have not listened. 4 Yahweh has sent to you all his servants the prophets, rising up early and sending them (but you have not listened, nor inclined your ear to hear) 5 saying, Return now everyone from his evil way, and from the evil of your doings, and dwell in the land that Yahweh has given to you and to your fathers, from of old and even forevermore; 6 and don’t go after other gods to serve them or worship them, and don’t provoke me to anger with the work of your hands; and I will do you no harm. 7 Yet you have not listened to me, says Yahweh; that you may provoke me to anger with the work of your hands to your own hurt.
8 Therefore thus says Yahweh of Hosts: Because you have not heard my words, 9 behold, I will send and take all the families of the north, says Yahweh, and I will send to Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, my servant, and will bring them against this land, and against its inhabitants, and against all these nations around; and I will utterly destroy them, and make them an astonishment, and a hissing, and perpetual desolations. 10 Moreover I will take from them the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride, the sound of the millstones, and the light of the lamp. 11 This whole land shall be a desolation, and an astonishment; and these nations shall serve the king of Babylon seventy years. 12 It shall happen, when seventy years are accomplished, that I will punish the king of Babylon, and that nation, says Yahweh, for their iniquity, and the land of the Chaldeans; and I will make it desolate forever. 13 I will bring on that land all my words which I have pronounced against it, even all that is written in this book, which Jeremiah has prophesied against all the nations. 14 For many nations and great kings shall make bondservants of them, even of them; and I will recompense them according to their deeds, and according to the work of their hands.
15 For thus says Yahweh, the God of Israel, to me: take this cup of the wine of wrath at my hand, and cause all the nations, to whom I send you, to drink it. 16 They shall drink, and reel back and forth, and be mad, because of the sword that I will send among them. 17 Then took I the cup at Yahweh’s hand, and made all the nations to drink, to whom Yahweh had sent me: 18 Jerusalem, and the cities of Judah, and its kings, and its princes, to make them a desolation, an astonishment, a hissing, and a curse, as it is this day; 19 Pharaoh king of Egypt, and his servants, and his princes, and all his people; 20 and all the mixed people, and all the kings of the land of the Uz, and all the kings of the Philistines, and Ashkelon, and Gaza, and Ekron, and the remnant of Ashdod; 21 Edom, and Moab, and the children of Ammon; 22 and all the kings of Tyre, and all the kings of Sidon, and the kings of the isle which is beyond the sea; 23 Dedan, and Tema, and Buz, and all who have the corners of their beard cut off; 24 and all the kings of Arabia, and all the kings of the mixed people who dwell in the wilderness; 25 and all the kings of Zimri, and all the kings of Elam, and all the kings of the Medes; 26 and all the kings of the north, far and near, one with another; and all the kingdoms of the world, which are on the surface of the earth: and the king of Sheshach shall drink after them. 27 You shall tell them, Thus says Yahweh of Hosts, the God of Israel: Drink, and be drunk, vomit, fall, and rise no more, because of the sword which I will send among you. 28 It shall be, if they refuse to take the cup at your hand to drink, then you shall tell them, Thus says Yahweh of Hosts: you shall surely drink. 29 For, behold, I begin to work evil at the city which is called by my name; and should you be utterly unpunished? You shall not be unpunished; for I will call for a sword on all the inhabitants of the earth, says Yahweh of Hosts.
30 Therefore prophesy you against them all these words, and tell them, Yahweh will roar from on high, and utter his voice from his holy habitation; he will mightily roar against his fold; he will give a shout, as those who tread grapes, against all the inhabitants of the earth. 31 A noise shall come even to the end of the earth; for Yahweh has a controversy with the nations; he will enter into judgment with all flesh: as for the wicked, he will give them to the sword, says Yahweh. 32 Thus says Yahweh of Hosts, Behold, evil shall go forth from nation to nation, and a great storm shall be raised up from the uttermost parts of the earth. 33 The slain of Yahweh shall be at that day from one end of the earth even to the other end of the earth: they shall not be lamented, neither gathered, nor buried; they shall be dung on the surface of the ground. 34 Wail, you shepherds, and cry; and wallow in dust, you principal of the flock; for the days of your slaughter and of your dispersions are fully come, and you shall fall like a goodly vessel. 35 The shepherds shall have no way to flee, nor the principal of the flock to escape. 36 A voice of the cry of the shepherds, and the wailing of the principal of the flock! for Yahweh lays waste their pasture. 37 The peaceable folds are brought to silence because of the fierce anger of Yahweh. 38 He has left his covert, as the lion; for their land has become an astonishment because of the fierceness of the oppression, and because of his fierce anger.

Observations: 25:1-7 For 23 years Jeremiah faithfully proclaimed what God told him to say, and no one listened, to him, nor any other true prophet. People didn't want to repent from their evil because they liked the sensual pagan worship, and being told that they'd be ok by the false prophets. However in doing so, they angered Yahweh to their hurt and pain.
25:8-38 For seventy years Judah will serve the king of Babylon, (giving the land the Sabbath rest it missed for the past 490 years or so). God will begin His judgment at Jerusalem and it will eventually encompass all nations, including the ones He uses to judge. After the exiles return, God will specifically judge Babylon (the Medes and the Persians did this), and then all nations (still future). The earth will be littered with dead bodies, from one end to the other when God pours out His wrath. This is not an historic, localized judgment of Jerusalem, but a future world-wide catastrophe.
Application: Even if people don't respond and repent, God's servants must obediently proclaim His word and warn of the coming wine of wrath.
Prayer: God, may I be among those who sip celebratory champagne at Your banquet table, rather than decompose on the earth after draining the dregs of Your wine of wrath. Amen.


Digging Deeper:

God in a nutshell: When rulers reject God's demand for righteous and just leadership, the prophets tell their lies and dreams contrary to Scripture, and the people just want to do whatever gives them temporary pleasure, then God gets angry. He still graciously issues calls to repentance, and offers to spare them judgment. But when He sees that we want nothing to do with Him, and refuse to listen, then irreversible judgment follows. He not only judges Judah, but the whole world.

Us in a nutshell: Although bad leaders and false prophets lead people astray, we still have the responsibility to understand and do what God has said. Ignorance of Him is no excuse. His communication is understandable, otherwise He'd be unjust in judging us. (What about “hear and loyally obey, or else” do you not understand?) Even while experiencing painful judgment, we can mitigate the consequences by obeying. Civil and religious leaders are singled out for destruction because of the multiplied impact of their injustice and unrighteousness. Faithful servants can take comfort in being God's people, and knowing He keeps all His promises.

Where to Go for More:
Truthbase.net

Jeremiah complete text

Jeremiah 21
21:1 The word which came to Jeremiah from Yahweh, when king Zedekiah sent to him Pashhur the son of Malchijah, and Zephaniah the son of Maaseiah, the priest, saying, 2 Please inquire of Yahweh for us; for Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon makes war against us: perhaps Yahweh will deal with us according to all his wondrous works, that he may go up from us. 3 Then Jeremiah said to them, you shall tell Zedekiah: 4 Thus says Yahweh, the 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 against the Chaldeans who besiege you, without the walls; and I will gather them into the midst of this city. 5 I myself will fight against you with an outstretched hand and with a strong arm, even in anger, and in wrath, and in great indignation. 6 I will strike the inhabitants of this city, both man and animal: they shall die of a great pestilence. 7 Afterward, says Yahweh, I will deliver Zedekiah king of Judah, and his servants, and the people, even such as are left in this city from the pestilence, from the sword, and from the famine, into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of their enemies, and into the hand of those who seek their life: and he shall strike them with the edge of the sword; he shall not spare them, neither have pity, nor have mercy.
8 To this people you shall say, Thus says Yahweh: Behold, I set before you the way of life and the way of death. 9 He who remains in this city shall die by the sword, and by the famine, and by the pestilence; but he who goes out, and passes over to the Chaldeans who besiege you, he shall live, and his life shall be to him for a prey. 10 For I have set my face on this city for evil, and not for good, says Yahweh: it shall be given into the hand of the king of Babylon, and he shall burn it with fire. 11 Touching the house of the king of Judah, hear the word of Yahweh: 12 House of David, thus says Yahweh, Execute justice in the morning, and deliver him who is robbed out of the hand of the oppressor, lest my wrath go forth like fire, and burn so that none can quench it, because of the evil of your doings. 13 Behold, I am against you, O inhabitant of the valley, and of the rock of the plain, says Yahweh; you that say, who shall come down against us? or who shall enter into our habitations? 14 I will punish you according to the fruit of your doings, says Yahweh; and I will kindle a fire in her forest, and it shall devour all that is around her.

Jeremiah 22
22:1 Thus said Yahweh: Go down to the house of the king of Judah, and speak there this word, 2 Say, Hear the word of Yahweh, king of Judah, who sits on the throne of David, you, and your servants, and your people who enter in by these gates. 3 Thus says Yahweh: Execute justice and righteousness, and deliver him who is robbed out of the hand of the oppressor: and do no wrong, do no violence, to the foreigner, the fatherless, nor the widow; neither shed innocent blood in this place. 4 For if you do this thing indeed, then shall there enter in by the gates of this house kings sitting on the throne of David, riding in chariots and on horses, he, and his servants, and his people. 5 But if you will not hear these words, I swear by myself, says Yahweh, that this house shall become a desolation. 6 For thus says Yahweh concerning the house of the king of Judah: you are Gilead to me, the head of Lebanon. Yet surely I will make you a wilderness, cities which are not inhabited. 7 I will prepare destroyers against you, everyone with his weapons; and they shall cut down your choice cedars, and cast them into the fire. 8 Many nations shall pass by this city, and they shall say every man to his neighbour, Why has Yahweh done thus to this great city? 9 Then they shall answer, Because they forsook the covenant of Yahweh their God, and worshipped other gods, and served them.
10 Don’t weep for the dead, neither bemoan him; but weep bitterly for him who goes away; for he shall return no more, nor see his native country. 11 For thus says Yahweh touching Shallum the son of Josiah, king of Judah, who reigned instead of Josiah his father, and who went forth out of this place: he shall not return there any more. 12 But in the place where they have led him captive, there shall he die, and he shall see this land no more. 13 Woe to him who builds his house by unrighteousness, and his rooms by injustice; who uses his neighbour’s service without wages, and doesn’t give him his hire; 14 who says, I will build me a wide house and spacious rooms, and cuts him out windows; and it is ceiling with cedar, and painted with vermilion. 15 Shall you reign, because you strive to excel in cedar? Didn’t your father eat and drink, and do justice and righteousness? then it was well with him. 16 He judged the cause of the poor and needy; then it was well. Wasn’t this to know me? says Yahweh. 17 But your eyes and your heart are not but for your covetousness, and for shedding innocent blood, and for oppression, and for violence, to do it. 18 Therefore thus says Yahweh concerning Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah: they shall not lament for him, saying, Ah my brother! or, Ah sister! They shall not lament for him, saying Ah lord! or, Ah his glory! 19 He shall be buried with the burial of a donkey, drawn and cast forth beyond the gates of Jerusalem.
20 Go up to Lebanon, and cry; and lift up your voice in Bashan, and cry from Abarim; for all your lovers are destroyed. 21 I spoke to you in your prosperity; but you said, I will not hear. This has been your way from your youth, that you didn’t obey my voice. 22 The wind shall feed all your shepherds, and your lovers shall go into captivity: surely then you will be ashamed and confounded for all your wickedness. 23 Inhabitant of Lebanon, who makes your nest in the cedars, how greatly to be pitied you will be when pangs come on you, the pain as of a woman in travail! 24 As I live, says Yahweh, though Coniah the son of Jehoiakim king of Judah were the signet on my right hand, yet would I pluck you there; 25 and I will give you into the hand of those who seek your life, and into the hand of them of whom you are afraid, even into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of the Chaldeans. 26 I will cast you out, and your mother who bore you, into another country, where you were not born; and there you will die. 27 But to the land whereunto their soul longs to return, there shall they not return. 28 Is this man Coniah a despised broken vessel? is he a vessel in which none delights? why are they cast out, he and his seed, and are cast into the land which they don’t know? 29 O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of Yahweh. 30 Thus says Yahweh, Write you this man childless, a man who shall not prosper in his days; for no more shall a man of his seed prosper, sitting on the throne of David, and ruling in Judah.

Jeremiah 23
23:1 Woe to the shepherds who destroy and scatter the sheep of my pasture! says Yahweh. 2 Therefore thus says Yahweh, the God of Israel, against the shepherds who feed my people: you have scattered my flock, and driven them away, and have not visited them; behold, I will visit on you the evil of your doings, says Yahweh. 3 I will gather the remnant of my flock out of all the countries where I have driven them, and will bring them again to their folds; and they shall be fruitful and multiply. 4 I will set up shepherds over them, who shall feed them; and they shall fear no more, nor be dismayed, neither shall any be lacking, says Yahweh. 5 Behold, the days come, says Yahweh, that I will raise to David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land. 6 In his days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely; and this is his name by which he shall be called: Yahweh our righteousness. 7 Therefore, behold, the days come, says Yahweh, that they shall no more say, As Yahweh lives, who brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt; 8 but, As Yahweh lives, who brought up and who led the seed of the house of Israel out of the north country, and from all the countries where I had driven them. They shall dwell in their own land.
9 Concerning the prophets. My heart within me is broken, all my bones shake; I am like a drunken man, and like a man whom wine has overcome, because of Yahweh, and because of his holy words. 10 For the land is full of adulterers; for because of swearing the land mourns; the pastures of the wilderness are dried up. Their course is evil, and their might is not right; 11 for both prophet and priest are profane; yes, in my house have I found their wickedness, says Yahweh. 12 Therefore their way shall be to them as slippery places in the darkness: they shall be driven on, and fall therein; for I will bring evil on them, even the year of their visitation, says Yahweh. 13 I have seen folly in the prophets of Samaria; they prophesied by Baal, and caused my people Israel to err. 14 In the prophets of Jerusalem also I have seen a horrible thing: they commit adultery, and walk in lies; and they strengthen the hands of evildoers, so that none does return from his wickedness: they are all of them become to me as Sodom, and its inhabitants as Gomorrah. 15 Therefore thus says Yahweh of Hosts concerning the prophets: Behold, I will feed them with wormwood, and make them drink the water of gall; for from the prophets of Jerusalem is ungodliness gone forth into all the land. 16 Thus says Yahweh of Hosts, Don’t listen to the words of the prophets who prophesy to you: they teach you vanity; they speak a vision of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of Yahweh. 17 They say continually to those who despise me, Yahweh has said, you shall have peace; and to everyone who walks in the stubbornness of his own heart they say, No evil shall come on you. 18 For who has stood in the council of Yahweh, that he should perceive and hear his word? who has marked my word, and heard it? 19 Behold, the storm of Yahweh, his wrath, has gone forth. Yes, a whirling storm. It shall burst on the head of the wicked. 20 The anger of Yahweh shall not return, until he has executed, and until he have performed the intents of his heart: in the latter days you shall understand it perfectly. 21 I sent not these prophets, yet they ran: I didn’t speak to them, yet they prophesied. 22 But if they had stood in my council, then had they caused my people to hear my words, and had turned them from their evil way, and from the evil of their doings. 23 Am I a God at hand, says Yahweh, and not a God afar off? 24 Can any hide himself in secret places so that I shall not see him? says Yahweh. Don’t I fill heaven and earth? says Yahweh. 25 I have heard what the prophets have said, who prophesy lies in my name, saying, I have dreamed, I have dreamed. 26 How long shall this be in the heart of the prophets who prophesy lies, even the prophets of the deceit of their own heart? 27 who think to cause my people to forget my name by their dreams which they tell every man to his neighbour, as their fathers forgot my name for Baal. 28 The prophet who has a dream, let him tell a dream; and he who has my word, let him speak my word faithfully. What is the straw to the wheat? says Yahweh. 29 Isn’t my word like fire? says Yahweh; and like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces? 30 Therefore, behold, I am against the prophets, says Yahweh, who steal my words everyone from his neighbour. 31 Behold, I am against the prophets, says Yahweh, who use their tongues, and say, he says. 32 Behold, I am against those who prophesy lying dreams, says Yahweh, and do tell them, and cause my people to err by their lies, and by their vain boasting: yet I didn’t send them, nor commanded them; neither do they profit this people at all, says Yahweh.
33 When this people, or the prophet, or a priest, shall ask you, saying, What is the burden of Yahweh? Then you shall tell them, What burden! I will cast you off, says Yahweh. 34 As for the prophet, and the priest, and the people, who shall say, The burden of Yahweh, I will even punish that man and his house. 35 You shall say everyone to his neighbour, and everyone to his brother, What has Yahweh answered? and, What has Yahweh spoken? 36 You shall mention the burden of Yahweh no more: for every man’s own word shall be his burden; for you have perverted the words of the living God, of Yahweh of Hosts our God. 37 You shall say to the prophet, What has Yahweh answered you? and, What has Yahweh spoken? 38 But if you say, The burden of Yahweh; therefore thus says Yahweh: Because you say this word, The burden of Yahweh, and I have sent to you, saying, you shall not say, The burden of Yahweh; 39 therefore, behold, I will utterly forget you, and I will cast you off, and the city that I gave to you and to your fathers, away from my presence: 40 and I will bring an everlasting reproach on you, and a perpetual shame, which shall not be forgotten.

Jeremiah 24
24:1 Yahweh showed me, and behold, two baskets of figs set before the temple of Yahweh, after that Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon had carried away captive Jeconiah the son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, and the princes of Judah, with the craftsmen and smiths, from Jerusalem, and had brought them to Babylon. 2 One basket had very good figs, like the figs that are first-ripe; and the other basket had very bad figs, which could not be eaten, they were so bad. 3 Then Yahweh said to me, What do you see, Jeremiah? I said, Figs; the good figs, very good; and the bad, very bad, that can’t be eaten, they are so bad. 4 The word of Yahweh came to me, saying, 5 Thus says Yahweh, the God of Israel: Like these good figs, so will I regard the captives of Judah, whom I have sent out of this place into the land of the Chaldeans, for good. 6 For I will set my eyes on them for good, and I will bring them again to this land: and I will build them, and not pull them down; and I will plant them, and not pluck them up. 7 I will give them a heart to know me, that I am Yahweh: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God; for they shall return to me with their whole heart. 8 As the bad figs, which can’t be eaten, they are so bad, surely thus says Yahweh, So will I give up Zedekiah the king of Judah, and his princes, and the residue of Jerusalem, who remain in this land, and those who dwell in the land of Egypt, 9 I will even give them up to be tossed back and forth among all the kingdoms of the earth for evil; to be a reproach and a proverb, a taunt and a curse, in all places where I shall drive them. 10 I will send the sword, the famine, and the pestilence, among them, until they be consumed from off the land that I gave to them and to their fathers.

Jeremiah 25
25:1 The word that came to Jeremiah concerning all the people of Judah, in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah (the same was the first year of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon), 2 which Jeremiah the prophet spoke to all the people of Judah, and to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying: 3 From the thirteenth year of Josiah the son of Amon, king of Judah, even to this day, these twenty-three years, the word of Yahweh has come to me, and I have spoken to you, rising up early and speaking; but you have not listened. 4 Yahweh has sent to you all his servants the prophets, rising up early and sending them (but you have not listened, nor inclined your ear to hear) 5 saying, Return now everyone from his evil way, and from the evil of your doings, and dwell in the land that Yahweh has given to you and to your fathers, from of old and even forevermore; 6 and don’t go after other gods to serve them or worship them, and don’t provoke me to anger with the work of your hands; and I will do you no harm. 7 Yet you have not listened to me, says Yahweh; that you may provoke me to anger with the work of your hands to your own hurt.
8 Therefore thus says Yahweh of Hosts: Because you have not heard my words, 9 behold, I will send and take all the families of the north, says Yahweh, and I will send to Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, my servant, and will bring them against this land, and against its inhabitants, and against all these nations around; and I will utterly destroy them, and make them an astonishment, and a hissing, and perpetual desolations. 10 Moreover I will take from them the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride, the sound of the millstones, and the light of the lamp. 11 This whole land shall be a desolation, and an astonishment; and these nations shall serve the king of Babylon seventy years. 12 It shall happen, when seventy years are accomplished, that I will punish the king of Babylon, and that nation, says Yahweh, for their iniquity, and the land of the Chaldeans; and I will make it desolate forever. 13 I will bring on that land all my words which I have pronounced against it, even all that is written in this book, which Jeremiah has prophesied against all the nations. 14 For many nations and great kings shall make bondservants of them, even of them; and I will recompense them according to their deeds, and according to the work of their hands.
15 For thus says Yahweh, the God of Israel, to me: take this cup of the wine of wrath at my hand, and cause all the nations, to whom I send you, to drink it. 16 They shall drink, and reel back and forth, and be mad, because of the sword that I will send among them. 17 Then took I the cup at Yahweh’s hand, and made all the nations to drink, to whom Yahweh had sent me: 18 Jerusalem, and the cities of Judah, and its kings, and its princes, to make them a desolation, an astonishment, a hissing, and a curse, as it is this day; 19 Pharaoh king of Egypt, and his servants, and his princes, and all his people; 20 and all the mixed people, and all the kings of the land of the Uz, and all the kings of the Philistines, and Ashkelon, and Gaza, and Ekron, and the remnant of Ashdod; 21 Edom, and Moab, and the children of Ammon; 22 and all the kings of Tyre, and all the kings of Sidon, and the kings of the isle which is beyond the sea; 23 Dedan, and Tema, and Buz, and all who have the corners of their beard cut off; 24 and all the kings of Arabia, and all the kings of the mixed people who dwell in the wilderness; 25 and all the kings of Zimri, and all the kings of Elam, and all the kings of the Medes; 26 and all the kings of the north, far and near, one with another; and all the kingdoms of the world, which are on the surface of the earth: and the king of Sheshach shall drink after them. 27 You shall tell them, Thus says Yahweh of Hosts, the God of Israel: Drink, and be drunk, vomit, fall, and rise no more, because of the sword which I will send among you. 28 It shall be, if they refuse to take the cup at your hand to drink, then you shall tell them, Thus says Yahweh of Hosts: you shall surely drink. 29 For, behold, I begin to work evil at the city which is called by my name; and should you be utterly unpunished? You shall not be unpunished; for I will call for a sword on all the inhabitants of the earth, says Yahweh of Hosts.
30 Therefore prophesy you against them all these words, and tell them, Yahweh will roar from on high, and utter his voice from his holy habitation; he will mightily roar against his fold; he will give a shout, as those who tread grapes, against all the inhabitants of the earth. 31 A noise shall come even to the end of the earth; for Yahweh has a controversy with the nations; he will enter into judgment with all flesh: as for the wicked, he will give them to the sword, says Yahweh. 32 Thus says Yahweh of Hosts, Behold, evil shall go forth from nation to nation, and a great storm shall be raised up from the uttermost parts of the earth. 33 The slain of Yahweh shall be at that day from one end of the earth even to the other end of the earth: they shall not be lamented, neither gathered, nor buried; they shall be dung on the surface of the ground. 34 Wail, you shepherds, and cry; and wallow in dust, you principal of the flock; for the days of your slaughter and of your dispersions are fully come, and you shall fall like a goodly vessel. 35 The shepherds shall have no way to flee, nor the principal of the flock to escape. 36 A voice of the cry of the shepherds, and the wailing of the principal of the flock! for Yahweh lays waste their pasture. 37 The peaceable folds are brought to silence because of the fierce anger of Yahweh. 38 He has left his covert, as the lion; for their land has become an astonishment because of the fierceness of the oppression, and because of his fierce anger.