Coachlight Bible Study
An Ancient Revival
Jeremiah Chapter One
The Greatest Faith Builder Is The Word Of God
II Kings 22:10 And Shaphan the scribe shewed the king, saying, Hilkiah the priest hath delivered me a book. And Shaphan read it before the king.
II Kings 22:11 ¶ And it came to pass, when the king had heard the words of the book of the law, that he rent his clothes.
II Chronicles 34:30 And the king went up into the house of the LORD, and all the men of Judah, and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and the priests, and the Levites, and all the people, great and small: and he read in their ears all the words of the book of the covenant that was found in the house of the LORD.
II Chronicles 34:31 And the king stood in his place, and made a covenant before the LORD, to walk after the LORD, and to keep his commandments, and his testimonies, and his statutes, with all his heart, and with all his soul, to perform the words of the covenant which are written in this book.
II Chronicles 34:32 And he caused all that were present in Jerusalem and Benjamin to stand to it. And the inhabitants of Jerusalem did according to the covenant of God, the God of their fathers.
Jeremiah Chapter One – An Ancient Revival
In the final days of Judah, a unique prophet was needed to proclaim the Word of God. God not only choose Jeremiah for this job before Jeremiah was born, but caused a revival in the land to pave the way for Jeremiah. This revival demonstrates that it is the Word of God that sparks revival, and not the works of men. Judah desperately needed the Word of God, but was stiff necked and would not listen. We will find that Jeremiah was a broken hearted prophet with a broken hearted message.
We have learned that God had a special prophet in the Babylonian court named Daniel. Daniel proclaimed the Word of God to Nebuchadnezzar, King of the Babylonian Empire. We have also learned that God had His prophet in the exile camp south of Babylon named Ezekiel. These were both unique men for the situation, not because of who they were, but that they esteemed God’s Word above man’s conventional wisdom.
I don’t think any man would have chosen Jeremiah for this job. Jeremiah did not think he was able to carry out God’s plan, and wanted to resign. But God always knows what is best. Jeremiah carried out God’s dictates, not because of who Jeremiah was, but because of Who God is.
I believe that our land is in the same condition that Judah was during Jeremiah’s time. The people have rebelled against God and reverted to a form of Paganism. Like Judah, we do not need counseling or education, but what we need is to conform to the Word of God. If this happens we will experience a revival also.
The immediate background for the book of Jeremiah is found in II kings 22 and II Chronicles 34. Before we look at this, let’s look at some of the facts in Jeremiah’s life:
1.) He was born a priest in Anathoth (2 miles north of Jerusalem) (Jeremiah 1:1)
2.) He was chosen to be a prophet before he was born. (Jeremiah 1:5)
3.) He was called to be a prophet at a young age. (Jeremiah 1:6)
4.) He was commissioned by God to be a prophet (Jeremiah 1:9-10)
5.) He began prophesying during Josiah’s reign (II Chronicles 35:25)
6.) He was a mourner at Josiah’s funeral (II Chronicles 35:25)
7. He was forbidden to marry because of the troubled times in which he lived (Jeremiah 16:1-4)
8. He had no converts and was rejected by his own people. (Jeremiah 11:18-21; 12:6; 18:18)
9.) He was hated, beaten, and put into stocks. (Jeremiah 20:1-3)
10. He was charged for being a traitor and placed in prison. (Jeremiah 37:11-16)
11. His message broke his own heart. (Jeremiah 9:1)
12. He wanted to resign but God would not allow it. (Jeremiah 20:9)
13. He saw the destruction of Jerusalem and Babylonian captivity and was allowed by Nebuchadnezzar to stay in the land when most others were deported to Babylon. When the remnant wanted to flee to Egypt, he prophesied against it. (Jeremiah 42:15 – 43:3)
14. He was forced to go with the remnant to Egypt. (Jeremiah 43:6-7). Jeremiah died in Egypt.
I. Josiah Was Judah’s Last Good King
A. Josiah began to reign when he was 8 years old.
B. Josiah reigned for 31 years
C. Josiah and Jeremiah were a similar age and were friends
II. Jeremiah’s Ministry Begins With A Revival In Judah (II Kings 22 & II Chronicles 34)
A. Hilkiah, a priest, Finds the Word of God in the temple 622 BC (Jeremiah’s father)
B. Josiah, hears the Word of God and repents
C. Josiah then brings about reform because Pagan religions are a result of forsaking God.
III. Josiah repents after hearing the Word of God (II Kings 22:3)
A. He rids the temple with religious articles for Baal
B. Destroys all false religious articles outside of Jerusalem
C. A revival breaks out in Judah after God’s Word is found and Read.
IV. Josiah killed by Pharoh Necho in 609 BC (I Chronicles 35:25)
A. Jeremiah prophesies during 18 years of Josiah’s reign
B. Jeremiah attends Josiah’s funeral
V. Jeremiah Was Allowed To Stay In The Land By Nebuchadnezzar. (Jeremiah 39:11-12)
A. Jeremiah did not want to go with people who rejected the Word of God.
B. Many of the remnant wanted to flee to Egypt – Jeremiah prophesied against it
C. Jeremiah had to go with the remnant to Egypt, but continued giving God’s Word
VI. , The Rest Of The Story (Background History)
A. Jehoahaz, a son of Josia, Judah’s next king
1. Reigned for only 3 months
2. Was deported to Egypt
3. Pharoh Necho places his brother on the throne of Judah
B. Eliakim next king of Judah- Name changed to Jehoikim
1. Reigned for 11 years
2. Reigned as an Egyptian vassal until 605 BC
a. Egypt was defeated by Nebuchadnezzar at Carchemish
b. Nebuchadnezzar then went into Judah and deported Daniel and friends
3. Jehoiakim now rules as a Babylonian vassal
a. Jeremiah prophesied that Jehoiakim should not rebel agaist Nebuchadnezzar
b. Jehoiakim rejects God’s Word and rebelled against Babylon
c. Nebuchadnezzar returns to Judah and places Jehoichin as king
C. Jehoiachin is king of Judah – Also called Jeconiah or Coniah
1. Reigned for 3 months and 10 days
2. Replaced by Nebuchadnezzar - deported Jehoiachin
3. Curse of Jeconiah – No one in his line will be on throne. Christ was only in Jeconiah’s line through His legal father Joseph. In Mary’s line Jeconiah was not present. Christ will reign as King. (Jeremiah 22:18 – 30)
D. Zedekiah king of Judah
1. He was the father of the brother of Jehoiachin
2. He reigned for 11 years
3. He attempted an alliance with Egypt
4. He caused Nebuchadnezzar to destroy Jerusalem as God had said
5. His eyes were destroyed and he was carried to Babylon
VII. Three Stages Of Jeremiah’s Ministry
A. 627 – 605 BC – Jeremiah Prophesied While Judah Was Threatened By Assyria and Egypt
B. 605 – 586 BC – Jeremiah Prophesied While Judah Was Threatened And Besieged By Babylon
C. 586 – 580 BC – Prophesied In Jerusalem And Egypt Ater Judah Destroyed
VIII. Jeremiah Chapter One
Jeremiah 1:1 ¶ The words of Jeremiah the son of Hilkiah, of the priests that were in Anathoth in the land of Benjamin:
Hilkiah was Jeremiah’s father and the priest that found the Word of God hidden in the temple. When the Word of God was read to Josiah, it sparked a great revival in Judah. God’s Word and God’s Word alone is the reason behind every revival. Revivals are never caused by man’s action, but God’s action through His Word.
Jeremiah 1:2 To whom the word of the LORD came in the days of Josiah the son of Amon king of Judah, in the thirteenth year of his reign.
Josiah was eight years old when he began to reign in Judah and reigned for 31 years.. He was Judah’s last good king. Jeremiah began his ministry in Josiah’s 13th year when Josiah was 22 years old. Jeremiah was about 20 years old at this time and both Josiah and Jeremiah were friends. Jeremiah attended Josia’s funeral after Josiah was killed by Pharaoh Necho.
Jeremiah 1:3 It came also in the days of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah, unto the end of the eleventh year of Zedekiah the son of Josiah king of Judah, unto the carrying away of Jerusalem captive in the fifth month.
In this text we have the length of Jeremiah’s ministry. It began in the thirteenth year of Josiah’s reign as king of Judah, and continued through the captivity of Jerusalem (I Chronicles 35:25)
Jeremiah 1:4 ¶ Then the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
Jeremiah did not prophesy with man’s wisdom, but only prophesied God’s Word
Jeremiah 1:5 Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.
It is a good thing that Jeremiah’s mother did not practice abortion. This text and Psalm 139:15 demonstrate that upon conception a child is a living being. God knows the child before conception. Jeremiah was sanctified to be a prophet by God before he was conceived.
Jeremiah 1:6 Then said I, Ah, Lord GOD! behold, I cannot speak: for I am a child.
Jeremiah did not think he was capable of performing the job God wanted him to do. God is never looking for a person that is capable, but one that esteems God’s Word above anything else
Jeremiah 1:7 But the LORD said unto me, Say not, I am a child: for thou shalt go to all that I shall send thee, and whatsoever I command thee thou shalt speak.
Jeremiah 1:8 Be not afraid of their faces: for I am with thee to deliver thee, saith the LORD.
Jeremiah 1:9 Then the LORD put forth his hand, and touched my mouth. And the LORD said unto me, Behold, I have put my words in thy mouth.
Jeremiah 1:10 See, I have this day set thee over the nations and over the kingdoms, to root out, and to pull down, and to destroy, and to throw down, to build, and to plant.
God did not want Jeremiah to think Jeremiah was capable of doing what God wanted him to do. God did want Jeremiah to realize Who God is and what God’s Word is – The only Truth. God was letting Jeremiah know that God would send Jeremiah and put God’s very Words into Jeremiah’s mouth. This illustrates the fact that God completely inspires Scripture – Not just the ideas. This shows the importance of studying the proper translation of the Bible.
J. Vernon Mcgee uses the following illustration to demonstrate the importance of the exact Words of God:
There was a girl who wanted to be a singer. After she sang at her recital, the girl was very anxious to know what her teacher thought of her performance. She returned to her dressing room and talked to some friends there. She asked her friends, “What did my teacher think?” One of her more diplomatic friends responded, “He said that you sang heavenly.” The young singer replied, Did he really say those exact words? Her friend replied, “Not exactly, but that is what he meant.” The girl exclaimed, “But I want to know the exact words he used to describe my singing.”She was not as happy when she heard the wording. You see the teachers exact words was, “The singing was an unearthly noise.”
Can we see how a well meaning translator can use words that may seem to mean the same as the author meant, but actually may lead the reader to assume a very different meaning?
Jeremiah 1:11 ¶ Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Jeremiah, what seest thou? And I said, I see a rod of an almond tree.
Jeremiah 1:12 Then said the LORD unto me, Thou hast well seen: for I will hasten my word to perform it.
Here God uses a metaphor to assure Jeremiah that God will perform His Word. The almond tree was known as the “waker”. It was the first tree to bloom or “wake up”after a long winter. God was telling Jeremiah that God would give Jeremiah the exact words that will wake the stiff-necked people out of their ignorance.
Jeremiah 1:13 And the word of the LORD came unto me the second time, saying, What seest thou? And I said, I see a seething pot; and the face thereof is toward the north.
Jeremiah 1:14 Then the LORD said unto me, Out of the north an evil shall break forth upon all the inhabitants of the land.
Jeremiah 1:15 For, lo, I will call all the families of the kingdoms of the north, saith the LORD; and they shall come, and they shall set every one his throne at the entering of the gates of Jerusalem, and against all the walls thereof round about, and against all the cities of Judah.
Here God uses another metaphor to show from where God’s judgment will come. It is the metaphor of a boiling pot. At this time Egypt and Assyria were no longer a threat, but the boiling pot was to the north of the Fertile Cresent – Babylon.
Now returning to II Kings:
II Kings 22:16 Thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will bring evil upon this place, and upon the inhabitants thereof, even all the words of the book which the king of Judah hath read:
II Kings 22:17 Because they have forsaken me, and have burned incense unto other gods, that they might provoke me to anger with all the works of their hands; therefore my wrath shall be kindled against this place, and shall not be quenched.
Here God gives the reason that judgment is coming to Jerusalem. Judah had forsaken God and reverted to the Paganism of Egypt and Babylon. They had not esteemed God’s Word as the only Truth. Does this sound like our country today? Every king had his own political schemes and policies. Do we know what any of them are today? They were going to reduce the deficit, etc. None are remembered today. On the other hand, the book of Jeremiah is still around after thousand of years.
But the people that esteem God’s Word as the only Truth escape the judgment:
II Kings 22:18 But to the king of Judah which sent you to enquire of the LORD, thus shall ye say to him, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, As touching the words which thou hast heard;
II Kings 22:19 Because thine heart was tender, and thou hast humbled thyself before the LORD, when thou heardest what I spake against this place, and against the inhabitants thereof, that they should become a desolation and a curse, and hast rent thy clothes, and wept before me; I also have heard thee, saith the LORD.
II Kings 22:20 Behold therefore, I will gather thee unto thy fathers, and thou shalt be gathered into thy grave in peace; and thine eyes shall not see all the evil which I will bring upon this place. And they brought the king word again.