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Bible Commentaries
Jeremiah 42

Bell's Commentary on the BibleBell's Commentary

Verses 1-22

  1. Intro:
    1. Last week - The remnant which was left in the land is on their way to Egypt stopped just out of Bethlehem in Chimham & decided to ask Jeremiah what God thought of their going south?
      1. They are ready to pray!
      2. A mother was teaching her three-year-old daughter The Lord’s Prayer. For several evenings at bedtime, she repeated it after her mother. One night she said she was ready to solo. The mother listened with pride, as she carefully enunciated each word right up to the end. “And lead us not into temptation”, she prayed, “but deliver us some e-mail, Amen.” [ These guys are ready to pray!]
  2. PLEASE PRAY FOR US! (1-6)
    1. At 1st reading there seems not to be a better plea for guidance then this! {It is unanimous(1); it is unreserved(5,6)}
    2. Yet we’ll see it is an insincere request! – It sounded sincere & spiritual yet there was deception in their hearts(20).
      1. Pray for us Jerry! We will obey! How pious their words sounded!
        1. Mt.15:8 “These people draw near to Me with their mouth, And honor Me with their lips, But their heart is far from Me.”
        2. Q: Have you ever tried to fool one of God’s servants w/pious prayers?
        3. Q: Doesn’t this happen every time we just jump in & pray even when our heart isn’t ready? {Greg Ghironzi – “pray for our travel”…wait a minute.}
      2. The children of Israel had made up their minds to go to Egypt. They hoped God would ratify it through Jeremiah.
        1. Q: Do you go from counselor to counselor asking for advice, hopping you’ll find someone to agree w/you? [I knew someone who did this, till they found someone to agree with them. But the problem was they came back & wanted their pastor(me) to agree with this other(opposite) counsel]
        2. Q: What’s your counsel? “If a spouse cheats on his/her spouse & they confess it as sin to the Lord & the Lord forgives them…do they need to say anything to their spouse?”
          1. They say à “I know if I tell them they’ll leave & split up our family!” – “I’m forgiven now aren’t I?” – “Against you & you only have I sinned” in Ps.51:4.
          2. What say you? & why? {No more condemnation but there is Consequence! Larry H.} – "Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you,…”
      3. Is “your” God a minute flaw, or a deeper realization then they know?
        1. They do clean it up in vs.6 but???
  3. BLESSED - IF YOU STAY! (7-12)
    1. ​​​​​​​The Lord kept them waiting for 10 days. Why?
      1. “A 10 day delay, to see if they would obey”???
        1. He gives them time to search their hearts & confess their sin???
      2. Faith & patience go together Heb.6:12 “but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.
        1. William Law said Solemn prayers & rapturous devotions, are but repeated hypocrisies unless the heart & mind be conformable to them.”
        2. If God has you in a holding pattern there is a reason! (Porte Prince)
    2. We read here of Jeremiah waiting patiently for a word from the Lord, rather than producing an immediate & obvious response!
      1. The Lord spoke to me very loudly on this one!
        1. Often I think, & I have said, “why pray when I know His answer” - I even quote Joshua being told to get up (Joshua 7:10 “So the LORD said to Joshua: "Get up! Why do you lie thus on your face?”) Jeremiah knew his answer, all along, No Egypt, stay put!
        2. I might know AN answer, but not nec. THE answer!, listen, & wait patiently.
    3. Vs.9-12 – Stay in the land & I’ll build you & plant you(10)!
      1. Remember 1:10
      2. (11) Here is what to remember when we are scared in a situation – even of a big bad mean king that huffs & puffs!…“God was in charge, not the king of Babylon!”
        1. Remember God is in charge not your boss, spouse, teacher, or principle!
        2. Read Prov.3:25,26
      3. (12) Again here is the true order of things – “I will grant you Mercy, that he(Neb) may have mercy on you.”
        1. A little girl asked her dad, "how big is God." Her father thought for a moment and answered, "Honey, he is always just a little bigger than you need."
  4. CURSED - IF YOU GO! (13-17)
    1. ​​​​​​​Ever since Abraham’s lapse of faith in going to Egypt the Jews had a tendency to follow his example!
      1. “Careful fathers, kids are watching!”
    2. vs.14 – In their natural eyes Egypt looked like a haven(peace; plenty; security). Yet this left out the supernatural view!
      1. “It was NOT the place that God had chosen for them.”
      2. Whether you’re deciding on moving, or moving jobs, it isn’t: “is the location better”, or “is the money better”, but “Is it God’s will”…that’s all that matters!!!
    1. ​​​​​​​This event warns us not to be insincere as we seek the will of God(20)
Bibliographical Information
Bell, Brian. "Commentary on Jeremiah 42". "Bell's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/cbb/jeremiah-42.html. 2017.
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