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Jeremiah 4:1-2 give us His response to their cry of anguish, and the promised blessing when in reality they return to GOD.
From this point the message is to Judah, and is a call for more than mere surface work, such as was then going on. No real fruit for GOD could be expected where they were sowing on unbroken and thorn-choked ground (Jeremiah 4:3). The plowshare of conviction must overturn the hardened soil of the heart.
Not the natural flesh alone, but the heart must be circumcised (Jeremiah 4:4). "For he is not a Jew which is one outwardly;. . . but he is a Jew which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter" (Romans 2:28-29). And the same apostle declares the true circumcision is to have "no confidence in the flesh" (Philippians 3:3). If the message was unheeded, then judgment must take its course; and already the Gentile destroyer was on his way.
Jeremiah 4:5-13 furnish us a vivid picture of the coming fall of Jerusalem by the hand of Nebuchadnezzar. So astounding is this announcement that the prophet is himself astonished (Jeremiah 4:10), and can scarcely credit that the Lord will so deal with His people.
There is but one door of escape, which he points out in Jeremiah 4:14 - “Wash thine heart." This can only be by reception of the Word, and allowing it to work in the conscience. He immediately goes on to enlarge on the surely coming overthrow of the city, in most awe-inspiring language (Jeremiah 4:15-21). But the people of Judah were the very opposite to what the apostle desired for the Roman saints (Romans 16:19) - they were "wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge" (Jeremiah 4:22).
The coming desolation of the land is graphically depicted in Jeremiah 4:23-31. It is not the earth, but the land of Palestine, that is before him, as the companion scripture, Isaiah 24:0, clearly shows. The language is doubtless highly poetical, yet fully to be relied on, - perhaps one should say rather figurative, than poetical, as the latter expression has been much abused of late.
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Ironside, H. A. "Commentary on Jeremiah 4". Ironside's Notes on Selected Books. https://www.studylight.org/
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