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The subject is continued in the fifth chapter, only with more perspicuity. Individuals are more brought before us. How fallen must have been their state when the prophet had to say, "Run ye to and fro through the streets of Jerusalem, and see now, and know, and seek in the broad places thereof, if ye can find a man, if there be any that executeth judgment, that seeketh the truth; and I will pardon it" (Jeremiah 5:1).
Does not this tell us what might have been had Abraham but had faith to plead further for Sodom? He stopped at ten (Genesis 18:0). Ten could not be found. Here, Judgment could be averted for one. Alas, they had all alike despised the chastening of the Lord (Jeremiah 5:3), and turned from the truth.
This amazed Jeremiah the prophet. He could scarcely credit the utterly apostate condition of his nation. There must surely be righteous ones somewhere. He would seek them out. "Therefore I said, Surely these are poor; they are foolish: for they know not the way of the Lord, nor the judgment of their God. I will get me unto the great men, and will speak unto them; for they have known the way of the Lord, and the judgment of their God: but these have altogether broken the yoke and burst the bonds" (Jeremiah 5:4-5).
His visit to the great we have not here (we may get many such later), but only proving that ignoble and noble are all one in the rejection of the word of GOD. So judgment must eventually have its way, though some years elapsed ere its fulfilment. Of this he continues to speak in Jeremiah 5:6-19.
How terrible the indictment of Jeremiah 5:7! - “When I had fed them to the full, they then committed adultery, and assembled themselves by troops in the harlots' houses."
What a word for the people of GOD today!
How awful to contemplate the yet patent fact that those who profess to be part of that Church, blessed with all spiritual blessings in CHRIST, should ever turn wantonly to the world and its follies, as Judah had done before - though they were on a much lower plane, their blessings being earthly and temporal. "Shall I not visit for these things? saith the Lord: and shall not My soul be avenged on such a nation as this?" (Jeremiah 5:9). To Christendom He says, “I will spue thee out of My mouth!" (Revelation 3:16).
"And it shall come to pass, when ye shall say, Wherefore doeth the Lord our God all these things unto us? then shalt thou answer them, Like as ye have forsaken Me, and served strange gods in your land, so shall ye serve strangers in a land that is not yours" (Jeremiah 5:19).
Sowing is followed by reaping: dreadful was the reaping of Israel; more dreadful will be the reaping of apostate Christendom - “Babylon the Great" (Revelation 17:18).
Their moral condition is further exposed in words too plain to need comment (Jeremiah 5:20-29), and all summarized in the last verse.
"A wonderful and horrible thing is committed in the land; the prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and My people love to have it so: and what will ye do in the end thereof?" (Jeremiah 5:30-31).
Solemn words! Ponder them carefully, my reader, and see if they be too severe to describe the great world-church of today.
Jerusalem's evil condition fully manifested, the sixth chapter opens with a call to the children of Benjamin to flee from her midst. Only thus could they escape being partakers of her sins. They remained and fell with her.
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Ironside, H. A. "Commentary on Jeremiah 5". Ironside's Notes on Selected Books. https://www.studylight.org/
the Week of Proper 21 / Ordinary 26