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Bible Commentaries
Jeremiah 14

Old & New Testament Restoration CommentaryRestoration Commentary

Verses 1-6

Jer 14:1-6

Jeremiah 14:1-6

THE EVENTS OF THE GREAT DROUGHT

The efforts of scholars to date this prophecy are somewhat amusing. Cook placed it "in the early years of the reign of Jehoiachim"; Robinson placed it vaguely in "the reign of Jehoiachim"; still others have opted for the closing years of Jehoiachim’s reign; and some have omitted dating it altogether! "Without chronological references it is difficult to date passages like this; even references to invasions and exile are not conclusive, because there were three invasions of Judah and as many deportations." A great drought is featured in this chapter; but there were many droughts in that part of the world; and there is nothing here that distinguishes this particular drought from others.

Some have even tried to break up the chapter into various units, assigning a different date to each; but, as Keil noted, "Such efforts have proved to be a complete failure."

As we have frequently noted, the "exact date" of any or all of these prophecies is of very little importance. The general facts are well known.

It is clear enough that the occasion of this chapter was a terrible drought that fell upon Judaea.

A practical outline of the chapter is: (1) a description of the drought (Jeremiah 14:1-6); (2) Jeremiah’s prayers for God’s help (Jeremiah 14:7-9); (3) God’s refusal to aid the apostate nation (Jeremiah 14:10-12); (4) Jeremiah’s plea that the false prophets are to blame (Jeremiah 14:13-15); (5) the doom of the false prophets and the people (Jeremiah 14:16-18); (6) Jeremiah’s continual plea to God (Jeremiah 14:19-22).

Jeremiah 14:1-6

THE GREAT DROUGHT

The word of Jehovah that came to Jeremiah concerning the drought. Judah mourneth, and the gates thereof languish, they sit in black upon the ground; and the cry of Jerusalem is gone up. And their nobles send their little ones to the waters: they come to the cisterns, and find no water; they return with their vessels empty; they are put to shame and confounded, and cover their heads. Because of the ground which is cracked, for that no rain hath been in the land, the plowmen are put to shame, they cover their heads. Yea, the hind also in the field calveth, and forsaketh [her young], because there is no grass. And the wild asses stand on the bare heights, they pant for air like jackals; their eyes fail, because there is no herbage.

The word of Jehovah that came to Jeremiah...

(Jeremiah 14:1). This is the title of the whole chapter and through Jeremiah 15:4, all of which deals with the same subject.

They all sit in black upon the ground...

(Jeremiah 14:2). The custom of wearing black as a token of grief or mourning was known then and might be even much older than those times. In addition to their dress and humble posture sitting upon the ground; the people are here represented as raising a mighty cry to God in heaven for relief. Throughout their history, the Jews had persistently called upon God when their troubles came upon them. Their nobles send their little ones to the waters ... (Jeremiah 14:3). The word rendered little ones here is peculiar to Jeremiah, a very rare word. Most modern scholars insist that it means servants, inferiors, or employees, or the common people. However, some of the older commentators believed the reference is to little children, implying that, Due to the drought, the servants no longer attended their lords; it was ’everyone for himself’; and the lords of the society were required to employ their own children to fetch water.

Either interpretation shows the seriousness of the water shortage.

Cisterns...

(Jeremiah 14:3).This word has the same meaning today; and for ages, such reservoirs have been used for storing water during the times of rain against anticipated shortages. The tragedy here was simply that the supply was exhausted.

They cover their heads...

(Jeremiah 14:3). This was a sign of mourning, indicating the same thing as the black clothing did in Jeremiah 14:1.

The plowmen are put to shame...

(Jeremiah 14:4). Thompson rendered the word ’plowmen’ in this clause as ’farmers’; but we fail to see any great advantage of the change. We have never known a plowman who was not a farmer. Robinson made it tillers of the ground; but that also falls short of being an improvement.

The devastating nature of this drought is seen in the fact that all living things were affected by it: (1) human beings of all classes, (2) nobles, (3) servants, (4) children, (5) farmers, (6) wild animals, (7) even the ground was cracked, (8) the grass had all died, and (9) there were not even any twigs upon which the wild ass could live.

Yea, the hind calved, and forsook her offspring...

(Jeremiah 14:5). The word ’hind’ is an Old English word for the female of the red deer; And this animal was regarded by the ancients as tenderly caring for her young. F10 The reason why the calf was abandoned here was the inability of the mother to produce milk due to the shortage of grass.

"The glazed condition of the eyes of the wild ass gives us the picture of eyes that are practically motionless because the death of the animal is near." F11

Sometime during the ministry of Jeremiah a terrible drought or series of droughts (the Hebrew word is plural) struck Palestine (Jeremiah 14:1). This national crisis forms the background of most if not all of the materials in chapters 14–17. No date for the drought is given. But since in these chapters Judah’s punishment is still future and since no reference is made to the deportation of Jehoiachin in 597 B.C. it is likely that these events transpired in the reign of Jehoiaklm. Droughts were not uncommon in Old Testament Palestine and numerous references to them occur in the Scriptures,[200] In the Book of Deuteronomy the Lord threatens to use drought as one of the disciplinary disasters which He will bring upon His people if they are unfaithful to Him (Deuteronomy 11:10-17; Deuteronomy 28:23-24). Growing out of this crisis is a personal crisis—the second one—in the ministry of Jeremiah. Chapter 17 contains a series of utterances more appropriately called Jeremiah’s sayings than Jeremiah’s sermons. Perhaps these sayings were excerpts from the preaching which Jeremiah did during the drought.

[200] Genesis 12:10; Genesis 26:1; Genesis 42:1-2; Ruth 1:1; 2 Samuel 21:1; 1 Kings 8:37

I. PROPHETIC INTERCESSION Jeremiah 14:1 to Jeremiah 15:9

One of the hallmarks of a prophet is that he prayed on behalf of his people. During the time of the terrible drought (Jeremiah 14:1-6) Jeremiah prayed three times for his countrymen (Jeremiah 14:7-9; Jeremiah 14:13; Jeremiah 14:19-22). Three times God rejected the petition of his prophet, the third time emphatically so (Jeremiah 14:10-12; Jeremiah 14:14-18; Jeremiah 15:1-9). Jeremiah was to learn through this frustrating effort that intercessory prayer without prior repentance on the part of the sinners is futile and useless.

The Description of the Drought Jeremiah 14:1-6

Whether or not Jeremiah 14:2-6 are to be considered a part of Jeremiah’s prayer or a background to it is not clear. In either case these verses are a masterful description of the national plight created by the drought. This is Hebrew poetry of the first rank.

In Jeremiah 14:2 Jeremiah pictures the whole nation engaged in lamentation. Even the gates of cities are said to be participating, perhaps bemoaning the absence of those who formerly had assembled there to transact business. By heaping dust upon themselves both the people and their garments became black. This blackening of oneself was one of the customary signs of mourning in antiquity. See 2 Samuel 13:19; 2 Samuel 21:10; Job 2:12; Lamentation Jeremiah 2:10. The nobles would send their inferiors (liter ally, their little ones) to the cisterns for water but they would return with empty vessels. Ashamed, dejected these servants would return to their master with heads covered as a sign of deepest mourning (Jeremiah 14:3). See 2 Samuel 15:30; 2 Samuel 19:4; Esther 6:12. The farmers are as confused as the nobles. The ground can no longer fulfill its function of producing fruit because of the absence of rain (Jeremiah 14:4). Even the wild animals are suffering in the drought. The tender doe is starving. Her natural affection for her young is forgotten as she desperately seeks food for herself (Jeremiah 14:5). The rough wild ass, accustomed to the harsh realities of desert life, desperately sniffs the air in an attempt to pick up the scent of water. Finally with no water and no food the animal languishes and dies (Jeremiah 14:6).

Verses 7-9

Jer 14:7-9

Jeremiah 14:7-9

JEREMIAH’S PRAYER FOR ISRAEL

Though our iniquities testify against us, work thou for thy name’s sake, O Jehovah; for our backslidings are many; we have sinned against thee. O thou hope of Israel, the Saviour thereof in the time of trouble, why shouldest thou be as a sojourner in the land, and as a wayfaring man that turneth aside to tarry for a night? Why shouldest thou be as a man affrighted, as a mighty man that cannot save? yet thou, O Jehovah, art in the midst of us, and we are called by thy name; leave us not.

Some have wondered if the people of Israel themselves or Jeremiah prayed this prayer; but it appears that Jeremiah here prayed on behalf of the people, using some of the phraseology that the people were using.

Work thou for thy name’s sake...

(Jeremiah 14:7). Note that the prayer is not based upon any merit of Israel, but solely upon the character of God Himself. It was the Jewish conception, first enunciated by Moses, that if God did not bless Israel, it would cause the pagan nations to declare that God was not able to bless them. It would appear that the presumption of Israel in this matter was almost incredible.

As a sojourner. as a wayfaring man .....

(Jeremiah 14:8). There is apparently in this the echo of a complaint by the people to the effect that God, instead of dwelling with Israel all the time, was like a traveling man who merely spent a night in their midst now and then. Israel expected God to bless them continually no matter what they did. After all, were not they called God’s Chosen People? Was not he enthroned among them in that magnificent temple? Oh, don’t forsake us now, Lord; we are in trouble, and we need you!

Coupled with God’s negative answer to this prayer (Jeremiah 14:10 f), we have the fact that Israel admitted their sins and backsliding, all right; but they went right on sinning. Why did they call God the hope of Israel and go right on with their wickedness? They never stopped sinning for a minute. "Instead they lay the source of their troubles on God; they call him the hope of Israel, but at the same time charge him with indifference to their needs, and with impotence to help them ... Then they brazenly declare: ’We are called by your name. Save us and thus redeem your reputation!’ " F12

Jeremiah 14:10-12

GOD REFUSES TO HEAR THEM

Thus saith Jehovah unto this people, Even so have they loved to wander; they have not refrained their feet: therefore Jehovah doth not accept them; now will he remember their iniquity, and visit their sins. And Jehovah said unto me, Pray not for this people for [their] good. When they fast, I will not hear their cry; and when they offer burnt-offering and meal-offering, I will not accept them; but I will consume them by the sword, and by the famine, and by the pestilence.

Clarke summarized God’s reply to the prayer as follows: "The measure of Israel’s iniquity being now full, they must be punished. The nation is ripe for destruction; intercede not for them."

They have loved to wander...

(Jeremiah 14:10) There is nothing innocent about this wandering. Cheyne rendered it, roving lawlessly about.

Pray not for this people...

(Jeremiah 14:11). Twice previously, God gave Jeremiah this same instruction (Jeremiah 7:15; Jeremiah 11:14); but Jeremiah had been unable to stop praying. No mother ever quit praying for a wayward son, no matter how hopeless his wickedness became. It could be that God was not really forbidding Jeremiah to pray but that he was merely pointing out the uselessness of any further prayers on behalf of apostate Israel.

Jehovah doth not accept them...

(Jeremiah 14:10). Keil’s comment on the reason why God would not then hear Israel is thus:

The reason was that they turned to God only in their need, but while their hearts still clung to their idols. Their prayers were only lip-service, and their sacrifices a soulless formality.

While it is certainly true that Keil’s excellent comment here applied to the vast majority of the condemned people, we must also agree with Payne Smith who wrote: "It is not necessary to say with Keil that Israel’s fasts and sacrifices were ’heartless formalities.’ There would have been those whom the chastisement had brought to repentance (also, those of the "righteous remnant" J.B.C.); and for these the lesson was a sterner one. There is a time when the most genuine repentance avails nothing to avert the temporal consequences of sin."

Sword... famine. pestilence .....

(Jeremiah 14:12) This dreadful trio throughout the ages has been the perpetual destroyers of human life. They are frequently mentioned in scripture, as here and in Jeremiah 5:12; Jeremiah 14:15; Jeremiah 27:8; Jeremiah 29:18; 2 Samuel 24:13; Isaiah 51:19, etc.

The Prophet’s Intercession Rejected Jeremiah 14:7-12

From his narration recounting the plight of the nation Jeremiah moves to formal intercession. He makes no excuses. He openly confesses the sin and guilt of his people. Yet he calls upon God to intervene on behalf of the drought-stricken nation “for the sake of Your name” (Jeremiah 14:7). He is asking God to act in His own self-interest. Should God allow His people to be done in by the drought the heathen would boast. In antiquity the esteem in which a deity was held by the world community was in direct proportion to the national well-being of the people who worshiped that deity. The thought may also be present that the Lord’s name pledges Him to be merciful toward His people even when they have sinned against Him.

The prophet still trusts in God in spite of the terrible drought. He addresses the Lord as “the hope of Israel” and as “his (i.e., Israel’s) Savior in the time of distress.” The concept of God as savior goes back to the period of the Judges when God would raise up saviors or deliverers for His people (Judges 3:9; Nehemiah 9:27). King Jehoahaz who was able to break the yoke of Aramaen oppression is also called a savior (2 Kings 13:5; 2 Kings 13:25). God is first called savior in 2 Samuel 22:3, a psalm attributed to David. The name savior was one of the favorites of the prophet Isaiah who uses it at least eight times. God in the past has proved Himself to be a savior to Israel and Jeremiah is confident that God can and will so reveal Himself again in the present crisis.

While Jeremiah believes in God’s ability to save he is unable to comprehend why the Lord delays His intervention on behalf of Israel. Two questions are directed to God both of which are in reality appeals for divine aid. (1) “Why have You, Lord, become to us like a stranger or wayfaring man?” (Jeremiah 14:8). One who merely passes through a country takes no active interest in the affairs of that land. It seems to Jeremiah that as far as Israel was concerned God had become a disinterested bystander, unwilling to get involved. (2) “Why have you become like a mighty warrior who is dumbfounded?” Jeremiah knows that God has the power to intervene; but God seems to have become like a soldier who in battle becomes terrified to the point of paralysis. The Septuagint renders the phrase “like a man in a deep sleep.” The point is that God has not acted on behalf of His people and Jeremiah cannot understand it. He knows that God is still in the midst of the nation. He knows that Israel still wears the name of God as His national bride. Therefore he calls upon God, “Do not let us down” (Jeremiah 14:9).

God’s reply to the praying prophet is straightforward and blunt. He does not deny that He has in fact abandoned His people. But He has forsaken them because they first abandoned Him. They love to wander after other gods and neither the national leaders nor the people themselves have made any effort to curb that quest for idolatry. As a result God cannot accept or countenance such a people. The Lord reminds Jeremiah of the threat he had earlier spoken concerning Israel: “NOW He will remember their iniquity that He may punish their sins” (Jeremiah 14:10). In view of the fact the judgment has already been decreed it is useless for Jeremiah to continue to pray for his people (Jeremiah 14:11). Nor will God be influenced by the ritualistic cries for help which might accompany the burnt offerings and meal offerings. God is not ruling out the possibility of sincere repentance for later, in the eleventh hour of the final siege, Jeremiah still holds out to the people the possibility of survival if they will only submit to the Lord. The thrust here is that God knows the heart of a man and He will not accept outward forms in place of genuine repentance. Ritual will not work any longer. God is about to consume them with war and all of its accompanying calamities (Jeremiah 14:12).

Verses 13-18

Jer 14:13-18

Jeremiah 14:13-15

THE FALSE PROPHETS ARE TO BLAME

Then said I, Ah, Lord Jehovah! behold, the prophets say unto them, Ye shall not see the sword, neither shall ye have famine; but I will give you assured peace in this place. Then Jehovah said unto me, The prophets prophesy lies in my name; I sent them not, neither have I commanded them, neither spake I unto them: they prophesy unto you a lying vision, and divination, and a thing of nought, and the deceit of their own heart. Therefore thus saith Jehovah concerning the prophets that prophesy in my name, and I sent them not, yet they say, Sword and famine shall not be in this land: By sword and famine shall those prophets be consumed.

The prophets say unto them...

(Jeremiah 14:13). This is a reference to the false prophets; and this is an account of how Jeremiah, tried to excuse the people by blaming the false prophets. That excuse was not acceptable to Jehovah, because blame must be attached to those who reject the covenant for whatever cause.

Why were the people deceived by the false prophets? The only plausible answer is that they WANTED to be deceived. "The secret of the power of the false prophets was given by the Lord in Jeremiah 5:31, ’My people love to have it so.’" Adam Clarke pointed out the fact that the people accepted the allegation of false prophets without any proof, and without investigating their credentials. F19 The slightest attention to the question of "Who are these sons of the devil"? would have spared the people of any temptation to trust them. This is exactly what Christians today should do with regard to men who deny the Bible. Clarke also recounted the fulfillment of this prophecy that the false prophets would be consumed by the sword during Nebuchadnezzar’s invasion. Jehoiachim had been warned by Jeremiah not to withhold tribute from Nebuchadnezzar but Jehoiachim heeded the words of the false prophets who advised him to withhold it. "Nebuchadnezzar was incensed, invaded the land and destroyed it, including the false prophets."

The deceit of their own heart...

(Jeremiah 14:14). Jeremiah thus described the various methods of prophesying employed by the false prophets; but these words do not mean that the false prophets were deceived in their own hearts, being therefore sincere but misguided men; ah no! This is a reference, not to self-deceit, but to willful and intentional fraud. We also believe that the same thing applies to many false teachers today. They are not sincere, misguided men, but unbelievers, preaching that in which they have no confidence at all.

These verses reveal a profound misunderstanding of the covenant. Both the false prophets and the people, "imagined that continual and wanton violation of the terms of that covenant would not result in the operation of the curses of that covenant!" What fools they were! However, we should reserve a little of our pity to the men of our own day who just as vainly imagine that, "We are justified by faith alone." These ancient protagonists of that same doctrine learned to their eternal sorrow how wrong they were.

Jeremiah 14:16-18

BOTH PEOPLE AND FALSE PROPHETS ARE DOOMED

And the people to whom they prophesy shall be cast out in the streets of Jerusalem because of the famine and the sword; and they shall have none to bury them--them, their wives, nor their sons, nor their daughters: for I will pour their wickedness upon them. And thou shalt say this word unto them, Let mine eyes run down with tears night and day, and let them not cease; for the virgin daughter of my people is broken with a great breach, with a very grievous wound. If I go forth into the field, then, behold, the slain with the sword! and if I enter into the city, then, behold, they that are sick with famine! for both the prophet and the priest go about in the land, and have no knowledge.

Following false teachers is no valid excuse for not obeying God’s Word. These words prophesy the destruction of false prophets and their followers alike. As Jesus put it, "If the blind lead the blind, they shall both fall into the ditch."

The Prophet’s Second Petition Rejected Jeremiah 14:13-18

In spite of God’s refusal to hearken to his first petition Jeremiah prays again on behalf of his people. The words of the prayer itself are in the form of a complaint. He calls God’s attention to the false prophets who are deceiving and misleading the people. These influential religious leaders were saying that God will never bring the sword and famine upon Judah as predicted over and over again by Jeremiah. In their view Judah was under the special protection of God. The Lord would see to it that His people had peace. Jeremiah was concerned about these prophets and the damaging message which they brought. But Jeremiah is not merely complaining to God; in reality he is again interceding. He is placing the responsibility for the condition of the nation squarely on the shoulders of the false prophets. The implied petition of Jeremiah 14:13 is for God to be merciful to the people as a whole in view of the fact that they have been misled by their leaders.

The Lord concurs with Jeremiah’s evaluation. The false prophets are guilty of speaking falsehood to the nation in the name of the Lord. God did not send them, command them or speak to them. They are acting strictly on their own initiative. Their visions of peace and prosperity are spurious and utterly worthless. They themselves are deceived and consequently that which they prophesy is deception. The Lord likens what these prophets are saying to divination (Jeremiah 14:14). It may well be that some of these prophets were using the methods of pagan diviners to attempt to pry into the future. On the other hand the term “divination” may be used here as a means of showing the emptiness and futility of the message of these men.

The Lord assures his perplexed prophet that the false prophets will be punished for the role thy have played in misleading the nation. The punishment which they experience will be most appropriate, They have said that sword and famine will not come upon the land. Therefore they shall meet their death by sword and famine (Jeremiah 14:15). But judgment will also fall upon the people of the land. Though they have been misled they are not excused from their iniquity and their sin. Those who die defending Jerusalem and those who die of the famine brought on by the siege of that city will simply be cast in the streets. No one will have the courage, inclination or strength to bury their dead bodies. The divine Judge has rejected again the appeal of Jeremiah on behalf of the people of Judah. Their evil deeds demand the outpouring of divine wrath (Jeremiah 14:16).

In view of the fact that such a dire fate awaits both the leaders and the inhabitants of Jerusalem God instructs Jeremiah to go and speak a lamentation to them. The prophet is actually warning the people through this dirge. Jeremiah describes his uncontrollable weeping over the impending destruction of the “virgin daughter of my people.” It is generally thought that Jerusalem is called a “virgin” because hitherto no enemy had completely conquered her. Shortly she would suffer a grievous wound from which she would not recover (Jeremiah 14:17). Projecting himself into the not too distant future Jeremiah describes the situation that will exist when the siege of Jerusalem begins. Outside the safety of the city walls the sword of Babylon has already done its deadly work. Inside Jerusalem people are starving to death. The prophet and priest and every other leader for that matter will be forced to rove about (literally, peddle their wares) in a foreign land (Jeremiah 14:18). Some commentators connect the verb translated here “to rove about” with a verb in Aramaic which means to go about like a beggar. If this be the meaning then these ex-nobles will go begging their way into the unknown land.

Verses 19-22

Jer 14:19-22

Jeremiah 14:19-22

JEREMIAH PLEADS WITH GOD NOT TO BREAK THE COVENANT

Hast thou utterly rejected Judah? hath thy soul loathed Zion? why hast thou smitten us, and there is no healing for us? We looked for peace, but no good came; and for a time of healing, and, behold, dismay! We acknowledge, O Jehovah, our wickedness, and the iniquity of our fathers; for we have sinned against thee. Do not abhor [us], for thy name’s sake; do not disgrace the throne of thy glory: remember, break not thy covenant with us. Are there any among the vanities of the nations that can cause rain? or can the heavens give showers? art not thou he, O Jehovah our God? therefore we will wait for thee; for thou hast made all these things.

This is one of the saddest appeals in the Bible. Their day of grace almost over, their nation threatened and anticipating an absolute and irrevocable destruction, their false prophets facing exactly the same doom they faced, their acknowledgment, at last, of their consummate wickedness which was a long continuation of the unceasing wickedness of the whole nation for ages past, yet, with all of that, they were desperate, pleading with God not to abhor them, pleading for him not to break the covenant, the very covenant which they had not merely broken, but which they had shattered and rejected.

The throne of they glory...

(Jeremiah 14:21) This is a reference to the temple (2 Kings 19:15; Psalms 99:1).

Feinberg noted that this prayer for the people was based upon three things: "(1) God’s reputation, (2) his temple, and (3) his covenant with Israel"

"Here were a group of people who had gone too far in sin, so far that they have become ignorant of God’s character, that God is indeed a God of holiness and righteousness. How could they be such fools?"

Break not thy covenant with us...

(Jeremiah 14:21). Despite the fact that they had already broken that covenant, yet they wished God to go ahead and fulfill his part of it.

They ceased to be God’s people when they abandoned themselves to idolatry; yet they still wanted God to be their God, to defend, support and bless them. They appeared to be ignorant of the fact that when the conditions of a covenant are broken by one party, the other is no longer bound by it. The covenant is necessarily annulled.

Are there any among the vanities...

(Jeremiah 14:22)? This question suggests that of the apostle Peter who asked, Lord, to whom shall we go? Thou only hast the words of eternal life (John 6:68). The vanities here are the artificial deities, that is, all of the idol gods.

Jeremiah’s Third Petition Rejected Jeremiah 14:19-22

Twice he has had his intercession rejected by God but still Jeremiah prays. With increased fervency he asks God how He can utterly reject Judah, how He can smite Judah and provide no divine healing for the wound. Misled by the false prophets the nation was confident of peace and a time of healing. But the drought continues. Nothing appeared on the horizon but the terror that accompanies any national calamity (Jeremiah 14:19). Jeremiah readily admits the sin of the nation. They are worthy of chastisement. The iniquity of Judah stretches back over the centuries to the fathers, the early ancestors of the nation (Jeremiah 14:20).

Jeremiah cannot ask for divine mercy on the grounds that Judah has taken the first feeble steps in the right direction. Nonetheless he does make a fourfold appeal for the intervention of God. (1) He asks God not to spurn the nation “for the sake of Your name.” When Israel suffers humiliation, the reputation of Israel’s God also suffers in the eyes of the nations. A similar appeal was made by Moses in the earlier history of the nation (Exodus 32:11-12; Numbers 14:13-16). (2) Jeremiah then asks God not to demean, disgrace or dishonor His glorious throne, either Jerusalem (Jeremiah 3:17) or the Temple (Jeremiah 17:12; Ezekiel 43:7). According to the Old Testament the Lord dwells between the cherubim in the Temple (Isaiah 37:16; Psalms 80:1; Psalms 99:1). (3) Jeremiah urges God to remember His covenant with Israel even though the people have broken their side of that covenant (Jeremiah 14:21). (4) Jeremiah’s final basis for appeal is simply that there is no one else to whom the people of Judah can turn. None of the vanities, i.e., idols, of the nation are capable of sending the much needed rains. The heavenly bodies which were the object of worship in Mesopotamia and Canaan as well certainly could not send the rain. It is the Lord, the God of Israel Who created the heavenly bodies and Who alone controls the processes of nature. He is the only hope for the nation. Therefore Jeremiah, speaking for his sinful people, affirms “we wait for You” (Jeremiah 14:22).

Drought, Famine, Sword - Jeremiah 14:1 to Jeremiah 15:21

Open It

1. What is the biggest lie you have ever believed for a period of time?

2. When have you pleaded for mercy on behalf of someone else?

Explore It

3. What desperate situation did Jeremiah foresee for Jerusalem? (Jeremiah 14:1-6)

4. On what basis did Jeremiah plead for God’s intervention? (Jeremiah 14:7-9)

5. Why did God say He would not be dissuaded from punishing Israel? (Jeremiah 14:10-12)

6. How did God reply when Jeremiah told Him that the prophets were giving the people the impression that they were safe? (Jeremiah 14:13-16)

7. With what dismaying word did God send Jeremiah to the people of Israel? (Jeremiah 14:17-18)

8. What great men of faith did God maintain could not convince Him to rescue Israel from judgment? (Jeremiah 15:1-3)

9. What king of Judah was particularly responsible for leading the people so far astray? (Jeremiah 15:4)

10. What attitude had set God firmly against the people of Israel? (Jeremiah 15:5-9)

11. How was Jeremiah treated because of the message he brought from God? (Jeremiah 15:10)

12. What promise did God make to His servant Jeremiah? (Jeremiah 15:11)

13. How did God describe the ruthlessness of the enemy He sent against Israel? (Jeremiah 15:12-14)

14. How did Jeremiah plead his own case with God? (Jeremiah 15:15-18)

15. Of what did Jeremiah need to repent in order to continue as God’s spokesman? (Jeremiah 15:19-21)

16. How did God predict that Jeremiah would continue to be received by the people? (Jeremiah 15:20-21)

17. What promise did God make to Jeremiah even as He asked him to take an unpopular course? (Jeremiah 15:20-21)

Get It

18. How did God handle the dilemma of His people in need of punishment and His own name in need of vindication?

19. Why was God so unresponsive to Jeremiah’s pleading on behalf of the people?

20. Why do false prophets often receive more honor from their audience than faithful prophets?

21. Why did God not accept Jeremiah’s repentant attitude on behalf of the people?

22. How is it fair or unfair that even God’s faithful servants will experience suffering?

23. When can, or cannot, an appeal to the honor of God’s name persuade Him to act?

24. When can the worthiness of God’s people cease to be a legitimate defense against God’s discipline?

Apply It

25. How can you prepare yourself to discern the lying words of people who falsely claim to represent the truth?

26. What steps could you take to prepare yourself to deliver or defend God’s Word, regardless of how it is received?

Questions On Jeremiah Chapter Fourteen

By Brent Kercheville

1 What must be the confession of all people (Jeremiah 14:7)?

2 Why should the Lord act (Jeremiah 14:7-8)? What is the basis of the people’s plea?

3 Why does God not accept the people (Jeremiah 14:10)?

4 What is God’s message (Jeremiah 14:11-16)?

5 What is the fear of the people (Jeremiah 14:19-21)? Why is this important?

6 Explain Jeremiah 14:22? What do we learn from this declaration?

TRANSFORMATION:

How does this relationship change your relationship with God?

What did you learn about him?

What will you do differently in your life?

Bibliographical Information
"Commentary on Jeremiah 14". "Old & New Testament Restoration Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/onr/jeremiah-14.html.
 
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