Big Idea: How crucial it is for the Word of God to be read, taught, proclaimed and obeyed.
"As God can send a nation or people no greater blessing, than to give them faithful, sincere, and upright ministers; so the greatest curse that God can possibly send upon a people in this world, is to give them over to blind, unregenerate, carnal, lukewarm, and unskillful guides. And yet, in all ages, we find that there have been many wolves in sheep's clothing, many that ... prophesied smoother things than God did allow. As it was formerly, so it is now, there are many that corrupt the word of God, and deal deceitfully with it." George Whitfield, On the Method of Grace.
After being called by God (ch.1) Jeremiah charges Judah of spiritual adultery (ch.2) and calls her to repentance (ch.3). When she refuses, disaster is inevitable and comes through the mighty Babylonians (ch.4-6). Then Jeremiah denounces his people for deceiving themselves and belonging to a sick, toxic religion (ch.7-10). A sick, toxic church is where people prefer:
- Rituals instead of a relationship (ch.7). Don't go to church to deceive yourself.
- Lies instead of the truth of God (ch.8-9). You will listen either to God's word or to wailing.
- Idols instead of the Living God (ch.10). Fear God and live without fear.