The Prophets (07): Jeremiah 8 - Knowing the Lord

Date: 9/18/2016
More audio from All Saints Church
Type: Sunday Sermon
Topic: Jeremiah
Organization: All Saints
Price: FREE

They Do Not Know Me (8:4-9:6) (revised from Peter J. Wallace)
a. They Do Not Know the Ordinances of the LORD (8:4-7)
   b. They Have No Wisdom and Reject the Word of the LORD (8:8-10)
      c. They Have No Healing and Falsely Claim Peace (8:10-12)
          d. An Empty Harvest (8:13)
              e. Why? Because We Have Sinned (8:14-15)
                 f. The Army of Terror Comes and Devours the Land (16-17)
             e’. Why Have They Provoked Me? (8:18-19)
         d’. The Harvest is Over, and We Are Not Saved (8:20)
      c’. My Heart is Wounded for their Wounds (8:21-9:1)
   b’. Falsehood Has Grown Strong in the Land (9:2-3)
a’. They Refuse to Know Me, Declares the LORD (9:4-6)

A Parallel Outline of Jeremiah (adapted from Dr. Michael Kelly)
Call and Narrative against Babylon (1)
   Oracles against Judah (2-25)
       Victorious Events in Jeremiah’s Life (26-29)
           Book of Consolation (30-33)
       Defeating Events in Jeremiah’s Life (34-45)
     Oracles against the Nations (46-51)
Narrative Concerning Babylon (52)

In this section containing another oracle against Judah, the prophet chides them against a strong sense of delusion that has taken over. Despite their blatant idolatry (8:1-3), they hold fast to “their deceit” (v 5). Unlike creatures that know their time (storks, doves, cranes), Judah does know her God and cannot see the signs of their impending judgment (v 7). The leaders have rejected the Word of Yahweh (v 8) and so utter judgment will come on these “greedy for gain” from “prophet even to priest” (v 10). They “practice deceit” saying “peace, peace when there is no peace” (v 11). So what are you waiting for, go to the walled cities because the Babylonians are coming to devour the Land (vv 14-16). God is sending them serpents and adders that will bite and devour you (v 17).

The tone changes to that of sorrow in verse 18. Knowing of this devastating judgment the prophet expresses deep sorry (v 18). He expresses the astonishment that God is no longer in Zion (v 19). As in much of Jeremiah there is a blending of the prophets words of his own sorry with that of Yahweh. He asks, “why have they provoked Me” with idolatries? Jeremiah/Yahweh declare, “For the brokenness of the daughter of my people I am broken; I mourn, dismay has taken hold of me” (v 21). The last verse in the chapter calls upon a phrase now a well known figure of speech, “Is there no balm in Gilead?” (v 22). Finally, the last verse in thee passage (9:1) displays the weeping prophet: O that my eyes were “a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night.”

Gregg Strawbridge Gregg Strawbridge, Ph.D., is the pastor of All Saints Church in Lancaster, PA. He became a committed follower of Jesus Christ at age 20, discipled in the context of a University Navigator Ministry. As a result of personal discipleship he went on to study at Columbia Biblical Seminary (M.A., Columbia, SC, 1990), as well as a Ph.D. in education and philosophy... read more