Jeremiah 5 ✒️ Our Sin Affects Others

June 2, 2024 • Dr. Dave Burnette

1Run 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.

 2And though they say, The LORD liveth; surely they swear falsely.

 3O LORD, are not thine eyes upon the truth? thou hast stricken them, but they have not grieved; thou hast consumed them, but they have refused to receive correction: they have made their faces harder than a rock; they have refused to return.

 4Therefore I said, Surely these are poor; they are foolish: for they know not the way of the LORD, nor the judgment of their God.

 5I 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.

 6Wherefore a lion out of the forest shall slay them, and a wolf of the evenings shall spoil them, a leopard shall watch over their cities: every one that goeth out thence shall be torn in pieces: because their transgressions are many, and their backslidings are increased.

 7How shall I pardon thee for this? thy children have forsaken me, and sworn by them that are no gods: when I had fed them to the full, they then committed adultery, and assembled themselves by troops in the harlots' houses.

 8They were as fed horses in the morning: every one neighed after his neighbour's wife.

 9Shall I not visit for these things? saith the LORD: and shall not my soul be avenged on such a nation as this?

 10Go ye up upon her walls, and destroy; but make not a full end: take away her battlements; for they are not the LORD's.

 11For the house of Israel and the house of Judah have dealt very treacherously against me, saith the LORD.

 12They have belied the LORD, and said, It is not he; neither shall evil come upon us; neither shall we see sword nor famine:

 13And the prophets shall become wind, and the word is not in them: thus shall it be done unto them.

 14Wherefore thus saith the LORD God of hosts, Because ye speak this word, behold, I will make my words in thy mouth fire, and this people wood, and it shall devour them.

 15Lo, I will bring a nation upon you from far, O house of Israel, saith the LORD: it is a mighty nation, it is an ancient nation, a nation whose language thou knowest not, neither understandest what they say.

 16Their quiver is as an open sepulchre, they are all mighty men.

 17And they shall eat up thine harvest, and thy bread, which thy sons and thy daughters should eat: they shall eat up thy flocks and thine herds: they shall eat up thy vines and thy fig trees: they shall impoverish thy fenced cities, wherein thou trustedst, with the sword.

 18Nevertheless in those days, saith the LORD, I will not make a full end with you.

 19And 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 your's.

 20Declare this in the house of Jacob, and publish it in Judah, saying,

 21Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not:

 22Fear ye not me? saith the LORD: will ye not tremble at my presence, which have placed the sand for the bound of the sea by a perpetual decree, that it cannot pass it: and though the waves thereof toss themselves, yet can they not prevail; though they roar, yet can they not pass over it?

 23But this people hath a revolting and a rebellious heart; they are revolted and gone.

 24Neither say they in their heart, Let us now fear the LORD our God, that giveth rain, both the former and the latter, in his season: he reserveth unto us the appointed weeks of the harvest.

 25Your iniquities have turned away these things, and your sins have withholden good things from you.

 26For among my people are found wicked men: they lay wait, as he that setteth snares; they set a trap, they catch men.

 27As a cage is full of birds, so are their houses full of deceit: therefore they are become great, and waxen rich.

 28They are waxen fat, they shine: yea, they overpass the deeds of the wicked: they judge not the cause, the cause of the fatherless, yet they prosper; and the right of the needy do they not judge.

 29Shall I not visit for these things? saith the LORD: shall not my soul be avenged on such a nation as this?

 30A wonderful and horrible thing is committed in the land;

 31The 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?

COMMENTARY by Dr. Dave Burnette

Written By: God through Inspiration

Penned By: Jeremiah

Date Penned: (627-586 BC)

Overview: To Urge God's People to Turn from Sin to God (c 1-52)

Theme: God's Judgement on Judah (c 1-45)

Message: No Respect for God (v 1-31)

Jeremiah 5 Commentary 

(5:1) Jerusalem - Jerusalem was the capital city and center of worship for Judah, but God challenged anyone to find one honest and truthful person in the entire city. God was willing to spare the city if only one upright person could be found. He had made a similar statement about Sodom, telling Abraham that he would spare Sodom if ten righteous people could be found (Genesis 18:32). Here he would save Jerusalem if even one person could be found. Think about the impact of your testimony in your neighborhood or community. You may be the only witness for God among many people. Are you faithful with that opportunity? 

(5:3) Our Hearts - Nothing but truth and honesty is acceptable to God. He knows the intentions of our hearts and rejects our prayers, praises, and acts of service when we offer them with hypocrisy or pretense. God sees through our false pretenses and refuses to listen. To be close to God, be honest with him. 

(5:4-5) Words of Judgement - Even the leaders who knew God's laws and understood his words of judgment had rejected him. They were supposed to teach and guide the people, but instead they led them into sin. Jeremiah observed the plight of the poor and uneducated--those who were uninformed of God's ways--and realized they were not learning God's laws from their leaders. Thus, God's search in Jerusalem was complete. The society had no true followers of God at any level. 

(5:7) Leadership - God held these people responsible for the sins of their children because the children had followed their parents' example. God will hold us accountable for leading others--especially children--astray by our example. (See Jesus' words in Mark 9:42.) 

(5:15) Babylon - Babylonia was indeed an ancient nation. The old Babylonian Empire had lasted from about 1900 BC to 1550 BC, and earlier kingdoms had been on its soil as early as 3000 BC. Babylon in Jeremiah's day would soon rebel against Assyrian domination, form its own army, conquer Assyria, and become the next dominant world power. 

(5:21) Refusing to Listen - Have you ever spoken to someone only to realize that the person didn't hear a word you were saying? Jeremiah told the people that their eyes and ears did them no good because they refused to see or hear God's message. The people of Judah and Israel did not listen to God's promised blessings for obedience and destruction for disobedience. When God speaks through his Word or his messengers, we harm ourselves if we fail to listen. God's message will never change us unless we listen to it. 

(5:22-24) Respecting the Lord - What is your attitude when you come into God's presence? We should come with fear and trembling (that is, awe and respect) because God sets the boundaries of the roaring seas and provides the rain. God had to strip away all the benefits that Judah and Israel had grown to expect from him and give the people another opportunity to turn back to him. God still sometimes uses the same method of blessing or withholding blessing to get our attention. Don't wait until God removes your cherished resources before committing yourself to him. 

(5:28-29) Defenseless - People and nations who please God treat orphans justly and care for the poor. Wicked people in Israel treated the defenseless unjustly, which displeased God greatly. Some defenseless people--orphans, those who are poor or homeless, and the lonely--are within your reach. What action can you take to help at least one of them? 

(5:31) At this time the religious climate was chaotic. The priests, God's ministers, were leading by their own authority, not by the truth of God's Word. Many prophets were telling lies and 1/2 truths, not messages from the Lord. The People had turned from the truth (God's Word) and heard only what they wanted to hear.

LIFE APPLICATION by Dr. Dave Burnette

Each day we walk through the Bible chapter by chapter making an application of our text to help us grow in the Lord. Many applications can be made from each day's text. Today, we continue in the Book of Jeremiah 5. Our text today shows no respect for God from His people in Jerusalem. In verse 7, we see the children of the disobedient fathers suffering because the children follow their example. In making application, we know that we never sin unto ourselves. Our sin affects others directly and indirectly. In this process, we see the ones we love suffering from our misjudgment. How about you? Do you see how your sin affects others? Let us learn from our text today that we never sin unto ourselves, but our sin always affects others.

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