Verse 1 – The word which came to Jeremiah from he Lord, saying:
Verse 2 – “Arise and go down to the potter’s house and there I will cause you to hear My words.”
If we listen closely, sometimes God will tell us to go to a certain place or to a person, but doesn’t tell us what to say or do until we get there.
Verse 3 – Then I went down to the potters house, and there he was, making something at the wheel.
Like the episode with the sash, this trip to the potters house will provide Jeremiah with a symbolic action message.
Verse 4 – And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter; so he made it again into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to make.
Like the clay, we are marred, scared, cracked, and damaged, until we come to Christ. He places us on His potter’s wheel to reshape us into His image. He will remold our lives, if we let Him.
Verse 5 – Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying:
Verse 6 – “O house of Israel, can I not do with you as this potter?” says the Lord. “Look, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel!
God had a master plan for Israel, just as He does for each one of us. He knows how to get the defects out and reshape us into a valuable vessel to be used by Him for His kingdom.
The difference between that lump of clay was that it has no free will as we do so the potter could make it into anything He chose to with no resistance from the clay. However, with us, our wills and desires should not get in the way of what the Potter wants for us.
Verse 7 – “The instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, to pull down, and to destroy it,
Verse 8 – “if that nation against whom I have spoken turns from evil, I will relent of the disaster that I thought to bring upon it.
Verse 9 – “And the instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it,
Verse 10 – “if it does evil in My sight so that it does not obey My voice, then I will relent concerning the good with which I said I would benefit it.
God never changes His character, nature, or being, but in His actions towards us when we change our response to Him. When we cry out to Him with a sincere heart, He responds with love and grace.
Verse 11 – “Now therefore, speak to the men of Judah and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying, ‘Thus says the Lord: “Behold, I am fashioning a disaster and devising a plan against you. Return now everyone from his evil way, and make your ways and your doings good.” ‘ ”
Verse 12 – And they said, “That is hopeless! so we will walk according to our plans, and we will every one do the imagination of his evil heart.”
In a relationship with God, independence and defiance, becomes stubbornness against God’s authority. This attitude becomes a way of life if it goes un-checked.
Verse 13 – Therefore thus says the Lord: “Ask now among the Gentiles, who has heard such a thing? The virgin of Israel has done a very horrible thing.
Verse 14 – Will a man leave the snow-water of Lebanon, which comes from the rock of the field? Will the cold flowing waters be forsaken for strange waters?
Meaning: Nature was a lot more consistent and dependable than Judah had been.
Verse 15 – “Because My people have forgotten Me, they have burned incense to worthless idols. And they have caused themselves to stumble in their ways, from the ancient paths, to walk in pathways and not on a highway,
Verse 16 – to make their land desolate and a perpetual hissing; everyone who passes by it will be astonished and shake his head.
A custom in the Near Eastern nations, people would make a hissing sound and shake their heads in disbelief.
Verse 17 – I will scatter them as with an east wind before the enemy; I will show them the back and not the face in the day of their calamity.”
The east wind was the hot wind from the desert, the same direction Babylon would come. Showing the back and not the face, showed God’s rejection on Judah.
Verse 18 – Then they said, “Come and let us devise plans against Jeremiah; for the law shall not perish from the priest, nor counsel from the wise, nor the word from the prophet. Come and let us attack him with the tongue, and let us not heed to any of his words.”
Jeremiah’s words and actions challenged the people’s social and moral behavior. They didn’t care that what he spoke was coming from God, they didn’t want to hear it.
The first thing people want to yell when living in sin is, “Don’t judge me!” But the people did get judged. Yes, God is a loving God, but if you’re not under the blood of Christ, you will be held accountable.
Verse 19 – Give heed to me, O Lord, and listen to the voice of those who contend with me!
Verse 20 – Shall evil be repaid for good? For they have dug a pit for my life. Remember that I stood before You to speak good for them, and to turn away Your wrath for them.
Verse 21 – Therefore deliver up their children to the famine, and pour out their blood by the force of the sword; let their wives become widows and bereaved of their children. Let their men be put to death, their young men be slain by the sword in battle.
Verse 22 – Let a cry be heard from their houses when You bring a troop suddenly upon them; for they have dug a pit to take me, and hidden snares for my feet.
Verse 23 – Yet, Lord, You know all their counsel which is against me, to slay me. Provide no atonement for their iniquity, nor blot out their sin from Your sight; but let them be overthrown before You. Deal thus with them in time of Your anger.
This is not a prayer for Christians today to pray against others. When you have treated someone kindly, prayed with them, helped in every way, and they stab you in the back-heart, just let them go. It won’t take very long for them to see what they’ve done, because they didn’t come against you, they came against whom you represent. Go sow your seeds to another.