Dr. John Hartmann

Proclaiming the Whole Counsel of God

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Idolatry- Judah’s Great Sin

October 3rd, 2010 · No Comments

This timely message begins with an exhortation for the church to be awakened to it’s priestly and prophetic calling. This is followed by a discussion of what is involved in being persecuted “for righteousness’ sake” (Matthew 5:10-12), which includes living a righteous life and maintaining the testimony of Jesus, as “light in the Lord” that exposes darkness (Ephesians 5:8-14). Jeremiah the prophet provides an example, as we find that he was beaten and put in stocks for having spoken God’s Word of judgment against the nation of Judah (Jeremiah 20:1-2).

The prophet had warned the nation of God’s judgment and called it to repentance, in hope that God might relent of the calamity purposed against it and show mercy (Jeremiah 18:1-11).  With the offer of mercy rejected (18:12), the prophet proceeds to describe the nature of Judah’s sin and of the judgment that was about to fall (18:13-17). The nation’s chief sin was idolatry. They had “walked after emptiness and become empty” (2:5). Forsaking the Lord “days without number”, they had rejected the fountain of living waters, and had hewn for themselves broken cisterns that could hold no water (2:13). God had promised to bless His people in great fashion if they would but obey His voice and walk in His ways (Leviticus 26:1-13; Deuteronomy 28:1-14), the ancient paths He had set for them. He also warned of very severe consequences for disobedience, the curse of the Law (Leviticus 26:14-33; Deuteronomy 28: 15-68). Leviticus 26 is unique in that it reveals the progressive nature of God’s judgment, in which He seeks to bring discipline with a view to repentance (cf. Amos 4:6-13; Psalm 94). We gain see the truth of Proverbs 14:34, that “righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people”. We also see that God disciplines nations, with a view to fulfilling His long-range redemptive purpose to bless all nations in Jesus, Abraham’s true “seed”.

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