Jeremiah: Prophet Of Judgment Followed By Blessing

Part XI: God's Warning Of Judah's Coming Disillusionment For Heeding False Prophets

(Jeremiah 4:10)


I.                 Introduction

A.    Romans 1:21-32 presents stages of spiritual darkness that have come upon pagan men for repeat stages of rejecting the true revelation of the Lord that is obvious even in nature itself.

B.     A similar event occurred in Judah's case in the days of Jeremiah, and Jeremiah 4:10 describes this briefly, supplying an edifying wake-up call that we heed the true messages of God's true messengers (as follows):

II.              God's Warning Of Judah's Coming Disillusionment For Heeding False Prophets, Jeremiah 4:10.

A.    Jeremiah 4:10 "is one of the most difficult verses in the book to interpret," for the prophet Jeremiah here "claimed that God had deceived the people [of Judah] by promising they would have peace when in fact God had brought His sword of judgment to their throats." (Bible Know. Com., O. T., p. 1136; brackets ours)

B.     At first glance, this statement appears to charge God with lying to Judah's people about their fate, but such an interpretation must be rejected because "it is out of character with the nature of God (cf. Num. 23:19)," Ibid.

C.     So, to learn what Jeremiah meant, we view this verse in the wide context of the whole book, Ibid. (as follows):

1.      The book of Jeremiah reveals the Lord's true prophets had consistently predicted judgment, Ibid.:

                             a.         Back in God's call of Jeremiah to his prophetic ministry, the Lord had told him that He was bringing judgment in the form of an invading Gentile army from the north for Judah's sin, Jeremiah 1:14-16.  This was to be the general theme of Jeremiah's whole ministry, for God had then told him that the whole nation would oppose him in his ministry, but that God would enable him to withstand them, Jeremiah 1:18-19.

                            b.         The prophet Micah, the Morasthite, was noted by Judah's elders in Jeremiah 26:18-19 KJV of his prophecies in the days of king Hezekiah of God's judging Jerusalem to be leveled for her idolatry, and Hezekiah had repented so that the Lord had relented of the calamity He had intended to bring on the city.  Micah's prophecy on this matter is recorded in Micah 3:9-12.

                             c.         A contemporary of Jeremiah, the prophet Habakkuk (Ryrie Study Bible, KJV 1978, p. 1045, 1296) at Habakkuk 1:1-11, predicted Babylon's invasion of Judah for the nation's rebellion against God.

                            d.         Another contemporary of Jeremiah, the prophet Zephaniah (Ibid., p. 1045, 1301) at Zephaniah 1:4-13 also predicted coming judgment on Judah and Jerusalem for idolatry.

2.      Yet, the book of Jeremiah shows the false prophets had consistently predicted peace, Ibid., B. K. C., O. T.:

                             a.         Jeremiah complained in Jeremiah 6:13-14 that the priests and false prophets had dealt falsely with the people of Judah by saying "Peace, peace," when there was no such peace on the horizon!

                            b.         In Jeremiah 14:13-14 ESV, Jeremiah told the Lord that opposite his message of judgment on Judah, the other prophets were saying that God had promised, "'You shall not see the sword, nor shall you have famine, but I will give you assured peace in this place,'" and the Lord had replied to Jeremiah, "The prophets are prophesying lies in my name.  I did not sent them.  They are prophesying to you a lying vision, worthless divination, and the deceit of their own minds."

                             c.         In Jeremiah 23:16-17 ESV, God said of such prophets, "Do not listen to the words of the prophets who prophesy to you, filling you with vain hopes.  They speak vision of their own minds, not from the mouth of the Lord.  They say continually to those who despise the word of the Lord, 'It shall be well with you'; and to everyone who stubbornly follows his own heart, they say, 'No disaster shall come upon you.'"

3.      Thus, Jeremiah's complaint in Jeremiah 4:10 in the midst of his predictions of coming judgment on Judah was his complaint that God had allowed the false prophets to mislead the people, that when the judgment of God fell, Judah's people would be shocked in their disillusionment, Ibid., Bible Know. Com., O. T.

D.    Thus, just as God turns those who reject His Word in Romans 1 over to further apostasy in judgment, just as God will allow the world to be deceived by a powerful deception in the Great Tribulation so that they will be judged for having rejected the truth in Christ (2 Thess. 2:10-12), God allowed the false prophets in Jeremiah's era to foment much error on the people of Judah further to judge them for rejecting the words of His prophets!


Lesson: God allowed the false prophets to foment forth their errant message further to deceive an already rebellious nation of Judah for having rejected the true messages of God's true prophets.


Application: May we heed the truth we are taught lest we end up in error and disillusionment! (Matthew 13:19)