Nepaug Bible Church - http://www.nepaugchurch.org - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes - http://www.nepaugchurch.org/pm/pm20050601.htm
JEREMIAH: STAYING UPRIGHT AMIDST EVIL PRESSURES
Part VII: Prophecies Regarding Judah's Captivity
B. God's Sovereign Punishment Of The Nations In Contrast To Pagan Belief
Lesson: (1) In sharp contrast to the pagan religious VIEW of the day that God was sovereign over only Judah where His temple was located, God was sovereign over the WHOLE UNIVERSE! (2) Besides, God related to His people as revealed in Scripture, NOT in accord with PAGAN belief! (3) Thus, God planned to judge not only Judah, but ALL the WORLD'S nations for their rebellion against Him in the form of pagan belief begun at Babel in Genesis 11 that had led even the nation Judah away from Him!
- It is easy to get caught up in the prevailing winds of religious views that blow about in our day, and that whether they be Biblically correct or errant ones!
- Yet, GOD functions ABOVE the din of such beliefs, working to fulfill His WORD, a truth made clear in Jeremiah 25:1-38 in its context and to which we do well to hearken (as follows):
- God's Sovereign Punishment Of The Nations In Contrast To Pagan Belief, Jeremiah 25:1-38.
- As we before learned, the people of Judah had incorporated a pagan belief to conclude those who had been taken captive to Babylon were removed from God's help and those who stayed were favored with it!
- In reality, God had let Babylon take king Jeconiah and some of the people captive to purify them so He could restore them to the land, but He planned to destroy those in Judah who did not repent, Jer . 24:1-10!
- To continue this correction of the errant view that had risen from pagan ideology, God related how Judah's coming captivity and His punishment of the Gentile nations around Judah would deal out God's just judgment in SOVEREIGN CORRECTION of PAGAN-influenced BELIEFS to the CONTRARY:
- Since the people of Judah had failed to heed the messages by the prophets of God to repent, the Lord predicted Babylon would destroy Judah and take the rest of the nation captive, Jeremiah 25:1-11a.
- They would stay in Babylon for seventy years, Jeremiah 25:11b. This length of time was given so the land could enjoy its sabbatical rests that had been missed the last 490, cf. Lev. 25:3-5; 26:33-35:
- Then, in sovereignty over ALL the nations, God would judge ALL the pagan rebellion in ALL the nations regardless what local pagan deities they trusted for preservation from harm ! (25:12-38)
- Following the Babylonian Captivity, God promised to judge Babylon that had taken His people captive for that nation's sin as well, and make Babylon a perpetual desolation, Jer. 25:12-14.
- After that, God promised to pass judgment on other nations besides Babylon, causing them each to experience His wrath in judgment for their pagan rebellion against Him and His truth, Jer. 25:15-17.
- Those nations included Judah (25:18), Egypt (25:19), Uz (25:20a), the Philistines (25:20b), the nations related to Judah in Edom (25:21a) and Moab (25:21b) (Lot's descendants, cf. Gen. 19:30-38), Tyre and Sidon (25:22), the kings of the islands beyond Judah's west coast (25:22c), Dedan, Tema and Buz in northern Arabia (25:23; Bible Know. Com., O. T., p. 1161), Arabia (25:24), Zimri, Elam and the Medes living east of the Euphrates (25:25; Ibid.) and eventually ALL the world's kingdoms, including Sheshach [a possible cryptic reference to Babylon], 25:26 (Ibid.).
- This worldwide judgment will doubtless occur in the Great Tribulation that is yet to come after the Church is raptured, cf. Rev. 6:1-19:21; however, this judgment would come with devastating effects on the world for its rejection of God and His truth that dates back to the Tower of Babel, Jeremiah 25:27-38 with Genesis 11:1-9 and 12:1-3: (a) God had initially raised up the nation Israel through Abraham to be God's witness to His light that would dispel the false pagan error among the nations that began at the Tower of Babel, Gen. 11:1-9; 12:1-3. (b) Yet, God's people had failed to be that light, and instead had become infected by the paganism that resided in the Gentile nations around her! (c) Thus, God planned to judge Israel and the Gentile nations for this evil, Jer. 25:27-38!
Application: We TODAY must NOT lean on prevailing religious views as the basis for gaining God's favor, for they are often laced with pagan error that began at Babel and upon which God's judgment has yet fully to fall, cf. Revelation 17:3-5; 18:1-3! Rather, we must heed Scripture ALONE!