Today’s devotion comes from Jeremiah 9:17-26.  Here is a link to this Scripture – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Jeremiah+9&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

Thus says the Lord, “Let not a wise man boast of his wisdom, and let not the mighty man boast of his might, let not a rich man boast of his riches;  but let him who boasts boast of this, that he understands and knows Me, that I am the Lord who exercises lovingkindness, justice and righteousness on earth;  for I delight in these things,” declares the Lord.”  Jeremiah 9:23-24.

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Other doctrine preaches and teaches about man, man’s alleged free-will, and a god who must wait and react to what man does.

But, Reformed Doctrine preaches and teaches about God, God’s will, and the God of Scripture Who initiates lovingkindness, justice and righteousness on earth;  for He delights in these things.

just as He (God) chose us in Him (Christ) before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him.  In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will,”  Ephesians 1:4-5.

“9 “Remember the former things long past,
For I am God, and there is no other;
I am God, and there is no one like Me,
10 Declaring the end from the beginning,
And from ancient times things which have not been done,
Saying, ‘My purpose will be established,
And I will accomplish all My good pleasure’;
11 Calling a bird of prey from the east,
The man of My purpose from a far country.
Truly I have spoken;  truly I will bring it to pass.
I have planned it, surely I will do it.”   Isaiah 46:9-11.   

God accomplishes all of His good pleasure.  Total Perfect Triumph.

The Rock!  His work is perfect,
For all His ways are just;
A God of faithfulness and without injustice,
Righteous and upright is He.”    Deuteronomy 32:4.

For the word of the Lord is upright,
And all His work is done in faithfulness.
He loves righteousness and justice;
The earth is full of the lovingkindness of the Lord.”  Psalm 33:4-5.

The Lord reigns, let the peoples tremble;
He is enthroned above the cherubim, let the earth shake!
2 The Lord is great in Zion,
And He is exalted above all the peoples.
3 Let them praise Your great and awesome name;
Holy is He.
4 The strength of the King loves justice;
You have established equity;
You have executed justice and righteousness in Jacob.
5 Exalt the Lord our God
And worship at His footstool;
Holy is He.”  Psalm 99:1-5.

For consider your calling, brethren, that there were not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble;  but God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong, and the base things of the world and the despised God has chosen, the things that are not, so that He may nullify the things that are, so that no man may boast before God.  But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption, so that, just as it is written, “Let him who boasts, boast in the Lord.”  1 Corinthians 1:26-31.

Today’s devotion comes from Jeremiah 9:1-16.  Here is a link to this Scripture – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Jeremiah+9&version=NASB

I quote only the following Scripture.

“They bend their tongue like their bow;
Lies and not truth prevail in the land;
For they proceed from evil to evil,
And they do not know Me,” declares the Lord.
“Let everyone be on guard against his neighbor,
And do not trust any brother;
Because every brother deals craftily,
And every neighbor goes about as a slanderer.
“Everyone deceives his neighbor
And does not speak the truth,
They have taught their tongue to speak lies;
They weary themselves committing iniquity.
“Your dwelling is in the midst of deceit;
Through deceit they refuse to know Me,” declares the Lord.

Therefore thus says the Lord of hosts,

“Behold, I will refine them and assay them;
For what else can I do, because of the daughter of My people?
“Their tongue is a deadly arrow;
It speaks deceit;
With his mouth one speaks peace to his neighbor,
But inwardly he sets an ambush for him.
“Shall I not punish them for these things?” declares the Lord.
“On a nation such as this
Shall I not avenge Myself?

12 Who is the wise man that may understand this?  And who is he to whom the mouth of the Lord has spoken, that he may declare it?  Why is the land ruined, laid waste like a desert, so that no one passes through?  13 The Lord said, “Because they have forsaken My law which I set before them, and have not obeyed My voice nor walked according to it, 14 but have walked after the stubbornness of their heart and after the Baals, as their fathers taught them,” 15 therefore thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, “behold, I will feed them, this people, with wormwood and give them poisoned water to drink.  16 I will scatter them among the nations, whom neither they nor their fathers have known;  and I will send the sword after them until I have annihilated them.”  Jeremiah 9:3-9 and 12-16.

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The LORD had warned previously.

But if you turn away and forsake My statutes and My commandments which I have set before you, and go and serve other gods and worship them, then I will uproot you from My land which I have given you, and this house which I have consecrated for My name I will cast out of My sight and I will make it a proverb and a byword among all peoples.  As for this house, which was exalted, everyone who passes by it will be astonished and say, ‘Why has the Lord done thus to this land and to this house?’  And they will say, ‘Because they forsook the Lord, the God of their fathers who brought them from the land of Egypt, and they adopted other gods and worshiped them and served them;  therefore He has brought all this adversity on them.’”  2 Chronicles 7:19-22.

But, there is hope!

The hope is not based on man coming back to his senses and using his wisdom, goodness, and alleged free-will to seek the LORD.

The hope is based on God’s “Unconditional Election”, the “U” of “TULIP”, the Five Points of Calvinism, the Reformed Doctrine of Salvation. 

Election is “the foundation of Salvation”.

Article 7Election is the unchangeable purpose of God, whereby, before the foundation of the world, he hath out of mere grace, according to the sovereign good pleasure of his own will, chosen, from the whole human race, which had fallen through their own fault, from their primitive state of rectitude, into sin and destruction, a certain number of persons to redemption in Christ, whom he from eternity appointed the Mediator and Head of the elect, and the foundation of Salvation.  …”  FIRST HEAD OF DOCTRINE Of Divine Predestination of Canons of Dordt. 

“I say then, God has not rejected His people, has He?  May it never be!  For I too am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin.  God has not rejected His people whom He foreknew.  Or do you not know what the Scripture says in the passage about Elijah, how he pleads with God against Israel?  “Lord, they have killed Your prophets, they have torn down Your altars, and I alone am left, and they are seeking my life.”  But what is the divine response to him?  “I have kept for Myself seven thousand men who have not bowed the knee to Baal.”  In the same way then, there has also come to be at the present time a remnant according to God’s gracious choice.  But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works, otherwise grace is no longer grace.”  Romans 11:1-6.

For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren;  and these whom He predestined, He also called;  and these whom He called, He also justified;  and these whom He justified, He also glorified.”  Romans 8:29-30.

For He says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.”  So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy.”  Romans 9:15-16. 

Today’s devotion comes from Jeremiah chapter 8.  Here is a link to this chapter – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Jeremiah+8&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“You shall say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord,

“Do men fall and not get up again?
Does one turn away and not repent?
“Why then has this people, Jerusalem,
Turned away in continual apostasy?
They hold fast to deceit,
They refuse to return.
“I have listened and heard,
They have spoken what is not right;
No man repented of his wickedness,
Saying, ‘What have I done?’
Everyone turned to his course,
Like a horse charging into the battle.
“Even the stork in the sky
Knows her seasons;
And the turtledove and the swift and the thrush
Observe the time of their migration;
But My people do not know
The ordinance of the Lord.

“How can you say, ‘We are wise,
And the law of the Lord is with us’?
But behold, the lying pen of the scribes
Has made it into a lie.
“The wise men are put to shame,
They are dismayed and caught;
Behold, they have rejected the word of the Lord,
And what kind of wisdom do they have?
10 “Therefore I will give their wives to others,
Their fields to new owners;
Because from the least even to the greatest
Everyone is greedy for gain;
From the prophet even to the priest
Everyone practices deceit.
11 “They heal the brokenness of the daughter of My people superficially,
Saying, ‘Peace, peace,’
But there is no peace.
12 “Were they ashamed because of the abomination they had done?
They certainly were not ashamed,
And they did not know how to blush;
Therefore they shall fall among those who fall;
At the time of their punishment they shall be brought down,”
Says the Lord.”  Jeremiah 8:4-12.

————————

We see in today’s Scripture that despite having the ordinances of God and prophets and priests and every advantage of being surrounded by the things of God as a Jew, and despite being in Jerusalem, where the Temple was located and the center of all these advantages, the people of Jerusalem continually turned away from God.

“Why then has this people, Jerusalem,
Turned away in continual apostasy?
They hold fast to deceit,
They refuse to return.
“I have listened and heard,
They have spoken what is not right;
No man repented of his wickedness,
Saying, ‘What have I done?’
Everyone turned to his course,
Like a horse charging into the battle.”  Verses 5-6.

If the Jews, superficially the people of God, are that far away from God as shown by today’s Scripture, then what hope is there for the Gentiles?!

What then?  Are we (the Jews) better than they (the Gentiles a/k/a Greeks)?  Not at all;  for we have already charged that both Jews and Greeks are all under sin;  10 as it is written,

There is none righteous, not even one;
11 There is none who understands,
There is none who seeks for God;
12 All have turned aside, together they have become useless;
There is none who does good,
There is not even one.”

13 Their throat is an open grave,
With their tongues they keep deceiving,”
The poison of asps is under their lips”;
14 Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness”;
15 Their feet are swift to shed blood,
16 Destruction and misery are in their paths,
17 And the path of peace they have not known.”
18 There is no fear of God before their eyes.”  Romans 3:9-18.

And yet, other doctrine preaches and teaches that man is wise, man is good, man has free-will, and that man just needs to try harder.

But, Reformed Doctrine sees the “Total Depravity” of man throughout Scripture such as shown in today’s Scripture.

Therefore, there is no hope in anything that man will do.

The only hope is that God will choose (elect) some for salvation and do everything necessary for their salvation as taught by Reformed Doctrine summarized by “TULIP”, the Five Points of Calvinism, the Reformed Doctrine of Salvation.

Because of man’s “Total Depravity”, the “T” of “TULIP”, it is necessary for God to choose those whom He wants to save and make those dead in sin alive. 

It is necessary for God to do everything from the beginning to the end:  from the beginning of God’s “Unconditional Election” through Christ’s “Limited Atonement” through God’s “Irresistible Grace” to the end of God’s “Preservation of the Saints”, the “U”, “L”, “I”, and “P” of “TULIP”, the Five Points of Calvinism, the Reformed Doctrine of Salvation. 

But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.  For by grace you have been saved through faith;  and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God;  not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.”  Ephesians 2:4-8.

Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | July 6, 2017

“I rejoice at Your word, As one who finds great spoil.”

Today’s devotion comes from Jeremiah 7:16-34.  Here is a link to this Scripture – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Jeremiah+7&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

As for you, do not pray for this people, and do not lift up cry or prayer for them, and do not intercede with Me;  for I do not hear you.  Do you not see what they are doing in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem?  The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead dough to make cakes for the queen of heaven;  and they pour out drink offerings to other gods in order to spite Me.  Do they spite Me?” declares the Lord.  “Is it not themselves they spite, to their own shame?”  Therefore thus says the Lord God, “Behold, My anger and My wrath will be poured out on this place, on man and on beast and on the trees of the field and on the fruit of the ground;  and it will burn and not be quenched.”

But this is what I commanded them, saying, ‘Obey My voice, and I will be your God, and you will be My people;  and you will walk in all the way which I command you, that it may be well with you.’  Yet they did not obey or incline their ear, but walked in their own counsels and in the stubbornness of their evil heart, and went backward and not forward.  Since the day that your fathers came out of the land of Egypt until this day, I have sent you all My servants the prophets, daily rising early and sending them.  Yet they did not listen to Me or incline their ear, but stiffened their neck;  they did more evil than their fathers.

“You shall speak all these words to them, but they will not listen to you;  and you shall call to them, but they will not answer you.  You shall say to them, ‘This is the nation that did not obey the voice of the Lord their God or accept correction;  truth has perished and has been cut off from their mouth.

The dead bodies of this people will be food for the birds of the sky and for the beasts of the earth; and no one will frighten them away.  Then I will make to cease from the cities of Judah and from the streets of Jerusalem the voice of joy and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride;  for the land will become a ruin.”  Jeremiah 7:16-20 and 23-28 and 33-34.

—————–

In sharp contrast to “This is the nation that did not obey the voice of the Lord their God or accept correction;  truth has perished and has been cut off from their mouth.”  (verse 28), “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, The people whom He has chosen for His own inheritance.”  Psalm 33:12.

There are those who “did not receive the love of truth so as to be saved”.  2 Thessalonians 2: 10-13.

And, there are those who did receive the love of truth so as to be saved such as the Psalmist in Psalm chapter 119.  We meditate on the following verses from Psalm chapter 119.

“I rejoice at Your word,
As one who finds great spoil.”  Psalm 119:162.

“The sum of Your word is truth,
And every one of Your righteous ordinances is everlasting.”  Psalm 119:160.

163 I hate and despise falsehood,
But I love Your law.
164 Seven times a day I praise You,
Because of Your righteous ordinances.
165 Those who love Your law have great peace,
And nothing causes them to stumble.
166 I hope for Your salvation, O Lord,
And do Your commandments.”  Psalm 119:163-166.

127 Therefore I love Your commandments
Above gold, yes, above fine gold.
128 Therefore I esteem right all Your precepts concerning everything,
I hate every false way.”  Psalm 119:127-128.

129 Your testimonies are wonderful;
Therefore my soul observes them.
130 The unfolding of Your words gives light;
It gives understanding to the simple.
131 I opened my mouth wide and panted,
For I longed for Your commandments.
132 Turn to me and be gracious to me,
After Your manner with those who love Your name.
133 Establish my footsteps in Your word,
And do not let any iniquity have dominion over me.”  Psalm 119:129-133.

118 You have rejected all those who wander from Your statutes,
For their deceitfulness is useless.
119 You have removed all the wicked of the earth like dross;
Therefore I love Your testimonies.”  Psalm 119:118-119.

“Your word is a lamp to my feet
And a light to my path.”  Psalm 119:105.

103 How sweet are Your words to my taste!
Yes, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
104 From Your precepts I get understanding;
Therefore I hate every false way.”  Psalm 119:103-104.

“Open my eyes, that I may behold
Wonderful things from Your law.”  Psalm 119:18.

“Your word I have treasured in my heart,
That I may not sin against You.”  Psalm 119:11.

15 I will meditate on Your precepts
And regard Your ways.
16 I shall delight in Your statutes;
I shall not forget Your word.”  Psalm 119:15-16.

“How blessed are those whose way is blameless,
Who walk in the law of the Lord.
How blessed are those who observe His testimonies,
Who seek Him with all their heart.
They also do no unrighteousness;
They walk in His ways.”  Psalm 119:1-3.

Today’s devotion comes from Jeremiah 7:1-15.

“The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying, “Stand in the gate of the Lord’s house and proclaim there this word and say, ‘Hear the word of the Lord, all you of Judah, who enter by these gates to worship the Lord!’”  Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, “Amend your ways and your deeds, and I will let you dwell in this place.  Do not trust in deceptive words, saying, ‘This is the temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord.’  For if you truly amend your ways and your deeds, if you truly practice justice between a man and his neighbor, if you do not oppress the alien, the orphan, or the widow, and do not shed innocent blood in this place, nor walk after other gods to your own ruin, then I will let you dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers forever and ever.

“Behold, you are trusting in deceptive words to no avail.  Will you steal, murder, and commit adultery and swear falsely, and offer sacrifices to Baal and walk after other gods that you have not known, then come and stand before Me in this house, which is called by My name, and say, ‘We are delivered!’—that you may do all these abominations?  Has this house, which is called by My name, become a den of robbers in your sight?  Behold, I, even I, have seen it,” declares the Lord.

“But go now to My place which was in Shiloh, where I made My name dwell at the first, and see what I did to it because of the wickedness of My people Israel.  And now, because you have done all these things,” declares the Lord, “and I spoke to you, rising up early and speaking, but you did not hear, and I called you but you did not answer, therefore, I will do to the house which is called by My name, in which you trust, and to the place which I gave you and your fathers, as I did to Shiloh.  I will cast you out of My sight, as I have cast out all your brothers, all the offspring of Ephraim.”  Jeremiah 7:1-15.

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“Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, “Amend your ways and your deeds, and I will let you dwell in this place.”  Verse 3.

Yes!  We should amend our ways and our deeds.  But, how do we do it? 

Therefore, my brethren, you also were made to die to the Law through the body of Christ, so that you might be joined to another, to Him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit for God.  For while we were in the flesh, the sinful passions, which were aroused by the Law, were at work in the members of our body to bear fruit for death.  But now we have been released from the Law, having died to that by which we were bound, so that we serve in newness of the Spirit and not in oldness of the letter.”  Romans 7:4-6.

16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.  17 For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh;  for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please.  18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law.  19 Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are:  immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, 21 envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.  22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control;  against such things there is no law.  24 Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.”  Galatians 5:16-24.

For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.  For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did:  sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.  For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.  For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God;  for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so, and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you.  But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him.  10 If Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, yet the spirit is alive because of righteousness.  11 But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.

12 So then, brethren, we are under obligation, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh— 13 for if you are living according to the flesh, you must die;  but if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live.  14 For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.”  Romans 8:2-24.

Today’s devotion comes from Jeremiah 6:22-30.

22 Thus says the Lord,
“Behold, a people is coming from the north land,
And a great nation will be aroused from the remote parts of the earth.
23 “They seize bow and spear;
They are cruel and have no mercy;
Their voice roars like the sea,
And they ride on horses,
Arrayed as a man for the battle
Against you, O daughter of Zion!”
24 We have heard the report of it;
Our hands are limp.
Anguish has seized us,
Pain as of a woman in childbirth.
25 Do not go out into the field
And do not walk on the road,
For the enemy has a sword,
Terror is on every side.
26 O daughter of my people, put on sackcloth
And roll in ashes;
Mourn as for an only son,
A lamentation most bitter.
For suddenly the destroyer
Will come upon us.

27 “I have made you an assayer and a tester among My people,
That you may know and assay their way.”
28 All of them are stubbornly rebellious,
Going about as a talebearer.
They are bronze and iron;
They, all of them, are corrupt.
29 The bellows blow fiercely,
The lead is consumed by the fire;
In vain the refining goes on,
But the wicked are not separated.
30 They call them rejected silver,
Because the Lord has rejected them.”  Jeremiah 6:22-30.

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The purpose of refining is to purify by separating the precious metal or material such as silver or gold from the worthless material.

There can be different processes of refining from more mild ways of separating to more harsh ways of separating.  For example, there can processes of refining such as mining or centrifuging (if that is a word) or distilling or boiling or burning.   

But, we see in today’s Scripture that the wickedness of the people of Israel so infiltrated Israel that the wicked were not separated, so that at least this process of the refining (whatever it was) was not successful, and they were rejected.

29 The bellows blow fiercely,
The lead is consumed by the fire;
In vain the refining goes on,
But the wicked are not separated.
30 They call them rejected silver,
Because the Lord has rejected them.”  Verses 29-30. 

But, there is hope!

There is the Almighty Purifier.

But who can endure the day of His coming?  And who can stand when He appears?  For He is like a refiner’s fire and like fullers’ soap.  He will sit as a smelter and purifier of silver, and He will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, so that they may present to the Lord offerings in righteousness.  Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasing to the Lord as in the days of old and as in former years.”  Malachi 3:2-4.

“It will come about in all the land,”
Declares the Lord,
“That two parts in it will be cut off and perish;
But the third will be left in it.
“And I will bring the third part through the fire,
Refine them as silver is refined,
And test them as gold is tested.
They will call on My name,
And I will answer them;
I will say, ‘They are My people,’
And they will say, ‘The Lord is my God.’”  Zechariah 13:8-9.

10 For You have tried us, O God;
You have refined us as silver is refined.
11 You brought us into the net;
You laid an oppressive burden upon our loins.
12 You made men ride over our heads;
We went through fire and through water,
Yet You brought us out into a place of abundance.”  Psalm 66:10-12.

Today’s devotion comes from Jeremiah 6:1-21.  Here is a link to this Scripture – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Jeremiah+6&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“Flee for safety, O sons of Benjamin,
From the midst of Jerusalem!
Now blow a trumpet in Tekoa
And raise a signal over Beth-haccerem;
For evil looks down from the north,
And a great destruction.

11 But I am full of the wrath of the Lord;
I am weary with holding it in.
“Pour it out on the children in the street
And on the gathering of young men together;
For both husband and wife shall be taken,
The aged and the very old.
12 “Their houses shall be turned over to others,
Their fields and their wives together;
For I will stretch out My hand
Against the inhabitants of the land,” declares the Lord.
13 “For from the least of them even to the greatest of them,
Everyone is greedy for gain,
And from the prophet even to the priest
Everyone deals falsely.
14 “They have healed the brokenness of My people superficially,
Saying, ‘Peace, peace,’
But there is no peace.
15 “Were they ashamed because of the abomination they have done?
They were not even ashamed at all;
They did not even know how to blush.
Therefore they shall fall among those who fall;
At the time that I punish them,
They shall be cast down,” says the Lord.

16 Thus says the Lord,
“Stand by the ways and see and ask for the ancient paths,
Where the good way is, and walk in it;
And you will find rest for your souls.

But they said, ‘We will not walk in it.’
17 “And I set watchmen over you, saying,
‘Listen to the sound of the trumpet!’
But they said, ‘We will not listen.’
18 “Therefore hear, O nations,
And know, O congregation, what is among them.
19 “Hear, O earth:  behold, I am bringing disaster on this people,
The fruit of their plans,
Because they have not listened to My words,
And as for My law, they have rejected it also.”  Jeremiah 6:1 and 11-19.

——————–

As we read through Scripture, we have seen so much of Scripture full of the wrath of God. 

Other doctrine presents a god formed by its own desires to be some type of Santa Claus god.

But, Reformed Doctrine sees the God of Scripture to be a holy and just God full of wrath against wickedness.  

And yet, other doctrine is like the false prophets in today’s Scripture: 

“…  Saying, ‘Peace, peace,’
But there is no peace.”  Verse 14.

In contrast, Reformed Doctrine is like the watchman in today’s Scripture:

“…  “And I set watchmen over you, saying,
‘Listen to the sound of the trumpet!’”  Verse 17.

Other doctrine relies on its own works and its own wisdom and its own goodness and its own alleged free-will to maintain peace.

But, Reformed Doctrine seeing the “Total Depravity” of man such as is seen in today’s Scripture and God’s wrath against all wickedness, trusts in God alone to provide all that is needed for salvation from the beginning to the end:  from the beginning of God’s “Unconditional Election” through Christ’s “Limited Atonement” through God’s “Irresistible Grace” to the end of God’s “Preservation of the Saints”, the “U”, “L”, “I”, and “P” of “TULIP”, the Five Points of Calvinism, the Reformed Doctrine of Salvation. 

“Thus says the Lord,
“Stand by the ways and see and ask for the ancient paths,
Where the good way is, and walk in it;
And you will find rest for your souls.  …”  Verse 16. 

Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | July 2, 2017

“Let us now fear the Lord our God”

Today’s devotion comes from Jeremiah 5:14-31.  Here is a link to this Scripture – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Jeremiah+5&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

14 Therefore, thus says the Lord, the God of hosts,
“Because you have spoken this word,
Behold, I am making My words in your mouth fire
And this people wood, and it will consume them.
15 “Behold, I am bringing a nation against you from afar, O house of Israel,” declares the Lord.
“It is an enduring nation,
It is an ancient nation,
A nation whose language you do not know,
Nor can you understand what they say.
16 “Their quiver is like an open grave,
All of them are mighty men.
17 “They will devour your harvest and your food;
They will devour your sons and your daughters;
They will devour your flocks and your herds;
They will devour your vines and your fig trees;
They will demolish with the sword your fortified cities in which you trust.

18 “Yet even in those days,” declares the Lord, “I will not make you a complete destruction.  19 It shall come about when they say, ‘Why has the Lord our God done all these things to us?’ then you shall say to them, ‘As you have forsaken Me and served foreign gods in your land, so you will serve strangers in a land that is not yours.’

20 “Declare this in the house of Jacob
And proclaim it in Judah, saying,
21 ‘Now hear this, O foolish and senseless people,
Who have eyes but do not see;
Who have ears but do not hear.
22 ‘Do you not fear Me?’ declares the Lord.
‘Do you not tremble in My presence?
For I have placed the sand as a boundary for the sea,
An eternal decree, so it cannot cross over it.
Though the waves toss, yet they cannot prevail;
Though they roar, yet they cannot cross over it.
23 ‘But this people has a stubborn and rebellious heart;
They have turned aside and departed.
24 ‘They do not say in their heart,
Let us now fear the Lord our God,
Who gives rain in its season,
Both the autumn rain and the spring rain,
Who keeps for us
The appointed weeks of the harvest.”  Jeremiah 5:14-24.

————————-

Despite the LORD’s almighty ability to punish Israel and despite the prophecy that the LORD indeed would punish Israel for forsaking Him and serving foreign gods, it is astonishing that Israel did not fear the LORD nor tremble in His presence.

”   ‘Do you not fear Me?’ declares the Lord.
‘Do you not tremble in My presence?  …”  Verse 22.

Despite the LORD’s almighty ability to bless Israel if she followed Him, Israel did not fear the LORD.

“‘They do not say in their heart,
“Let us now fear the Lord our God,
Who gives rain in its season,
Both the autumn rain and the spring rain,
Who keeps for us
The appointed weeks of the harvest.”  Verse 24.

Now these things happened to them as an example, and they were written for our instruction, upon whom the ends of the ages have come.  Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed that he does not fall.”  1 Corinthians 10:11-12.

“… Let us now fear the Lord our God …”  Verse 24.

“…  “But to this one I will look,
To him who is humble and contrite of spirit, and who trembles at My word.”  Isaiah 66:2.

But know that the Lord has set apart the godly man for Himself;
The Lord hears when I call to Him.

Tremble, and do not sin;
Meditate in your heart upon your bed, and be still.  Selah.
Offer the sacrifices of righteousness,
And trust in the Lord.

Many are saying, “Who will show us any good?”
Lift up the light of Your countenance upon us, O Lord!
You have put gladness in my heart,
More than when their grain and new wine abound.
In peace I will both lie down and sleep,
For You alone, O Lord, make me to dwell in safety.”  Psalm 44:3-8.

Worship the Lord in holy attire;
Tremble before Him, all the earth.
10 Say among the nations, “The Lord reigns;
Indeed, the world is firmly established, it will not be moved;
He will judge the peoples with equity.”  Psalm 96:9-10.

Let all the earth fear the Lord;
Let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him.
For He spoke, and it was done;
He commanded, and it stood fast.
10 The Lord nullifies the counsel of the nations;
He frustrates the plans of the peoples.
11 The counsel of the Lord stands forever,
The plans of His heart from generation to generation.
12 Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord,
The people whom He has chosen for His own inheritance.”  Psalm 33:8-12.

18 Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear Him,
On those who hope for His lovingkindness,
19 To deliver their soul from death
And to keep them alive in famine.”  Psalm 33:18-19.

“O fear the Lord, you His saints;
For to those who fear Him there is no want.”  Psalm 34:9.

“Praise the Lord!
How blessed is the man who fears the Lord,
Who greatly delights in His commandments.
His descendants will be mighty on earth;
The generation of the upright will be blessed.
Wealth and riches are in his house,
And his righteousness endures forever.”  Psalm 112:1-3.

“Oh let those who fear the Lord say,
“His lovingkindness is everlasting.”  Psalm 118:4.

“How blessed is everyone who fears the Lord,
Who walks in His ways.
When you shall eat of the fruit of your hands,
You will be happy and it will be well with you.
Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine
Within your house,
Your children like olive plants
Around your table.
Behold, for thus shall the man be blessed
Who fears the Lord.”  Psalm 128:1-4.

10 He does not delight in the strength of the horse;
He does not take pleasure in the legs of a man.
11 The Lord favors those who fear Him,
Those who wait for His lovingkindness.”  Psalm 147:10-11.

Today’s devotion comes from Jeremiah 5:1-13.  Here is a link to this Scripture – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Jeremiah+5&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“Why should I pardon you?
Your sons have forsaken Me
And sworn by those who are not gods.
When I had fed them to the full,
They committed adultery
And trooped to the harlot’s house.
“They were well-fed lusty horses,
Each one neighing after his neighbor’s wife.
“Shall I not punish these people,” declares the Lord,
“And on a nation such as this
Shall I not avenge Myself?

10 “Go up through her vine rows and destroy,
But do not execute a complete destruction;
Strip away her branches,
For they are not the Lord’s.
11 “For the house of Israel and the house of Judah
Have dealt very treacherously with Me,” declares the Lord.
12 They have lied about the Lord
And said, “Not He;
Misfortune will not come on us,
And we will not see sword or famine.
13 “The prophets are as wind,
And the word is not in them.
Thus it will be done to them!”  Jeremiah 5:7-13. 

———————

From the beginning, Scripture exhorts us to put the word of God in us.

Hear, O Israel!  The Lord is our God, the Lord is one!  You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.  These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart.  You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up.  You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead.  You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”  Deuteronomy 6:4-9.

What are the negative consequences of the word of God not being in us? 

“The prophets are as wind,
And the word is not in them.
Thus it will be done to them!”  Verse 13.

What are the positive consequences of the word of God being in us? 

“Your word I have treasured in my heart,
That I may not sin against You.”  Psalm 119:11.

“Your words were found and I ate them,
And Your words became for me a joy and the delight of my heart;
For I have been called by Your name,
O Lord God of hosts.”  Jeremiah 15:16.

But the seed in the good soil, these are the ones who have heard the word in an honest and good heart, and hold it fast, and bear fruit with perseverance.”  Luke 8:15.

But his delight is in the law of the Lord,
And in His law he meditates day and night.
He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water,
Which yields its fruit in its season
And its leaf does not wither;
And in whatever he does, he prospers.”  Psalm 1:2-3.

But, despite knowing the negative consequences of the word of God not being within us and knowing the positive consequences of the word of God being in us, without the intervention of God, we all (Israel and Gentiles alike), go our own way, ignoring the word of God.

But, there is hope!

Behold, days are coming,” declares the Lord, “when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah, not like the covenant which I made with their fathers in the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, although I was a husband to them,” declares the Lord.  “But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares the Lord, “I will put My law within them and on their heart I will write it;  and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.  They will not teach again, each man his neighbor and each man his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they will all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them,” declares the Lord, “for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.”  Jeremiah 31:31-34

Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | June 29, 2017

“Seek refuge” in the LORD.

Today’s devotion comes from Jeremiah chapter 4.  Here is a link to this chapter – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Jeremiah+4&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“If you will return, O Israel,” declares the Lord,
Then you should return to Me.
And if you will put away your detested things from My presence,
And will not waver,
And you will swear, ‘As the Lord lives,’
In truth, in justice and in righteousness;
Then the nations will bless themselves in Him,
And in Him they will glory.”

For thus says the Lord to the men of Judah and to Jerusalem,

“Break up your fallow ground,
And do not sow among thorns.
“Circumcise yourselves to the Lord
And remove the foreskins of your heart,
Men of Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem,
Or else My wrath will go forth like fire
And burn with none to quench it,
Because of the evil of your deeds.”

Declare in Judah and proclaim in Jerusalem, and say,
“Blow the trumpet in the land;
Cry aloud and say,
‘Assemble yourselves, and let us go
Into the fortified cities.’
“Lift up a standard toward Zion!
Seek refuge, do not stand still,
For I am bringing evil from the north,
And great destruction.
“A lion has gone up from his thicket,
And a destroyer of nations has set out;
He has gone out from his place
To make your land a waste.
Your cities will be ruins
Without inhabitant.
“For this, put on sackcloth,
Lament and wail;
For the fierce anger of the Lord
Has not turned back from us.”

“It shall come about in that day,” declares the Lord, “that the heart of the king and the heart of the princes will fail; and the priests will be appalled and the prophets will be astounded.”

14 Wash your heart from evil, O Jerusalem,
That you may be saved.
How long will your wicked thoughts
Lodge within you?
15 For a voice declares from Dan,
And proclaims wickedness from Mount Ephraim.
16 “Report it to the nations, now!
Proclaim over Jerusalem,
‘Besiegers come from a far country,
And lift their voices against the cities of Judah.
17 ‘Like watchmen of a field they are against her round about,
Because she has rebelled against Me,’ declares the Lord.
18 “Your ways and your deeds
Have brought these things to you.
This is your evil. How bitter!
How it has touched your heart!”  Jeremiah 4:1-9 and 14-18.

————————————–

Lift up a standard toward Zion!
Seek refuge, do not stand still,
For I am bringing evil from the north,
And great destruction.”  Verse 6.

Today’s Scripture was not only a warning for Israel, it can serve as a warning for us today.

But by His word the present heavens and earth are being reserved for fire, kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men.

But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day.  The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.”  2 Peter 3:7-9.

Seek the Lord while He may be found;
Call upon Him while He is near.
Let the wicked forsake his way
And the unrighteous man his thoughts;
And let him return to the Lord,
And He will have compassion on him,
And to our God,
For He will abundantly pardon.”  Isaiah 55:6-7.

“He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
Will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress,
My God, in whom I trust!”
For it is He who delivers you from the snare of the trapper
And from the deadly pestilence.
He will cover you with His pinions,
And under His wings you may seek refuge;
His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark.

You will not be afraid of the terror by night,
Or of the arrow that flies by day;
Of the pestilence that stalks in darkness,
Or of the destruction that lays waste at noon.
A thousand may fall at your side
And ten thousand at your right hand,
But it shall not approach you.
You will only look on with your eyes
And see the recompense of the wicked.
For you have made the Lord, my refuge,
Even the Most High, your dwelling place.
10 No evil will befall you,
Nor will any plague come near your tent.”  Psalm 91:1-10.

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