Key Verse: JEREMIAH 21:8-14
Jeremiah, by today's standards, would be considered a failure. For 40 years he was God's spokesman yet, no one listened, no one was moved by his passionate prophetic preaching. Jeremiah was not a man of material financial means. He was rejected , he stood alone, declaring God's message. Jeremiah was a weeping prophet. In the eyes of God , Jeremiah was a success. He was faithful, courageous in proclaiming the word of God. His message was repent or be punished.
1 THE PARADOX OF MALPRACTICE OF JUSTICE (Jeremiah 21:8-10)
Jeremiah issues two options for the people of Judah, submitt to captivity or fight with no success. The people had no concern for those without a voice, no political power, the disadvantaged . The powerful elite would be taken into captivity, the land would be burned. Goods and products had been out of reach, over priced for those who worked the land while the wealthy would live large and lavishly.
2 THE PRIORITY OF THE PRACTICE OF JUSTICE (vv 11-12)
Justice is to be a priority, the first order of business. God cares about those who are being taken advantage of, devalued , stealing from the people. Jeremiah directs his message to the leaders of Jerusalem.. God demands equity, Jeremiah compels them to right the wrongs to those who have been mistreated.
3 THE PRICE OF THE MALPRACTICE OF JUSTICE (vv. 13-14)
It is here that Jeremiah proclaims the harsh results of God declaring war on the people. He calls them "inhabitants of the valley", not owning them. The punishment will be allocated according to their actions. They will not get away with wrong doing. It would behoove them to seek and pursue justice or suffer dire consequences.
It is so often said that, "the more things change, the more they stay the same". In today's lesson, we find the same happening in this time of civilization and society, the malpractice of justice. Powerful leaders, slick politicians, those who make and shape the rules, have little or no regard for justice. There is more times than not, the voiceless will be exploited. Justice made a mockery of.
The prophet Jeremiah, warns those of his time as well as those today. He warns of the importance of practicing justice. There will be a serious penalty when we refuse to practice justice.
Rev. Johnny H, Eskridge
St Paul Baptist Church @ Shively Heights