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happy is the adoption of the worship of Jehovah, the acknowledging him to be their God: then will he protect them, and save them from destruction. Jeremiah predicts that many lands will einbrace the Jewish religion, and that ultimately all nations shall be gathered to Jerusalem, and shall there worship before the throne of Jehovah.
“ At what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, and to pull down, and to destroy it; if that nation, against whom I have pronounced, turn from their evil, I will repent of the evil that I thought to do unto them. And at what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it; if it do evil in my sight, that it obey not my voice, then I will repent of the good, wherewith I said I would benefit them."
Chap. xviii, 7-10. “ And it shall come to pass, after that I have plucked them out I will return, and have compassion on them, and will bring them again, every man to his heritage, and every man to his land. And it it shall come to pass, if they will diligently learn the ways of my people, to swear by my name, Jehovah liveth; as they taught my people to swear by Baal; then shall they be built in the midst of my people. But if they will not obey, I will utterly pluck up and destroy that nation, saith Jehovah."
Chap. xii. 15-17. “ At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of Jehovah, and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of Jehovah to Jerusalem : neither shall they walk any
more after the imagination of their evil heart.”– Chap. iii. 17. From the beginning of the book to the end, Jeremiah teaches that wars, subjection to the enemy, capture, annihilation of states, &c., are punishments inflicted by Jehovah. In nearly all his predictions he foretells the invasion of the Chaldeans and the destruction of the Jewish nation, on account of the immoralities of the people, of the false prophets, of the king, and of his ministers. We might quote the whole book in confirmation of this.
“ Jehovah said unto me, Out of the north an evil shall break forth upon all the inhabitants of the land. For, lo, I will call all the families of the kingdoms of the north, saith Jehovah; and they shall come, and they shall set every one his throne at the entering of the gates of Jerusalem, and against all the walls thereof round about, and against all the cities of Judah, And I will utter my judgments against them touching all their wickedness, who have forsaken me, and have burned incense
unto other gods, and worshipped the works of their own
“ Lo, I will bring a nation upon you from far, O house of
“ And thou, Pashur, and all that dwell in thine house shall go into captivity : and thou shalt come to Babylon, and there thou shalt die, and shalt be buried there, thou, and all thy
friends, to whom thou hast prophesied lies.”—Chap. xx. 6. The captivity is to be succeeded by the return of the Jews to their own land. Jehovah promises that he will make an everlasting covenant with them, and that he will not turn away from them, to do them good : that the Jewish kingdom shall be one of great splendour, and that, as long as the covenant of day and night endures, so long shall a man of the line of David sit upon the throne of the house of Israel.
“ Thus saith Jehovah the God of Israel, concerning this city, whereof ye say, It shall be delivered into the hand of the king of Babylon by the sword, and by the famine, and by the pestilence; behold I will gather them out of all countries, whither I have driven them in mine anger, and in my fury, and in great wrath; and I will bring them again unto this place, and I will cause them to dwell safely: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God: and I will give them one heart, and one way, that may fear me for ever, for the good of them, and of their children after them : and I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from them, to do them good; but I will put my fear in their hearts, that they shall not depart from me. Yea, I will rejoice over them to do them good, and I will plant them in this land assuredly with my whole heart and with my whole soul. For thus saith Jehovah, Like as I have brought all this great evil upon this people, so will I bring upon them all the good that I have promised them. And fields shall be bought in this land, whereof ye say, It is desolate without man or beast; it is given into the hand of the Chaldeans. Men shall buy fields for money, and subscribe evidences, and seal them, and take witnesses in the land of Benjamin, and in the places about Jerusalem, and in the cities of
Judah, and in the cities of the mountains, and in the cities of the valley, and in the cities of the south: for I will cause their captivity to return, saith Jehovah.”—Chap xxxii. 36-44.
“ For thus saith Jehovah, David shall never want a man to sit upon the throne of the house of Israel ; neither shall the priests the Levites want a man before me to offer burnt offerings, and to kindle meat offerings, and to do sacrifice continually. Thus saith Jehovah, If ye can break my covenant of the day, and my covenant of the night, and that there should not be day and night in their season; then may also my covenant be broken with David my servant, that he should not have a son to reign upon his throne; and with the Levites the priests, my ministers. As the host of heaven cannot be numbered, neither the sand of the sea measured: so will I multiply the seed of David my servant, and the Levites that minister unto me. Moreover the word of Jehovah came to Jeremiah, saying, Considerest thou not what this people have spoken, saying, The two families which Jehovah hath chosen, he hath even cast them off? thus they have despised my people, that they should be no more a nation before them. Thus saith Jehovah; If my covenant be not with day and night, and if I have not appointed the ordinances of heaven and earth; then will I cast away the seed of Jacob, and David my servant, so that I will not take any of his seed to be rulers over the seed of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob : for I will cause their captivity to return, and have mercy on them.”-Chap. xxxiii. 17-26. When the Chaldeans shall have accomplished the designs of Jehovah in punishing his rebellious and idolatrous people, the kingdom of Babylon shall become a perpetual desolation. Jeremiah was a distinguished individual of the chosen race; it was therefore natural that he should regard the heathen with contempt, and believe them to be doomed to destruction.
“O Jehovah, correct me but with judgment; not in thine anger, lest thou bring me to nothing. Pour out thy fury upon the heathen that know thee not, and upon the families that call not on thy name: for they have eaten up Jacob, and devoured him, and consumed him, and have made his habitation desolate.”—Chap. x. 24, 25.
“ Thus saith Jehovah against all mine evil neighbours, that touch the inheritance which I have caused my people Israel to inherit; Behold, I will pluck them out of their land, and pluck out the house of Judah from among them.”-Chap. xii. 14.
And it shall come to pass, when seventy years are accomplished, that I will punish the king of Babylon, and that nation,
saith Jehovah, for their iniquity, and the land of the Chal-
Chap. xxv. 12. The relation between God and his people, between man and his Maker, is still represented, even by Jeremiah, under the form of a covenant. “ Jehovah will perform the oath which he sware unto the fathers."
“ Thus saith Jehovah the God of Israel; Cursed be the man that obeyeth not the words of this covenant, which I commanded your fathers in the day that I brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, from the iron furnace, saying, Obey my voice, and do them, according to all which I command you: so shall ye be my people, and I will be your God : that I may perform the oath which I have sworn unto your fathers, to give them a land flowing with milk and honey, as it is this day. Then answered I, and said, So be it, O Jehovah."-Chap. xi. 3-5. Jehovah sends his prophets to make known his will to his people. These prophets are inspired by him. His word in their hearts is “as a burning fire,” which they cannot forbear to utter. Sometimes Jehovah communicates his designs in visions and dreams. But besides these prophets of Jehovah, there are also false prophets in Israel, who, though uninspired, speak in the name of Jehovah, and profess to have received revelations from him in visions and dreams.
“O Jehovah, thou hast deceived me, and I was deceived : thou art stronger than I, and hast prevailed : I am in derision daily, every one mocketh me. For since I spake, I cried out, I cried violence and spoil : because the word of Jehovah was made a reproach unto me, and a derision, daily. Then I said, I will not make mention of him, nor speak any more in his
But his word was in mine heart as a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I was weary with forbearing, and I could not stay.”—Chap. xx. 7-9.
The word which came unto Jeremiah from Jehovah, when king Zedekiah sent unto him Pashur the son of Melchiah, and Zephaniah the son of Maaseiab the priest, saying, Enquire, I pray thee, of Jehovah for us; for Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon maketh war against us; if so be that Jehovah will deal with us according to all his wondrous works, that he may go up from us.”—Chap. xxi. 1, 2.
I have heard what the prophets said, that prophecy lies in my name, saying, I have dreamed, I have dreamed. How long
shall this be in the heart of the prophets that prophesy lies ?
Chap. xxiii. 25, 26.
The Book of the Prophet Ezekiel. The prophecies and visions of Ezekiel form a large book ; but the religious, and moral instruction, which may be gathered from its pages, is very scanty.
Its contents are chiefly political—religiously political; for among the Jews, who believed themselves to be governed by Jehovah, whose government was a theocracy, rather than a monarchy, religion and politics were intimately connected.
The judgments of God on the house of Israel, on account of the idolatry of his people; their captivity; the desolation of their kingdom; predictions of the ruin and destruction which should overtake the Chaldeans; and prophecies of the future splendour and greatness of God's people, are the subjects which, variously wrought out by a fertile imagination, occupy the entire Book.
The notions of God entertained by this prophet are strictly and genuinely Judaical.
Representations of God. Jehovah is the God of Israel. He is exceedingly enraged when other Gods are worshipped and placed on an equality with himself: in his wrath he rejects his own people, and abandons them, for a while, to the mercy of their enemies.
Wherefore, as I live, saith Jehovah God; Surely, because thou hast defiled my sanctuary with all thy detestable things, and with all thine abominations, therefore will I also diminish thee; neither shall mine eye spare, neither will I have any pity. A third part of thee shall die with the pestilence, and with famine shall they be consumed in the midst of thee: and a third part shall fall by the sword round about thee; and I will scatter a third part into all the winds, and I will draw out a sword after them. Thus shall mine anger be accomplished, and I will cause my fury to rest upon them, and I will be comforted : and they shall know that I Jehovah have spoken it in my zeal, when I have accomplished my fury in them. Moreover I will make