Study Guide

Book of Jeremiah Chapter 23

Chapter 23

Opening a New Branch of David, Inc.

  • God reprimands the leaders (and prophets and priests) who should have shepherded his flock.
  • Instead they've scattered the flock, but God will eventually gather the flock together and lead it back into the Promised Land. They'll have better leaders this time and won't have to live in fear.
  • God will raise up a "Branch" from the House of David, and this good king will rule righteously over Judah and Israel.
  • In the future, the people will see God not only as their savior from Egypt but from Babylon also.
  • Next, Jeremiah says that he feels drunk and overwhelmed because of the word of the Lord within him.
  • The (figurative) adulterers in Judah are causing the land to dry up. The prophets and priests are giving the people false hope.
  • The prophets in Samaria were prophesying through Baal and misleading people, but the prophets in Jerusalem are worse: they've committed adultery and strengthened evil people. They're as bad as Sodom and Gomorrah. That's bad.
  • In retribution, God will make them eat wormwood and drink poisonous water and die in agony.
  • God continues to pile it on against the false prophets: they're just speaking about their own fantasies and delusions. They're not bringing true messages from God.
  • None of these people have ever stood before the Lord, and now his wrath is coming against Judah like a whirlwind.
  • The purpose of God's anger will become clear in the future.
  • The prophets refused to stand before God and take his counsel and now the people are a mess because of it.
  • God asks if he isn't a God who's nearby (implying he is). He also can see anyone who tries to hide and he also fills heaven and earth, in case we forgot that.
  • The prophets mistakenly believe that they're having prophetic dreams and waste time telling people about them.
  • God's word is like a hammer that can smash these false prophets and their bad advice.
  • I think we all now understand how much God hates false prophets.
  • If people ask what God's burden is, God says Jeremiah should say in response "You are."
  • God wants people to stop complaining about "the burden of the Lord." He'll cast them out forever if they keep doing it.
  • They'll have to deal with eternal shame and disgrace. Eternal. Shame. And. Disgrace.

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