Jeremiah 23

  1. Verses 1-8. To meet the situation created by the failure of Judah’s rulers, what does God say he will do?
    Cf. Ezek. 34:1-16. How much of what is promised here has been fulfilled?
    Cf. John 10:1-18; Luke 1:32, 68-70; 1 Cor. 1:30.
  2. What does Jeremiah say concerning:
    (a) the religious life, worship and ministry of the prophets of his day;
    (b) their moral character and conduct; and
    (c) their influence?
    What qualifications are essential in those who are called to speak in the name of the Lord?

Notes

  1. Verse 1. ‘Shepherds”: see 2:8 and mg.
  2. Verse 5. ‘Branch’: better, ‘shoot’ or ‘sprout’, i.e., a growth of new life. Cf. 33:15; Is. 11:1.
  3. Verses 7, 8. ‘The new and more wonderful Exodus’ (C.R. North). .
  4. Verse 9. Describes the effect of God’s words on Jeremiah himself.
  5. Verses 33-40. The Hebrew word translated ‘oracle’ (or ‘burden’ RSV) could also mean, figuratively, a solemn utterance, normally of ominous import (cf. Is. 13:1; 15:1; 17:1). The people had evidently been speaking mockingly of the prophet’s utterances as ‘burdens’. Jeremiah uses it to rebuke its users (verses 33, 39), and forbids its employment in such an irreverent context.
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