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Jeremiah—The Message and Messenger—Chapter 24

For Jeremiah commentaries chapters 1-17 please link here:

For chapters 18-23 please link here:

Anyone want to be a good fig? 

Within this short chapter of visual illustration, we will look at God’s inverted flower or hollow garden of flowers within, where which lies the correct description of the fig. The flower garden is within the fig and we partake of the delights of it with its vast nutritional benefits: “Figs are high in natural sugars, minerals and soluble fibre. Figs are rich in minerals including potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron and copper and are a good source of antioxidant vitamins A, E and K that contribute to health and wellness.”  What is mind-absorbing, is the female fig wasp will sacrifice its life to pollinate a fig when it enters inside the fig, moving herself in the tiny hole, where the flower garden is located, pollinating the many flowers within and laying eggs and then dying.

The fig harvest, picked gatherings, should place pictures in our mind regarding the second Babylonian captivity of Judah under King Jeconiah and its last captivity under King Zedekiah. This visual illustration hopefully will remain in memory to teach us the importance of loving, serving and obeying God. It is grievously sad the Jews of the southern kingdom of the Holy Land of Israel chose the same fate as their northern brethren who were removed from their land for the same sins 130 years previous, though Judah’s sins were even more grievous. It all goes back to history repeating itself due to the chosen, sinful antics of men who are sure they can get away with their “naughtiness” even though the consequential facts laid in stone prove differently.

Due to the idolatrous and ecumenical sins of King Jeconiah and his cursed line, no king of the line of David has served as king in Israel inasmuch as God never lies. No one gets away with Scriptural compromise, maintaining a desire to “be with it” by saying I do not judge other religions and I get along with all faiths. These types of people would never expose the lies of another religion. They would never desire to be persecuted for God. They imitate the people of Romans chapter 1, they claim to be wise, being all-inclusive, but everyone can see they are fools who ride the wild waves of the ocean simply to be liked by satan’s children who follow the drowning agendas of misery and destruction.

Verse 1 informs us, the craftsmen and locks-men or smiths (from the Hebrew word) were removed at this time. Obviously, King Nebuchadnezzar wanted these gifted Jews put in slave work for the advancement of his kingdom. Consequently, prisoners and valuable items required sturdy wooden locks with keys. And no kingdom, no matter how great, always has its share of criminals who need to be put away.

From Wheaton Lock Service: “The first Egyptian lock, of 4,000 years ago, comprised a wooden bolt securing a door, with a slot with several holes on its upper surface. A device attached to the door contained wooden pins which would drop into the holes and secure the bolt. The key, also wooden, was a large toothbrush–shaped affair, whose ‘bristles’ were actually pegs that matched the holes and pins in the lock. To open the door, it would be inserted into the keyhole located below the pins and lifted, raising the pins and allowing the bolt to be slid out.”

It is probably safe to assume the Babylonian wooden locks were similar to the Egyptian wooden locks, being metal locks with keys were not present till the Roman Empire had advanced in major metal inventions within these years—870-900 AD. The Roman Empire fell in 1453.

Babylon the Great needed to maintain its world dominance in vastness, loveliness, and uniqueness. Endless people gifted with trained eyes and creative hands were necessitated in the production of all that men would learn of and seek after to keep the merchants in business and tax money accumulating for King Nebuchadnezzar.

This will be true of idol worshipping Mystery Babylon of the tribulation period which will be magnificent beyond comprehension due to people being graciously gifted by God; though sadly, they will employ their talents for satan and his devices. The two antichrists will covet it all and use Babylon’s riches and power to control the world and its inhabitants until God effectuates its destruction in accordance with ancient Babylon. Many will mourn over the merchandise lost—Revelation Chapter 18.

We conclude verse 1 with the introduction of the subject matter and that being figs. I happen to have yummy figs in my fridge right now from the Middle East.

We see there are two baskets of figs set before the temple where the people were to come and worship God with pure hearts in loving obedience. They were to be a sweet flavor before the LORD like good figs, not rottenness to His bones.

Jeremiah is a fig connoisseur. He can simply peer into the one basket and tell they are “very good” without even tasting. They were ripe figs, just right for the palate. And he immediately could tell the other basket was full of figs that the bugs could have.

We do have bon bon (good good) figs and bad figs seated here and this might remind us of the good and bad fish in the New Testament in Matthew 13:47-49: “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a dragnet that was cast into the sea and gathered some of every kind, which, when it was full, they drew to shore; and they sat down and gathered the good into vessels, but threw the bad away. So it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come forth, separate the wicked from among the just, and cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth.”

The LORD God is most apt in teaching us by planting in our minds His simplistic illustrations of His creation, being executed in elementary manners that even children can understand including the parable of good fish, bad fish.

We note in Jeremiah, the good is separated from the uneatable, set in two individual baskets. With Christ’s fish parable, they too become separated from one another to illustrate those who are born again to eternal life in heaven from those who are the children of the evil serpent—satan. They will be cast into the lake of fire where there will be wailing and grinding of the teeth in perpetual pain and agony for rejecting the Savior.

We want to be good figs and good fish. We want to abhor what is evil and cling to what is good, serving others as Romans 12:9-21 exhorts. These verses are powerful attributes to intercede for regarding ourselves and other believers.

We note in verse 3, God kindly speaking to Jeremiah with a question to teach him, being God is the wisest teacher who ever lived. He is schooling Jeremiah regarding His loving kindness to those He will rescue from harm. God allowed these Hebrews to be taken captive to Babylon with King Jeconiah. This permitted that they might live and continue the Jewish race. God knew a righteous people would eventually rise up and repent of their evil ways when in captivity. They would come to see God never lies and everyone pays for their sin as promised in the Scriptures they knew.

God’s graciousness to His sinning ones is revealed here. He knows the past, present and future. And He knew a good outcome would arise for the Hebrews through many terrifying spankings by the Chaldeans or Babylonians while enslaved by them. This will be God’s second rescue of His children in captivity; the first being their rescue from Egypt by which they were brought to this land of Israel. God’s hands snatched them out of the clutches of a vicious Pharaoh and will snatch them out of the clutches of pagan lands when their required spankings have accomplished all that is needed. Spare the rod, spoil the adult.

Slavery was simply a sad part of life until the 1800s. Even in America’s history, native pagans owned slaves. Sacagawea, a Shoshone, was taken captive, led away from Idaho to North Dakota in the Midwest by a Hidatsa tribe at age 12 and then the tribe sold her to be a wife at age 13 to a French/Canadian fur trapper—Toussaint Charbonneau. She was delighted to see her brother (who was now the chief) when she returned to Idaho with Lewis and Clark. Clark penned “She jumped up, ran and embraced him and threw her blanket over him and cried profusely.”

Many whites were also enslaved by the native Indians.

Man’s sin nature of manipulation and control feeds his ego in all aspects including power over slaves. Though some slaves were simply owned to lighten the load of labor and were treated well.

Not until Christians began to preach and write about its evils did change take place in America when it came to Black enslavement. A Christian woman by the name of Harriet Beecher Stowe penned Uncle Tom’s Cabin—published in 1852. It festered a stampede of anger, pawing at slavery’s ills. This book was key to unlocking the bonds of Black people in America and afar. And for our education, we must know Uncle Tom was a good guy, not a bad man; a fictitious Christian hero who died on behalf of the Black people for their freedom.

It took a godly, on-fire Christian man by the name of William Wilberforce (who went to be with the LORD on the 29th of July 1833) to bring an end to slavery in Great Britain as a member of Parliament on a relentless campaign. He also fought for prudishness and modesty; uplifting every moral decency in Britain through pen and speech.

“What a difference it would be if our system of morality were based on the Bible instead of the standards devised by cultural Christians.” ― William Wilberforce, Real Christianity

He resigned from clubs, gambling, dancing, drinking, and theatre attendance after being born again. These were the things he indulged in before meeting Jesus Christ and having his sinful eyes opened and his heart cleansed. He was now a soldier for Jesus Christ and chose to no longer be entangled in the allurements of culture and sensuality. He married a pure, innocent, and modest woman of moral character—Barbara. She was not of a Hollywood character and Hollywood wrongly portrayed her in the immodest manner of cultural modernism. And Wilberforce was not portrayed in a manner whereby he condemned all that is sexually immoral and impure.

2 Timothy 2:3-4 “You, therefore, must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier.”

We move into God’s curses upon His people further in verse 8 and we note the rottenness of the Jews who own no true heart for the LORD. They are rotten figs which must be destroyed and suffer the worst of circumstances for their sins. These consistently broke all of God’s laws without regret and in all proudness of heart under King Zedekiah, assigned to be king of Judah under King Nebuchadnezzar. King Zedekiah proceeded King Jeconiah, who was King Zedekiah’s nephew.

Zedekiah and those remaining in Israel are like naughty children who will not yield to correction given by their father. Remember from past lessons, it was under King Zedekiah the temple was destroyed and the remnant of Judah removed into captivity, excluding the poorest of the poor or peasants and Jeremiah.

We note the Jews will be cursed and they will cause those who come in contact with them to suffer from their curses including “being a reproach and a proverb, a taunt and a curse;” verse 9. They will be a terror to the people of the earth! They will be the night monsters under their beds when they close their eyes and dream fearfully. When awakened, they will find the genuine thing—a nightmare, come of the day, placed before their faces.

Many were shocked after WWII when the Jews were released from concentration camps. They truly appeared as those who had survived a nuclear blast.

We once again cover the fact 3/4 of the Jews will perish from the sword, famine and pestilence or disease of the entire nation of Judah.  Only 1/4 will survive for continual brutal treatment and enslavement. All enjoyment will perish. Sadness, gloom, and pain are their future fates. David stated before he was afflicted he went astray. But God’s discipline upon him caused him to keep God’s Word and cling to it always. (Psalm 119:67)

Obedience brings blessings and disobedience God’s curses. And this why we need to study God’s Word to learn His will. We discerningly need to pray for His perfect will to be performed in our lives and others. Man’s natural will and desires lead to death resulting from self-promoting contentment.

It is interesting how the deceived believe it will be different with them when they travel a road of sin. They will be the exception to the rule of “reaping what you sow” or plant. If you plant potatoes in a field, you will harvest potatoes. Just ask any Idaho potato farmer.

To this day, many Christians are divorcing their spouses believing they can get away with it and experience all the fun of loose living. They will not accept the fact their God will judge them because they are saved and they hold a special place in God’s heart. They do not believe in just spankings and receiving a comeuppance from a father who knows best. They become oblivious to the planting fact. It is all about feelings and not facts. Sin is such a pleasure to them in the present. And they do not believe in discipline anyway. But if you could peer 20 years in the future, you would see they are far less happy than they were when they took their dive into sin. And are a petite shadow of the person they were when they were following the LORD in obedience. You would observe one who wishes they could turn back the clock and reverse their actions, though they may not ever verbalize those words. Plus, you would survey a trail of guilt for all the souls they injured and possibly destroyed in their pride of doing it their way.

Another sad way of our day is people not being willing to suffer in their marriages or other hardships, believing it is all about having a happy meal. We all need to study and remember 1 Peter 2:21-3:2.

Returning to Jeremiah, verse 10 lets us know they are forfeiting God’s gift to them—that of their land which He once blessed with milk and honey. And those who survive in slavery status will miss the land of Israel terribly and all the blessings that were part of this gift, including the best place in the world to worship Almighty God at that time in unabated freedom.

This is the last verse of this short chapter though chapter 45 is the shortest.

Love to all, Val Lee (My photo atop)

The remarkable fig tree:

January 26, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment