God presents the example of obedience of the family of Rechab
Jeremiah 35:1 The word which came unto Jeremiah from the LORD in the days of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah, saying, 35:2 Go unto the house of the Rechabites, and speak unto them, and bring them into the house of the LORD, into one of the chambers, and give them wine to drink.
God told Jeremiah to TEST the descendants of Rechab before the people as to their obedience to their father, and so he commanded them to drink wine.
35:3 Then I took Jaazaniah the son of Jeremiah, the son of Habaziniah, and his brethren, and all his sons, and the whole house of the Rechabites; 35:4 And I brought them into the house of the LORD, into the chamber of the sons of Hanan, the son of Igdaliah, a man of God, which was by the chamber of the princes, which was above the chamber of Maaseiah the son of Shallum, the keeper of the door: 35:5 And I set before the sons of the house of the Rechabites pots full of wine, and cups, and I said unto them, Drink ye wine.
They then refused to drink wine in memory of the command of their forefather Jonadab.
35:6 But they said, We will drink no wine: for Jonadab the son of Rechab our father commanded us, saying, Ye shall drink no wine, neither ye, nor your sons for ever: 35:7 Neither shall ye build house, nor sow seed, nor plant vineyard, nor have any: but all your days ye shall dwell in tents; that ye may live many days in the land where ye be strangers.
The descendants of Jonadab refused to drink wine and gave the reason that they obeyed their forefather.
35:8 Thus have we obeyed the voice of Jonadab the son of Rechab our father in all that he hath charged us, to drink no wine all our days, we, our wives, our sons, nor our daughters; 35:9 Nor to build houses for us to dwell in: neither have we vineyard, nor field, nor seed: 35:10 But we have dwelt in tents, and have obeyed, and done according to all that Jonadab our father commanded us.
These people were tent dwellers until they entered the city for fear of the army of the Babylonians.
35:11 But it came to pass, when Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon came up into the land, that we said, Come, and let us go to Jerusalem for fear of the army of the Chaldeans, and for fear of the army of the Syrians: so we dwell at Jerusalem.
Listen to the witness of these men who obeyed their forefather fully as he had charged them; and yet today’s spiritual Ekklesia will not obey our heavenly Father nor do we have any zeal to fully learn and live by every Word of God our Father!
35:12 Then came the word of the LORD unto Jeremiah, saying, 35:13 Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Go and tell the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, Will ye not receive instruction to hearken to my words? saith the LORD.
The descendants of Rechab obeyed their forefather and would not obey any other man; Why do today’s called out brethren say: “the church or some man said it was alright to do this” when the Word of God commands otherwise. In doing so we exalt that person above our love for our God and his Word.
To love and obey men contrary to the whole Word of God is IDOLATRY; it is REBELLION against the Word of God; it is the Mark of the Beast [Satan the arch rebel]!
35:14 The words of Jonadab the son of Rechab, that he commanded his sons not to drink wine, are performed; for unto this day they drink none, but obey their father’s commandment: notwithstanding I have spoken unto you, rising early and speaking; but ye hearkened not unto me.
Brethren, we HAVE the writings of the prophets and the apostles, the whole Word of God; and we would rather obey a man than to diligently study to make ourselves approved of God.
2 Timothy 2:15 Study [the word of God to learn and do it] to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
Those who repent and turn to God the Father and all his Word, in Christ-like zeal and deep passionate love for God the Father and the Husband of our baptismal espousal; shall enter the spiritual Promised Land of Eternity. Those who will not repent will receive strong correction.
Jeremiah 35:15 I have sent also unto you all my servants the prophets, rising up early and sending them, saying, Return ye now every man from his evil way, and amend your doings, and go not after other gods to serve them, and ye shall dwell in the land which I have given to you and to your fathers: but ye have not inclined your ear, nor hearkened unto me.
Because these men obeyed their father; and those Called Out of Egypt would not obey their God [our spiritual Father] strong correction came upon them; and because today’s spiritually called out of bondage to Satan and sin refuse to obey our spiritual Father in heaven, we will also be sternly corrected if we do not sincerely repent.
35:16 Because the sons of Jonadab the son of Rechab have performed the commandment of their father, which he commanded them; but this people hath not hearkened unto me: 35:17 Therefore thus saith the LORD God of hosts, the God of Israel; Behold, I will bring upon Judah and upon all the inhabitants of Jerusalem all the evil that I have pronounced against them: because I have spoken unto them, but they have not heard; and I have called unto them, but they have not answered.
God rewards the Rechabites because they had proved themselves obedient and loyal.
35:18 And Jeremiah said unto the house of the Rechabites, Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Because ye have obeyed the commandment of Jonadab your father, and kept all his precepts, and done according unto all that he hath commanded you: 35:19 Therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Jonadab the son of Rechab shall not want [lack] a man to stand before me for ever.
Jeremiah is told to write out all his prophecies; which he did by his scribe Baruch in the book which bears his name. The words of God by Jeremiah have been preserved as instruction for us today.
This is dual and is for ancient Judah and those nations in the past and it is also for our nations today! and if it was a warning for the spiritually ignorant nations: How much more is this a warning for those who are supposed to have God’s Spirit; for those who are supposed to know better?
Jeremiah 36:1 And it came to pass in the fourth year of Jehoiakim [Jeconiah / Coniah] the son of Josiah king of Judah, that this word came unto Jeremiah from the LORD, saying, 36:2 Take thee a roll of a book, and write therein all the words that I have spoken unto thee against Israel, and against Judah, and against all the nations, from the day I spake unto thee, from the days of Josiah, even unto this day.
Eliakim using the regal name Jehoiakim reigned for 11 years before being killed by Nebuchadnezzar during the first big siege of Jerusalem c 597 B.C.
The book of Jeremiah was written and preserved for us, in the hope that we might repent and return to a zeal for learning and living by every Word of God instead of exalting our idols of men.
Brethren, the whole body of scripture was written first and foremost for the spiritually Called Out of God, who are supposed to have an understanding of the Word of God from God’s Spirit, and only secondarily is it a witness for those who have no understanding.
ALL scripture applies to the spiritual Ekklesia; either directly or figuratively.
2 Timothy 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
Jeremiah 36:3 It may be that the house of Judah will hear all the evil which I purpose to do unto them; that they may return every man from his evil way; that I may forgive their iniquity and their sin.
36:4 Then Jeremiah called Baruch the son of Neriah: and Baruch wrote from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the LORD, which he had spoken unto him, upon a roll of a book.
A day of fasting is called and Baruch reads the book in the Temple in the hope that fasting in the sanctity of that place, people would take the words to heart and repent.
Even so God has not left his called out without a warning in these last days. They have been continually warned for the past ten years.
36:5 And Jeremiah commanded Baruch, saying, I am shut up [locked up under guard]; I cannot go into the house of the LORD: 36:6 Therefore go thou, and read in the roll, which thou hast written from my mouth, the words of the LORD in the ears of the people in the LORD’s house upon the fasting day: and also thou shalt read them in the ears of all Judah that come out of their cities.
36:7 It may be they will present their supplication before the LORD, and will return every one from his evil way: for great is the anger and the fury that the LORD hath pronounced against this people.
36:8 And Baruch the son of Neriah did according to all that Jeremiah the prophet commanded him, reading in the book the words of the LORD in the LORD’s house.
A fast is proclaimed and the Word of God to Jeremiah is read to the nation of Judah.
36:9 And it came to pass in the fifth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah, in the ninth month [answering to November], that they proclaimed a fast before the LORD to all the people in Jerusalem, and to all the people that came from the cities of Judah unto Jerusalem.
The prophecy and admonition to repentance was read to all the people at the gate of the Temple.
36:10 Then read Baruch in the book the words of Jeremiah in the house of the LORD, in the chamber of Gemariah the son of Shaphan the scribe, in the higher court, at the entry of the new gate of the LORD’s house, in the ears of all the people.
Michaiah then went to the king’s house and told the princes what Baruch had read to the people.
36:11When Michaiah the son of Gemariah, the son of Shaphan, had heard out of the book all the words of the LORD, 36:12 Then he went down into the king’s house, into the scribe’s chamber: and, lo, all the princes sat there, even Elishama the scribe, and Delaiah the son of Shemaiah, and Elnathan the son of Achbor, and Gemariah the son of Shaphan, and Zedekiah the son of Hananiah, and all the princes. 36:13 Then Michaiah declared unto them all the words that he had heard, when Baruch read the book in the ears of the people.
The princes sent for Baruch to bring the scroll of Jeremiah to them.
36:14 Therefore all the princes sent Jehudi the son of Nethaniah, the son of Shelemiah, the son of Cushi, unto Baruch, saying, Take in thine hand the roll wherein thou hast read in the ears of the people, and come. So Baruch the son of Neriah took the roll in his hand, and came unto them.
Then the princes demanded to hear for themselves all the words of Jeremiah.
Do you begin to see how God does a great work?
It is not by the greatness of men nor by the might, power and strength of men that a work of God is done! God does his work through the weak so that it is self-evident that it is God who does the work and not men. Jeremiah was in prison and yet the word came out from the prison and the princes demanded to hear it; Paul taught from prison both in Judea and in Rome.
Why? So that no man could exalt himself!
1 Corinthians 1:29 That no flesh should glory in his presence
Jeremiah 36:15 And they said unto him, Sit down now, and read it in our ears. So Baruch read it in their ears.
Then the princes told the king the Word of God by Jeremiah against the nation for their sins.
36:16 Now it came to pass, when they had heard all the words, they were afraid both one and other, and said unto Baruch, We will surely tell the king of all these words.
The princes asked for the history of the writing and where Baruch had heard the words that he wrote.
36:17 And they asked Baruch, saying, Tell us now, How didst thou write all these words at his mouth? 36:18 Then Baruch answered them, He pronounced all these words unto me with his mouth, and I wrote them with ink in the book.
The princes then warned Baruch and Jeremiah to hide and also hid the writing for fear of the king’s possible reaction to God’s warning, and then they went to directly tell the king of the matter.
The warning of the princes was because another prophet, Uriah ben Shemaiah, proclaimed a similar message and Jehoiakim ordered his execution (Jeremiah 26:20-23).
36:19 Then said the princes unto Baruch, Go, hide thee, thou and Jeremiah; and let no man know where ye be. 36:20 And they went in to the king into the court, but they laid up the roll in the chamber of Elishama the scribe, and told all the words in the ears of the king.
The king sent for the book and had it read aloud to him.
36:21 So the king sent Jehudi to fetch the roll: and he took it out of Elishama the scribe’s chamber. And Jehudi read it in the ears of the king, and in the ears of all the princes which stood beside the king.
The king listened to only a few pages and then shredded the book and cast it into the fire. The king rejected the call to repentance and the warning of heavy correction for a refusal to turn in enthusiastic zeal to learn and live by every Word of God.
36:22 Now the king sat in the winterhouse in the ninth month: and there was a fire on the hearth burning before him. 36:23 And it came to pass, that when Jehudi had read three or four leaves, he cut it with the penknife, and cast it into the fire that was on the hearth, until all the roll was consumed in the fire that was on the hearth.
The king would not fear or even hear the warnings from God through Jeremiah and Baruch, and neither would the people close to the king repent. They rather feared the king more than the Word of God.
Even so, today most leaders, elders and brethren of the Ekklesia fear men more than they fear God; obeying men and not seeking to diligently learn and to keep God’s Word in passionate zeal.
36:24 Yet they were not afraid, nor rent their garments, neither the king, nor any of his servants that heard all these words.
Only three men protested the king’s destruction of the book.
36:25 Nevertheless Elnathan and Delaiah and Gemariah had made intercession to the king that he would not burn the roll: but he would not hear them.
The king then sought to seize Jeremiah and Baruch but they had hidden [v 19], and God kept their place secret, saving them from the wrath of the king.
36:26 But the king commanded Jerahmeel the son of Hammelech, and Seraiah the son of Azriel, and Shelemiah the son of Abdeel, to take Baruch the scribe and Jeremiah the prophet: but the LORD hid them.
God commanded Jeremiah and Baruch to write down all his words a second time.
36:27 Then the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah, after that the king had burned the roll, and the words which Baruch wrote at the mouth of Jeremiah, saying, 36:28 Take thee again another roll, and write in it all the former words that were in the first roll, which Jehoiakim the king of Judah hath burned.
Jeremiah is then sent to prophesy of the end of the king, because he had rejected the Word of God by the prophet. All those who reject living by every Word of God today will also end badly.
36:29 And thou shalt say to Jehoiakim [born Eliakim] king of Judah, Thus saith the LORD; Thou hast burned this roll, saying, Why hast thou written therein, saying, The king of Babylon shall certainly come and destroy this land, and shall cause to cease from thence man and beast? 36:30 Therefore thus saith the LORD of Jehoiakim king of Judah; He shall have none to sit upon the throne of David: and his dead body shall be cast out in the day to the heat, and in the night to the frost. 36:31 And I will punish him and his seed and his servants for their iniquity; and I will bring upon them, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and upon the men of Judah, all the evil that I have pronounced against them; but they hearkened not.
Baruch then wrote all the words of the first book and much more was added to it.
36:32 Then took Jeremiah another roll, and gave it to Baruch the scribe, the son of Neriah; who wrote therein from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the book which Jehoiakim king of Judah had burned in the fire: and there were added besides unto them many like words.
No wonder that the king was infuriated at the Word of God by Jeremiah!
Rabbinical literature describes Jehoiakim as a godless tyrant who committed atrocious sins and crimes. He is portrayed as living in incestuous relations with his mother, daughter-in-law, and stepmother, and was in the habit of murdering men, whose wives he then violated and whose property he seized. He also sinned by tattooing himself.
Jeremiah prophesied of Jehoiakim, Jeremiah 22:18 Therefore thus saith the LORD concerning Jehoiakim [Eliakim the eldest son of Josiah who replaced his brother Shallum] the son of Josiah king of Judah; They shall not lament for him, saying, Ah my brother! or, Ah sister! they shall not lament for him, saying, Ah lord! or, Ah his glory! 22:19 He shall be buried with the burial of an ass, drawn and cast forth beyond the gates of Jerusalem. and his dead body shall be cast out to the heat of the day and the frost of the night” (Jeremiah 36:30). Josephus wrote that Nebuchadnezzar slew Jehoiakim along with high ranking officers and then commanded Jehoiakim’s body “to be thrown before the walls, without any burial.
Jehoiakin died during the first siege of Jerusalem and was succeeded by his son Jeconiah (also known as Jehoiachin), who was deposed after the city fell three months and ten days later. Nebuchadnezzar deposed Jeconiah fulfilling the Word of God by Jeremiah and installed Zedekiah.
The same correction that fell on the wicked of ancient Judah will come upon all those who reject God’s warnings today!