This is what the LORD says: “Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls. But you said, ‘We will not walk in it.'”
Solomon said it in the book of Ecclesiastes, “There is nothing new under the sun.” As I read the words of Jeremiah 6, I feel like he is addressing our society. I read a small article sometime ago that described the teenagers of today to a ” T”. when I looked to see who wrote it, I was surprised to see the author was Socrates, who was describing the teenagers of his time. Sin is as old as the Garden of Eden. All men are sinners, and prone to say, “God has no part in my life.” In fact, in verse 16, we are told it is a choice: but you said, ‘We will not walk in it.’ Let us allow the Lord to fashion us into His people, who love Him and His ways. Let us be those who stand for Christ, asking where the good way is, and walking in it.
They do not say to themselves, ‘Let us fear the LORD our God, who gives autumn and spring rains in season, who assures us of the regular weeks of harvest.’ Your wrongdoings have kept these away; your sins have deprived you of good.
If the blessings in our lives have seemed to suddenly dry up, perhaps it is time to look around. Is there hidden or unconfessed sin in our lives? Remember, it is our wrongdoings, our sins that deprive us of good. Thanks be to God, because of Jesus, we are able to repent and confess and be restored once again into the free flowing blessings of our Lord.
Circumcise yourselves to the LORD, circumcise your hearts, you men of Judah and people of Jerusalem, or my wrath will break out and burn like fire because of the evil you have done – burn with no one to quench it
Circumcision was a sign of the original covenant with Israel and God.. It made the Jews different in the sight of men, and sealed them to God. Now, the Lord is calling them to circumcise their hearts. Don’t embrace just the physical sign of belonging to God – change your hearts! Don’t just follow the Law and its rituals. Commit yourselves to Me. Return to Me, do things My way, and let Me bless and protect you. We are called to the same in our day. It isn’t just attending church or going to Bible Study or teaching Sunday School class. We are sealed to God for eternity through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross. Walk in His way. Love His Word and teach others. If you have fallen away from faith or a close walk with God, He invites you to return. Repent of your sin and He will be faithful to forgive it and cleanse you from all unrighteousness. A clean heart!!
“Return, faithless people; I will cure you of backsliding.” Yes, we will come to you, for you are the LORD our God.
When we sin, God invites us to return to Him for the cure. The cure for our disobedience to God is God. He invites us to return, faithless one, and I, The Pure Bridegroom, I the Holy One, I, Who have not sinned, I the One Who has been offended, I will cure you of this sin and restore our relationship. So the One Who is sinned against, the Injured Party, invites us to return to Him in repentance and He will forgive us.(I John 1:9) Apply this to our everyday lives. If someone sins against us or harms our relationship, the way to heal that is through forgiveness. In our humanness we resist this, but Christ is our example. His love compels us to reach out to forgive and heal, even if we are the injured person.
“Your wickedness will punish you; your backsliding will rebuke you. Consider then and realize how evil and bitter it is for you when you forsake the LORD your God and have no awe of me,” declares the Lord almighty.
This is the consequence of choosing sin over following God’s way. Think of a time when you did that very thing and remember the bitterness and misery you experienced. Godly Christian men and women cannot choose backsliding or sin without feeling pain- spiritual and physical- as they have forsaken the Lord their God – the One Who truly loves them. Rejoice! God has provided the way out of that misery and pain. Repent and ask forgiveness. His promises don’t fail. His love never ceases. I John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you ,before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”
This reminds me of Ephesians 2:10, For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works , which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Whether Old Testament or New, the truth is this: God knew us before we were born, formed us in the womb, set us apart for Him, and planned the work we would do for Him. He encourages us: don’t be afraid to speak, be ready, and remember “I am with you”(vs 8).
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.
Years ago, God blessed me with this verse to be my “run to” verse when my mind begins to dwell on things that are less than godly. If it wanders off into places it shouldn’t go, I recall this verse, and the Lord brings my thoughts back to where they belong. It is a blessed thing to have the Word of God hid in our hearts, where we can access it at any time. It is like a spiritual “car wash” for the mind. Now, isn’t that a visual!
I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death…
I think this is the key to the trials of life. There will be suffering while we are on this earth. How we deal with that suffering will change our lives – each time. There is a fellowship in Christ that we share in suffering, that doesn’t come to us any other time. There is an intimacy we will not forget, and it will change us. Plan on choosing the fellowship next time the suffering comes. Look for ways God is lifting you, encouraging you, strengthening you, helping you, never letting go of you. The deep things of Christ we learn during these times will remain with us as we continue to live and walk in Him.