For the Glory of the Lord Jesus Christ

The Ancient Paths


© September 2011 by Rev. J. Robinson

Jeremiah 19:14-18

Will a man leave the snow of Lebanon
which comes from the rock of the field? or shall the cold flowing waters that
come from another place be forsaken? Because my people have forgotten me, they
have burned incense to vanity, and they have caused them to stumble in their
ways from the
ancient
paths, to walk in paths, in a way not cast up; to make their land desolate, and
a perpetual hissing; every one that passes thereby shall be astonished, and wag
his head. I will scatter them as with an east wind before the enemy; I will shew
them the back, and not the face, in the day of their calamity.  Then said they,
Come, and let us devise devices against Jeremiah; for the law shall not perish
from the priest, nor counsel from the wise, nor the Word from the prophet.
Come, let us smite him with the tongue, and let us not give heed to any of his
words.

Israel had tired of hearing the
admonitions of the Lord from the prophet Jeremiah, who obviously was intonating
dire warnings from the Lord God Himself.  When people (whether or not they
consider themselves to be the people of God) rebel against the Lord God, and
upon continually hearing prophetic utterances declaring that they need to
repent, a heart that becomes hardened is often the result.  This is what can be
observed in this passage; so let us look at:

Jeremiah 19:18c

Come, let us smite him with the
tongue, and let us not give heed to any of his words.

The heart being hardened is what
produces this sort of response, even from people that consider themselves to be
born again Christians.  This is not something that most people like to think
about, let alone talk about, so when the Holy Spirit begins to convict people,
this will be the ultimate response.    Lets look at a passage in Acts which
confirms this:

Acts 7:54-58

When they heard these things
they were cut to the heart (conviction), and they gnashed on him with
their teeth.  But he, being full of the Holy Spirit, looked up stedfastly into
heaven, and saw the Glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God,
and said, Behold, I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing on the
right hand of God.  Then they cried with a loud voice, and stopped their ears,
and ran upon him with one accord, and cast him out of the city, and stoned him,
and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man’s feet, whose name was
Saul.

Imagine…grown men putting their
hands upon their hears to shut out the words of Stephen.  But they weren’t just
words that Stephen was speaking, it was the Holy Spirit that was speaking
through Stephen.  This is why these people felt convicted and were cut to the
heart.  They knew that what they just heard was an accurate description of their
spiritual state and so they hated the one who was bearing the message.  If I
speak words, they are just my words and they might contain some power or they
may not.  But if I am led under the unction of the Holy Spirit, then my words
cease to be “my words” and they become the “words of the Holy Spirit”, with
POWER AND AUTHORITY.

But as this passage depicts, when
they were convicted, the first thing that they wanted to do was to cause the
irritation to go away, even if it was to murder the irritation.  Now let us
return to Jeremiah, which upon further consideration, this is what was happening
to these people.  They were being convicted and they wanted Jeremiah to be quiet
and speak no more.  However, they were not to the point of murdering Jeremiah,
but they were going to set up a campaign of lies and innuendoes against the
prophet.

Jeremiah 19:18c

Come, let us smite him with the
tongue, and let us not give heed to any of his words.

Often, when a person stands up and
makes an apology for the Word of God, the devil determines to try and destroy
the believer by discrediting his/her testimony by belittling, spewing forth lies
and innuendoes in an attempt to get them to be quiet and speak the Word of God
no longer.  We as the people of God are to make an “apology,” which in the
Greek, is the word is Απολογια, or apologia, which means to make a
cogent defense, or a strong defense.

Revelation 12:10-13

And I heard a loud voice saying in
heaven, now is come salvation, strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the
power of His Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused
them before our God day and night.  And they overcame him by the BLOOD of
the LAMB, and by the WORD of their testimony; and they loved not their lives
unto death.  Therefore rejoice ye heavens, and you that dwell in them.  Woe to
the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you,
having great wrath, because he knows that he has but a short time.  And when the
dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which
brought forth the man child.

So as Jeremiah was so doing, so are
we to be busy occupying ourselves by carrying out the business of our Lord Jesus
Christ.  We are to be making an Απολογια, or a strong and cogent defense of the
Word of God.  Let the _evil rant and rage as he hears us make bold proclamations
of the Glory of the Risen Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, our
King!

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