Jeremiah 9

Those who will not know God as their law giver will be made to know Him as their Judge.
If the furnace of affliction will not purify them from their dross,
He will cut them off with terrible desolations.

1 Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for the slain of the daughter of my people!

2 Oh that I had in the wilderness a lodging place of wayfaring men; that I might leave my people, and go from them! for they be all adulterers, an assembly of treacherous men.

3 And they bend their tongues like their bow for lies: but they are not valiant for the truth upon the earth; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they know not me, saith the LORD.

4 Take ye heed every one of his neighbour, and trust ye not in any brother: for every brother will utterly supplant, and every neighbour will walk with slanders.

5 And they will deceive every one his neighbour, and will not speak the truth: they have taught their tongue to speak lies, and weary themselves to commit iniquity.

6 Thine habitation is in the midst of deceit; through deceit they refuse to know me, saith the LORD.

7 Therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts, Behold, I will melt them, and try them; for how shall I do for the daughter of my people?

8 Their tongue is as an arrow shot out; it speaketh deceit: one speaketh peaceably to his neighbour with his mouth, but in heart he layeth his wait.

9 ¶ Shall I not visit them for these things? saith the LORD: shall not my soul be avenged on such a nation as this?

10 For the mountains will I take up a weeping and wailing, and for the habitations of the wilderness a lamentation, because they are burned up, so that none can pass through them; neither can men hear the voice of the cattle; both the fowl of the heavens and the beast are fled; they are gone.

11 And I will make Jerusalem heaps, and a den of dragons; and I will make the cities of Judah desolate, without an inhabitant.

12 ¶ Who is the wise man, that may understand this? and who is he to whom the mouth of the LORD hath spoken, that he may declare it, for what the land perisheth and is burned up like a wilderness, that none passeth through?

13 And the LORD saith, Because they have forsaken my law which I set before them, and have not obeyed my voice, neither walked therein;

14 But have walked after the imagination of their own heart, and after Baalim, which their fathers taught them:

15 Therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Behold, I will feed them, even this people, with wormwood, and give them water of gall to drink.

16 I will scatter them also among the heathen, whom neither they nor their fathers have known: and I will send a sword after them, till I have consumed them.

17 ¶ Thus saith the LORD of hosts, Consider ye, and call for the mourning women, that they may come; and send for cunning women, that they may come:

18 And let them make haste, and take up a wailing for us, that our eyes may run down with tears, and our eyelids gush out with waters.

19 For a voice of wailing is heard out of Zion, How are we spoiled! we are greatly confounded, because we have forsaken the land, because our dwellings have cast us out.

20 Yet hear the word of the LORD, O ye women, and let your ear receive the word of his mouth, and teach your daughters wailing, and every one her neighbour lamentation.

21 For death is come up into our windows, and is entered into our palaces, to cut off the children from without, and the young men from the streets.

22 Speak, Thus saith the LORD, Even the carcases of men shall fall as dung upon the open field, and as the handful after the harvestman, and none shall gather them.

23 ¶ Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches:

24 But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD.

25 ¶ Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will punish all them which are circumcised with the uncircumcised;

26 Egypt, and Judah, and Edom, and the children of Ammon, and Moab, and all that are in the utmost corners, that dwell in the wilderness: for all these nations are uncircumcised, and all the house of Israel are uncircumcised in the heart.

Jeremiah 9:1-16 – ​National Perversity

   Once the voice of joy and thanksgiving had been heard in Jerusalem, but now on every side there was bloodshed, and the patriot-prophet could only weep incessantly over the slain. A lodge in the wilderness seemed preferable to the most luxurious mansion in the city. Solitude would be better than association with the ungodly perpetrators of such crimes. Yet we must not go out of the fray so long as our Captain wants us to remain in it, in dependence upon him. —Through the Bible Day by Day

Jeremiah 9:7-16 – National Perversity

   What a magnificent description of the effect of God’s judgments on the land! No bird, no beast, no lowing of cattle, but jackals gamboling over the ruins of Jerusalem. However fast we shut our doors and windows, death enters our homes. Neither palace nor cottage is exempted. There is no escape for young or old from the judgments of God, except in penitence and faith. The secret of national decay and overthrow is the same in all ages. The tree is rotten at the core before it falls beneath the hurricane. Let us turn to I Corinthians 1:18, which belongs to this chapter, and learn how little the wisdom and might of the world can avail us in the dread hour of universal desolation. Stand with the Crucified and glory in His Cross; be content to bear His reproach and shame, that you may become a son of the Resurrection, and be accounted worthy to escape those things that must come to pass, and at last stand, before Him. —Through the Bible Day by Day

Jeremiah 9:12—Who is he to whom the mouth of the LORD hath spoken, that he may declare it?

   A saintly soul has translated these words into music, which expresses their inner thought:–

       “Lord, speak to me, that I may speak
          In living echoes of thy tone:
       As Thou hast sought, so let me seek
          Thy erring children, lost and lone.

       “O teach me, Lord, that I may teach
          The precious things Thou dost impart:
       And wing my words, that they may reach
          The hidden depths of many a heart.”

   With such expressions of the disciples of the Lord, we should couple his sublime words: “Take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak. For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you” (Matthew 10:19-20). And again He said (Matthew 10:27): “What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye upon the housetops.” Often we have run before we were sent. We have spoken our own message, and it has fallen flat and powerless. We have elaborated our sentences with careful art, but they have been lighter than vanity, for want of the King’s word, in which alone there is power.
   Let us amend our ways, and wait on Him for his word, going forth to speak it with an authority which can only be obtained when one has the consciousness of a Thus with the Lord. We may have to go into the darkness of pain and sorrow, or hide in the closet far from the rush of the world, and the clamour of human voices; but we shall hear Him speak, as the prophet Elijah did at Horeb, when the still, small voice filled the cave with its thrilling cadence. —Our Daily Homily