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9:45 am Sunday School
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Echo Evangelique

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Saturday 9:00-10:00PM
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Thursday 8:00-9:00PM

 

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FRIDAY NIGHT
7:30pm Bible Study
SATURDAY MORNING
8:30am Bible Study
Sunday School
9:45am  10:30am

The Futility of Man’s Pride and a Call to Worship the Lord

Part I

Text: Jeremiah 13:1-17

Key Concepts:

  • The Symbol of the Linen Sash
  • God will judge His own people according to His righteousness
  • The Lord will not tolerate but will destroy the wicked

 

There are those who seem to get lost on the way. People who used to be part of us but now live sinful lifestyles that keep them away. This way of living also makes them useless to the glory and purpose of God. Are you one of those who have let the futility of their heart remove them from the presence of God? Has your faith gone cold? Is your spiritual growth stunted because you are enamored of sin? Do you need to turn back -from your wickedness- and return to the Lord? Are you able to hear the call to repentance? Are you aware that a departure from intimacy with God will naturally lead to your destruction? Moreover, when one refuses to repent from wickedness, when one chooses sin over God, His judgment will eventually, but inevitably, fall on you. For God Himself will impose the circumstances that leads to your ruin. Indeed, the child of God cannot expect to prosper whilst living in a manner that displeases his/her Heavenly Father.

The Symbol of the Linen Sash

The sash referred to in this portion of the text depicts an undergarment (not an ordinary belt) but something closer to the strap typically worn by male athletes. Jeremiah is sent to acquire a sash and to wear it. Then God directed him to travel about three hundred and fifty (350) miles to hide it in the Euphrates (Jer. 13: 1-5).  Now it came to pass after many days that the Lord said to me, “Arise, go to the Euphrates, and take from there the sash which I commanded you to hide there’” (Jer. 13: 6, NKJV). Naturally, upon retrieval the sash was ruined, soiled and practically useless. The imagery of this derelict sash had to do with the condition of the nation.  ‘“Thus says the Lord: ‘In this manner I will ruin the pride of Judah and the great pride of Jerusalem. This evil people, who refuse to hear My words, who follow the dictates of their hearts, and walk after other gods to serve them and worship them, shall be just like this sash which is profitable for nothing”’ (Jer. 13: 9-10, NKJV). This filthy sash represents the relationship of Judah and Israel to God. The removal of the dirty sash characterizes their departure from their God.  Their intimacy with God was no more, the relationship was in tatters. As a result of being separated from God, the people were ruined. And since they have become “profitable for nothing”, God would destroy them. For, “Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire” (Matt. 7:19, ESV).

God will judge His own people according to His righteousness 

God being just, cannot and will not overlook our conditions when we persist in our sins. Indeed, He will judge His people according to His own justice. God Himself will cause our ruin, if we turn from Him. “I will ruin the pride of Judah and the great pride of Jerusalem” (Jer. 13: 9, NKJV).  That was no idle threat. For Judah’s pride was not spoiled by accident. God Himself set them on the path to their destruction by delivering them to their enemies. Their position of intimacy and great privilege with God was no more. They were no longer tied to the waist of God (Jer. 13:11). Likewise to the spoiled sash, they were good for nothing, useless for the purpose of serving and glorifying God. Where did Judah go wrong? Instead of enjoying their relationship of intimacy and privilege with God, they became proud, futile in their ways. They foolishly took God’s blessings for granted. They became evil doers who were comfortable with their own wicked ways. Indeed, their pride caused them to claim their independence from God, to follow their own evil desires. They “’walk(ed) after other gods to serve them and worship (ed) them (Jer. 17:10, NKJV). They chose their pride over God. “…they would not hear”’ (Jer. 13:11, NKJV).  As a result of that, God Himself caused their destruction. Brethren, pride is the failure to submit to God’s sovereign will. It causes us to be self-reliant, rather than dependent on God and His Word. Consequently, we become arrogant, and take credit for what God accomplishes. It is a rejection of God’s standards. Our pride never serves the purposes of God. For it is futile and self-deceptive. If Jesus Himself could pray “not my will but thine be done” (Luke 22:42, KJV), what excuse do we have to seek to be self-reliant, self-deluding, proud and self-righteous. Rather, the more grace we receive from God, the humbler we should be in our walk with Him.

The Lord will not tolerate but will destroy the wicked

The Bible teaches us that “The just shall live by faith” (not by pride) (Rom. 1:17, NKJV). True faith is knowledge of God, of His sovereign will and submission to that will. A faith that focuses and relies on God alone. True faith trusts and obeys the living God. Faith in God is not about self. In fact, it is self-denying, self-sacrificial. True faith seeks to glorify God through obedience. Those who seek to ‘obey’ God their own way, don’t know God. Those who seek to redefine God, are simply idolators. Since idolatry is a higher form of betrayal to God, and God will not be mocked; idolators will be judged, whether she or he be king, priest or prophet. Both leaders and regular people will receive the same judgment. For, when the leadership is corrupt, the people being led will equally be corrupt. ‘“I [The Lord] will not pity nor spare nor have mercy but will destroy them” (Jer. 13:13, NKJV). The cup of the wicked will be filled with God’s wrath. They will be drunk from God’s judgment (Jer. 13:13). Beware brethren, lest you share in this cup of wine of judgment and ruin.

In conclusion….

God in His grace and mercy, thankfully, is warning us of danger. “’ Hear and give ear: Do not be proud,
for the Lord has spoken”’ (Jer. 13:15, NKJV). If your life is currently going in the wrong direction, stop, look and listen. Stop your rebellion and proud ways. Take the opportunity God is giving you to repent. “’Give glory to the Lord your God before He causes darkness, and before your feet stumble…”’ (Jer. 13:16, NKJV). In the instance of Achan (Jos. 7:19), giving glory to God meant to confess one’s sins to God. We also learn from John (9) that giving glory to God had to do with confession. We are indeed called to admit and acknowledge our sins before God in humility. As David confessed, “I acknowledge my transgressions, and my sin is always before me. Against You, You only, have I sinned, and done this evil in Your sight—That You may be found just when You speak, and blameless when You judge” (Ps 51:3-4, NKJV). When we attempt to hide our sins from God, we deceive ourselves and therefore cannot truly repent. If you need God’s forgiveness, repent from your sins this instant. Do not wait. Do not make excuses. Do so before darkness (i.e. death, distress, calamity) and ruin fall upon you (Jer. 13:16).  Call upon God’s goodness for your deliverance. “But if you will not hear” (Jer. 13:17), you will weep bitterly. If you remain impenitent, you will grieve. God will shatter your treasured pride. You will go from being pure gold to base lead. You will be spiritually useless. It is not too late to return to your Merciful Father. For when you repent, He will indeed have mercy on you. And He will restore you.

More Info
575 American Legion Hwy
Roslindale, MA 02131
Phone: 617-323-3107
Fax: 617-323-3165
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Every Sunday at 10:45am