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Trip 661:  Symbolism of the Clay Pot

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THE TIME SEQUENCE BIBLE

1095 Devotional “Trips”!

Rix W. Tillman, D. Min.

Reading assignment:  __Jeremiah 19:1 through Jeremiah 20:6

Focal verse(s):  Jeremiah 19:11:  “and say to them, ‘Thus says the LORD of hosts, “Just so will I break this people and this city, even as one breaks a potter’s vessel, which cannot again be repaired; and they will bury in Topheth because there is no other place for burial.

God sent Jeremiah to buy a potter’s earthen bottle and told him to take some of the elders and priests with him as witnesses.  The Lord told Jeremiah to take the bottle to the Valley of Ben Hinnom, which was the city dump.  They went to the Potsherd Gate, which the potters used to throwaway their broken pieces of pottery.  When the men reached the Potsherd Gate, Jeremiah delivered a sermon from the Lord in which he condemned their idolatry and began to describe the coming judgment of God.  The Babylonians would invade them and slay many of them, leaving their bodies exposed for the birds and wild animals to feed upon.  The people who survived would become so starved during Babylon’s siege of Jerusalem they would become cannibals, eating their own children!  As Jeremiah preached this message, he took the bottle he had purchased and broke it to illustrate how God would break Jerusalem and Judah.  After he finished his sermon to the elders and priests, Jeremiah returned to the city and repeated his sermon to the people in the temple court.  One of the priests named Pashhur had Jeremiah taken and whipped with 40 lashes, then put him in the stocks to be publicly harassed.  After Jeremiah was freed the next day he continued to preach the same message, changing Pashhur’s name to “terror on every side” and mentioning the fact that Pashhur would receive God’s punishment because of his rejection of the Lord’s message.  We need more Jeremiah’s in today’s world!  Do you have the commitment to Christ to take public ridicule and even physical abuse and never waive in your commitment to our Savior?  Become a “Jeremiah person” today and you will truly make a difference in this world for Christ!

 

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Trip 660:  The Potter and the Clay

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THE TIME SEQUENCE BIBLE

1095 Devotional “Trips”!

Rix W. Tillman, D. Min.

Reading assignment:  __Jeremiah 18

Focal verse(s):  Jeremiah 18:6:  “0 house of Israel, can I not do with you as this potter does?’ Declares the Lord.  ‘Like clay in the hand of the potter, so are you in my hand, 0 house of Israel.”’

God instructed Jeremiah to get an object lesson by visiting the local potter’s shop and watch how he worked with the clay on his potter’s wheel.  While Jeremiah was watching, the potter found a flaw in the vessel he was making, so he squeezed the clay into a lump and made another pot.  God told Jeremiah that this was a picture of His association with the Israelites.  The people were the clay in God the potter’s hand.  If God saw a flaw He had the privilege as Creator to change the clay as he pleased.  The flaw that God referred to was the sin of the people, including their idolatry, sexual promiscuity, and dishonesty.  When Jeremiah preached this message to the people they responded by plotting against him, planning to destroy his reputation with slander, gossip, and public humiliation.  Because they had rejected both God and His prophet, God’s judgment of famine and the sword awaited them.  We are the clay and God is the potter.  As yielded Christians, we are to be like soft clay in the Potter’s hands, ready to be molded and shaped into God’s will for our lives.  When we backslide, the clay becomes stiff and cannot be shaped, and must be broken!

 

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Trip 659:  Judah’s Idolatry—Part 3

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THE TIME SEQUENCE BIBLE

1095 Devotional “Trips”!

Rix W. Tillman, D. Min.

Reading assignment:  __Jeremiah 10

Focal verse(s):  Jeremiah 10:8:  “But they are altogether stupid and foolish in their discipline of delusion–their idol is wood!  

Jeremiah explained the folly and ignorance of idol worship in the 10th chapter.  Worshipping idols was worthless because the gods that the people were worshipping were made by the worshippers!  They would cut down a tree, take it to the craftsman who would form the wood into the desired god, cover it with precious metal and take it to the site of worship.  It would sit there like a scarecrow in a farmer’s field and had no power to speak or do anything else, either good or bad.  God is alive whereas the idols are dead; the Lord is eternal while the idol is finite and will decay with time.  Jeremiah 10:11 is the only verse in the entire book of Jeremiah written in Aramaic!  Aramaic was the merchant language of the day, and this verse and was probably directed at the pagans in the area concerning their false gods who would perish with them.  God created the universe and only the Lord has the power to make clouds, rain, lightning, and wind.  The man-made idols, in contrast, can make nothing or do nothing!  Jeremiah instructed the people to pack up their belongings and be ready to leave Judah because those who survived the Babylonian onslaught would be taken away as captives.  Christians should live in a way that we are ready to be raptured by Christ at all times!  If Jesus came tomorrow, what would he find you doing?  Telling someone about Christ or involved in something that Jesus would be ashamed to find you doing?  If, like Jeremiah, you knew that God’s judgment was coming soon, would it change the way you live for Christ?  My friend, just listen to the news and read the book of Revelation and you’ll realize that God’s judgment is coming soon!!

 

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Trip 658:  Judah’s Idolatry—Part 2

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THE TIME SEQUENCE BIBLE

1095 Devotional “Trips”!

Rix W. Tillman, D. Min.

Reading assignment:  __Jeremiah 9

Focal verse(s):  Jeremiah 9:6:  “Your dwelling is in the midst of deceit; through deceit they refuse to know me,” declares the LORD.”

Jeremiah pictured the tongues of the Judeans as bows which shot lies because dishonesty had become a way of life in Judah.  (Sounds like the modern day American political system!) The prophet felt such grief and despair at the shameful condition of Judah that he wept over the land, knowing soon God would send the wicked Babylonians to conquer the people.  Jeremiah told the women to teach their daughters a funeral song about the death of the children and young men of Jerusalem who would be killed when the Babylonians invaded Judah.  Jeremiah mentioned that God would punish the guilty and save the righteous during the coming judgment.  Those who had conformed outwardly to religious rituals but were unrepentant in their hearts would be punished because they were not circumcised in their hearts.  Many church members today understand how to “play church”:  They know all the right words to say, how to act, and what to do when they attend church, but it’s all a game.  Although they sing the hymns and praise choruses of the faith, and appear to hear the sermon, there is no change in their lives and they live just like a person who doesn’t know the Lord.  This is life-style that leads to God’s imminent judgment!

 

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Trip 657:  Judah’s Idolatry and Imminent Exile

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THE TIME SEQUENCE BIBLE

1095 Devotional “Trips”!

Rix W. Tillman, D. Min.

Reading assignment:   __Jeremiah 8

Focal verse(s):  Jeremiah 8:3:  “And death will be chosen rather than life by all the remnant that remains of this evil family, that remains in all the places to which I have driven them,” declares the LORD of hosts.

There would be no escape from God’s judgment for the wicked people of Judah.  Even the bones of those who were dead would be dug up out and would be laid out in the open.  The survivors of the invasion would be carried off to a foreign land and wish they were dead because their lives would be so miserable.  Most people learn from their errors, but not the people of Judah.  The people had grown so hard in their hearts spiritually they could not recognize their mistakes.  They were so caught up in sin that sin did not seem serious, but rather just a natural part of their everyday lives.  Before you’re quick to condemn the Israelites and Judeans for their sin, just think how far our culture has slipped into a sinful life-style in the last 50 years.  Do you remember when a profane word would upset you when you heard it in a movie?  How about sex and violence in books, movies, television, and online?  Be careful that you don’t become desensitized by the sinful world around you!  Take an inventory of the movies you attend, television programs you watch, internet sites you visit, books you read, and the music you listen to and see if you need to make some changes!  The devil may be “turning up the sin heat” on you so slowly you don’t even realize you’re being boiled alive!

 

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Trip 656:  Prediction of Judah’s Destruction—Part 4

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THE TIME SEQUENCE BIBLE

1095 Devotional “Trips”!

Rix W. Tillman, D. Min.

Reading assignment:  __Jeremiah 6

Focal verse(s):  Jeremiah 6:8:  “Be warned, O Jerusalem, or I shall be alienated from you, and make you a desolation, a land not inhabited.

Jeremiah spoke in the 6th chapter of blowing the trumpet, meaning that the people would have to sound the alarm and flee in haste when the Babylonians invaded.  Jerusalem would be left in such ruins that sheepherders would be able to graze their sheep where the city had been!  The Babylonians would attack the city at night and would be guided by God as they laid siege to the city walls.  Jeremiah described how the religious leaders were only preaching what the people wanted to hear and not the true Word of God.  The peoples’ hearts had grown so hard they did not know how to blush when their sins were brought out.  The Babylonian army was wicked and would show no mercy to the Judeans as they invaded them.  God said that the people were like ore and that Jeremiah was His “tester of metals”.  The metal tester concluded after testing the ore that the people were rebellious and hardened of heart, so God’s judgment would have to come upon them.  Has God had to put you through the fire lately?  All refined metal has to first go through the fire to get out the impurities and strengthen it.  When you have trials and tribulations, just remember that’s the way God helps get your impurities out and make you stronger.  Another thought: You can’t have a rainbow until there’s been some rain!

 

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Trip 655:  Prediction of Judah’s Destruction—Part 3

Book Cover

THE TIME SEQUENCE BIBLE

1095 Devotional “Trips”!

Rix W. Tillman, D. Min.

Reading assignment:  __Jeremiah 5

Focal verse(s):  Jeremiah 5: 1:  “Go up and down the streets of Jerusalem, look around and consider, search through her squares.  If you can find but one person who deals honestly and seeks the truth, I will forgive this city.

In the 5th chapter of Jeremiah reasons are given for God’s judgment upon Judah.  Jeremiah was sent to Jerusalem by God on a mission to find just one person who was honest and seeking to know God’s truth.  If he could find just one such person, God would forgive the entire city.  As corrupt and ungodly as Sodom and Gomorrah was, Abraham could find more than one righteous person in that city, but Jeremiah could not find a single righteous soul in Jerusalem!  Because Judah was so wicked God compared them to His choice vine that had gone wild, and He would send the Babylonians through Judah’s “vineyard” and prune the dead branches…that is, those who had not repented and had turned away from God.  Even though Jeremiah and other prophets predicted the doom of Jerusalem, the people refused to listen.  Some of the specific sins of the people which would cause God to bring judgment upon them included their total disregard for the poor and needy, false prophets throughout the nation, and priests who were leading the people into apostasy.  The only way it seemed God could get the attention of this backslidden generation was to bring judgment upon them.  Take a look around at our current generation: excessive crime, drive-by shootings, rape, pornography, gay marriage, drug traffic, permissiveness, etc.  Can you think of a good reason that God won’t be doing the same thing to us that He had to do to the Judeans?  Wake up, Christian, before the time comes when no one righteous can be found in your city!

 

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