BIBLE: Jeremiah Chapter 17 – Headline “The Living Dead Find Living Water”

Words in italic type have been added for clarity. They are not found in the original Hebrew or Aramaic.

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Jeremiah 17

What should I learn from this chapter?

  • The meaning of sap/pitch.
  • The definition of living water.
  • The meaning of “tree”.

Judah’s Sin and Punishment

Jeremiah 17:1 “The sin of Judah is written with a pen of iron;
With the point of a diamond it is engraved
On the tablet of their heart,
And on the horns of your altars,
  • The tablet of the heart would be made of stone.
Jeremiah 17:While their children remember
Their altars and their wooden images (Heb. Asherim, Canaanite deities) by the green trees on the high hills.
Jeremiah 17:O My mountain in the field,
I will give as plunder your wealth, all your treasures,
And your high places of sin within all your borders.
Jeremiah 17:And you, even yourself,
Shall let go of your heritage which I gave you;
And I will cause you to serve your enemies
In the land which you do not know;
For you have kindled a fire in My anger which shall burn forever.”
Jeremiah 17:Thus says the Lord:
“Cursed is the man who trusts in man
And makes flesh his strength (Lit. arm),
Whose heart departs from the Lord.
Jeremiah 17:For he shall be like a shrub in the desert,
And shall not see when good comes,
But shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness,
In a salt land which is not inhabited.
  • Like a tumbleweed which does not bear fruit.
Jeremiah 17:“Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord,
And whose hope is the Lord.
Jeremiah 17:For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters,
Which spreads out its roots by the river,
And will not fear when heat comes;
But its leaf will be green,
And will not be anxious in the year of drought,
Nor will cease from yielding fruit.
  • Leaves are symbolic of many people.
  • Trees, in scripture, are symbolic of men and nations. (See Topic: Biblical Materials scroll to Tree).
  • A green tree has “sap/pitch”. Sap/Pitch is symbolic for the Holy Spirit which seals man to God. It’s meaning is “atonement”. It was used on Noah’s ark to “seal” the ark.
Jeremiah 17:“The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked (Or incurably sick); Who can know it?

Jeremiah 17:10 I, the Lord, search the heart,
I test the mind (Most secret parts, lit. kidneys),
Even to give every man according to his ways,
According to the fruit of his doings.
Jeremiah 17:11 As a partridge that broods (Sits on eggs) but does not hatch, so is he who gets riches, but not by right;
It will leave him in the midst of his days,
And at his end he will be a fool.”
Jeremiah 17:12 A glorious high throne from the beginning
Is the place of our sanctuary.
Jeremiah 17:13 O Lord, the hope of Israel,
All who forsake You shall be ashamed.
“Those who depart from Me Shall be written in the earth,
  • Like the woman caught in adultery. Jesus wrote in the dirt. Was He writing their names?
    • John 8:6 This they said, testing Him, that they might have something of which to accuse Him. But Jesus stooped down and wrote on the ground with His finger, as though He did not hear.
Because they have forsaken the Lord,
The fountain of living waters.”
  • Jesus is the fountain of living waters.
    • John 4:13 Jesus answered and said to her, “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, 14 but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.”
    • John 7:38 He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.”
    • Revelation 7:17 for the Lamb who is in the midst of the throne will shepherd them and lead them to living fountains of waters. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.”
  • Water is symbolic of the flow of people. Living water is the flow of living people. Without God the waters are spiritually dead. Jesus’ death and resurrection has the ability to clean the waters of spiritual “dead-ness”. To believe in Jesus is to never die spiritually. To not believe in Jesus is to be the walking (alive) dead (dead). Jesus is the fountain of living waters providing eternal life to those who believe in Him.

Jeremiah Prays for Deliverance

Jeremiah 17:14 Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed;
Save me, and I shall be saved,
For You are my praise.
Jeremiah 17:15 Indeed they say to me,
“Where is the word of the Lord?
Let it come now!”
Jeremiah 17:16 As for me, I have not hurried away from being a shepherd who follows You,
Nor have I desired the woeful day;
You know what came out of my lips;
It was right there before You.
Jeremiah 17:17 Do not be a terror to me;
You are my hope in the day of doom.
Jeremiah 17:18 Let them be ashamed who persecute me,
But do not let me be put to shame;
Let them be dismayed,
But do not let me be dismayed.
Bring on them the day of doom,
And destroy (Lit. crush) them with double destruction!

Hallow the Sabbath Day

Jeremiah 17:19 Thus the Lord said to me: “Go and stand in the gate of the children of the people, by which the kings of Judah come in and by which they go out, and in all the gates of Jerusalem;
Jeremiah 17:20 and say to them, ‘Hear the word of the Lord, you kings of Judah, and all Judah, and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, who enter by these gates.
Jeremiah 17:21 Thus says the Lord: “Take heed to yourselves, and bear no burden on the Sabbath day, nor bring it in by the gates of Jerusalem;
Jeremiah 17:22 nor carry a burden out of your houses on the Sabbath day, nor do any work, but hallow the Sabbath day, as I commanded your fathers.
Jeremiah 17:23 But they did not obey nor incline their ear, but made their neck stiff (Were stubborn), that they might not hear nor receive instruction.
Jeremiah 17:24 “And it shall be, if you heed Me carefully,” says the Lord, “to bring no burden through the gates of this city on the Sabbath day, but hallow the Sabbath day, to do no work in it,
Jeremiah 17:25 then shall enter the gates of this city kings and princes sitting on the throne of David, riding in chariots and on horses, they and their princes, accompanied by the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and this city shall remain forever.
Jeremiah 17:26 And they shall come from the cities of Judah and from the places around Jerusalem, from the land of Benjamin and from the lowland (Heb. shephelah), from the mountains and from the South (Heb. Negev), bringing burnt offerings and sacrifices, grain offerings and incense, bringing sacrifices of praise to the house of the Lord.
  • It’s time to rest and let God work on your behalf.
Jeremiah 17:27 “But if you will not heed Me to hallow the Sabbath day, such as not carrying a burden when entering the gates of Jerusalem on the Sabbath day, then I will kindle a fire in its gates, and it shall devour the palaces of Jerusalem, and it shall not be quenched.” ’ ”
  • To carry a burden when entering the gates of Jerusalem is to partake in the marketing of one’s produce and goods.
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