Jeremiah 7:24 – But they did not listen or pay attention; instead, they followed the stubborn inclinations of their evil hearts. They went backward and not forward.
Jews of Jeremiah’s time excelled at following the external trappings of the law; as long as they offered the appropriate sacrifices in abundance, they thought they would please God.
In Jeremiah 7:22-23, the Lord told them otherwise. “I did not just give them commands about burnt offerings… but… this command: … Walk in obedience to all I command you” (NIV, italics added). Instead, they did as they wanted, resulting in a backward religion.
The literal wording of the last sentence reads: “They were backward and not forward.” They had their religion the wrong way around; they had focused on external actions and not internal obedience.
Earlier, the prophet Isaiah said that the people would fall backward, into captivity, because they had a “little” religion: “the word of the LORD to them will become: do this, do that, a rule for this, a rule for that; a little here, a little there – so that as they go they will fall backward, they will be injured and snared and captured” (28:13 NIV).
The goal for Christians today remains the same: “This is love for God: to keep His commands” (1 John 5:3 NIV). True devotion will express itself in every area of our lives.
– From 365 Encouraging Verses of the Bible, published by Barbour Publishing, Inc. Used by permission.
|Share The Good News|