Chapter 16:  History, Prophesy, and Prediction


While our puny human minds require the Writing Prophets to be
parceled into the categories of (1) history, (2) prophesy, and (3)
prediction, to the God of the Universe, the Father of the Lord Jesus
Christ, and the origin of all the Bible of Jesus, the Prophets and
Apostles, it is all history.  Some not yet seen on the human scene, but
determined by God and revealed to His Servants the Prophets (Amos
3:7); and some contemporary history like in Jeremiah as we see the
last 163 years unfold each day in the rebellion and termination first of
the northern kingdom of Israel and then the southern kingdom of
Judah.  Also the gradual revelation from God through the Bible
continues, primarily in the Dark Ages of the Divided Kingdoms {you
will notice that most of the minor prophets and 4 major prophets were
written during those dark days of the Divided Kingdom, and that alone
gives you a clue that much of prophesy is “exhortation, comfort, and
edification” (II Corinthians 14:3) during dark days}, to deliver to His
own people the concept of a new sort of kingdom, a kingdom
established on earth during the life and times of Christ, for which the
Lord Jesus Christ is the head as well as the means of entrance, a
kingdom that would be tended to by God and the Holy Spirit, an
eternal kingdom contrasted to those like Assyria, Babylon, Persia,
Greece, and the famous Roman Empire, a kingdom unlike the others
where the rule of God and Christ reigned in a certain segment of the
world’s population at any time in history, a kingdom of Gentiles and a
few select Jews, a kingdom of a people after God’s own heart that
would re-populate the new earth.

NOTE:  In many godly ways and thought patterns, the history of
the universe is the history of God choosing from each generation
of the world’s population approximately 7,000 each year to be
citizens of the new heaven and the new earth!

At this point in these “Bible Studies in Jeremiah and Prophesy”,
hopefully you have read through the book of Jeremiah.  If not, then
this beginning of the new years is a good time to do it, hopefully at
one sitting, and commencing with a prayer to God for leadership from
the Holy Spirit in understanding of what is written.  Never forget, that
spiritual matters are spiritually discerned.  (I Corinthians 2:14)
Today, we will start a rapid scan of Jeremiah 24-52 to appreciate
even more after the previous 15 months of study on Jeremiah and the
Prophets, the flavor of Jeremiah and Prophesy, even as we have
previously done for the little book of Amos.

16-1:  America and Judah, “Do not take Advantage of the People
in the Land”.

What we noticed in the Prophet Amos is a repeated theme from God
in the other books of Prophesy like Jeremiah.  It is God warning
government, princes, priests, prophets, and community values “Do not
take advantage of your own people in the land.”  Goodness, surely
you know we have not learned this message over 2010 plus 587 years
later.  For example the USDA tells us that 1 out of 7 Americans is
hungry, millions go to bed hungry every night, and many adults do not
have one meal during the day.  This ought not to be in the land of
plenty, the home of the brave and the free; and while we are so
concerned to fight wars across the globe in the name of democracy,
how about in the name of our deepest American and religious values,
fighting a war to feed the hungry Americans of this nation.  Even as
the Prophet Amos called the wealthy ladies of Bashan, the “fat cows
of Bashan” because they lived in luxury and greed while so many other
neighbors in the land about them were destitute and hungry, so we
have a lot of “fat cats” in America that ought of greed for increased
profits take advantage of the poor people in America.  Ever time they
up their profits to look good in the stock market, they put additional
pressure on these poor and hungry people of America; and the
balance of those millionaires and billionaires who out of their
abundance give {hardly the widow’s mite} near the end to rationalize
their conscience, to the imbalance of those who are poor and needy,
even in this country, does not yet fix the problem of the need and
hunger of the 1 out of 7 according to the USDA.
As we rapidly scan through the pages and 52 chapters of Jeremiah
{January and February in newsletters and on-line at
biblecombibleman.com}
, not only will we pick up these Bible
messages of warnings against the way you treat your own fellow
citizens, and the strangers in the land; but primarily we will note in
Jeremiah, what is History, Prophesy, and Prediction.

16-2:  History with an Introduction to  Edification and Comfort.

What better verse to start with than the history of Jeremiah 24:1 that
starts the chapter with history, then rapidly slides into the prophesy of
the division of God’s people into good figs and bad figs.  Of all the
dark messages for dark days of Jeremiah, this passage from chapter
24 to chapter 29 is to provide hope for the good figs of God’s people
during those dark days of Captivity, making “edification” and “comfort”
more the emphasis in prophesy than previous chapters where God  
and His servant Jeremiah are trying to get through the thick and
rebellious head of Judah God’s perspective on their righteousness
{really the lack there of in the sight of God, although they thought all
that religion was gong to save them, then in history and eternally} by
way of “exhortation”.

NOTE:  These extensive quotes to follow will be from the King
James Version, because it is in the public domain, preventing
those who make profits out of the Bible from crying “copying”
with infringements on their profits:  where something is lost in
1611 English, we will add excerts from the New King James
Version which allows limited quotations in any book.

“THE Lord shewed me, and ,behold, two baskets of figs were set
before the temple of the LORD, after that Nebuchadnezzar king of
Babylon had carried away captive Jeconiah the son of Jehoiakim
king of Judah, with the carpenters and smiths, from Jerusalem,
and had brought them to Babylon.”  (Jeremiah 24:1)

While we can easily get the distinct impression that the whole nation of
Judah had gone to pot--people, prophets, priests, and government--
we learn in Jeremiah 24-29 of the good figs, primarily those that were
taken captive as contrasted to those bad figs that were killed on the
spot.  And what we really must decide, especially in light of the
previous passage where God had Jeremiah go through all the streets
of Judah and Jerusalem looking for just one righteous person, that
although God was displeased with the righteousness of all the nation,
out of His grace and mercy He chose some better sinners {the good
figs} to not only go into Captivity in Babylon, surviving death and
starvation, but also a remnant of their children to 70 years later return
to the Promised Land.

“This is a work of God, and it is marvellous in our eyes.”  (Psalm
118:23)

1.  (prophesy)  The basket of good figs had “very good figs” while the
basket of bad figs had “very naughty figs”--so bad that they could not
be eaten. (24:2).
2.  (history and prophesy) Jeremiah said that he saw the very good
figs and the evil figs (24:3).
3.  (prophesy, history, and prediction) When the Word of God again
came to Jeremiah, God explained that he would acknowledge that part
of the population of Judah sent into Captivity as the good figs.

“...Like these good figs, so will I acknowledge them that are
carried away captive of Judah, whom I have sent out of this place
into the land of the Chaldeans for their own good.”  (Jeremiah 24:
5)

1.  God was making something good out of what looked so bad.  
After all the captive citizens of Judah in or on their way to Babylon,
thought, what could be good about Babylon and Captivity.
2.  By the way, did you notice in 24:1 the groups that Nebuchadnezzar
chose:  craftsmen like silversmiths and carpenters, and some of the
princes of the people.  
{Recall how some like Daniel became
government leaders in Babylon.}
3.  Caution another warning to those who would take Jeremiah 29:11
{in other versions of the Bible} out of these darkest hour context of
Jeremiah and Israel to justify the Gospel of Prosperity, the real
promise for the good figs was in 70 years; it was only for protection
not prosperity in Babylon; and the hope was for their children in 70
years, returning only a remnant, and that remnant by no means was to
what such false preachers call prosperity.
 {Read Ezra and
Nehemiah on the Restoration, and how meager for example was
the Temple compared to before.  Of course, they were free; and
perhaps the Popular Preachers of Prosperity should concentrate
on freedom over prosperity.}
4.  God promises to set His eyes on the good figs for their own
good:  (1) to bring them back to this land, at least as a people as it
would their children after 70 years; (2) God promises to build up the
good figs and not tear them down; (3) to plant them and not pluck
them up; God will give them a heart to know them {this very important
teaching of the new birth and righteousness through the new birth is
one of the most significant Christian doctrines, and is quoted in the
New Testament from Jeremiah}; the covenant, albeit a new covenant
will then be established between God’s people and God whereby (a)
God will be their God, and (b) the people will be the people of God;
and God’s specially identified people, the good figs, will return to God
with “their whole heart”.  (24:6,7)
5.  Top to bottom the evil figs are identified, starting in Jeremiah 24:8-
10.

“And as the evil figs, which cannot be eaten, they are so evil;
surely thus saith the LORD, So will I give Zedekiah the king of
Judah, and his princes, and the residue of Jerusalem, that remain
in this land
{some fled Jerusalem and hid in the hills and among
neighbors}
, and them that dwell in the land of Egypt {some went
down into Egypt}
:  and I will deliver them to be removed into all
the kingdoms of the earth
{the scattering of the Jews all over the
earth}
for their hurt {captivity in Babylon was for the good of the
good figs, the scattering of Jews over all the kingdoms of the
earth was for the hurt of the bad figs}
, to be a reproach and a
proverb, a taunt and a curse, in all places wither I shall drive
them.  And I will send the sword, the famine, and the pestilence,
among them, till they be consumed from off the land that I gave
unto them and to their fathers.”  (Jeremiah 24:8-10)

NOTE:  Recall even as the prophetic prediction of Captivity or
Destruction was made in Amos at least 163 years before it became
history on the human scene, so this prediction was written and
recorded in Jeremiah before it happened.  Those of unbelief in God
and the Word of God of the Bible would be quick to think and say,
“Yes, after it happened as the people were divided into either
Captives or Survivors on the land, in Egypt, and in the neighborhood,
then God chose the two groups of good figs and bad figs.  No, not
so; and such an attitude shows a lack of faith in God and in the Bible
as the Word of God!

16-3:  Years of the Prophesy Against Judah Through Jeremiah.
(chapter 25)

In Jeremiah 25, the Message of God against Judah and Jerusalem
delivered through Jeremiah started in the 13th year of king Josiah and
ran until the present, the present of Jeremiah 25 and the larger contest
is identified as 23rd year of, that is for 20 years Jeremiah had daily
been speaking to all the people of Jerusalem and Judah, but they did
not listen.  (Jeremiah 25:1-3).  And here in Jeremiah 25:4-7 is a
summary of Jeremiah and the other Prophets prophesied for so long.

“And the LORD hath sent unto you all his servants the prophets,
rising early and sending them; but ye have not hearkened, nor
inclined your ear to hear.  They said, Turn ye again now every one
from his evil way, and from the evil of your doings, and dwell in
the land that the LORD hath given unto you and to your fathers
for ever and ever:  and go not after other gods to serve them, and
to worship them, and provoke me not to anger with the works of
your hands; and I will do you no hurt.  {This was the message of
God through the Prophets for over 163 plus years; however, the
time of “no hurt”, at least for the bad figs was over.}  Yet ye have
not hearkened unto me, saith the LORD: that ye might provoke
me to anger with the works of your hands to your own hurt.”  
(Jeremiah 25:4-7)

16-4:  Vivid Description in Jeremiah 25:9-11 of the Calamity.

{Please read it from Jeremiah 25:9-11.}

16-5:  History of Captivity has been fulfilled by the time of
Jeremiah 29.

Even as predicted in Jeremiah 24:1, it was past history in Jeremiah 29:
1,2.
 {For details of the history of the destruction of Jerusalem in
597 and 587 B.C. you must go to the historical books of Kings
and Chronicles.  Also Josephus, the Jewish historian has some
good detailed accounts.}

“Now these are the words of the letter that Jeremiah the prophet
sent from Jerusalem unto the residue of the elders which were
carried away captives, and to the priests, and to the prophets,
and to all the people whom Nebuchadnezzar had carried away
captive from Jerusalem to Babylon; (after that Jeconiah
{another
pronunciation for king Jehoiachin}
the king, and the queen, and
the eunuchs, the princes of Judah and Jerusalem, and the
carpenters, and the smiths, were departed from Jerusalem;)...”  
(Jeremiah 29:1,2)

1.  Jeremiah presents on the behalf of God very practical advice for
the good figs in Captivity:  (1) build houses to live in; (2) plant gardens
for food; (3) marry and raise children; (4) in order to increase and not
diminish in Babylon, take wives for your sons and give your daughters
for wives; (5) seek the peace of the city where you live, praying to
God for it and peace.  (Jeremiah 29:5-7)
2.  Even as earlier in Jeremiah false prophets of Israel in Captivity
were predicting that in 2 years there would be a Restoration to the
homeland, those same false prophets were still making predictions of
a less than 70 year Captivity.

“For thus saith the LORD, that after seventy years be
accomplished at Babylon I will visit you, and perform my good
word toward you, in causing you to return to this place {Jeremiah
is still in Jerusalem}.  For I know the thoughts that I think toward
you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give
you an expected end.”  (Jeremiah 29:10,11)

3.  Quite contrary to the “expected end” of the Popular Preachers of
Prosperity, Jeremiah explains in 12-14, Jeremiah and God through
Jeremiah explains the “expected end” that God intends:  (1) God’s
people will call upon God; (2) God’s people of the good figs will go
and pray to God; (3) God will listen to their prayers; (4) the people of
God will seek God and when they seek with their whole heart they will
be rewarded by finding God; (5) God will be fond of them; (6) God will
turn away, or put behind them, their Captivity; (7) God will gather them
from all the nations where He has driven them; and (8) God will again
bring them into the land of Jerusalem, Judah, and Israel.

16-6:  The Period of Jeremiah 29 is obviously the last Decade of
Jerusalem.

You recall Jerusalem was sieged and taken captive in 597 B.C. with
some captives taken to Babylon and some killed, then in 587 B.C.
completely destroyed with the walls torn down and the temple torn
down.  It is obviously during that 10 years during the writing of
Jeremiah 29, and you see it especially starting in Jeremiah 29:15.
1.  God and Jeremiah are enraged from Jerusalem that the Captives
in Babylon are saying, “The LORD hath raised us up prophets in
Babylon...”  (Jeremiah 29:15)
2.  First, in 29:16-19, what is going to happen to Judah that remained
after the Deportation and Captivity of 597 B.C.:  (1) God will send
upon those remaining citizens of Jerusalem and Judah the sword,
famine, and pestilence; (2) God will make them like vile figs that
cannot be eaten because they are so evil; (3) God will persecute them
with the sword, famine, and pestilence; (4) God will deliver them to the
fate of removal to all the kingdoms of the earth where they will be a
curse, astonishment, hissing, and reproach.
3.  And again God and Jeremiah remind them of WHY.  
{Remember
now in Jeremiah 24-29 as contrasted to Jeremiah 1-23 where the
message of judgment was to the whole nation, now here in
Jeremiah 29 it is to the bad figs, those who remained in
Jerusalem and Judah after 597 B.C.}

“Because they have not hearkened to my words, saith the LORD,
which I sent unto them by my servants the prophets, rising up
early and sending them; but ye not hear, saith the LORD.
(Jeremiah 29:19)

16-7:  Then starting in Jeremiah 29:20, words for the Captives in
Babylon.

“Hear ye therefore the word of the LORD, all ye of the captivity,
whom I have sent from Jerusalem to Babylon.”  (Jeremiah 29:20)

NOTE:  Could it be any clearer who God is talking about, just like
the hope of Jeremiah 29:11, who it was delivered to and
specifically what that hope would be?

1.  God is delivering the false prophets Ahab and Zedekiah, who
prophesied “a lie” in the name of God to be killed by king
Nebuchadnezzar.  (29:21)
2.  History in Babylon among the captives will take up a new saying
and curse, “The LORD make thee like Zedekiah and like Ahab, whom
the king of Babylon roasted in the fire.” (Jeremiah 29:22)

16-8:  Back to Cup of Fury of God on nations of Jeremiah 25.

Even as read over and over from Jeremiah 25:15 to the end of
Jeremiah 25 in verse 38, it is hard to tell the exact point and verse
where God’s words of judgment through Jeremiah transition from
more immediate judgment on nations starting at Jerusalem and going
forth to Saudi Arabia and all the nations of the earth, to final judgment
on all nations at the end of time.  Yet you see and know it is there,
certainly before you come to Jeremiah 25:31 with the great “noise”
that is heard to all the ends of the earth.

“A noise shall come even to the ends of the earth; for the LORD
hath a controversy with the nations, he will plead with all flesh; he
will give them that are wicked to the sword, saith the LORD.”  
(Jeremiah 25:31)

1.  You recognize that great noise as the same as the sounding of the
seventh trumpet of Revelation 10:7.

“But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall
begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath
declared to his servants the prophets.”  (Revelation 10:7)

2.  That great noise is the “great sound of a trumpet” is the great
gathering of good figs and bad figs immediately after the Second
Coming of Christ of the teachings of Jesus in Matthew 24:30,31.

“And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven:  and
then shall all the tribes of earth mourn, and they shall see the Son
of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great
glory.  And he shall send hsi angels with a great sound of a
trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four
winds, from one end of heaven to the other.”  (Matthew 24:t30,31)

NOTE:  At this point in Bible Studies in Jeremiah, it has become
obvious that Jeremiah must be pursued simultaneously with
studies on the KINGDOM.  To a certain extent among you most
aggressive seekers after Bible this has already been true as you
have indulged in the studies under the headings of
CUP OF
WATER and GOLDEN NUGGET AND THE MOCKING BIRD;
however the necessity of consider the tragedies of Jeremiah in
the destruction of Jeremiah without losing a historical perspective
of hope and the kingdom of God and Christ necessitates a more
unified approach in simultaneous Bible study by email and on-
line.  You can get a better feel for this if you go to the web page
on
THE KINGDOM, and read the monthly newsletters which will
now alternate between Jeremiah and the Kingdom.

Please also in this simultaneous pursuit, see:

1.  
Jeremiah and the Forever Kingdom.

2.  History of God:  A Reconciliation of the Darkness and Hope.

3.  
The Kingdom.