Preface:  The Heart of Jeremiah.

This book on Jeremiah and Prophesy is “The Heart of Jeremiah” in that it is not a
complete verse by verse exegetical commentary or Bible study like the wonderful
commentary by J.A. Thompson in the NEW BIBLE COMMENTARIES. It is more like a
topical commentary in the nature of the Carroll Commentaries on AN
INTERPRETATION OF THE ENGLISH BIBLE. It has the same approach to the Bible
and Bible study as Sampey’s THE HEART OF THE OLD TESTAMENT, and Hester’s
HEART OF THE NEW TESTAMENT, not exhaustive on every verse and chapter of
the Bible as that would requires volumes of books and nobody would read them
anyway!  Like these two “Jeremiah and Prophesy” books, the main book and the
Appendix, they give the prime gist of the Bible books of Jeremiah and other Prophets
of Prophesy in the Old Testament as they present Jeremiah in historical and spiritual
context.

Preface-1:  Contribution of Jeremiah and Prophesy to the total message of 66 books of
the Bible.

What place do these books have in the total Bible of 66 books?  Or what contribution
to the total message of the Bible, of course centering around the learning of Christ,
does each book make?  In the case of Hester’s HEART OF THE NEW TESTAMENT,
what is the contribution of the 27 books of the New Testament to the total Bible
message; and in the case of Sampey’s HEART OF THE OLD TESTAMENT, by the
way a very short and poignant book, what contribution to the total Bible message of
Christ does the 39 books of the Old Testament make?

Preface-2:  Having said all that, the heart or gist of Jeremiah centers around the
“heart” itself.

1.  First of all, it is apparent to serious students of the Bible that the messages of
Jeremiah and Lamentations are heart felt messages, a matter of total involvement of
His life and Prophesy with God.
2.  Secondly, it is in Jeremiah that we really first learn of both the necessity and God’s
provision of a “new heart” for His own chosen and called people.  No single passage
of Scripture is more germane to the total Bible message of salvation for the people of
God than that of Jeremiah 31:31-34.

“Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the
house of Israel, and with the house of Judah...But this shall be the covenant that I will
make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in
their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be
my people.  And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his
brother, saying, Know the LORD:  for they shall all know me, from the least of them
unto the greatest of them saith the LORD; for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will
remember their sin no more.”  (Jeremiah 31:31-34)

Before we detail the points of exegesis in this extremely important passage in the
Word of God, we will by way of preface note several Biblical facts:
(1). This new heart from God first requires a new covenant with God, and of course
Jesus called this new heart a “new testament” {Mark 14:22-25}, and Christian tradition
during the many years of formulation of the 27 book of the New Testament into a
single book of the Word of God, selected these descriptive words of Jesus about this
new covenant as the New Testament.  Do you recall this incident and teaching from
the life of Christ as recorded in the book of Mark.
“And He said to them, ‘This is My blood of the new covenant {Testament and
Covenant are equivalent words, the verse above being translated “new covenant” in
the New King James Version and “new testament” in the original King James Version.}
which is shed for many.”  (Mark 14:24)
(2).  Granted that it is a long ways in history and revelations from God between
Jeremiah’s announcement of the “new covenant and new heart” as part of prophesy
given to him by God to Jesus in the seventh century Before Christ {B.C.} to when
Jesus sat down with His 12 Apostles to discuss the bloody implications of the new
covenant; and we must keep our concepts and implications of new heart and new
covenant in the total context of the rest of the 66 books of the Bible, and in the total
context of Jeremiah itself.
3.  Also granted that this provision of God for a new heart in the innermost being of
God’s own people is not appreciated until we see what a dismal failure was the
original people of God before God in Jeremiah destroyed Judah and Jerusalem.  The
history of the total destruction of first the northern kingdom of Israel then the southern
kingdom of Judah with Jerusalem at its center begs the obvious question, “What
happened to the original people of God?” Jeremiah answers in most of its 52 chapters
both the history and God’s interpretation through Jeremiah of what was wrong with His
own people; and beyond that comes the begging question, “What in the world were
God’s own people thinking?” in order to get into such a mess, a puzzling question that
together, if you were among the many online participants in the 3 year Bible study on
“Jeremiah and Prophesy”, we sought to labor over during those 3 years of Bible study.
Preface-3:  Like for any book of the Bible, we primarily know what contribution God
meant for Jeremiah to be to the total message of Salvation through Christ of the Bible
by the quotes from the Old Testament in the New Testament.  There are 4 quotes
from Jeremiah in the New Testament and 1 from Lamentations.
NOTE, an insert from volume 1 of the LEARN CHRIST COMMENTARIES.
Jeremiah.  {You will find the Jeremiah quotes in Table 11a.}  While Isaiah was the
great Prophet of the 8th century B.C., Jeremiah was for the 7th century B.C.  As
discussed at the beginning of this book, Jeremiah went over every day to the Temple
from Anatoth, his hometown, per the instructions of God to deliver the famous Temple
Message that God said no one would listen to.  That is, until the Babylonians
destroyed the Temple and Jerusalem as Jeremiah predicted.
Major Prophet                     Matthew             Apostles                     Luke             Mark
Jer. 5:
21                                                                                                                                            8:
18
Jer. 7:11                            21:13                                                   11:17             
Jer 31:7,15               2:17,18                                                                     
Jer 31:31                                                                                                                        
14:24
(Insert from James on Lamentations)
Lamentations 3:57              James 4:8
1.  Jeremiah 5:21 and Mark 8:18.
“Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding:  which have eyes, and
see not; which have ears, and hear not:  Fear ye not me?  saith the LORD;  will ye not
tremble at my presence, which have placed the sand for the bound of the sea by a
perpetual decree, that it cannot pas it; and though the waves thereof toss themselves,
yet can they not prevail; though they roar, yet can they not pass over it?”  (Jeremiah 5:
21,22)
“Having eyes, see ye not?  and having ears, hear ye not?  and do you not
remember?”  (Mark 8:18)
   2.  Jeremiah 7:11 and Matthew 21:13.
“The word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying, Stand in the gate of the
LORD’s house, and proclaim thee this word, and say, Her the word of the LORD, all
ye of Judah, that enter in at these gates to worship the LORD.  Thus saith the LORD
of hosts, the God of Israel, Amend your ways and your doings, and I will cause you to
dwell in this place.  Trust ye not in lying words, saying, The temple of the LORD, The
temple of the LORD, The temple of the LORD, are these.  for if ye thoroughly amend
your ways and your doings; if ye thoroughly execute judgment between a man and his
neighbour; If ye oppress not the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, and shed not
innocent blood in this place, neither walk after other gods to you hurt:  Then will I
cause you to dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers, for ever and
ever.  Behold, ye trust in lying words, that cannot profit.  Will ye steal, murder, and
commit adultery, and answer falsely, and burn incense unto Baal, and walk after other
gods whom ye know not; And come and stand before me in this house, which is called
by may name, and say, We are delivered to al all these abominations?  In this house,
which is called by ny name, become a den of robbers in your eyes?  Behold, even I
have seen it, saith the LORD.”  (Jeremiah 7:1-11)
“And said unto them, It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye
have made it a den of thieves.”  (Matthew 21:13)
NOTE:  Even as Jesus twice, once in Matthew and once in Mark referred to the place
of worship as well as all the public buildings of Jerusalem and the surrounding country
and countries as “den of thieves”, so the subtitle of this book and the Appendix after
“Jeremiah and Prophesy” is NATIONAL DEN OF THIEVES.  Thus of the 5 quotes from
Jeremiah and Lamentations, the focus of this volume 6 of the LEARN CHRIST
COMMENTARIES falls more on the quotes above.  Much of the “Heart of Jeremiah”
centers around the famous Temple Message of Jeremiah in Jeremiah 7 and 23.  
Immediately you see this as timely and applicable to America in that Americans
normally think of all their public buildings and houses of worship as blessed by God.  
And certainly they once were, just like Judah and Israel; however at the point where
God observes that idolatry has replace the legitimate worship of the only real God of
the universe, the Father of the Lord Jesus Christ, then in the sight of God “the temple
of the Lord, the temple of the Lord, the temple of the LORD are these” as a chant and
worship praise song, even as a belief, becomes a lie!
   3.  Jeremiah 31:7,15 and Matthew 2:17,18.
“For thus saith the LORD; Sing with gladness for Jacob, and shout among the chief of
the nations:  publish ye, praise ye, and say, O LORD, save thy people, the remnant of
Israel....Thus saith the LORD; A voice was heard in Ramah, lamentation, and bitter
weeping; Rachel weeping for her children refused to be comforted for her children,
because they were not.”  (Jeremiah 31:7,15)
“Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, In Rama
was there a voice heard, lamentation, and weeping, and great mourning, Rachel
weeping for her children, and would not be comforted, because they are not.”  
(Matthew 2:17,18)
   4.  Jeremiah 31:31 and Mark 14:24.
“Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the
house of Israel, and with the house of Judah...But this shall be the covenant that I will
make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in
their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be
my people.  And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his
brother, saying, Know the LORD:  for they shall all know me, from the least of them
unto the greatest of them saith the LORD; for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will
remember their sin no more.”  (Jeremiah 31:31-34)
“And as they did eat, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and brake it, and gave to them,
and said, Take, eat:  this is my body.  And he took the cup, and when he had given
thanks, he gave it to them; and they all drank of it.  And he said unto them, This is my
blood of the new testament, which is shed for many.  Verily I say unto you, I will drink
no more of the fruit of the vine, until that day that I drink it new in the kingdom of God.”  
(Mark 14:22-25)
   5.  Lamentations 3:57 and James 4:8.
“submit yourselves therefore to God.  Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.  Draw
night to God, and he will draw night to you.  cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify
your hearts, ye double minded.”  (James 4:7,8)
“I called upon thy name, O LORD, out of the low dungeon.  Thou hast heard my voice;
hide not thine ear at my breathing, at my cry.  Thou drewest near in the day that I
called upon thee:  thou saidst, Fear not.  O Lord, thou hast pleaded the causes of my
soul; thou hast redeemed my life.”  (Lamentations 3:55-57)