The Fruitless Prophet
Lesson 3 – Jeremiah During Josiah
Jeremiah 2:1-6:30
Date: 28 October 2020 – Jer20
Dates and chronology are based largely on Used by permission.
1.          Jeremiah and Josiah
a.          God tells us very little about Jeremiah’s interaction with good King Josiah. Possibly, Jeremiah 1:1-6:30 took place during the days of Josiah. (Ryrie) Warren Wiersbe divides Jeremiah 2:1-6:30 into four messages: rebellion, repentance, righteousness, and retribution.
b.          “In the Book of Jeremiah, the only direct references to Josiah are in 1:2 where Jeremiah dated his call in Josiah’s thirteenth year, in 3:6 where he indicated that he was speaking in the days of Josiah, and in 25:1-3 where he pointed out that in the fourth year of Jehoiakim he had been active for twenty-three years, having begun his ministry in the days of Josiah.” (
2.          National Rebellion (2:1-37)
a.          Israel first loved the Lord but became unfaithful to Him (2:2, 5). They defiled the land God gave them, turning their backs on God (2:7). Priests, pastors and prophets turned away from God (2:8).
b.          They committed two evils: They forsook the Lord the fountain of living waters (2:13) and instead they hewed (digged) cisterns, broken cisterns (i.e., pits that served as rain tanks).
c.           God allowed Israel to become slaves to Egypt and to Assyria because of their rebellion (2:14, 19).
d.          They broke their promises to God (2:20). They could not wash away their idolatry sins to hide them from God (2:22). They worshiped their images and turned from God (2:27).
e.          In vain, God smote them, but they would not heed (2:30). God had not been a wilderness unto Israel, yet they forgot Him (2:31-32). They tried to deny their guilt, yet God still pled with them (2:35).
We cannot hide our sins from the Lord. We must not deny our guilt. If we forsake Him, He will chasten us. When this happens, we must repent.
3.          Call for Repentance (3:1-4:31)
a.           God pleads with Judah as an unfaithful spouse to return again to Him (3:1). Judah did not learn from God’s judgment on Israel and fearlessly became treacherous against the Lord (3:7-8). The best thing we can learn from history is to LEARN from history and change our ways. Judah only feignedly turned to the Lord not with her whole heart (3:10). God wants our whole hearts!  Her sin was worse than that of Israel (3:11).
b.          God begged Israel (now in Assyrian captivity in the north) to return (3:12, 14). God longed to provide for them again (3:15). God begged Israel to return (3:22).
c.           God begged Judah to lament (4:8) and to wash her heart from wickedness (4:14). He urged Judah to see their true condition (4:22). Painful trouble was coming (4:31). O that we might learn from God’s dealings with those who have sinned! When we sin, we must quickly and thoroughly repent and turn back to God.
4.          Lack of Righteousness (5:1-31)
a.          God made a search for any who did right and sought truth (5:1). The people said the LORD liveth, but they spoke falsely (5:2). The people refused God’s correction, hardened their hearts and would not return to Him (5:3).
b.          The people lied to themselves, denying the Lord’s words (5:12).
c.           God predicted that a nation from afar would overtake them (5:15).
d.          The prophets and priests deal falsely and the people love to have it so (5:31).
5.          Coming Retribution (6:1-30)
a.          Judgment is coming from the north (6:1). God urged Judah to be instructed (6:8).
b.          God promised judgment because the people dealt falsely (6:12-13). God urged them to ask for the old paths and the good way, but they refused to walk therein (6:16).
c.           God refused their insincere burnt offerings (6:20).
d.          Again, God warned of coming judgment (6:22-23).
e.          God begged his people to mourn over their sins (6:26).
6.          Conclusion
Jeremiah may have preached these admonitions during the days of Josiah. During his days, there was a form of revival, but it evidently was not from the heart for the people quickly returned to their sinful ways when Josiah died.
Application: We may not be bowing to idols as Judah bowed, but if we are not careful, materialism or worldly lusts will quench our spiritual fire and we will lose God’s blessing. He is a fountain of living waters. The Devil’s water in broken cisterns is stale and leaking at best. God gets no delight in chastening His children, but in love, He chastens to urge them to repent of their rebellion and return. He will do the same to us if we stray. We must learn from the past and stay close to the Lord.