The Lord’s commentary concerning Israel was not flattering toward those who first received His message. They claimed to “know” their God, yet Jehovah said, “Israel has spurned the good.” They invested their silver and gold in making idols, but their devotion to false gods would only bring about “their own destruction.” The carved images of the northern tribes would be “broken to pieces.”
When the Lord’s people really needed help they turned to the Assyrians, the Egyptians, and other “allies among the nations.” The help of these foreign powers came at a cost, and Israel would “soon writhe because of the tribute” that they needed to pay to win the support of other empires.
With outside influence came strange religious ceremonies. The Jews had “multiplied altars for sinning.” When they wanted to come to the Lord’s authorized place of sacrifice, God would “not accept them.” He would never be content to take His place in a pantheon of deities. The Lord would “remember their iniquity” because they had “forgotten” their Maker.
God promised in Jeremiah 31 that a New Covenant would eventually be given to His elect. “They shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest.” Since we live in that great time of blessing, we must not pursue a double-minded way of life (James 1:5-8). We follow a Savior who has been completely true in heart and action. He calls us to follow Him with the sincerity of exclusive worship and obedience.
Prayer from A Book of Prayers
God of Glory, we have a sure hope in Christ. Though we have often spurned Your good gifts, He has not rejected us. When we have foolishly turned our hearts to the making of idols, He has taught us the difference between a true Savior and objects that are not gods. We should always listen to His Word. The way of the world will not solve our problems. If we follow that path we will only multiply our troubles. You are the only answer for Your people.