Think Of The Homeless

There are over 30 million Americans who live on the streets of our nation. Can you consider giving something to a shelter near you? Your fellow human beings need socks because they walk everywhere. Food and shelter are great too, if they will take them. So please give.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012




Anguished Prophet of Doom    Part 2

In the early days of Jehoiakim’s reign, around 608 BC, Jeremiah was instructed to stand in the Lord’s house and proclaim the message coming forth. This was September or October during the  Feast of the Tabernacles. Jeremiah must have been a part of the crowd that followed the procession of believers into the temple. The priests circled the altar and the worshippers waved their lulabs (ceremonial plumes woven of different types of plant leaves) and joined in the singing.

Jeremiah would have interrupted the ceremony in order to protest the false orthodoxy. “The Lord says to amend your ways.” He told them. “I will let you live in this place if you will cease your  murder, adultery, Baal worship, and idol worship  and come before me and declare that you have been delivered! Has this house become a den of robbers in the Lord’s eyes?”

As Jeremiah went further to predict the destruction of the temple itself, the angry mob; still upset that Josiah’s previous reforms had only led to Egypt’s conquest of Judah, seized Jeremiah and proclaimed his death. Court officials rushed to the scene and held an inquiry. The priest told the inquiry that Jeremiah deserved death for prophesy against the city. Jeremiah basically replied that it was God who had sent him to speak of the fate coming to the temple and the city. He also told them that if he was killed, it would bring innocent blood upon the city and its inhabitants.  The officials released him.

Even though he had been almost killed due to his bold prophecy, he was again threatened in his own home town of Anathoth, and warned not to “prophesy in the name of the Lord!” Intrepidly, however, Jeremiah continued on. His next destination was the “burning place” of human sacrifice.... if you can believe that there was such a place among the house of Israel. Topheth was located in the Valley of Hinnom, and was known for its ritualistic murder/worship. The elders and priest there were either a group of pagans from some unknown cult or else they were of a corrupted form of Judaism, it is not clear, but  Jeremiah felt they had to be confronted. In their presence Jeremiah broke and earthenware flask and told them that the Lord had called for their destruction as the flask had been destroyed, and that they would never be mended.

Jeremiah went all over the area telling the people that their days were numbered because the Lord was fed up with their “stiff necks” and deaf ears to his word. The high priest, Pashur, was enraged to hear the prophesy and flogged Jeremiah where he stood. He was then placed in the stocks at the Benjamin gate. Released the next morning, Jeremiah told Pashur that his name before God was not Pashur, but “Terror on all sides” and  Pashur was to be captured and dragged off to Babylon like the rest of people, and there he would die and be buried.

Jeremiah often found his life a shambles because of his mission and he cried out to God in anguish on many occasions. “Oh, Lord, I have become a laughingstock all the day long. I am continually mocked for crying out VIOLENCE AND DESTRUCTION. But if I fail to speak the Lord’s truth, there is a fire in my heart and burning in my bones and I am so weary from it that I cannot fail to proclaim the Lord’s words.”

King Jehoiakim ignored Jeremiah, no doubt he remembered the interruption of his coronation ceremony. Taxing the already strained finances of the people, the King built himself another palace with forced labor in the south of Jerusalem. Jeremiah condemned him for building a house to himself with the people’s money and forcing them to work for nothing.

In 605 bc, the Babylonian’s under Nebuchadnezzar crushed Pharaoh Neco’s forces in northern Syria. King Jehoaikim then became the servant of Nebuchadnezzar and paid him tribute. However, Nebuchadnezzar’s father the King had died soon after and it was necessary for Nebuchadnezzar to return to the throne and be crowned.

In the fourth year of King Jehoiakim, Jeremiah was instructed by God to write down all the words concerning the nations of Israel and Judah  and also all the nations. “I whish to forgive them their iniquity and sin, but they must first turn from their evil ways, and they must be given fair warning afore hand.” The Lord told him.

Jeremiah hired Baruch, a scribe, to take down all of his most important sermons and oracles. These were taken down on a scroll and in the future Baruch would become Jeremiah’s personal secretary. These events happened before 605 B.C., early in the year before, when the Babylonians had returned and were advancing against Ashkelon. Jeremiah had proclaimed a fast against the Babylonian activity and he told Baruch to read the scroll in presence of all to hear during the fast. In the temple he read the scroll aloud.  When the court noblemen heard the words of Jeremiah, they knew they must report this to the King and they told Jeremiah and Baruch to go and hide themselves and let no one know where you are.

The King was then read the scroll while arming himself near a brazier in his quarters. Each time a portion was read to the King, he took that part and burned it in the brazier until the whole scroll was destroyed. He then sent for the arrest of Jeremiah. Jeremiah, however, now well hidden  once again dictated the Word of God to Baruch and this time added much that was not in the first draft.

more on this next time, and I promise it will be soon.... it’s important to finish the current  postings on Jeremiah.                                             

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

The Snowman

Hello, please come by and see an animated story time for little kiddies called The Snowman, it features original voices, music and animation. They will love it and .... maybe you will too!


Friday, September 21, 2012

Jeremiah: The Anguished Prophet of Disaster

Assyrian siege of Lachish


The warnings of Judah’s last prophet fail to prevent the fall of Jerusalem and the exile of its people. With this calamity, the kingdom ends and the city is all but deserted.

The Anguished Prophet 
of Disaster 

It was Jeremiah’s unfortunate job to predict misfortune. It was then to his great distress to have to witness the outcome. Solomon’s glorious temple is destroyed and the kingdom of Judah is taken away to Babylonian captivity.

His ministry spanned the period from 627 b.c. to 580 b.c. and he was rejected and given short shrift by those he would save. He was often lonely and filled with sorrow, but his life is a testament to faith in God even in times of great distress.

Born in the village of Anathoth, the top of a broad hill about two miles outside of Jerusalem, it was a place set aside for the priestly ministry in the times of Joshua and ever since that time the priests had insisted on strict adherence to the laws of Moses. Jeremiah’s father, Hilkia, was one of those priests and his son was given deep respect for the laws of Moses. Its no guess that Jeremiah believed he belonged to a tradition that went back in time with his ancestors and was closer to them than what was currently happening to the people of Jerusalem of his day.

Jeremiah lived in a wilderness which offered no relief from a brutal sun. The land was also quite brutal, containing many ragged cliffs, huge boulders and also a 3000 foot cliff drop to the Dead Sea. Images of the desolate area would be burned in the young boys mind, and would surface in his writings. To the south, he could see the shining city of Jerusalem, a place filled with people he would love and chastise.

At home, Jeremiah was probably shielded from the crazies of Jerusalem. A small child when King Manasseh died, he was witness to the evils that had corrupted the people and had also become a way of life. For quite some time, Jerusalem had been a vassal of Assyria, and was obligated to honor their gods. But Manasseh did far more than pay token homage. He didn’t prevent the worship of Yahweh, but he did re-open local heathen shrines, installed pagan altars and even restarted the  practice of human sacrifice. Ishtar, the Assyrian god of love and war, was placed in the temple in statue form. In her name the priests and male worshipers practiced ritual sex with “holy” prostitutes who lived in the temple. This was a practice that was supposed to promote fertility in the crops, the herds and the families. Statues to the sun god, Shamash, the moon-god, Sin, and other deities representing heavenly bodies were erected within the temple courtyards. Although sorcery was forbidden, wizards and enchanters were flourishing. Those who opposed the King’s decrees were executed or driven underground. 

In 640 b.c. the King’s son and successor, Amon, was murdered. His eight year old son, Josiah, was then placed on the throne. As Josiah matured, the surrounding nations of Babylonia and other vassal states began to challenge Assyria’s waning power, and Josiah himself found strength to assert some resistance. In 628 b.c. he defied his Assyrian overlords and launched a religious reformation to clean Jerusalem of its pagan influences. The shrines were destroyed and the temple was cleaned, and too, the temple priests and prostitutes were executed. 

Jeremiah was called about the year 627 b.c. when he was 17 or 18 years old.

“Now the word of the Lord came to me saying: Before you were born, I consecrated you. I appointed you prophet to the nations.”

Then I said, “Ah, Lord God! I do not know how to speak for I am only a boy!”

But the Lord said to me, “ Do not say I am only a boy, for to all those I will send you, you will go. Whatever I command you, you will speak. Be not afraid of them, for I am with you to deliver you, says the Lord. Then the Lord put forth his hand and touched my mouth, and said to me, “Behold, I have put my words in your mouth.”

God then revealed to him the impending doom of Judah. “Out of the north evil shall break forth upon all the inhabitants of the land.... and I will utter my judgements against them, for all their wickedness in forsaking me: they have burned incense to other gods, and worshiped the works of their own hands.” The divine voice warned Jeremiah not to be dismayed by the persecution to come: “They will fight against you, but they shall not prevail. I am the Lord, and I am with you."  God also ordered him NOT to take a wife, for Judah faced destruction and family lines would perish. From the outset, Jeremiah faced loneliness,  implacable enemies and his country’s bitter destiny.

It was with great heaviness of heart that Jeremiah took up his calling. Like those before him he admonished the shoppers in the marketplace and the crowds in the temple courtyards. He would join the worshipers and deliver his grim warnings dressed in a long white robe of the priest.  He was young and full of anger, and must have presented quite the spectacle.

Hear the word of the Lord, he would say. “As a thief is shamed when caught, so shall the House of Israel be shamed! Those who worship wood and stone and call it their father who gave them birth! Be they Kings, Princes or stone cutters! All will be shamed!”

Before long he would become quite the well known thorn in the side of the people despite their ridicule. “They bend their tongue like a bow.... falsehood has grown strong in the land!”

Josiah’s attempt to revive Judaism gained impetus around 622 b.c. with the discovery of an old law book now called Deuteronomy, outlining the theology of the Mosaic covenant. In line with the precepts, all sacrificial ceremony was now to be performed inside the temple. The clergy were invited to participate in this ritual, but most of them would refuse.

The reforms met with little support, the people suspected political motivation of the King and also feared Assyrian retaliation. At best, the people kept everything that had been doing and only added the King’s wishes into the mix.

Meanwhile Assyria was failing on all fronts. The Babylonians destroyed the capital of Nineveh in 612 b.c. and marked the virtual end of Assyrian power. Josiah, committed to renewal, carried his reformation into the old kingdom of Israel. Now free of Assyrian influence, he extended his reach as far north as Galilee and then west to the Mediterranean sea.

Looking to create a buffer between aggressive Babylonia and his own empire, Pharaoh Neco of Egypt decided to aid Assyria. Knowing that an Egyptian-Assyrian alliance would interfere with an independent Israel, Josiah led an army to  intercept and delay the Egyptians. He met them in battle about 50 miles northwest of Jerusalem, in the place known as Megiddo. He was mortally wounded there and died in transit to the capital. His forces were then badly routed by the Egyptians. Judah then fell temporarily under Egyptian domination. His son Jehoahaz the II was then crowned King. Within three months, Neco carried the new King off to Egypt, placing his brother Jehoiakim on the throne. The new ruler, having no  respect for Josiah’s reforms, threw open the doors wide to paganism once again.

more next time       

Monday, January 2, 2012

Reviews by Hubie Goode: Chronological Bible

The Daily Bible
Chronological Edition

Well, Happy New Year everyone! I'm looking forward to a brand new year full of blessing and I wish the same for all of you as well. Let's start it off with an exercise in daily Bible reading, spending time in God's word and keeping him in front of us. This is the Daily Bible put in chronological order, or the order in which things happened (as best as can be expected). I started this last year and was very blessed by the way this issue was done.

The compiler, F. LaGard Smith, has put together a Bible you may have never seen put together quite like this before and I found it to be a great way to go through the word. I highly recommend it. However, it starts now, with the beginning of the year so you had best get cracking on getting your issue. I don't have much more to say on this other than that it is one of the best Bibles I have ever read. Get one for yourself!

Happy New Year, Hubie

Escape The Hezbollah