by Jeffrey W. Hamilton
Text: Jeremiah 8:4-22
I. I was reading a letter years ago from someone who tried to introduce false doctrine into the church and then left after they failed.
A. The author discussed how pleased she was that these members had left.
1. She said their leaving was a sign of courage
2. That they now had a chance to heal.
B. The accusation was that by being with us wounds were given to them because we did not agree with what they were advocating
C. Those who left joined groups that most here would say were not teaching the truth.
1. I wonder if true healing was taking place or the lack of opposition to their false beliefs was giving them a breather.
D. It reminded me of Jeremiah’s statement about the false prophets who superficially healed the grief of Israel by declaring peace, even though none existed. - Jeremiah 8:11
1. The wounds of Israel only appeared to be healing.
2. But it was only an appearance because the cause of the wound had not been dealt with.
II. Israel’s real problem was sin
A. Notice these statements
1. They refused to repent of sins - Jeremiah 8:4-6
2. They lacked knowledge of God’s law - Jeremiah 8:7
3. They altered the law into a lie - Jeremiah 8:8-9
4. They were unembarrassed by their sins - Jeremiah 8:12
B. It is sinners who need healing
1. The wounds of Israel were caused by their rebellion and sin - Isaiah 1:4-6
2. People become ill in their souls because of their rebellion and sin. An affliction that can only be cured by God and his Word - Psalms 107:17-21
3. Jesus came to heal sinners - Mark 2:17
III. The healing of a diseased soul requires God
A. God was Israel’s healer - Exodus 15:26
B. When God struck Israel for her sins, only God could bring a cure - Jeremiah 30:12-17
C. It is God who heals - Psalms 103:2-3
D. When mankind was caught in the depths of sin, it was Jesus who was wounded on our behalf so that by his wounds we are healed - Isaiah 53:5
E. When God heals, it sticks - Jeremiah 17:14
IV. Healing only comes when the sick seek the Physician
A. David cried to God to be healed - Psalm 41:4
B. And God promises to heal if we will return to Him - Hosea 6:1-2
C. Humility, fearing God, and avoiding evil brings healing - Proverbs 3:7-8
D. Heeding the word of God brings health - Proverbs 4:20-22
V. Israel’s wounds were a mortal blow. She died even though a cure was available - Jeremiah 8:18-22
A. They had the knowledge necessary to be healed. They had the ability to apply that healing knowledge to affect a cure. But they died anyway, because they did not do what was necessary.
B. Today there are people dying in their sins. Jesus holds the cure, he has told you what to do, yet will you die in your sins?
C. Malachi 4:1-3
D. Which shall it be?