Tag Archives: Jeremiah 13

Dirty Girdles by the Riverside

6jan17

Sounds like the name of a bad country song. But no, it’s a story in the book of Jeremiah, Chapter 13. The lamenting, ever so fed up prophet that God gives an odd instruction to use for an illustration in a sermon.

God tells Jeremiah to get his girdle (a belt of sorts) and put it around his waist and not wash it. Thus… the dirty girdle. Stay with me here! This story is going places. He then tells him to take a trip down by the River Euphrates and hide the girdle in a hole in the rock which God uses to illustrate the soon to be state of Israel. The only one more fed up the Jeremiah, is God.

Verse 11 sums it up when God says

11 For as the girdle cleaveth to the loins of a man, so have I caused to cleave unto me the whole house of Israel and the whole house of Judah, saith the Lord; that they might be unto me for a people, and for a name, and for a praise, and for a glory: but they would not hear.

To go way out on a limb and paraphrase what God is saying to Jeremiah would be “I just wanted my people to hang tight to me, but that wouldn’t listen.”

Isn’t it a sad state of affairs in the life of a Christian that we have but one way to please God, and that’s just to listen to Him. And we can’t do it. At least I can’t. Perhaps you’re more obedient than I am. Even in the course of this morning’s study, I’m taking messages, I’ve got life on my mind and it’s as if I’m saying to God, “Can you hold that thought, I’ll be right back.”

Seriously, did you just shush God, Shari?

That’s basically it. When God has a message and we fail to hear, isn’t that shushing God? That’s about as crazy as dirty girdles in the river being used as a sermon illustration. And as crazy as thought that was it had me heart sick when Jeremiah went back to remove the girdle and it was rotten and torn and the scripture says it was “good for nothing” (vs. 10)

The very thing that will hold us together, like the belt on a man’s britches, is worthless. Because what holds the people of God together isn’t being heeded to. We’re not listening.

In first Peter 1:13 Peter says:

Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;

Again God says “Hang tight, stay with Me, be serious about your faith.” But much like my bible study this morning we’re distracted by life. I believe God understands my weaknesses. He knows I struggle and that you do as well. But all He’s desiring is our company. That’s not much for the Creator to ask for. When we go into the world, take Him to. Make him a part of everyday life. Put Him on like a coat and buckle Him up tight like a belt that can’t be torn off. Don’t be a good for a nothin’. That’s a quote from childhood when someone spoke of a person who wouldn’t work. It’s Friday, the last day of the work week for most… but every day is a work day for Jesus until He returns.

 

God, the Girdle and the Glory!

girdle

Strange title I know, but an even a stranger story that pierced my soul this morning as I read it. Jeremiah, who was only about 17 when God called him, was known as the weeping prophet. He knew what God’s judgment would bring to Israel and no matter how he cried or warned the people would not listen. In one such warning God gave Jeremiah an illustration using a girdle; not one of our modern day vices that conceals our fluffiness, but a belt worn by a man.

Jeremiah 13 

Thus saith the Lord unto me, Go and get thee a linen girdle, and put it upon thy loins, and put it not in water.

So I got a girdle according to the word of the Lord, and put it on my loins.

And the word of the Lord came unto me the second time, saying,

Take the girdle that thou hast got, which is upon thy loins, and arise, go to Euphrates, and hide it there in a hole of the rock.

So I went, and hid it by Euphrates, as the Lord commanded me.

It is said that the belt symbolized the close relationship that God desired with man. So Jeremiah did as he was told and hid the girdle in the hole in the rocks for many days until God told him to dig it up. When he dug up the belt, it was ruined; the scripture said it was good for nothing. God explained the illustration to Jeremiah in verses 10-11:

10 This evil people, which refuse to hear my words, which walk in the imagination of their heart, and walk after other gods, to serve them, and ~     worship them, shall even be as this girdle, which is good for nothing.

11 For as the girdle cleaveth to the loins of a man, so have I caused to cleave unto me the whole house of Israel and the whole house of Judah, saith the Lord; that they might be unto me for a people, and for a name, and for a praise, and for a glory: but they would not hear.

I know that the prophecy is about Israel, but oh how our beloved America echoes their behavior. I’m not a doom and gloom personality. I love seeing the cup half full. But deed we make it hard. America was that girdle once upon a time that put God in His proper place, held tightly by a faith unwavering. He was written into the founding father’s plan for our nation only to be removed generations later by a leadership who has cowered to Godless religions that seek to destroy us from within. Well… that sounded a bit doomsday didn’t it?

But it’s true… they will not hear.

We were created in His image, for His glory. As Gentiles we were adopted into His family because the nation of Israel turned their back on Him and today we as a nation do the same. So what’s a gal to do? It appears we can’t fix Washington… or so Satan would have us believe. I will never give up on the possibility that God will turn us around again. But it’s going to take more than words.

It takes votes – November 4th

It takes valor – When the world says it’s acceptable, we have to stand our ground and say not it’s not.

It takes vigilance – we have to be on constant guard of what Satan is trying to do.

It takes vengeance – Not ours but Gods.

Please pray throughout the coming week.  Imagine if we viewed these next coming days like the wall of Jericho, and we march every day in silent prayer, and then come Tuesday we shout! We look at the ballot from God’s perspective and tear down the lies that Washington is hiding behind. It could really happen if we lived what we say we believe.

My prayer is that as a nation we bind God tightly around us and then wait for His Glory.