6 Jehovah-tsidkenu, The LORD our Righteousness. Part One Man’s Need for Righteousness

6 Jehovah-tsidkenu, The LORD our Righteousness.  Part One Man’s need for Righteousness

Jehovah –Tsidkenu-Jehovah Our Righteousness    5 “Behold, the days are
coming,” declares the LORD, When I will raise up for David a righteous [a]Branch;
And He will reign as king and act wisely And do justice and righteousness in
the land. 6 “In His days Judah will be saved, And Israel will dwell
securely; And this is His name by which He will be called, ‘The LORD our
righteousness.’  Jeremiah 23:5,6

When studying the declaration of Jeremiah that one was to be raised up who would reign as King, and bring justice and righteousness to the land, we need to understand the background.  Just what was going on and what had brought Jeremiah to this point.  Most of Jeremiah’s message was gloom and doom and hideous prophesies of exile and unrest.  Then in the midst of all the tears and sadness is this gleam of hope, like a dim star in the Netherlands of the galaxy.

Much had changed since Isaiah had prophesied.  Israel had descended along a desperate decline into idolatry and sin.  God would raise up a king who would be faithful and try to point the people in the right
direction.  As soon as that King was dead and gone, a new king would appear and the Bible would declare as their
biography, “he did evil in the sight of Jehovah.”  In time the slide into depravity and evil in God’s sight brought Israel to a time when God’s judgment on them was imminent.  Time after time He had come to their aid, and sent them prophets to warn them of the impending disaster that awaited them.

Israel was in desperate need.  They were spiritually bereft as their idol worship took them further from the blessings of the true God they had once worshipped.  Morally, the people took up the religious barbarism of their neighbors and lived only for themselves, engaging in horrible religious practices that led many of them to engage in immoral acts around the heathen altars. Political intrigue and maneuvering for power fostered unrest among the people. Even the priest, were worshipping abominations adopted from their heathen neighbors. As God removed His hedge of protection, other nations encroached on their land and their liberty.  The day of the Gentiles, the golden head of Babylon, stood ready in the future to begin the exile of the Israelites.

God’s love for them, the tears in His heart for them, prompted Him to raise up Josiah, a good king, who would try to banish idolatry from the heart of the people. Hilkiah found the lost Scriptures in the Temple as He obeyed the orders of Josiah to restore the temple and make it ready for worship of Jehovah.  Jeremiah was Hezekiah’s
son.  He was present as a mourner when King Josiah was buried and the tears in his eyes were for more than the death of this good man.  His tears would continue to fall as he witnessed Israel’s final fall into destruction.  His heart would endure a lifetime of winter as he listened to God’s words, related them to the people, and harvested their bitter rebuke of unbelief.  He knew he could not force their belief in his warnings. His harsh message broke his own heart. He was forced to watch as evil counselors resisted his words and precipitated the nation over the cliff.

But our great God never leaves us without hope.  He lets the sun break through the dark clouds.  He begins in chapter 23 by promising the religious rulers , the ones responsible for the law of the land being taught to the people, 1 “Woe to the shepherds who are destroying and scattering the sheep of My pasture!” declares the LORD.  He promises that He will judge them.  Then He says, one day I will take over myself and I will gather those of my people who are left wherever they have been scattered.  I will bring them home and I will take care of them.  The one they have rejected will tenderly gather them and set shepherds over them.  J. Vernon McGee says, regarding this future time. “This refers specifically to the return of the Jews to their land after the present dispensation has closed and the church has been raptured.”

Then Jeremiah gives us the good news.  A kingdom will be established with a ruler like no other.  He will be so just and righteous in His dealings that He shall be called, Jehovah-tsidkenu, “THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS.”

None of us can truly appreciate the righteousness of God, and until we understand just how far we are from the expectations of a Holy God, we cannot comprehend our need for His Gift.

  1.  What provokes the wrath of God?

Read
Romans 1:18 Ungodliness is everything that is against God.  In our world today, we see man trying to push
God out of every social institution and out of governmental authority.  To deny the existence of God, the authority
of God is sin and provokes the wrath of God. Unrighteousness is the action of unrighteous men.  Men deny the rule of God by their actions.  They cheat, embezzle, steal, murder, beat their wives, and cheat on their mates…you name it.  Unrighteousness, man’s inhumanity against man is prevalent in our society and provokes the wrath of God.

2.  Does man have an excuse for his behavior?

Read
Romans 1:19,20   .
Creation itself is proof of a sovereign God to which we are accountable.

3.  What was the response of man to the revelation of God in His creation?

Read
Romans 1:21-23

They had a knowledge of God, but they did not glorify Him, They did not give God His
rightful place in their lives, but became self sufficient to the point of creating
their own Gods from wood and metal using the creation itself as their inspiration.
It was not lack of knowledge that led them here.  It was not ignorance of God.  It was willful rebellion against His eternal power and deity.  And with this false worship came immorality and sinful practices which disgusted God and caused Him to give them up.  In other words, He gave them over to judgment because they refused to see the light that was given.
12
that seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear,
and not understand; lest haply they should turn again, and it should be forgiven them Mark 4:12( for further understanding of this verse refer to Isaiah 6)  The Bible indicates in many places that
God does not forever strive with sinful man.  There comes a time when He must judge and He will harden their hearts so they can no longer understand spiritual things.
(They already are in that condition)

4.   List the unrighteousness which follows when man rebels against God.

Read
Romans 1:26-31

Paul is speaking of His own time. He is talking about what was happening in Greece, Egypt, Rome and other countries within his hemisphere of understanding.  But the human family has not changed.  This is prevalent in our own time…in our own United States.  We have revelation of God
about what is right and wrong, yet we disregard and even flaunt our immoral choices and encourage, even insist that others commit the same sins..  We defy the consequences promised by God.  We refuse to learn the lessons of nations who have received the judgment of God for their continued disregard of His sovereignty.

5.   What does Paul say is the judgment of God for those who commit these sins?

Read Romans 1:32  Can you relate news stories that point to groups trying to gain respectability for their sins by forcing the government to recognize them legally?

Can you think of organizations that are willing to accept immoral ideas within their group?  (Groups who were
diametrically opposed to such views a few years ago.)

Can you think of laws being passed that are in direct rebellion against the laws of God?

How long will God put up with America?  We have the truth.  We condemn ourselves.

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