Summary: How God takes something with no beauty and transforms it into a beautiful vessel for His service.
A WORK ON THE WHEELS
Intro: In our reading we find that God has spoken to Jeremiah and told him in verse 2 “Arise, and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will cause thee to hear my words.” Now we know the potter is God but how may of us know what God is talking about when he speaks of the potter’s house? He is speaking specifically of Judah or the house of Israel as referred to in verse 6. Looking at verse 3 Jeremiah says “Then I went down to the potter’s house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels.” Then he continues in verse 4 by saying, “And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it.” Most preaching that is done on this subject come from verse 4. And while there have been many soul stirring and soul saving messages from verse 4 none of it could have happened with verse 3. I want to preach on the subject, “A WORK ON THE WHEELS.”
To understand this you need to know a little bit about the potter’s wheel. It consisted of two wheels, one large wheel and one small wheel. The wheels were on a vertical axis and they were connected by a wooden rod. The large wheel was on the bottom and the small wheel was on the top. The large wheel was turned by the feet that would in turn spin the upper wheel. To us this wheel represents the circumstances of life that are used by God to the mold the believer, but in order for there to be a work on the wheel there was some things the potter had to have before he could mold us.
I. SOMETHING TO MOLD
A. This was the clay. Clay is basically useless when it is dug out of the ground
B. It is shapeless, has no purpose, no beauty, it is no good and is of basically no good to anyone
C. This is a picture of us when we were in our depraved state. We were sinners and a like a piece clay we were shapeless and had no purpose
D. There was no beauty in our life
E. But the potter put us on the wheel and we became a work on the wheels and the circumstances of life started us spinning
II. THERE HAS TO BE A MOTIVE
A. We didn’t end up on the potter’s wheel by mistake
B. There is a motive behind everything the potter is doing
C. When he is forming that vessel he already has something in mind as to his will for us. He knows what kind of vessel he wants to make. A potter doesn’t sit down to make a vase and by chance make a bowl.
D. (Romans 8:29)For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethern
E. There is a perfect Will of God for each and everyone of us but it is up to us to find it
III. HE HAS A METHOD
A. The wheel begins to spin starting to work. The ugly piece of clay is on the wheel. The potter has kneaded it out like dough so he could have something to work with. He got some water just in case the clay gets a little dry or to hot. It doesn’t have any form. It’s just laying there helpless. It cant stand on it’s on
B. The potter begins to apply a little friction causing the clay to stand upright giving it a little power to stand on its own
C. He then applies some pressure. This pressure was applied to get out some the small stones and burrs out that cause imperfections.
D. Then the potter trims the clay. He cuts all of the excess away
E. Finally, he uses the heat to purify work. He puts it in a kiln and covers it up.
F. Nobody can see what is going on inside that kiln and it is hot and that vessel is being tried and tempered to see if is worthy to be used as a vessel of honor
G. There has been many vessels gone in but some of them came out bent or broke and couldn’t be used
H. But this time the potter pulls the vessel out of the kiln and to his delight he sees that piece of clay that was without shape and it was ugly and useless now it shape and is beautiful. But he wants to see if it is useful