Summary: WE ALL MUST HEAR THE CALL OF GOD!
JEREMIAH 1: 4-10
SUNDAY PM SERVICE SEPTEMBER 21, 2003
INTRODUCTION: FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE!!
A little girl had been trying for months to learn the art of tying her shoes. She finally grasped the knack and was able to do it by herself. Her parents expected the child to be delighted, but were surprised by her disappointment. Her father asked why she was crying.
She sobbed, "I just learned how to tie my shoes."
He said, "That’s wonderful, Honey, but why are you crying?"
She replied, "Because now I’ll have to do it all by myself for the rest of my life."
SOURCE: "The Sermon on the Amount," Heidi Husted, Preaching Today, Tape 122.
Contributed by: Ian Biss
Tony Campolo says that his wife is a brilliant woman. She has a PHD & is capable of pursuing a very profitable career. But she elected to stay home with her children when they were young. Her decision didn’t bother her at all except when other women would ask, “What do you do?” She would answer, “I’m a homemaker. I stay home & take care of my children & my husband.” They would usually respond with “Oh” & then ignore her from then on.
So Mrs. Campolo came up with this response when she was asked what she did: “I’m socializing two Homo-sapiens in Judeo-Christian values so they’ll appropriate the eschatological values of utopia. What do you do?” They would often blurt out “I’m a doctor” or “I’m a lawyer” & then wander off with a dazed look in their eyes.
Contributed by Melvin Newland
TRANSITION THOUGHT: The Lord calls us all to tasks! Sometimes it is tying shoes, sometimes it is raising children. Our text in Jeremiah is the call of God to an individual to share the word of God with all people. This will be our focus this day, The call of the Lord to his servant to proclaim the word of God to all Nations.” Let us now focus on “THE CALL!”
THESIS SENTENCE: WE ALL MUST HEAR THE CALL OF GOD!
I. THE CALL IS AN EXPERIENCE WITH THE LIVING GOD (VV. 4-5)
A. God initiates the encounter: (VERSE 4)
1. Jeremiah states that the Lord’s word came to Him. He did not go and find it. 2. The God of Heaven came and spoke to Jeremiah. This is a private event that Jeremiah shares with his readers. This is a unique encounter, here God is not giving his messenger a message to proclaim, but calling the messenger to be the one to later proclaim the Message of God to His People.
3. This is God’s modus operandi, or manner or working. He chooses a messenger: Moses (Exodus 3:1): the burning bush, Isaiah (6:1&2): a vision of the Lord in the Temple , Samuel (I Samuel 3:2-9): a voice in the night, Ezekiel (chapters 2&3): a vision and voice in a great storm
4. God always gets the attention of those he desires to speak with and use to bring honor and glory to himself.
B. God has a purpose for the encounter:
1. Since the beginning of time, God knew who He would use to bring His message to His people. At this point in time, it would be Jeremiah. To be Yahweh’s prophet at this juncture in history is the very reason for which Jeremiah has been born. It is his very purpose for being!!
2. Jeremiah still had free will and could have rejected God’s calling on his life, But it is equally clear that he could only discover the meaning of his birth and mortal existence in responding to the CALL.
3. The startling fact of the matter, without Jeremiah’s acceptance of God’s call concerning the destruction of the nation and his words concerning the future of Judah, the people might not have had the conceptual and theological tools with which to comprehend their monumental tragedy and to move beyond it.
4. In a real sense, Jeremiah is the Human Savior of the people of God. He provided the information needed, FROM GOD, TO help the people endure the wrath of God.
C. God blesses the nations through the encounter:
1. The final phrase in verse 5, “prophet to the nations,” is a reference to Judah and its neighbors, Egypt, Assyria, and Babylon.
2. The larger context or meaning here is God desires to communicate with all people everywhere at all times. The fact we have the book of Jeremiah to read is an assurance God wants to communicate with us as well as with the people of the 6th century BC.
II. THE CALL ALWAYS BRINGS A STRUGGLE TO THE HEARER (VV. 6-8)
A. The encounter alone with God bring fear and trepidation, but God desires acceptance of HIS Call.