Summary: The potter digs up the clay, allows it to dry, then he crushes it into a powder. Then He adds the Water and mixes it in until it becomes soft and pliable. Once the clay is softened He can begin to shape it into what pleases Him. Sometime there are i
Jeremiah Ch. 18:1-19:13 Ervin Kimrey Jr.
Intro: The potter digs up the clay, allows it to dry, then he crushes it into a powder.
Then He adds the Water and mixes it in until it becomes soft and pliable.
Once the clay is softened He can begin to shape it into what pleases Him.
Sometime there are impurities that hinder the molding process.
Sometimes these impurities cause the work to become marred.
I. THE POTTER’S PURPOSE. (18:1-3)
A. This natural potter was working with his fingers and other instruments, to make a vessel for the purpose he had in mind.
1. The potter chooses different lumps of clay for different projects; they are different in size, shape, and constancy.
2. The potter molds the vessel by applying pressure or direction with his fingers.
3. He can only mold the clay while it is pliable.
4. When the clay becomes hardened, it cannot be formed any longer.
B. The great Divine Potter also has a purpose for the lives He has created. Jer 1:18
Jer 1:18 For, behold, I have made thee this day a defenced city, and an iron pillar, and brasen walls against the whole land, against the kings of Judah, against the princes thereof, against the priests thereof, and against the people of the land.
Jer 2:11 Hath a nation changed their gods, which are yet no gods? but my people have changed their glory for that which doth not profit.
1. Jeremiah saw God as the Potter; Israel, his nation, as the clay.
a. God molded Israel by giving them blessings.
b. God also molded them by bringing judgment.
2. The potter has a plan for our nation.
a. God still molds nations by blessing those who meet His conditions.
b. God also still molds nations by judgment when they walk in disobedience to His Word.
3. Jeremiah observed that God had a purpose for his chosen people; those called to worship Him, the kingdom of God on earth. Jer 1:18; 2:26-30
4. God wanted to bless the world through Israel.
a. God worked hard on His people to bring them to the place they worshipped Him properly.
b. God’s presence was with the people of Israel.
5. God wants to bless the world through the church today.
a. God surely has to work hard on His people, the church, today to bring them to a place of proper worship.
b. God’s presence will be with the church when it obeys Him.
II. THE POTTER’S PROBLEM (18: 4-7)
A. While the potter worked on it, the vessel became marred in his hand.
1. Once marred, the vessel could not become what the potter wanted.
2. The vessel could have been marred because of an impurity in the clay, or from some outside source.
B. Even while the Divine Potter works on us, we may become marred.
1. We may become marred because of some inborn or natural trait we have not turned over to Him.
2. We often become marred because we allow other things to have influence on us.
C. Reasons we resist the working of the potter in our lives.
1. We become marred when we want only the blessings, not the responsibilities of serving God.
2. We become marred when we starve ourselves by not reading and studying the Word.
3. We are marred because of lack of communication with God; we do not pray.
4. We are marred because we will not take advantage of training to become better servants.
5. We are marred, becoming unusable for the potters original plan because we will not hear Him.
6. When one becomes hardened they can no longer be shaped and molded into His image.
III. THE POTTER’S PATIENCE (18: 8-17) especially v.8
A. He did not throw the clay away; he worked with it some more.
1. He crushed it; then began a new work in it.
2. He worked with it again, to make it into something else.
B. God, the Master Potter, does not throw us away; he works us over.
1. He may have to destroy what has been made with us before but He can remake us into a new or better vessel.
2. He does have the patience to work with us until we develop into what He has planed for us.
IV. THE POTTER’S PROCLAMATION (19:4-13)
A. Defeat by enemies v. 7
B. Death by enemies v.7
C. Plagues v.8
D. Famine v.9
E. Shattering v.10-12
V. THE POTTER’S PERSISTENCE (18:6)
A. He did not quit working with the clay until he had made an object of use.
1. He may have had to restart several times.
2. With each remaking, he may have had to design a new vessel because of limitations imposed by the failure of the last one.