CLICK HERE to read Jeremiah 15.
After Jeremiah intercedes for the people, the Lord responds that even if Moses or Samuel interceded for the people, there is nothing the Lord can do for them because they have chosen against Him (verse 1). He tells Jeremiah just to let the people go, and to prepare for the coming of their consequences – that there will be war, and famine, and captivity (verse 2).
The Lord tells Jeremiah the people have specifically earned four consequences by their own behavior: “the sword to slay, the dogs to tear, and the fowls of heaven, and the beasts of the earth, to devour and destroy” (verse 3). Because they have worshiped false gods and idols with perverted ordinances and human sacrifices, they themselves will be killed. Those who die in the war instead of being taken captive will be eaten by wild beasts: torn and eaten by dogs, birds, and wild beasts. Because they have not testified to those around them, they will be scattered amongst other countries. These that survive and are taken captive by other countries will disappear into these other countries and become those peoples, because the political leaders of Israel tried making deals and treaties with other countries instead of relying on their covenants with the Lord (verse 4).
The sins of Israel are so great that none will mourn them, and all will know they earned this politically and spiritually (verse 5). Instead of being chosen and honored, they will be shamed and destroyed. Instead of being delivered like in Egypt, they are going back into captivity again (verse 6). Instead of prospering temporally and with spiritual posterity and prosperity, they will have few resources and no blessings to pass on to their children outside the covenant (verse 7).
The widows left behind are without husbands because of the war, and without priesthood holders because of the iniquity of the people (verse 8). They grieve the loss of their husbands that have died, and they grieve the loss of the priesthood (verse 9).
Instead of turning to the Lord to be delivered, the people have only complained about the encroaching enemy (verse 10). Because they have done nothing to stop the enemy with their own righteousness or by calling for His help, they will be conquered by its destruction (verse 11). Without the Lord, they cannot win against the enemy (verse 12). Their strength was their faith, and their power was in the priesthood, and it was by the atonement that they had access to these. But they have traded these for sin instead (verse 13). Since they have chosen not to be His people, He will send them out to become parts of other peoples that they do not even yet know (verse 14).
Jeremiah grieves the sentence the people have chosen and is appalled by their sins that have earned such consequences. Yet he is confident before the Lord, knowing that the Lord remembers Him and working to be worthy to communicate and visit with Him (verse 15). Jeremiah has been obedient and faithfully testified for the Lord (verse 16). He did not mock the Lord’s ways, even when He was alone in obedience (verse 17). Yet still, Jeremiah grieves that the people do not want the Lords help and have chosen instead to be scattered and destroyed (verse 18).
But the Lord is faithful, too, and promises that if the people will return to Him and repent, then He will be there to deliver them (verse 19). He comforts Jeremiah, saying not to return to them for more prophesying because the people have made their choice; however, if they change their minds and come to him in faith, then he may intercede for them (verse 19). The Lord also assures Jeremiah not to worry about the people attacking him in their wickedness (verse 20). The Lord promises to protect Jeremiah, to deliver him even through the people’s consequence of war, and that he will be safe (verse 21).