READ: Jeremiah 9-10
THINK: What kinds of things do people brag about? Often, it's the same things people pursue in search of success. Knowledge, power and wealth are all symbols of status and accomplishment and are frequently used to impress-or intimidate-other people. But these things don't impress God, and He will not allow worldly knowledge, human ability or earthly riches to bring ultimate satisfaction. He wants you to find true joy and fulfillment through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. All earthly achievements pale in comparison to the privilege of knowing Christ. True worth comes from devoting ourselves to the Lord, following His standards and allowing Him to fill us with His Holy Spirit so we can fulfill the purposes for which He created us.
RESPOND: What emotions does Jeremiah display in chapter 9, and why? (See 9:1-26 note.) What do these emotions reveal about Jeremiah and his relationship with the people to whom he prophesied? According to 9:5, how did friends treat each other, and why were the people worn out? What would happen to Jerusalem and the other cities of Judah, and why (9:11-14)? According to 9:23, what did God warn the people not to brag about? If they were going to boast, who and what was to be the subject of their satisfaction, and why (9:24)? (See 9:24 note.) What did God mean when He warned the people "Do not learn the ways of the nations or be terrified by signs in the sky" (10:2)? (See 10:2 note.) How did the Lord describe the religious practices of surrounding nations, and why (10:3-5)? According to 10:6-7, who is like the Lord? In what three ways does 10:10 describe God? According to 10:11 what will happen to all other "gods"? According to 10:16, in what major way does God differ from worthless idols? In what way is 10:17-22 an indication of what was coming? (See 10:17-22 note.)
PRAY: Give praise to God for His kindness, justice and righteousness-the fact that all He does is right and for our good. Praise Him as the true God, the living God and the eternal King, who is unlike any other.
ACT: Treat your friends well. Be honest with them and give them respect. Don't imitate the behaviors of people who don't serve God. Make sure you're setting a Christlike example and that you're influencing others for better rather than letting them influence you for worse.
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