Jeremiah’s Prophetic Call to the Nations and His Process of Preparation and Surrender
Janet Smith © gardenministries.org, written March 31, 2014
The Sovereign Lord calls Jeremiah: Jeremiah 1:4-10
Verses 4-5: The Sovereign Lord [as the Word] chooses and declares Jeremiah’s prophetic identity as God’s sovereign vessel.
Verse 6: Jeremiah tells Sovereign God that perhaps He is choosing the wrong guy: “Alas, I can’t speak and I am too young!” So what’s our excuse? “I can’t because …[fill in the blank].”
Jeremiah’s first response reveals:
♣ His worldview
♣ His sense of self and his perceived inadequacies: self-invalidation
♣ That he had believed the lies of invalidation that reinforced his own self-invalidation
♣ A propensity to trust his own perceptions of how things work best, hosting a subtle form of “I know better than You God” attitude
Verse 7(a): Sovereign God pushes back on Jeremiah’s pushback and counters the lies of self-invalidation and says: “Do not say, ‘I am too young. Do not be afraid.'” I.e., “Jeremiah! Confront your fears and self-invalidation and do not give way to them!”
Verse 7(b): after commanding Jeremiah to stop being afraid and self-invalidating, Sovereign God lifts Jeremiah out of the valley of shame and self-invalidation by rightly relating to him in the truth of being Lord over Jeremiah’s created purpose: “You must go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you.” He’s not just being bossy. God is operating in the truth of the relationship as He created it to function and flourish.
Verse 8: Sovereign God comforts Jeremiah and again assures Jeremiah of why He does not need to be afraid. Now Jeremiah can confront his fears because he knows God’s voice, is assured of His presence, and has heard His promise to rescue him in times of trouble: “‘Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you and will rescue you,’ declares the Lord.”
Verse 9: Sovereign God releases His impartation (Impartation = God’s Grace + God’s Word): “Then the Lord reached out his hand and touched my mouth and said to me, ‘I have put my words in your mouth.'”
Verse 10: Sovereign God releases divine authority to his obedient, surrendered sovereign vessel: “See, today I appoint you over nations and kingdoms to uproot and tear down, to destroy and overthrow, to build and to plant.” Throughout the Bible, only those who allowed God’s extremely vigorous purging and pruning process in their lives, and by His grace endured until it was completed in them, were they released to carry God’s divine authority. In the days to come, divine authority will operate through those who have overcome the enemy through complete surrender to Jesus as Lord.
Jeremiah 1:11-12: God’s Quick and Ready Word Requires Quick and Ready Vessels. Sovereign God deepens His fathering relationship through Jeremiah’s training process.
Verse 11: Sovereign God father’s Jeremiah and begins a training conversation that deepens the relationship of trust and releases revelation. “The word of the Lord came to me: ‘What do you see, Jeremiah?’ ‘I see the branch of an almond tree,’ I replied.”
Verse 12: Like a good Dad, Sovereign God affirms his son Jeremiah for not just seeing a tree but seeing what kind of tree it was. “The Lord said to me, ‘You have seen correctly [i.e., you have seen well!], for I am watching to see that my word is fulfilled.'”
Once the Holy Spirit’s impartation, revelation, and authority comes, GET GOING BEING YOU!
Jeremiah had a process of trusting God, overcoming the lies of invalidation against his true identity, and learning how to rightly relate to Sovereign God as a sovereign vessel. God refused to let Jeremiah keep his worldview and self-view. He would not validate Jeremiah’s fears but commanded him to “Stop it!”
When that process of building trust was done, it was time for Jeremiah to get going. Just like Jeremiah, our process of building trust and becoming faithful and trustworthy is coming to completion. It is now time to receive the divine impartation, revelation, and authority to go forth as faithful friends of Sovereign God. The Almond Tree’s are the first to bloom in January, and they ripen quickly, some within 21 days. As God’s sovereign Almond Tree vessels, those who are called to the front line, to be God’s First Fruits in His end-time harvesting-of-the- Harvesters move, our trust process is coming to completion. We are either with Him or we have quit. We have either committed our all wholeheartedly to God or we have walked away and justified our fears. For those who have asked to give God everything and have prepared themselves by believing God, they will begin to receive Sovereign God’s impartation, revelation, and authority, and soon embark upon and employ what is described as The Almond Tree Anointing.
The Almond Tree Anointing rests upon a people who know how to respect and respond in full surrender to Sovereign God. They intimately know God’s voice, are quick to obey Him and speak His Word at His command. Their heart before God is to walk out His commands faithfully, even when it is heavy and sorrowful. Psalm 126:5: “They who sew [seeds] in tears will reap in joy.” Hebrews 12:2: “For the joy set before Him, He endured the cross.” Those who are called to be First Fruits are also those whom God is forming as His new wineskin. They have completed the vigorous purging process and intimately know and follow God’s voice, are firmly grounded in His Word, and daily surrender their all (i.e., sew in tears) for Jesus’ sake. The pattern of Jesus is the pattern they follow. They understand that God is not going to repair the old wineskin but that He said in His Word that new wine actually blows up old wineskins. Only a new wineskin will hold the new wine that He is about to pour out. It is the wine described in Joel 2:28- 29. It is the promised outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Joel 2:1-27 describes a change in global events that demands a sober, sorrowful response from His people. As a faithful Father, God has been building the new wineskin in many people who responded to Him with their all and became “wise virgins.”
Satan’s desperate last attempt to subvert his final judgment results in his most horrific “outpouring.” This sets the stage for God’s finest hour as the Holy Spirit comes and fulfills the Joel 2:28 promise and the manifest son’s of God are revealed and the bride of Jesus Christ emerges clothed with the Holy Spirit. Romans 8:14 “For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.” Great truth and light and great darkness and evil will soon flood the earth. The appropriate response from God’s sovereign vessels toward these events is one of great sorrow, as we gaze upon our loving and good God who never intended creation for such evil, and great joy, as we see the bride of Jesus Christ emerge. Like Jeremiah, those with The Almond Tree Anointing will carry both sorrow and joy as they faithfully sew into God’s heart for the nations in the last days.
If you have been crying out for God’s wineskin to be ready for the promised Joel 2:28-29 outpouring, and if you have availed yourself to carry His heart of sorrowful intercession, take heart! The immense harvest of joy is soon at hand and is overflowing with joy-unspeakable and full of glory! The promised BIG of God is about to break open. I Peter 1:8, “and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory.”
Prepare yourself: Jeremiah 1:17: “Get yourself ready! Stand up and say to them whatever I command you. Do not be terrified by them, or I will terrify you before them.”
Last-minute preparation punch list:
1. Confront your fears. God is faithful to squeeze our circumstances so that our fears will surface. The voice of fear can be very convincing, especially if we are used to listening to it. Ask God to shed light on it.
2. Don’t act on invalidating lies. Out of the mouth the heart speaks (Luke 6:45). When our fears surface, so will the pride and the lies that “protect” the fear. No matter how tired and weary we may be, believing lies and succumbing to fear and pride turns us into weak victims rather than overcoming victors.
3. Arise and Stand in the Truth. Ask God to surface any residual fears. Consider that the circumstances that are squeezing you are a part of His answer. Identify and call your runaway imagination that pretends to be “problem-solving” for what it is: FEAR! Resolve to trust God and let His love drive out any last remaining fears. Romans 8: For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!”
4. Commit to walking out everyday in complete rest and trust. Receive, Believe and Speak the Word God has called you to speak, first for yourselves and then to your harvest field. Receive the grace, believe the Word (completely), TRUST THAT GOD IS ALWAYS, ALWAYS GOOD, and be who God say’s you are.
Barnes’ Notes (biblehub.com) What seest thou? – If we admit a supernatural element in prophecy, visions would be the most simple means of communication between God and man. A rod of an almond tree – Many translate “a staff of almond wood.” The vision would thus signify that God – like a traveler, staff in hand – was just about to set forth upon His journey of vengeance. But the rendering of the King James Version is supported by Genesis 30:37. The word rendered “almond” comes from a root signifying “to be awake;” and as the almond blossoms in January, it seems to be awake while other trees are still Sleeping, and therefore is a fit emblem of activity.
Jeremiah was not, however, one “dumb before the shearers, and that opened not his mouth” Isaiah 53:7. Of all the prophets there is not one who so frankly lays open to us his brooding melancholy nature. He discloses to us his innermost thoughts. We find him sensitive to a most painful degree, timid, shy, hopeless, desponding, constantly complaining, and dissatisfied with the course of events, with the office which had been thrust upon him, and with the manner of the Divine Providence. Jeremiah was not one whose sanguine temperament made him see the bright side of things, nor did he quickly find peace and happiness in doing his Master’s will. And yet we never find him rebuked, because he was doing his duty to the utmost extent of his powers. Timid in resolve he was unflinching in execution. As fearless when he had to face the whole world as he was dispirited and prone to complaining when alone with God. He is a noble example of the triumph of the moral over the physical nature. His whole strength lay in his determination to do what was right at whatever cost. He made everything yield to whatever his conscience told him he ought to do. Danger, opposition, mockery without; fear, despondency, disappointment within, availed nothing to shake his constant mind. The sense of duty prevailed over every other consideration; and in no saint were the words of Paul in 2 Corinthians 12:9 better exemplified.
Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible (biblehub.com) Then said the Lord unto me, thou hast well seen,…. The thing seen is a very proper emblem of what I am about to do, and the quick dispatch that will be made therein: for l will hasten my word to perform it; the words, “shoked ani,” “I will hasten,” or “I am hastening,” are in allusion to “shoked,” the name of the almond tree in Hebrew; which is so called because it is quick and early, and, as it were, hastens to bring forth its flowers, leaves, and fruit; in like manner the Lord says he would hasten to perform what he had said or should say by him concerning the destruction of Jerusalem, and the captivity of the people, and every thing else he should give him in commission to say. Jarchi and Abendana make mention of an ancient Midrash, or exposition, to this sense; that from the time of the almond tree’s putting forth, until its fruit is ripe, are one and twenty days (21), according to the number of days which were between the seventeenth of Tammuz, in which the city was broken up, and the ninth of Ab, in which the temple was burnt; but though the almond tree is the first of trees, and is very early in putting forth, yet there is a greater time than this between its putting forth and its fruit being ripe; for Pliny (s) says, that the almond tree first of all flowers in January, and its fruit is ripe in March.
I. Jeremiah 1
1 The words of Jeremiah son of Hilkiah, one of the priests at Anathoth in the territory of Benjamin. 2 The word of the Lord came to him in the thirteenth year of the reign of Josiah son of Amon king of Judah, 3 and through the reign of Jehoiakim son of Josiah king of Judah, down to the fifth month of the eleventh year of Zedekiah son of Josiah king of Judah, when the people of Jerusalem went into exile.
The Call of Jeremiah
4 The word of the Lord came to me, saying, 5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” 6 “Alas, Sovereign Lord,” I said, “I do not know how to speak; I am too young.”
7 But the Lord said to me, “Do not say, ‘I am too young.’ You must go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you. 8Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you and will rescue you,” declares the Lord. 9 Then the Lord reached out his hand and touched my mouth and said to me, “I have put my words in your mouth. 10 See, today I appoint you over nations and kingdoms to uproot and tear down, to destroy and overthrow, to build and to plant.”
11 The word of the Lord came to me: “What do you see, Jeremiah?” “I see the branch of an almond tree,” I replied. 12 The Lord said to me, “You have seen correctly, for I am watching to see that my word is fulfilled.”
13 The word of the Lord came to me again: “What do you see?” “I see a pot that is boiling,” I answered. “It is tilting toward us from the north.” 14 The Lord said to me, “From the north disaster will be poured out on all who live in the land.
15 I am about to summon all the peoples of the northern kingdoms,” declares the Lord. “Their kings will come and set up their thrones in the entrance of the gates of Jerusalem; they will come against all her surrounding walls and against all the towns of Judah.
16 I will pronounce my judgments on my people because of their wickedness in forsaking me, in burning incense to other gods and in worshiping what their hands have made. 17 “Get yourself ready! Stand up and say to them whatever I command you. Do not be terrified by them, or I will terrify you before them.
18 Today I have made you a fortified city, an iron pillar and a bronze wall to stand against the whole land—against the kings of Judah, its officials, its priests and the people of the land. 19 They will fight against you but will not overcome you, for I am with you and will rescue you,” declares the Lord.