A MESSAGE AGAINST FALSE RELIGION (JEREMIAH 7:1–29)
Arad letter inscribed with “temple of the Lord” (probably referring to the Jerusalem temple) from a southern Judahite fortress, from the same time as Jeremiah. A message against false religion is given near the temple in Jeremiah 7.
(Jeremiah 7:1-29 )False Religion Worthless. Jeremiah confronts the people as they enter the temple of the Lord in Jerusalem. This is the place where God himself told them to come and worship, yet mere attendance at his house is not enough if they continually despise him by breaking his commandments.
(Jeremiah 7:1-3) It appears that worshipers may have recited passages like Psalm 15 as they entered “the gate of the Lord’s house” (verse 2), stressing the need for purity of life among those who came before the Lord. If the Israelites are to be saved, they need to reform their ways and their actions, not merely offer the required sacrifices. This is not because Old Testament believers were saved by works but because their actions exposed the true commitments of their hearts. As Jesus said, a good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit (Matthew 7:16-18).
(Jeremiah 7:4) This is the temple of the Lord. The inhabitants of Jerusalem repeat this formula as if the temple is a magic amulet that will protect them no matter how they live. This superstitious belief may have been reinforced by the dramatic deliverance of Jerusalem from the Assyrian army in the time of Hezekiah, 100 years earlier (2 Kings 18:13-19:37). Psalms also speaks of the Lord’s protecting his city (E.G., Psalm 46).
Taken from NIV Zondervan Study Bible©2017 HarperCollins Christian Publishing