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Double Jeopardy

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Why History Repeats Itself – We Don’t Learn From Our Mistakes


1.     This is the time of year when, in general, mankind turns its attention to Christ.

(1)         Whether or not Dec. 25th is the birth of Christ is not the issue here.

(2)         The point = for whatever reason men give thought to Christ.

2.     However, I think that we are receiving indicators that, as a nation, more and more we are removing ourselves from Jesus Christ.

(1)         Now some would say – “Don’t forget whose birthday it really is!”  Others – “Jesus is the reason for the season.”

(2)         I do not believe that Christmas should be viewed as a religious holy (holiday) day, but it does trouble me somewhat when men seek to remove Christ from everything!

(3)         Cf. – AFA journal

3.     When we become or if we allow our nation to become a nation, or if we have already become a nation who forsakes God we become a nation in double jeopardy (cf. game).

(1)         We teach our children rules and regulations to live by.

A.       Rules from experience  (choosing friends, don’t play with the door…).

B.       Rules from knowledge (do your homework; no motorcycles, etc.)

C.       Rules of love (discipline; love of God; love of family).

(2)         Heartbreaking when children break the rules parents set up to protect them.

A.       Parents don’t desire to discipline / punish their children!

B.       Some children misinterpret the meaning of discipline!  It requires a great deal of love.

(3)         Double ugly when children break rules of parents who seek only to love and protect them.

A.       Some children adopt their own code of ethics (lying, drugs, fornication, stealing, etc.).

B.       What a contrast to the code of ethics parents seek (honesty, purity, responsibility, …)

C.       Children forsaking those who truly love them and gave them only good!!!  Acquiring a lifestyle that is of no profit.

4.     Read Jer. 2:9-13.

5.     Regarding text.

(1)         Jeremiah is speaking 626-580 BC.

(2)         Three world powers :

A.       Egypt – power waning.

B.       Assyria – has ruled 300 years, but is growing weak.

C.       Babylon – under Nebuchadnezzar soon to rise like a lion and a kingdom of gold (Dan. 2).

(3)         Jeremiah warns of impending doom upon Judah.

A.       1:14 – “Out of the North calamity shall break forth on all the inhabitants.”

B.       4:6-8 – Lion is coming from the thicket… clothe yourself in sackcloth, lament and wail.

(4)         Judah refused to hear the call

A.        “An astonishing and horrible thing” had been committed in the land (5:30).

B.       They forgot God, days without number (2:32).

6.     Judah was in double jeopardy!

7.     Reference STPO:  The subject matter = the deluding influence of sin upon the lives of men.  When we cut our ties with God (as a nation or individual) the influence is two fold.


I.            FIRST, JUDAH HAD FORSAKEN GOD (Jer. 2:13).

1.      The fact is emphasized by the words Jeremiah used.

(1)           Return – 40 times.

(2)           Backsliding – 13 times.

2.      The tragedy of the act is seen in their actions.  “They did not keep the covenant of God; they refused to walk in His law, and forgot His words” (Psa. 78:10-11).

3.      They  forsook / forgot God

(1)           Instead they remembered their wooden images.

(2)           We forget God when:

A.         We place all our trust in earthly physicians.

B.         We trust too much in an earthly government.

C.         We do not pray (Lk. 18:1).

4.      Would you forsake the “Fountain of Youth” if it actually existed?

(1)           Everyone of us would remember exactly where it is and how to get there.

(2)           Everyone of us would want to be near it.

(3)           Everyone of us would tell others!!!  Not neglect, reject, or forget it!!! EVER!

5.      BUT – God is being forgotten, neglected, and sometimes rejected!

(1)           We cry out for you to remember.

(2)           We cry out for you to cease backsliding and return.

A.         To the security God offers.

B.         To the love God offers.

C.         To the rest God offers.

II.          second, they had hewn out cisterns – “broken cisterns.”

1.      Let’s examine the statement.

2.      Man has a tendency to worship the works of his own hands.

(1)           Idolatry is the most obvious.

(2)           Covetousness and greed may be the least obvious but most prevalent.

(3)           Pride.

A.         “Pride and arrogance… I do hate” (Prov. 8:13).

B.         “My soul will weep in secret for your pride” (Jer. 13:17).

C.         “Pride goes before destruction…” (Prov. 16:18).

D.         Pride = a sense of superiority.

(4)           In the process we seek gratification / significance in broken cisterns.

3.      We are guilty of “hewing out broken cisterns” of our own.

(1)           Cistern of the “Great American Dream.”

A.         So great that 25,000+ will commit suicide.

B.         So great that countless are not happy with what they have.  MORE!!!

C.         So great that 4,000 abortions take place.  Many for convenience sake!

D.         So great that 9,000,000 are confessed alcoholics.

(2)           Cistern of happiness at all cost.

A.         If you need to cheat to be successful then do it.

B.         If you need to lie to get ahead then do it.

C.         If you are not happy then get the doctor to give me a pill.

(3)           Cistern of “wisdom and education.”

A.         College educations are important, but not ALL important.

B.         Emphasis too often placed on “becoming successful,” not “remaining faithful.”

C.         How many encourage their children, even now to become preachers, elders?

4.      Jeremiah WEPT because of the sad state of Judah.

(1)           Looking for refreshement in broken cisterns.

(2)           Yet Jeremiah continued to proclaim God’s truths.

III.        the only solution = turn or return to god

1.      God called to the backsliding chidlren of Judah to return to the only “fountain of living water” (2:13).

2.      God is the only “fountain of living waters.”

(1)           “Whoever drinks shall never thirst” (Jn. 4:14).

(2)           “Let him who thirsts, come…” (Rev. 22:17).

3.      God provides, but cannot help if you refuse to respond.

(1)           “The harvest is past, summer ended, and we are not saved” (8:20).

(2)           Are you saved?  If not, why not?


1.     Judah was a nation in double jeopardy.

        (1)     Forsaking God.

        (2)     Seeking relief from broken cisterns.

(3)     Such a plan would not provide or hold water.

2.     If this time of year draws your attention to Christ, please consider your course and or the course of our nation.

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