Pastor Mark's lesson is based on the first chapter of Jeremiah.
1:4 Then the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
5 Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.
6 Then said I, Ah, Lord GOD! behold, I cannot speak: for I am a child.
7 But the LORD said unto me, Say not, I am a child: for thou shalt go to all that I shall send thee, and whatsoever I command thee thou shalt speak.
8 Be not afraid of their faces: for I am with thee to deliver thee, saith the LORD.
9 Then the LORD put forth his hand, and touched my mouth. And the LORD said unto me, Behold, I have put my words in thy mouth.
10 See, I have this day set thee over the nations and over the kingdoms, to root out, and to pull down, and to destroy, and to throw down, to build, and to plant.
Jeremiah is often referred to as "the weeping prophet" for he wept over the nation of Israel. We need people today who will weep over our nation.
Jeremiah preached the impending captivity of the people. Prophet has
1. a demanding task; Jeremiah's Dad was a priest. He was a follower of his Daddy's God.
Contrast priest and prophet. A priest's duty is predictable: to preserve the past. A prophet's duty is unpredictable: effort to change the future.
A priest ministers to the individual. A prophet ministers to a nation.
A priest is paid a stipend. A prophet has no clear source of income.
2. a difficult task; the prophet is functioning in a time of rebellion; a time of reformation but not repentence. (What we need: repentence.)
3. doubts. (v.6) I am but a child. Most commentators believe that Jeremiah was literally a teenager at the time of his calling. God's response (v.7) I will tell you what to say.
Three assurances God gave to Jeremiah.
1. The assurance of His grace. (vv.4,5) If God calls, He empowers.
2. The assurance of His protection. (v.7) I shall send thee. (v.8) Be not afraid for I am with you.
3. The assurance of God's effective Word. (v.9) His word is trustworthy.
Jeremiah persisted in his task for forty years! He was ordained by God.
Sometimes the battle is won by going!