Saturday 13 March

Collect
Almighty God,
whose most dear Son went not up to joy but first he suffered pain,
and entered not into glory before he was crucified:
mercifully grant that we, walking in the way of the cross,
may find it none other than the way of life and peace;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.  Amen.

Jeremiah 16.10–17.4
 And when you tell this people all these words, and they say to you, ‘Why has the Lord pronounced all this great evil against us? What is our iniquity? What is the sin that we have committed against the Lord our God?’ then you shall say to them: It is because your ancestors have forsaken me, says the Lord, and have gone after other gods and have served and worshipped them, and have forsaken me and have not kept my law; and because you have behaved worse than your ancestors, for here you are, every one of you, following your stubborn, evil will, refusing to listen to me. Therefore I will hurl you out of this land into a land that neither you nor your ancestors have known, and there you shall serve other gods day and night, for I will show you no favour.
 Therefore, the days are surely coming, says the Lord, when it shall no longer be said, ‘As the Lord lives who brought the people of Israel up out of the land of Egypt’, but ‘As the Lord lives who brought the people of Israel up out of the land of the north and out of all the lands where he had driven them.’ For I will bring them back to their own land that I gave to their ancestors.
 I am now sending for many fishermen, says the Lord, and they shall catch them; and afterwards I will send for many hunters, and they shall hunt them from every mountain and every hill, and out of the clefts of the rocks. For my eyes are on all their ways; they are not hidden from my presence, nor is their iniquity concealed from my sight. And I will doubly repay their iniquity and their sin, because they have polluted my land with the carcasses of their detestable idols, and have filled my inheritance with their abominations.
 O Lord, my strength and my stronghold,
   my refuge on the day of trouble,
to you shall the nations come
   from the ends of the earth and say:
Our ancestors have inherited nothing but lies,
   worthless things in which there is no profit.
 Can mortals make for themselves gods?
   Such are no gods!
 ‘Therefore I am surely going to teach them, this time I am going to teach them my power and my might, and they shall know that my name is the Lord.’
The sin of Judah is written with an iron pen; with a diamond point it is engraved on the tablet of their hearts, and on the horns of their altars, while their children remember their altars and their sacred poles, beside every green tree, and on the high hills, on the mountains in the open country. Your wealth and all your treasures I will give for spoil as the price of your sin throughout all your territory. By your own act you shall lose the heritage that I gave you, and I will make you serve your enemies in a land that you do not know, for in my anger a fire is kindled that shall burn for ever.

Psalm 120
    When I was in trouble I called to the Lord;
   I called to the Lord and he answered me.
    Deliver me, O Lord, from lying lips
   and from a deceitful tongue.
    What shall be given to you?
   What more shall be done to you, deceitful tongue?
    The sharp arrows of a warrior,
   tempered in burning coals!
    Woe is me, that I must lodge in Meshech
   and dwell among the tents of Kedar.
    My soul has dwelt too long
   with enemies of peace.
    I am for making peace,
   but when I speak of it, they make ready for war.

As we have been living with Jeremiah for some time, it might be good to think about the book as a whole. As with Amos, earlier in the year, here is a link to the Bible Project video summarising Jeremiah.

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