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Bible Commentaries

Bell's Commentary on the Bible

Jeremiah 35

Verses 1-19

  1. PEER PRESSURE! (1-5)
    1. This actually happened 18 years earlier, but was probably put here as a stark contrast to the last chapter.
    2. Background on the Rechab clan(2 Kings 10:15-31): Jehonadab(Rechab’s son) teams up w/Jehu & tricks all those who worship Baal to come to a Baal-potluck. Onceinside got 80 guys to go in & kill all of them!
      1. This took place 2 ½ centuries earlier – but the years, decades, centuries, did nothing to weaken the families traditions.
    3. Rechabites - Dr. Wolff (1839) found in Arabia, near Mecca, a tribe claiming to be descendants of Jehonadab; and recently a Bedouin tribe has been found near the Dead Sea who also profess to be descendants of the same Kenite chief.
    4. WOW! Turn up the pressure cooker!
      1. What pressure to conform!
      2. They are brought into a safe & comfortable place! (2)
        1. Babylonians were attacking. [No longer Nomad, didn’t seem so-bad!]
      3. They were brought by Gods prohet himself. (3)
      4. He got all of them together. (3)
      5. He brought them to an exalted meeting place(the temple). (4)
      6. They received the best hospitable provisions. (5)
      7. They had already compromised a little in temporarily staying “in” Jerusalem. (11)
        1. They abandoned their tents but not their Standards!
    5. Q: Would their refusal lead them to a rebuke from God? Was God trying to wean them from their “Eccentric Ultra Conservatism Lifestyle”?
      1. Q: Did these obstinate Puritans need to be caught up to their day?
    1. ​​​​​​​Vs.6 – This is also translated in later manuscripts “No way Jose!”
    2. No Wine, No Home, No Agriculture!
      1. ​​​​​​​These regulations may have been intended as a protest against Canaanite religion or settled life in general, but more likely they protected the Rechabites’ life-style and trade secrets as itinerant metalworkers.
    3. Faithfulness - Faithfulness in little things is a big thing.
    4. Vs.6 – Wisdom on Peer-Pressure!
      1. Submit to pressure from peers and you move down to their level. Speak up for your own beliefs and you invite them up to your level.If you move with the crowd, you'll get no further than the crowd.When 40 million people believe in a dumb idea, it's still a dumb idea.Simply swimming with the tide leaves you nowhere. So if you believe in something that's good, honest and bright -- stand up for it. Maybe your peers will get smart and drift your way.
    5. They didn’t ask others to agree w/their tradition, but they would not violate it themselves.
  3. OBEDIENCE LESSON! (12-17)
    1. ​​​​​​​Here is the knot in the rope! (16)
      1. This verse gets even darker (17). Before the light of 18,19.
    2. What an indictment against the Jews! [1] The Jews refused to obey the very Law of God! [2] The Rechabites obeyed every human tradition.
    3. Christians are often put to shame by those who are intensely loyal to their family, their religion, or their personal pursuit.
      1. If Christians put into their personal walks the devotion & dedication an athlete puts into his sport, the church would be pumping w/revival life!
    1. ​​​​​​​They are not rewarded for their standards, but for their faithfulness to their fathers command!
      1. Remember: God loves unity & truth, but is no lover of uniformity!
        1. Name one thing He made that is uniform?
      2. He called some to the Nazarite vow…but not all!
      3. Jesus & John the Bap. Glorified God w/different lifestyles.
      4. Note: special callings! After Wes spoke many said they weren’t called to Africa to do that! (that’s ok, we’re not all “Wesbo”, fighting off snakes, eating giraffe, making crocodiles into boots, etc)
        1. He calls some to Afica, others to P.I., others to Haiti, others to New Zealand, some to Beverly Hills, & others to stay home w/the stuff!
        2. One isn’t better than the other.
      5. Calling’s are diff. - You cannot choose your calling. Your calling chooses you.
        1. You have been blessed with special skills that are yours alone. Use them, whatever they may be, and forget about wearing another's hat.
        2. “A talented chariot driver can win gold and renown with his skills. Let him pick figs and he would starve.”
      6. ​​​​​​​Find your calling; Follow your calling; & Fulfill your calling!
    2. There are three types of Christians who respond to the call of service:
      1. Rowboat Christians -- have to be pushed.
      2. Sailboat Christians -- always go with wind.
      3. Steamboat Christians – pray & make up their minds where they ought to go, and go there regardless of wind and weather.
Copyright Statement
These files are the property of Brian Bell.
Text Courtesy of Calvary Chapel of Murrieta. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Bell, Brian. "Commentary on Jeremiah 35". "Bell's Commentary". 2017.