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Bible Commentaries

Expositor's Dictionary of Texts

Jeremiah 45

Verses 1-5

The Minute Philosopher

Jeremiah 45:5

Service is perhaps life's best interpretation.

I. To rise in life, then, is never to escape from service. The nobler and better we are growing, the more entangled shall we be in a far-reaching servitude. Jesus has taught us that service is the true measurement of greatness. He is the least whose service is the poorest. He is the greatest whose service is the best. Could we forget ourselves, and serve mankind in life and death, we should be growing Christlike.

In service too, and nowhere else, lies our true liberty. True freedom is never liberty from service. True freedom is always liberty to serve.

II. If life be service, how all-important is it for you and me to learn the art of serving well. The best and richest service you can render is often not the service of great things but of small.

We begin to see the truth of that when we remember how largely our lives are compact of little things. Even to the greatest, the chance of doing great things rarely comes.

So then, if life be service, and if the bulk of life is made up of little things, the service that neglects these lesser elements must fail. A saint is one who sanctifies life's trifles.

Do you not think that service in the small things is often the hardest service in the world? To work on, serve on, love on, unnoticed and unpraised, is perhaps the finest heroism earth can show.

Again mark this, as telling the importance of these little acts. Only through the small services of life faithfully done can you and I be disciplined for the great services when God is pleased to send them. God measures the service that He will give us tomorrow, not from our talents so much as from the faithfulness with which we serve Today.

And after all, how can you tell which act is small, which great? These measurements are human, not Divine. God's standard is very different from ours.

III. What the world needs above all else Today is consecrated character, and that is just what service in small things shows. God brings the glory of the autumn hills out of a million indecipherable heather-bells. God brings the glory of the rainbow out of a million indistinguishable drops. And God can bring the glory of a consecrated character out of that countless multitude of little deeds that form our life.

G. H. Morrison, Flood-Tide, p. 241.

Illustration. Great services reveal our possibilities. Small services reveal our consecration.

And in the latter, rather than in the former, lies your best hope of influencing the world. Bridge-builders build our bridges seven or eight times stronger than the ordinary traffic needs. And bridges are rarely tested to the utmost. They do their best work carrying the daily loads. Still, if the strain should come, the strength is there. So you and I have latent powers and slumbering capacities. And some day, perhaps, all shall be needed. But now Today it is in life's common traffic, and the brave carrying of life's common loads, that we shall serve best, and glorify God in a consecrated life.

G. H. Morrison, Flood-Tide, p. 251.

References. XLVII. 5. Spurgeon, Sermons, vol. xxxiv. No. 2025. XLVII. 6, 7. A. Maclaren, Expositions of Holy Scripture Isaiah and Jeremiah, p. 380. XLVIII. 11, 12. Spurgeon, Sermons, vol. xiii. No. 761. XLIX. 8. Ibid. vol. xviii. No. 1085. L. 1. A. Maclaren, Expositions of Holy Scripture Isaiah and Jeremiah, p. 385.

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Bibliographical Information
Nicoll, William Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on Jeremiah 45". Expositor's Dictionary of Text. https://studylight.org/commentaries/eng/edt/jeremiah-45.html. 1910.