The fire of Yahweh (Lam 4:11-4:11)

Kaph

“Yahweh gave

Full vent

To his wrath.

He poured out

His hot anger.

He kindled

A fire

In Zion,

That consumed

Its foundations.”

Yahweh was angry at Jerusalem. Thus he vented his anger when he started a fire in Zion that consumed it down to its foundations. Yahweh, not the Babylonians, set the city on fire. This verse starts with the Hebrew consonant letter Kaph in this acrostic poem.

Yahweh rails against the false prophets (Jer 14:14-14:16)

“Yahweh said to me.

‘The prophets are prophesying lies

In my name.

I did not send them.

I did not command them.

I did not speak to them.

They are prophesying to you

A lying vision,

A worthless divination,

The deceit of their own minds.

Therefore thus says Yahweh

Concerning the prophets

Who prophesy in my name,

Although I did not send them.’

They say.

‘Sword shall not come on this land.

Famine shall not come on this land.’

By sword and famine

Those prophets shall be consumed

By sword

Or with famine.

The people to whom they prophesy

Shall be cast out into the streets of Jerusalem.

They will be the victims of famine.

They will be the victims of the sword.

There shall be no one to bury them,

Themselves,

Their wives,

Their sons,

Their daughters.

I will pour out their wickedness

Upon them.”

Yahweh spoke again to Jeremiah about the false prophets who told them not to worry about the sword or famine. Yahweh said that they were lying false prophets pretending to prophesize in his name. Yahweh did not send them or command them to speak. They were, in fact, prophesying a lying vision or a worthless prediction. They were deceived in their own minds. He never told them that there would be no sword or famine. Instead, these prophets would be consumed by the sword or famine. Those listening to them will also be consumed, that includes themselves, their wives, and their children. Yahweh was going to pour out all their wickedness upon them.

Yahweh will not accept their offerings (Jer 14:11-14:12)

“Yahweh said to me.

‘Do not pray

For the welfare of this people.

Although they fast,

I do not hear their cry.

Although they offer burnt offerings,

I will not accept them.

Although they offer grain offerings,

I will not accept them.

But I will consume them

By the sword,

By famine,

By pestilence.’”

Yahweh continues to show his displeasure for the people of Judah, when he spoke to Jeremiah. Yahweh told Jeremiah not to pray or intercede for these people and their welfare. If they fasted, he would not hear their cries. If they brought burnt, grain, or cereal offerings, he would not accept them. Yahweh was clear. They were going to be consumed by the sword, famine, or pestilence. There was no hope for them.

The wrath of God (Jer 10:25-10:25)

“Pour out your wrath

On the nations

That do not know you!

Pour out your wrath

On the people

That do not call on your name!

They have devoured Jacob.

They have devoured him.

They have consumed him.

They have laid waste his habitation.”

Jeremiah continues with his prayer. He wanted God to pour out his wrath on the nations that did not know him, nor Israel. He wanted Yahweh to pour out his wrath on those people who did not call on his name. These were the people who devoured and consumed Jacob. They also had destroyed their living area.

 

They provoke Yahweh’s anger (Jer 7:17-7:20)

“‘Do you not see

What they are doing

In the towns of Judah,

In the streets of Jerusalem?

The children gather wood.

The fathers kindle fire.

The women knead dough.

They make cakes

For the queen of heaven.

They pour out drink offerings

To other gods.

They provoke me to anger.

Is it I whom they provoke?’

Says Yahweh.

‘Is it not themselves?

Do they not hurt themselves?’

Therefore thus says Yahweh God.

‘My anger shall be poured out

On this place.

My wrath will be poured out

On this place.

It will be poured out

On human beings,

On animals,

On the trees of the field,

On the fruit of the ground.

It will burn.

It will not be quenched.’”

Yahweh pointed out, via Jeremiah, what the people in the towns of Judah and on the streets of Jerusalem were doing. The children gathered wood, while their fathers started fires. The women made cakes for the queen of heaven that was the Babylonian goddess Ishtar, or the Canaanite goddess Astarte, the goddess of Venice. They prepared their drink offerings for these gods. Yahweh was provoked to anger and wrath by these actions. Thus Yahweh was going to pour out his anger on all the people, animals, trees, and fruit in Judah and Jerusalem. They would all burn and be consumed with this fire.

Yahweh’s rejection (Jer 6:27-6:30)

“I have made you a tester.

You are a refiner among my people.

Thus you may know their ways.

You may test their ways.

They are all stubbornly rebellious.

They go about with slanders.

They are bronze.

They are iron.

All of them act corruptly.

The bellows blow fiercely.

The lead is consumed by the fire.

In vain,

The refining goes on.

The wicked are not removed.

They are called

‘Rejected silver.’

Yahweh has rejected them.”

Jeremiah was to be the tester for Yahweh. He was going to test the faithfulness of the people. Thus there is a comparison with testing metals. Jeremiah found that they were all rebellious corrupt slanderous people. He was going to test them as if they were iron or bronze. The lead was consumed in the fire but no precious metals were to be found. The wicked were not removed, so that they came up as rejected silver. Thus Yahweh has rejected these wicked people.

The wicked (Isa 26:10-26:11)

“If favor is shown

To the wicked,

They still do not learn righteousness.

In the land of uprightness,

They deal perversely.

They do not see

The majesty of Yahweh.

O Yahweh!

Your hand is lifted up.

But they do not see it.

Let them see your zeal

For your people!

Let them be ashamed!

Let the fire

For your adversaries

Consume them!”

Isaiah says that you cannot favor the wicked because they never learned righteousness. They are the perverse ones in the land of the upright people, since they do not see the majesty of Yahweh. Turning directly to Yahweh, Isaiah says that Yahweh’s hand is lifted up in judgment. However, the wicked ones do not even see it. They should see the zeal that Yahweh has for his people and be ashamed. These wicked adversaries should be consumed with God’s fire.