Preaching, Teaching, and Notes

Go down to the Potter’s House.

Jeremiah 18:1-2 “The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord saying,  Arise,  and go down to the potter’s house,  and there will I cause thee to hear my words.”

Jeremiah was God’s Prophet.  He spoke to Judah for God.  But when callled to go to the potter’s house, he did not refuse,   because God spoke to him.  

He  went, without question, to hear what God would say,  even through a mere potter.

He didn’t say. “Hey, Lord, I am your prophet.  I don’t need to go to a potter’s house.  You know he only makes pots,  but I give your message to priests, the king, and the people.”

No, Jeremiah wanted to hear the Lord’s Word, no matter how it came.

Jeremiah 18:3-4 “Then I went down to the potter’s house,  and,  behold, he wrought a work on the wheels.  

And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter:  so he made it again another vessel  as seemed good to the potter to make it.”

Now the potter uses clay and water (lots of water) to make the clay very pliable in his hands.

The two are mixed together, and when the clay seems soft enough; the shaping  starts.

The potter starts the wheel and puts the clay on; and begins to shape the vessel he wants to make.

But the vessel was marred,  because the clay had a hard spot.  The water had not been absorbed into that part of the clay, so when the potter’s hand was trying to form it,  it refused to bend,  and so it destroyed the pattern,  marring the vessel.

Often we are the same way.  The Holy Spirit has spoken to us, trying to work the “water” of the Lord’s Word in us, and we just refuse to hear.  

(In scripture water is a picture of the Holy Spirit working through the Word;  Ephesians 5:26 “That He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the Word.) 

It becomes a dry, hard spot in our life.  Then when the Lord is forming us according to His Will, we become marred, and unable to be molded into what He wants. (Sometimes the hard part tears a hole in the vessel,  sometimes it just will not bend, or yield to the Potter’s hand.)

“So he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it.”

So what does the potter do?  What did He do with Israel?  And what does God do with us?

Does He give up on us?  No.

Jeremiah 18:6 “O house of Israel,  can not I do with you as this potter?  Saith the Lord.   Behold,  as the clay is in the potter’s hand,  so are ye in Mine hand,  O house of Israel.”

He takes the hard clay out ,  and then adds more water till the clay is completely pliable, so that the rest of the clay is reusable: to be able to be made into what the Lord wants.  

The hard spots in us are varied:    

They are those things the Lord has told us to do, and we have put off.

We know what the Lord is telling us.  We know what we should do; but we think we have a better plan.  

We even come to believe that the Lord will not care…it is such a small thing.

But it becomes a hard place, and comes between us and God in our lives, until it is removed.

Or this hard spot is a resentment we have left unconfessed (why should I confess this attitude?  They did this to me.  Let them apologize first!),  so it festers into something between the Lord and us.    

[I will tell you, speaking from personal experience, that these things are deadening.    They make you insensible to God’s voice.   Any attitude , hurt, or affections which pushes you away from God (His call, His love, His power to do for you) causes real separation.   Forgiveness is freedom—do not let anyone tell you different.   Forgiving someone frees you from their control.  They can not hurt you anymore;  for forgiveness lifts you above them.]

But once these (and any other “hard” places) are removed,  the Holy Spirit can add the water of the Word to us, making us pliable in His hands; so he can form us into a Vessel unto honor, meet for the Master’s use.

(Pliable to His hands.   See what He does!  His hands in us, and for us—for He shapes our circumstances, our path, as well as us.)

2 Timothy 2:19-21 “Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal,  The Lord knoweth them that are his.  And,   Let every one that name  the the name of Christ depart from iniquity.

But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth;  and some to honor and some of dishonor.

If an man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honor, sanctified, and meet for the master’s use, and prepared unto every good work.”

Do you want to be “prepared”?  Nothing coming between you and your Lord?

Ready to face any challenge, or call?   

Then yield;  give yourselves into the hands of the Almighty Potter,  and let Him work within you—and see what He will work for you.

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