2015-09-13 Pastors Corner

Sue and I played Cribbage the other night on a custom walnut board we brought from the States. I was trying to remember where we’d purchased the board, when I found this cartoonish picture an old gentleman on the bottom of the box. It was encircled by these words, “Masters of Wood Since 1883.” Suddenly I remembered our trip to the Svoboda Clock Shop in Wisconsin. We stopped to check out their iconic 36 foot-tall Grandfather’s clock. We purchased the small game board because it was all we could afford. Although my internet search turned up some changes in the business, they’re still going and family owned. That’s impressive isn’t it … a family doing the same thing for over 132 years?

What about a family following the instructions of one man for over 300 years? That’s the story of the Recabites found in Jeremiah 35. You’ll have to read it yourself if you want all the details, but let me give you the broad sweeps.

If looked at historically, the story seems misplaced. When viewed thematically however, its placement is strategic. The story is grouped according to a faithfulness/unfaithfulness theme: Chapter 33 tells about God’s unconditional covenant faithfulness, Chapter 34 reveals the gross falseness of King Zedekiah and Judah’s officials in their pledge to release the Hebrew slaves, Chapter 35 narrates the story of the faithful Recabite clan and Chapter 36 contrast it with the story of King Jehoiakim’s total disregard for God’s Word.

The Recabites are God’s living object lesson of how the Jews should have responded to his Words. God plainly states the contrast in Jeremiah 35:14.

The Recabites The Jews
Faithfully obeyed the instructions of their dead ancestor Chronically ignored the instructions of their living God and Creator
Their ancestor’s instructions had been giving once God had given his repeatedly to no avail
Displayed obedience for centuries Marked by disobedience for centuries
Their faithfulness would be rewarded Their unfaithfulness would be punished

Thanks to Pastor Mike Witzend for the material in this table.