Jeremiah 5:18
Yet even in those days, declares the LORD, I will not make a full end of you.
Sparing MercyA.F. Muir Jeremiah 5:18
The judgments described as about to be inflicted are very fearful, but they were amply deserved. The wickedness of the people was such as to justify their complete destruction. Yet they were spared ere they were totally extinct! Why this unlooked-for restraint?

I. IT HAS CHARACTERIZED ALL GOD'S JUDGMENTS OF MANKIND ON EARTH. The Fall, the Flood, the Exodus, etc., the sparing of the remnant of Benjamin, etc.

II. THERE IS BUT ONE EXPLANATION FOR IT. It is the possibility of some turning to him truly in the first instance; and, secondly, through them, of the race being saved in the future. God has never utterly cut off even the most sinful. Love, and not. mere vengeance, behaves in this way.

1. Has he not spared us?

2. He has never abandoned his purpose of saving "the whole world." - M.

I will make My words in thy mouth fire.
Three elements of the power of the Gospel are here found.

I. The I WILL of the Almighty. That will is an ocean deep and wide as eternity and infinity. In that shoreless deep all the mighty orbs, suns, systems floated first by mere will of Jehovah. To that will every line of inspiration becomes either a ray of light, law, and peace, or a thunderbolt of justice.

II. "THE WORDS OF THY MOUTH." The language is human, but Divine in its source. In all the dealings of heaven with our race, created instruments have been used. A long line of prophets and patriots have been guided with the authority and power from the eternal throne. So that whether Jehovah will to rouse all the stormy elements of clouds above, and waters beneath, as by a shepherd's staff, and styled the rod of God, on the kingdom of Egypt, or drive a broad dusty highway through the waves of the sea, — it is the same glorious God that is present in this sacred book. Ten thousand angels of the lifeguard around heaven's throne could not change the heart of the weakest child. But aided by the will of the eternal majestic "I" of the text, a babe in the manger at Bethlehem will awaken a song that shall ring out in anthem heard far up among the golden spheres of heaven, and echo round and round our redeemed and regenerated world.

III. A FIRE purifies but consumes the chaff.

(W. H. Van Doren, D. D.)

seems to me that the Word of God in our churches is too much like a sight which you not infrequently see in our streets in winter: a heap of coals cast down from a cart in front of a house upon the frosty ground, with the snow lying all around it, and falling upon it from the bosom of the storm. It is a remarkable conjunction when you come to think of it — a heap of coals and a heap of snow. The snow lies upon the heap of coals as cold and unmoved as it could lie over a heap of granite stones; and yet that heap of coal contains a vast quantity of potential heat, heat enough to melt all the snow in the street and convert for the time being the winter around into summer. But so long as the coal is as cold as the snow, so long does it produce no effect. Supposing you were able to apply a burning coal from your kitchen fire to the cold coal outside, what a wonderful change you would produce. You would let loose the potential heat; you would transform that cold inert mass of coal into a fiery furnace, which would melt and evaporate all the snow around it. And more marvellous still would the effect of the Word of God be upon you, coming to your cold, hard, frost-bound heart, with power from on high kindled with the fire of God's Holy Spirit. The potential heat in it would be set free, and it would transform your whole nature and life.

(H. Macmillan.)

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