The scriptures read are Jeremiah 4-6, Psalm 48 and Hebrews 4.
Jeremiah 4. Better repent and turn your life around, Jerusalem. Judgment is coming.
Jeremiah 5. Like Diogenes looking for an honest man, Jeremiah is searching for someone who knows better than to violate God's law. When he meets some hard hearted people, he thinks, "Well, they're poor; they don't know any better." Then he finds the well-to-do are no better.
More vineyard imagery. The growth he finds in Israel and Judah are not the vines God planted.
People think God is all words and no action. Boy, are they in for a surprise!
"Because you've served foreign gods in my land, you're going to find yourselves serving foreigners in their land." Poetic justice.
There are predators among God's people who exploit the poor and fatherless. Prophets and priests are lying. That's how bad things have gotten.
Jeremiah 6. Zion is like a beautiful meadow churned up into mud and stripped of vegetation to use for war. The city is full of violence and oppression. Greed is rampant. You can't even count on the prophets and priests to tell you how bad things are. They're just telling everyone that it will be all right when it patently won't. Everyone's beyond shame and blushing.
There is a way out but no one wants to go down that road. No one's listening to the sirens and hurricane warnings. There's a nation coming for you from the north and you're all heading into dead ends.
Psalm 48. Could not resist this upbeat multilingual reggae version with the trippy video, though it only covers the first two verses of the psalm.
Hebrews 4. Everyone needs a rest, a sabbath, a respite in Edenic paradise. Don't miss it like the Israelites did in the wilderness.
And don't think you can put anything past God. He and his word are sharper than you think.
We do have a holy but compassionate high priest in Jesus. He may not have sinned but he knows firsthand the temptations we face. We can always go to him for mercy and grace.