About the Book of Jeremiah
Jeremiah was a priest. He was born in Anathoth, a town in Israel in about 650 BC. The Lord spoke to him. ‘You must be a prophet’, he said. He told Jeremiah what he must say to the people in Judah. Jeremiah was afraid, but the Lord promised to make him strong. He went. And he told the people what the Lord had told him to say. He did this for 40 years, but it was very difficult. The Lord told the people that they were very bad. So the people got angry. Jeremiah was very brave and he continued to speak the Lord's words. He was sad for another reason. He wanted people to stop doing bad things. The Lord would not punish them if they were sorry. Jeremiah knew that. But the people did not listen, so God had to punish them. They were not kind to Jeremiah. But he was only telling them what God had told him to say. Jeremiah knew that the Lord wanted people to worship him, and only him. Their ancestors had promised to do that. If they obeyed the Lord, he would give them many good things. But now they were worshipping many false gods. Jeremiah had to tell them that God would punish them for that.
The Lord sent other prophets to Israel at nearly the same time as Jeremiah. God spoke by his prophets. Most of the people did not listen to their words. But they listened to false prophets. They spoke things that the people wanted to hear.
People would not listen to God's message. But Jeremiah still obeyed God. So God showed Jeremiah how God himself would, one day, bring people to know him. He told him about the gift of the Holy Spirit. He sent the Lord Jesus Christ to give this gift. But that was many years after Jeremiah had died.