II. THE EVILS OF ISRAEL (ACTUALLY JUDAH)
AS THE HYPOCRITICAL WORSHIPPERS OF GOD
As the hypocritical worshippers of God, Israel (actually Judah) committed many evils.
A. Oppressing the Sojourner,
the Orphan, and the Widow
They oppressed the sojourner, the orphan, and the widow, and they shed innocent blood. They also went after other gods to their own ruin (v. 6).
B. Stealing, Murdering, Committing Adultery,
Swearing Falsely, and Burning Incense to Baal
Jeremiah 7:9 speaks of Israel’s stealing, murdering, committing adultery, swearing falsely, burning incense to Baal, and going after other gods which they had not known.
C. Making Cakes for the Queen of Heaven
and Pouring Out Drink Offerings to Other Gods
In verse 18 Jehovah says, "The children gather wood, and the fathers light the fire, and the women knead the dough, to make cakes for the queen of heaven and to pour out drink offerings to other gods to provoke Me to anger." Here the queen of heaven is Nimrod’s wife Semiramis; later she was known as Artemis in Ephesus (Acts 19:27). It is hard to believe that God’s elect, His chosen people, could degrade to such an extent that they would make cakes for the wife of Nimrod. This was a matter of both fornication and idolatry.
D. Not Listening or Inclining
Their Ear to God’s Command
"This is what I commanded them, saying, Hear My voice, and I will be your God, and you will be My people; and walk in all the way which I command you, that it may go well with you" (v. 23). However, Israel did not listen to the voice of Jehovah their God but walked in the counsels and the stubbornness of their evil hearts and went backward and not forward (v. 24).
(Life-Study of Jeremiah and Lamentations, Chapter 10, by Witness Lee)