Scripture Text:(click to open in a new window or tab)
1. To what tree or plant would you compare your life?
- evergreen tree (tall and majestic)
- weeping willow (bending with the wind)
- desert cactus (a sole survivor)
- oak tree (a bit nutty)
2. Upon what is Jeremiah relying? How does this contrast with the gods of other nations, “their altars and Asherah poles” (verse 2; see Exodus 34:12 – 14)?
3. In contrast to the cursed drought conditions that prevail, what blessed hope does Jeremiah cling to and hold forth for others (verses 5 – 8)?
4. Why does Jeremiah call the human heart “deceitful above all things” (verse 9)? What is the relationship between mind and action (verse 10)? What is the point of the related parable (verse 11)?
5. What are Jeremiah’s countrymen saying about his ability to prophesy (verses 14 and 15)? How will the coming disaster bring both hope and terror to the prophet?
6. Of what does Jeremiah need healing? How might he be confused with a false prophet? (Hint: What has not yet happened that he is predicting will?)
7. What times of spiritual “drought” have you experienced? What keeps you going during those dry times?
8. At present, are you feeling more like a “bush in the wastelands” (verse 6) or a “tree planted by the water” (verse 8)? Why?
9. How honest are you with yourself? Could your heart be deceiving you about the motives of some of your actions at work? At home? In relationships?