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Whore

Whore

You have played the whore with many lovers; and would you return to me? declares the Lord. Jeremiah 3:1

As a Christian and physician, I feel that I should speak the truth in love, always being professional and kind. There are times though that loving, kind words just don’t get through. In my addiction, polite did not work. I required painful consequences. Similarly, in medicine, sometimes the truth must be blunt and uncomfortable to get through. Your addiction is killing you. You must stop overeating . . . stop smoking . . . stop drinking . . . if you want to survive. Your food addiction is no less disastrous for you than a heroin addiction. You need help now.

Sometimes the carrot does not work for us, at which point, we require the stick. This, I think, is God’s tone in today’s passage. God may be slow to anger, but in the third chapter of Jeremiah, his patience has worn thin.

If it offends you that I titled this blog entry “Whore”, then you will find today’s passage even more distasteful. Six times in the chapter, God used the word to refer to his wayward people. If you don’t like this, you’re really going to be offended to find out that his words apply to you and me.

In the chapter, God explicitly describes those who claim to follow him, only to turn and follow themselves, as whores and adulterers. The language is offensive. It is meant to be. God forgoes pleasantries in saying, I loved you. I saved you. I made you and you belong to me. Yet in following your own way, you cheat on me. You find the word “whore” offensive? Good. I’m offended by your unfaithfulness. You don’t like being called a whore? Then stop acting like one.

We tend to speak of our sin as mistakes, struggles, or failures. When we live enslaved to our own destructive behaviors though, it is no small thing. In our sin, we abandon God, embracing another god, making ourselves out to be adulterers and whores. This is painful, toxic language, but that is the point. We must understand exactly what we choose to become when we abandon God to go our own way.

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  1. Willis says:

    This morning in church we are opening with the song “Good and Gracious King”
    The chorus contains the lines.

    To the King in need of nothing
    Empty handed I rejoice

    Those lines humble me every time I think of them. In the world one needs some sort of gift to see the rulers,
    BUT
    The God of the universe, sends His son to save humanity by dying for us, and I can approach Him with empty hands and even rejoice that I have nothing to offer in payment, nothing absolutely nothing. Nothing but devotion and gratitude and for that I can rejoice. WOW!!

    To the King in need of nothing
    Empty handed I rejoice.

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