The Prophet Jeremiah

As I have mentioned in previous posts, I am fascinated with the OT prophet Jeremiah. I even see some parallels between this OT character and a certain contemporary controversial figure. Jeremiah is one of the most complex characters in the Bible never described or displayed in some monchromatic manner. This character has depth and shape and is complicated. Here is a quote from Louis Stulman in Order Amid Chaos: Jeremiah as Symbolic Tapestry:

Jeremiah is represented in his book as a son of a priest, a messenger and spokeperson for God, an actor, a litigant, a gleaner, a sentry, a righteous sufferer, a covenant mediator, an iconoclast, a writer, a surrogate city, and impregnable wall of bronze, a confidant of kings, a prisoner and exile, a 'prophet to the nations', an 'assayer and tester of the people's ways', and a proponent and opponent of God. Moreover, Jeremiah appears as a champion of Torah teaching, an intercessor forbidden to pray, homo sympathetikos, a subversive poet, the voice of God and the voice of the poor, a madman, a survivor and witness, a symbol of destruction and hope and a 'prophet like Moses'. He is portrayed as compulsive, embittered and disillusioned, writhed in pain, vengeful, explosive, tormented and tormenting, conflicted, stern yet compassionate, volatile, penetrating, sanguine, sensitive yet detached, timorous, powerful, and powerless. (Page 143)


  1. We just did a whole issue on “prophets and prophecy”, which included a selection from Dr. Michael Brown's upcoming commentary on Jeremiah published by Zondervan: http://voiceofrevolution.askdrbrown.org/2008/11/11/voice-of-revolution-looks-at-prophets-and-prophecy/

    I think you'll like Dr. Brown's perspective, he practically lived in Jeremiah for a while while doing the commentary.


    Marcus French
    Voice of Revolution

  2. Thanks for the suggestion Marcus!

  3. I love Rob Bell's description of performance artist applied to the prophets of the FIRST Testament.

  4. Exactly Mike! Jeremiah, especially, serves as a sort-of chief performance artist given many, many different roles. Each role elevates and highlights the social, political and theological issues of that time period.

  5. I was just talking with my new boss about what kind of performance art statement we could make to our community. Something counter cultural, something healthy, something that would really make people take a second look...he suggested that we move our families in together. i think that's a start.

    I've never wanted to work in the church for a paycheck. I pray that I'll never live that way. I want to make a difference...though Jeremiah shows us that the path of making a difference is not a comfortable one...

  6. That's awesome! I'm glad you are working for such a great thinking boss.