Heaping oppression upon oppression

Heaping oppression upon oppression, and deceit upon deceit, they refuse to know me, says the LORD

(Jeremiah 9:1-3) O that my head were waters, and my eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for the slain of the daughter of my people! O that I had in the desert a wayfarers’ lodging place, that I might leave my people and go away from them! For they are all adulterers, a company of treacherous men. They bend their tongue like a bow; falsehood and not truth has grown strong in the land; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they do not know me, says the LORD.

(Jeremiah 9:4-6) Let every one beware of his neighbor, and put no trust in any brother; for every brother is a supplanter, and every neighbor goes about as a slanderer. Every one deceives his neighbor, and no one speaks the truth; they have taught their tongue to speak lies; they commit iniquity and are too weary to repent. Heaping oppression upon oppression, and deceit upon deceit, they refuse to know me, says the LORD.  (RSV)

:5 Every one deceives his neighbor, and no one speaks the truth; they have taught their tongue to speak lies; they commit iniquity and are too weary to repent.

5. “… how much labour must a man take in order to get to hell!” … Adam Clarke

5. weary themselves–are at laborious pains to act perversely [MAURER]. Sin is a hard bondage (Hab 2:13).

(Habakkuk 2:13) Behold, is it not from the LORD of hosts that peoples labor only for fire, and nations weary themselves for nought?  (RSV)

(Jeremiah 51:58) “Thus says the LORD of hosts: The broad wall of Babylon shall be leveled to the ground and her high gates shall be burned with fire. The peoples labor for nought, and the nations weary themselves only for fire.”  (RSV)

the builders of the walls have “labored” only for the “fire” in which they shall be consumed, “In the fire” answers to the parallel, “burned with fire.” Translate, “shall have labored in vain,” … Jamieson-Faussett-Brown

(Jeremiah 9:4-6) Let every one beware of his neighbor, and put no trust in any brother; for every brother is a supplanter, and every neighbor goes about as a slanderer. Every one deceives his neighbor, and no one speaks the truth; they have taught their tongue to speak lies; they commit iniquity and are too weary to repent. Heaping oppression upon oppression, and deceit upon deceit, they refuse to know me, says the LORD.  (RSV)

(Ecclesiastes 1:2) Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity.  (RSV)

When people do not deal directly … it is referred to as deceitfulness

Stating their goal would not allow them to reach their goal

… because they know it would be rejected, so they manipulate and deceive.

Consider The Gibeonites – Joshua 9:3-6

Joshua 9

 3 But when the inhabitants of Gibeon heard what Joshua had done to Jericho and Ai,

 4 they worked craftily, and went and pretended to be ambassadors. And they took old sacks on their donkeys, old wineskins torn and mended,

 5 old and patched sandals on their feet, and old garments on themselves; and all the bread of their provision was dry and moldy.

 6 And they went to Joshua, to the camp at Gilgal, and said to him and to the men of Israel, “We have come from a far country; now therefore, make a covenant with us.” (NKJV)

The people even suspected that it might be a trick – Joshua 9:7

7 Then the men of Israel said to the Hivites, “Perhaps you dwell among us; so how can we make a covenant with you?” (NKJV)

Every deception begins with a good story

Joshua 9

 8 But they said to Joshua, “We are your servants.” And Joshua said to them, “Who are you, and where do you come from?”

 9 So they said to him: “From a very far country your servants have come, because of the name of the LORD your God; for we have heard of His fame, and all that He did in Egypt,

 10 “and all that He did to the two kings of the Amorites who were beyond the Jordan-to Sihon king of Heshbon, and Og king of Bashan, who was at Ashtaroth.

 11 “Therefore our elders and all the inhabitants of our country spoke to us, saying, ‘Take provisions with you for the journey, and go to meet them, and say to them, “We are your servants; now therefore, make a covenant with us.”‘   (NKJV)

The problem is that they took them at their word – Joshua 9:12-15

12 “This bread of ours we took hot for our provision from our houses on the day we departed to come to you. But now look, it is dry and moldy.

 13 “And these wineskins which we filled were new, and see, they are torn; and these our garments and our sandals have become old because of the very long journey.”

 14 Then the men of Israel took some of their provisions; but they did not ask counsel of the LORD.

 15 So Joshua made peace with them, and made a covenant with them to let them live; and the rulers of the congregation swore to them.  (NKJV)

They didn’t discover their error until three days later – Joshua 9:16

16 And it happened at the end of three days, after they had made a covenant with them, that they heard that they were their neighbors who dwelt near them. (NKJV)

Why the elaborate scheme? – Joshua 9:24

24 So they answered Joshua and said, “Because your servants were clearly told that the LORD your God commanded His servant Moses to give you all the land, and to destroy all the inhabitants of the land from before you; therefore we were very much afraid for our lives because of you, and have done this thing. (NKJV)

Craftiness is lying by not telling the whole truth

It was by craftiness that Satan deceived Eve – II Corinthians 11:3

(2 Corinthians 11:3) But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.  (NKJV)

It was a variety of craftiness Paul warned about … regarding false teachers

(2 Corinthians 11:12-13) But what I do, I will also continue to do, that I may cut off the opportunity from those who desire an opportunity to be regarded just as we are in the things of which they boast. For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ.  (NKJV)

Craftiness … we fall prey to … but we should not be … “surprised”

   Jesus declared that Satan was a liar – John 8:44

(John 8:40-44) “But now you seek to kill Me, a Man who has told you the truth which I heard from God. Abraham did not do this. “You do the deeds of your father.” Then they said to Him, “We were not born of fornication; we have one Father–God.” Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and came from God; nor have I come of Myself, but He sent Me. “Why do you not understand My speech? Because you are not able to listen to My word. “You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.  (NKJV)

Satan uses lies to manipulate people into sin.

Satan “dresses sin up” (deceit / craftiness) … in attractive ideas

Deceit became a major problem in Israel – Jeremiah 9:4-6

(Jeremiah 9:4-6) Let every one beware of his neighbor, and put no trust in any brother; for every brother is a supplanter, and every neighbor goes about as a slanderer. Every one deceives his neighbor, and no one speaks the truth; they have taught their tongue to speak lies; they commit iniquity and are too weary to repent. Heaping oppression upon oppression, and deceit upon deceit, they refuse to know me, says the LORD.  (RSV)

Deceit / Craftiness … remains a major problem today

For those who “refuse to know the Lord

… craftiness & deceit are simply … “Standard Operating Procedure”

xxx

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