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Sermon #5303

Names Written in the Earth

A Sermon on Jeremiah 17:13


Jeremiah 17:13 ESV KJV
O LORD, the hope of Israel, all who forsake you shall be put to shame; those who turn away from you shall be written in the earth, for they have forsaken the LORD, the fountain of living water. (ESV)

Sermon Description

In this sermon on Jeremiah 17:13 titled “Names Written in the Earth,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones makes a clear and bold statement: sin is deliberate. When sinning, a person knows that they are rebelling against a holy God. The first people lived with God in the garden and knew God personally. It was in this state, Dr. Lloyd-Jones argues, that humankind knowingly disobeyed God. Moreover, circumstances now remind people of God when they have put Him out their minds. Take for example those who are faced with death or suffering: how often do they hear the unbeliever praying out of last resort when they suffer greatly? When this happens, it shows the world that they knew all along that God is sovereign and still they rebel. Dr. Lloyd-Jones elaborates that not only does humanity rebel against God deliberately, they do so while God is providing breath to their lungs and sustenance to their bones. It was not in a desert and famine that people originally opposed God, but rather it was in paradise that they first rebelled against their Creator. Similarly, if one is able to rebel against and curse God right now, it is only because He has put air in their lungs and sustained them up to this very moment.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. Sin is always deliberate. There is an active and positive element to sin, not just passive.
  2. There is an element of ingratitude in sin. We owe everything to God yet we turn from him.
  3. There is blindness to our own real good. We turn from the fountain of living waters to broken cisterns.
  4. The inevitable consequence of sin is shame, being confounded, and having your name written in the earth.
  5. Those who forsake God will be put to shame. Their folly will be exposed before all.
  6. What people relied on will be shown as useless. They will be bewildered and without hope.
  7. A name written in the earth is unstable, insecure, impermanent, and will be obliterated.
  8. Fame, power, and worldly pleasure will all pass away. Death comes for all.
  9. There will be a judgment where the ungodly will not stand. They will be like chaff blown away.
  10. Even the earth itself will be destroyed, along with all who belong to it. Nothing will remain.
  11. The greatest tragedy is not having your name written in heaven. That is eternal.
  12. We must turn to God, confess our sin, and rely only on Christ's work to have our name in heaven.

Old Testament

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.