No Peace : The Will at Odds with God and Man
Genesis 7:18-24; 8:1
II Timothy 3:1-9
II Thessalonians 2:1-12
August 20, 2023
I have changed the title of the lesson slightly from:
The Role of the Will in Relation to God and Man (16 lesson)
Peace at Last: The Will at One with God and Man (9 lessons so far)
No Peace: The will at
Odds with God and
I guess that my titles of the lessons along a central theme for months,
fluctuate, like your and my relationship with God and our fellowman,
perhaps jumping around from all angles and covering a wide spectrum.
The hardest thing about speaking for God is allowing Him to show
you the topic on which to represent Him,
Thus, if I was looking, the passage of the hour would be a most unlikely
source for a Sunday School lesson. But once I saw it earlier this week,
I felt led to it in a way that is joy to experience. The following is a homily from the Pulpit Commentary
The scripture is: Jeremiah 9:3.
“And they bend their tongues like their bow for lies: but they are not valiant
for truth upon the earth; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they know
not me, saith the Lord.”
The following is a homily from the Pulpit Commentary
Wickedness Prevailing, and Why It Prevails
“These wicked people,” says the prophet, “prevail, but their prevailing
does not come by truth and good faith.”
I. WE HAVE HERE AN ADMISSION THAT WICKEDNESS
PREVAILS. It is, indeed, one great consideration in the prophet’s
unutterable grief that wickedness is so strong and successful. Man, weak
and puny as he is in some respects, is in others strong to achieve very
impressive results. In mere physical strength there are many brutes that far
excel him, but he has faculties which so multiply his strength as to put the
rest of creation under his feet. That man, with his peculiar nature, should
be strong to do good, means that if his choice so falls he may also be
strong to do evil. The prophet looks out, then, upon wicked men who
prevail in their plots and schemes. He has no wish to minimize their
success. He uses a strong word to indicate it. The word used to indicate
the prevailing of the waters at the Deluge is the word also used to indicate
the prevailing of the wicked here.
18 And the waters prevailed, and were increased greatly upon the
earth; and the ark went upon the face of the waters.
19 And the waters prevailed exceedingly upon the earth; and all the
high hills, that were under the whole heaven, were covered.
20 Fifteen cubits upward did the waters prevail; and the mountains
21 And all flesh died that moved upon the earth, both of fowl, and of
cattle, and of beast, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon
the earth, and every man:
22 All in whose nostrils was the breath of life, of all that was in the
dry land, died.
23 And every living substance was destroyed which was upon the face
of the ground, both man, and cattle, and the creeping things, and
the fowl of the heaven; and they were destroyed from the earth:
and Noah only remained alive, and they that were with him in the
24 And the waters prevailed upon the earth an hundred and fifty days.
The wickedness is not only extensively present, but manifestly successful.
There must be no shirking of this fact. It is another matter, indeed, what the
success may be worth, and how long it may last; but there it is, such as it is.
The wicked prevail:
· by putting the good into prison, and even to the taking away of their lives.
· by seducing the weak and self-indulgent into temptation.
· by deceiving the simple.
They go upon the maxim that everything is fair, and has in it the highest necessity
if it helps toward the attainment of their ends. And their ends they do attain, making
a boast of their success, and sneering at the scrupulosity (diligent, thorough, and
extremely attentive to details) of those who will not follow in their steps.
גָּֽבְר֛וּ 19 ἐπεκράτει
וַיִּגְבְּר֥וּ 18 ἐπεκράτει
ὑψώθη: hupsothae - he/she/it-was-LIFT-UP/EXALT-ed set-high/elevate/lift-up". "exalt".
was raised up high KJV and the waters prevailed
Jer. 9:3 יָצָ֛אוּ yā·ṣā·’ū
Synonyms for prevail:
carry the day
carry all before
be the victor
“They bend their tongue like their bow;
Lies and not truth prevail in the land;
For they proceed from evil to evil,
And they do not know Me,” declares the Lord.
And they bend their tongues like their bow for lies: but they are not valiant
for the truth upon the earth; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they know not
me, saith the LORD.
They bent their tongues like their bows;
lies and not faithfulness prevail in the land,
for they proceed from one evil to another,
and they do not take Me into account.
This is the Lord’s declaration.
They use their tongues like a bow. Lies rather than truth fly throughout the land.
They progress from one evil to another, and they don't know me," declares the LORD.
And they bend their tongue--their bow--for falsehood, and they have grown strong
in the land, but not for truth. For they proceed from evil to evil, and they do not
know me, says LORD.
And they bend their tongue, as it were their bow, for falsehood; and they are
grown strong in the land, but not for truth: for they proceed from evil to evil,
and they know not me, saith Jehovah.
“They bend their tongue like their bow;
[Their] lies and not truth prevail and grow strong in the land;
For they proceed from evil to evil,
And they do not know and understand and acknowledge Me,” says the Lord.
Their tongues are bent like a bow to send out false words: they have become
strong in the land, but not for good faith: they go on from evil to evil, and they
have no knowledge of me, says the Lord.
And they bend their tongue, their bow of falsehood, and not for fidelity are they
valiant in the land; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they know not me,
And they will bend their tongue, their bow, a lie: and they were not strong for
faithfulness upon the land; for from evil to evil they went forth, and they knew me
not, says Jehovah.
And they bend their tongues like their bow for lies: but they are not valiant
for the truth upon the earth; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they know
not me, says the LORD.
The King James 2000 is not a new version. It is a King James Version brought
forward 400 years. Several categories of words are brought up to 21st century
language. Pronouns such as thy, thine, thou, ye, etc. are put into current language
And they bend their tongue [like] their bow, [for] falsehood and not truth is
superior in the land, for they go forth from evil to evil, and they do not know me,"
And they bend their tongues like their bow for lies. But they are not mighty
for the truth on the earth; for they go from evil to evil, and they do not know
Me, says Jehovah.
They bend their tongues like bows, to shoot out lies: As for the truth, they may
nothing away with all in the world. For they go from one wickedness to another,
and hold nothing of me, sayeth the LORD.
The Lord says, "These people are like soldiers who have readied their bows.
Their tongues are always ready to shoot out lies. They have become powerful
in the land, but they have not done so by honest means. Indeed, they do one
evil thing after another and do not pay attention to me.
"They bend their tongue, as their bow, for falsehood; and they are grown strong
in the land, but not for truth: for they proceed from evil to evil, and they do not
know me," says the LORD.
Who have prepared e their tongue as their bow of falsehood, And, not by faithfulness,
have they become mighty in the land, - For from wickedness unto wickedness, have
they gone forth, But me, have they not known, Declareth Yahweh.
And they bend their tongues like their bow for lies: but they are not valiant for the
truth upon the earth; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they know not me,
saith the LORD.
They bend their tongue, [as it were] their bow, for falsehood; and they are grown
strong in the land, but not for truth: for they proceed from evil to evil, and they
don't know me, says Yahweh.
And they bend their tongue, their bow is a lie, And not for stedfastness have they been
mighty in the land, For from evil unto evil they have gone forth, And Me they have not
known, An affirmation of Jehovah!
Every one of them says basically:
· They speak lies with their tongue,
· They have grown strong prevailing in the land at the expense of truth,
· They proceed in evil by doing more evil and wickedness,
· They have not known God, neither do they pay attention to Him,
· This revealed and asserted by God, Jehovah, Yahweh, Himself!
II. THE INSTABILITY OF THIS PREVALING IS HINTED AT.
Integrity, honor, uprightness, honesty, truth, good faith, are thrown to the winds.
Mr. Valiant for Truth - a Pilgrim’s Progress character - The prophet does not need
to have extorted from him an admission that the wicked prevail; but
along with the admission he makes an assertion which, even in the midst of
his melancholy, gives him confidence and a measure of satisfaction. This
prevailing, great and proud as it is, cannot last, for it lacks the essential
constituents of endurance. The man who gains his ends by deceit and
treachery must of necessity deceive himself as much as he does others. He
persuades himself that he will never grow weary of what he so much
enjoys. He forgets, too, that every one whom he deceives may be thereby
learning a lesson which some day may come back in unexpected and
terrible betrayal to himself. There is not a single instance of wicked
prosperity that need alarm or perplex us. The more wickedness raises its
head in boasting, the more sudden may be the final overthrow.
But SOMEDAY SOON their proceeding and prevailing WILL GO NO FURTHER!
In closing, I cite three Scriptural examples as warnings of evil and its dangers:
#1 II Timothy 3:1-9
1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters,
proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers,
incontinent*, fierce, despisers of those that are good,
*In 1 Corinthians 7:5, it evidently refers to lack of control in a particular matter,
and signifies unchastity. In Matthew 23:25, the Greek word is translated in both
the King James Version and the American Standard Revised Version by "excess."
4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers
5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from
such turn away.
6 For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive
silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,
7 Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the
8 Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also
resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate* concerning the
* men whose moral sense is perverted and whose minds are beclouded with
their own speculation. To which I add, “Get it straight or leave it alone,
the conclusion you come to may be your own.” I Googled this expecting
to find its source but no results were found. The closest was:
Jumping to conclusions is a phenomenon where people reach a
conclusion prematurely, on the basis of insufficient information.
9 But they shall proceed no further: for their folly shall be manifest
unto all men, as their’s also was.
Take this verse in connection with prevail above.
NO MORE PREVAILING.
And I want reiterate from former lessons to caution you that of the
seven things God hates mentioned in Proverbs 6:16-19 all are
characteristic if not prevelant (a la prevailing) in American culture
as I speak:
· a proud look
· a lying tongue
· hands that shed innocent blood
· an heart that deviseth wicked imaginations
· feet that be swift in running to mischief
· a false withness that speaketh lies
· he that soweth discord among brethren.
Satan has a role in all this in his attempt to “blind the minds of them
which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who
is the image of God, should shine unto them.” (II Corinthians 4:4)
The Bible does not give us much information on Jannes and Jambres. In fact,
the names of these two men appear only once in the entire Bible, in II Timothy 3:8.
In a passage describing the wickedness of the last days, Paul says, “Just as Jannes and
Jambres opposed Moses, so also these men oppose the truth—men of depraved minds,
who, as far as the faith is concerned, are rejected. But they will not get very far because,
as in the case of those men, their folly WILL BE CLEAR TO EVERYONE??????????
Long-standing Jewish tradition says that Jannes and Jambres were the two chief magicians
who withstood Moses and Aaron in Exodus 7. “Aaron threw his staff down in front of
Pharaoh and his officials, and it became a snake. Pharaoh then summoned wise men
and sorcerers, and the Egyptian magicians also did the same things by their secret arts:
Each one threw down his staff and it became a snake. But Aaron’s staff swallowed up
their staffs” (vs 10-12). Later, these same sorcerers duplicated the changing of water
into blood (Exodus 7:22) and the production of frogs (8:7). However, the sorcerers were
powerless to duplicate the other plagues. (ibid. v. 19)
The names “Jannes” and “Jambres” appear in the Talmud* as well. According to one
midrash,* the two magicians left
(see Exodus 12:38) and were later instrumental in promoting the worship of the
golden calf that Aaron made (Exodus 32). Another midrash identifies the “two servants”
of Balaam as Jannes and Jambres (Numbers 22:22). According to the midrashim and
other sources, Jannes and Jambres continued to exert a wicked influence on
until the time of Phinehas (Numbers 25). These stories are interesting, but they should
not be taken as equivalent to inspired Scripture.
Paul confirms the traditional names of the sorcerers who challenged Moses without
lending credence to the legends found in apocryphal works. His intention was to use
the wickedness of Jannes and Jambres, as presented in the Torah,* as an illustration
of a widespread, active rejection of the truth in the last days.
I repeat: as an illustration of a widespread, active rejection of the truth in the last days.
* the body of Jewish civil and ceremonial law and legend
comprising the Mishnah and the Gemara. There are two
versions of the Talmud: the Babylonian Talmud
(which dates from the 5th century AD but includes
earlier material) and the earlier Palestinian or Jerusalem Talmud.
*an ancient commentary on part of the Hebrew scriptures, attached to the
biblical text. The earliest Midrashim come from the 2nd century AD, although
much of their content is older.
* the law of God as revealed to Moses and recorded in
the first five books of the Hebrew scriptures (the Pentateuch).
# 2 II Thessalonians 2:1:1-12
1 Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus
Christ, and by our gathering together unto Him,
2 That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by
spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of
Christ is at hand.
3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come,
except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be
revealed, the son of perdition;
4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or
that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the
shewing himself that he is God.
5 Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these
things? (this is why Christains go to church to study about it - Hebrews 10:25)
6 And now ye know what withholdeth that He might be revealed in
7 For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only He who now
letteth will let, until He be taken out of the way.
8 And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall
consume with the spirit of His mouth, and shall destroy with the
brightness of His coming:
9 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all
power and signs and lying wonders,
10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish;
because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be
11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they
should believe a lie: (remember what all was going on above)
12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had
pleasure in unrighteousness.
# 3 Revelation 22:12-21
12 And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give
every man according as his work shall be.
13 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the
14 Blessed are they that do His commandments, that they may have
right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the
15 For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and
murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.
(Remember the above about lying) (And while I am at it, consider this
passage from I Corintians 6:9-11 9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not
nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,
10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners,
shall inherit the
washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus,
and by the Spirit of our God.
16 I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the
churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright
and morning star. (SURE MERCIES OF DAVID!)
17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth
say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will,
let him take the water of life freely.
18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy
of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add
unto him the plagues that are written in this book:
19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this
prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and
out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this
20 He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen.
Even so, come, Lord Jesus.
21 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.