Evening, July 20, edited from Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening
“But now what are you doing on the road to Egypt, to drink the waters of the Nile?” — Jeremiah 2:18
By various miracles, by assorted kindnesses, by uncommon deliverances Jehovah had proved himself to be worthy of Israel’s trust. Yet they broke down the hedges with which God had enclosed them as a holy garden; they abandoned their own true and living God, and followed after false gods. Constantly did the Lord rebuke them for this infatuation, and our text contains one instance of God’s admonishing them, “But now what are you doing on the road to Egypt, to drink the waters of the muddy Nile?”–for so it may be translated. “Why you you wander far away and leave your own cool stream flowing from Lebanon? Why do you forsake Jerusalem to turn aside to Memphis and to Tahpanhes? Why are you so strangely set on mischief, that you can’t be content with the good and healthy, but would follow after those things evil and deceitful?” Is there not here a word of clear instruction and warning to the Christian? Oh, true believer, called by grace and washed in the precious blood of Jesus, you have tasted of better drink than the muddy river of this world’s pleasure can give you; you’ve had fellowship with Christ; you’ve obtained the joy of seeing Jesus, and leaning your head upon his chest. Do the trivialities, the songs, the respect, the revelry of this earth bring contentment after that? Have you eaten the bread of angels, and now can live on corn husks? Samuel Rutherford once said, “I have tasted of Christ’s own manna, and it has made me lose my taste for the brown bread of this world’s joys.” I think it should be the same with you. If you are wandering in pursuit of the waters of Egypt, Oh, return quickly to the one living fountain; the waters of the Nile may be sweet to the Egyptians, but they will only taste bitter to you. What do you have to do with them? Jesus asks you this question this evening–what will you answer him?