The Lord used the prophet Jeremiah to write two books: Jeremiah and Lamentations.  Jeremiah is often referred to as the ‘weeping prophet’ as he mourned over the people of God and the messages of the Lord’s displeasure and His chastening hand upon His people.  Jeremiah, chapter two is the first message to the people that Jeremiah delivers.

Let’s begin by reading Jeremiah 2:1-3, “Moreover the word of the LORD came to me, saying, Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem, saying, Thus saith the LORD; I remember thee, the kindness of thy youth, the love of thine espousals, when thou wentest after me in the wilderness, in a land that was not sown. Israel was holiness unto the LORD, and the firstfruits of his increase: all that devour him shall offend; evil shall come upon them, saith the LORD.”  Jeremiah reminds the people of the love and goodness of God to them and how they, as a nation, pursued the Lord while they were in the wilderness, even as a bride would pursue her bridegroom.  He reminds them of how Israel is an offering consecrated to the Lord.  They are His firstfruits of increase. The firstfruits were God’s consecrated property, His portion of the whole harvest.  They were wholly the Lord’s and were considered to be holy to the Lord.  To any who would ‘devour’ His people, He would declare them guilty and bring judgment upon them.  The firstfruits belonged to the Lord and He would not tolerate anyone else doing harm to them.

Now let’s read Jeremiah 2:4-5, “Hear ye the word of the LORD, O house of Jacob, and all the families of the house of Israel: Thus saith the LORD, What iniquity have your fathers found in me, that they are gone far from me, and have walked after vanity, and are become vain?”  Although the Lord had greatly blessed these people, they were unfaithful to Him.  They hearts had been drawn away from Him.  They no long pursued Him.  He asks them why they had behaved towards Him like that.  Had the house of Jacob found fault in the Lord? (It was Jacob’s name that had been changed to Israel in Genesis 32:28, “And he saith, `Thy name is no more called Jacob, but Israel; for thou hast been a prince with God and with men, and dost prevail.’”)  What sin had the Lord committed that they no longer desired Him like they did at the beginning?  In verses 6-11, the Lord speaks to them of His love and their unfaithfulness.  In verse 11, we read, “Hath a nation changed their gods, which are yet no gods? but my people have changed their glory for that which doth not profit.”  What a sad question.  Had any other nation changed their gods, although they were false gods?  No, they were at least faithful to their false gods.  The Lord’s people exchanged Him, the true God, for that which is false and unprofitable.  What had the Lord done to deserve this unfaithfulness from His people?  Of course we know the fault was not the Lord’s.

What about us today?  Do we still pursue the Lord?  Does He hold first place in our lives, or do we spend our time going after those things which can never bring happiness; those things which are false and unprofitable?  Listen to the Lord’s words to the church in Ephesus in Revelation 2:4, “But I have this against you, that you have left your first love.” (NASB)  Even in the early church, they had ceased to put the Lord first in their lives and in their hearts.  What had the Lord done to deserve such treatment?  May we ask ourselves this very searching and important question: Have I left my first love?  Is the Lord no longer first in my life?  Have I been unfaithful in replacing the Lord with something or someone else?  My friend, we should search our own hearts to see if this is true of us.  And if it is?  Then, “Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works…” (Revelation 2:5)  It takes ‘first love’ to do ‘first works’, those works which manifest the zeal and desire we had for the Lord in the beginning.  As in a marriage relationship, our love for the Lord should grow each day.  By walking in fellowship with Him, obeying His Word, and loving His truths…we can still have ‘first love’ for the Lord.  (225.2)