We will begin this lesson in Jeremiah 24:1 "The LORD shewed me,
and, behold, two baskets of figs [were] set before the temple of the
LORD, after that Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon had carried away
captive Jeconiah the son of Jehoiakim king of Judah, and the princes
of Judah, with the carpenters and smiths, from Jerusalem, and had
brought them to Babylon."

     Figs, throughout the Bible, have symbolized the physical house of
Israel. In this particular lesson, it is a little more selective. This
is really speaking of the houses of Judah and Benjamin. The Babylonian
captivity came about, because of the worship of false gods. We will
see the two types of figs representing two attitudes toward the
punishment God has sent upon them. Notice, that a certain group of
these people of the physical house of Israel were carried away into
Babylon. Jeconiah is the same person as Jehoiachin. Jehoiakim was his
father. In every generation, there seems to be great trials that come.
It is not the trials that make or break a man, but the way that man
handles his problems. These figs, are in two separate baskets, which
symbolize the fact they were separated in two different places.
Perhaps, one basket is for those in Babylon, and one basket is for
those who escaped.

     Jeremiah 24:2 "One basket [had] very good figs, [even] like the
figs [that are] first ripe: and the other basket [had] very naughty
figs, which could not be eaten, they were so bad."

     One basket of figs is not edible, because they are so bad. It
reminds me of Jesus cursing the fig tree that did not produce good
fruit. We know that all fruit trees, to be very good, must be pruned
back from time to time. It appears, that the figs in the one basket is
from a good growth. They have, probably, been pruned to make them
better. We know that the punishment that had come on Judah and
Benjamin was to cause them to return to God. I believe the basket of
good figs learned their lesson well, and repented, and came back to
God. The basket of figs that were bad did not learn from their
experience. They just went further away from God than they had been in
the beginning. They are not changed.

     Jeremiah 24:3 "Then said the LORD unto me, What seest thou,
Jeremiah?  And I said, Figs; the good figs, very good; and the evil,
very evil, that cannot be eaten, they are so evil."

     It is well-known that people who are living for God are in a
growing process. They become better everyday. My own statement is that
Christianity is a daily walk through life with Jesus as our Leader.
The longer we walk, the more like Him we become. Sin is the same way.
Once a person commits a sin, it is much easier to commit the sin
again, or one much worse. The slide into a lifestyle of sin is easy,
you just commit the first sin. The rest is easy.

     Jeremiah 24:4  "Again the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,"

     Very often, in these lessons, Jeremiah reminds us that the words
are coming directly from God.

     Jeremiah 24:5 "Thus saith the LORD, the God of Israel; Like these
good figs, so will I acknowledge them that are carried away captive of
Judah, whom I have sent out of this place into the land of the
Chaldeans for [their] good."

     This punishment of captivity by the Chaldeans is for the good of
the people captured. They surrendered to them, knowing this punishment
was from God. Had they remained in the worship of false gods, they
would have soon gone to the point of no return. God got them out of
there, to cause them to seek His face again.

     Jeremiah 24:6 "For I will set mine eyes upon them for good, and I
will bring them again to this land: and I will build them, and not
pull [them] down; and I will plant them, and not pluck [them] up."

     Since they willingly submitted to the chastisement God had put on
them, God is pleased with them. He will restore them their land again.
Their repentance and acceptance of the punishment they deserved,
brought them back into the blessings of God. The greatest blessing was
the fact that God forgave them. He restored the blessings on them,
when He removed the curse.

     Jeremiah 24:7 "And I will give them an heart to know me, that I
[am] the LORD: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God:
for they shall return unto me with their whole heart."

     They are brand new creatures. God has created a new heart within
them. This is a total spiritual renewal within them. It is like the
Christians experiencing the new spiritual birth. God wants to
fellowship with mankind. He wants to be their God. His holiness will
not allow Him to fellowship with them, unless they turn to Him with
their whole heart. The curse is gone, and the blessings of God are
upon them.

     Jeremiah 24:8  "And as the evil figs, which cannot be eaten, they
are so evil; surely thus saith the LORD, So will I give Zedekiah the
king of Judah, and his princes, and the residue of Jerusalem, that
remain in this land, and them that dwell in the land of Egypt:"

     It appears, that Zedekiah was the uncle of Nebuchadnezzar. He was
very evil. He was the leader of those that the basket of bad figs
represent. We see a rebellious group who would not tolerate the
chastisement of the LORD. They had not repented of their evil. Some
had fled to Egypt to keep from being captured, and they were included
in this evil group.

     Jeremiah 24:9 "And I will deliver them to be removed into all the
kingdoms of the earth for [their] hurt, [to be] a reproach and a
proverb, a taunt and a curse, in all places whither I shall drive

     They did not repent, and the curse was not removed from them.
They would be scattered to many different countries. The lands where
they lived would look down on them as second-class citizens. The
punishment of banishing them to many lands is punishment from God.
They would be thought of as outcasts, wherever they went.

     Jeremiah 24:10 "And I will send the sword, the famine, and the
pestilence, among them, till they be consumed from off the land that I
gave unto them and to their fathers."

     They will not live in the promised land any longer. God will
drive them out. The sword would cause them to run for safety somewhere
else. The famine would send them away in search of food to eat. The
pestilence was like locusts that devoured everything in its way.
Remember, all of this was sent on them by God to drive them out of the

                         Jeremiah 26 Questions

1.  What did God show Jeremiah in verse 1?
2.  Who is Jeconiah?
3.  What do figs symbolize?
4.  In this particular Scripture, they symbolize whom?
5.  What do the two types of figs represent?
6.  What is another name for Jeconiah?
7.  It is not the trials that come that make or break a man, but his
    __________ toward the problem.
8.  How did the two baskets of figs differ?
9.  What makes a fruit tree good?
10. Why did the punishment come to Judah and Benjamin?
11. What did Jeremiah notice about the figs?
12. How is this like people?
13. What does the author say Christianity is?
14. Why is it so important not to commit the first sin?
15. Quote Jeremiah chapter 24 verse 5.
16. What promise does God make them in verse 6?
17. Why will God bless them, and be their God?
18. Who was the leader of the evil ones?
19. Who was his nephew?
20. What will happen to those evil ones?
21. What would they be thought of wherever they went?
22. What did God send against them to remove them from the land?