Part 1: In the days of Jeremiah God made the following statement through the prophet, “For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water” (Jer. 2:13). Many of today’s generation may not even know what a cistern is. It is a device for storing water. According to Glaisher, Meteorological Observations, 24, the annual rainfall for the Palestine area occurs over a period of about 56 days. By the end of summer most pools and wells if not totally dried up diminish greatly, and cisterns are turned to as the source of water.
Arch. C. Dickie in an article for ISBE wrote the following concerning cisterns; “In the case of private cisterns, it is the custom of the country today to close up the inlets during the early days of the rain, so as to permit of a general wash down of gathering surfaces, before admitting the water. Cisterns, belonging to the common natives, are rarely cleansed, and the inevitable scum which collects is dispersed by plunging the pitcher several times before drawing water.
When the water is considered to be bad, a somewhat primitive cure is applied by dropping earth into the cistern, so as to sink all impurities with it, to the bottom. The accumulation often found in ancient cisterns probably owes some of its presence to this same habit (ISBE p.658). This helps us to understand what is being said in Jeremiah 2:13. The people had left the sweet life giving water (God’s love and care) and had turned to broken cisterns (trusting in other gods which were no gods cf. v11, 12).
Today there are those who make the same choice to forsake the living water to drink of the putrid, pungent, poison of sin.
Satan makes the things of this life look so great and refreshing. Ad makers glorify sinful lifestyles and the public falls for the trap. Christians are tempted to drink long and full of Satan’s dipper, and some fall into his trap. The dipper of Satan will never quinch the thirst of anyone. Instead it leads one deeper and deeper into sin.
It has been said many times of the nation of Israel during Bible times, “How could they turn their backs on God after he had provided them with so much?”
God provided deliverance from bondage more than once for His people yet they continued to sin.
The same question needs to be asked about the children of God today. God has given us so many great and wonderful things. His giving of His Son to die for our sins ranks as the greatest of all blessings. He has also given mankind the written word so that we can know how to please our creator, and to know of His love for us. He gave us the Church so that we could have fellowship with Him and with other Christians.
In the body we find support and help as we travel through this life. With all these blessings how can Christians fall away? Some believe they cannot fall, but the Bible teaches that it is possible. Paul wrote to the Galatian Christians to help them see they had fallen away, and to help the faithful know how to help and accept those who repented and turned back to the Lord.