A Sermon Delivered to
The Compassion Internet Church
22 September 2013
Frank L. Hoffman, Pastor
Jeremiah is often referred to as the weeping prophet, because he saw all the evil in the world around Him and he internalized it, which gave him a weeping heart.
And Jeremiah is not alone with these kinds of feelings, for all over the world there are loving, compassionate, and peacemaking children of God, who see the same kinds of evil that Jeremiah saw, perhaps even more, and each of them also has a weeping heart.
They see our senseless warring madness, all the displaced people, the terrorism, and the suffering and death.
They see the unbelievable cruelty and sadism committed upon billions of animals every year, and the seemingly total indifference to their suffering and death.
They are horrified over the jokes people make about the suffering animals as they chomp upon their barbeque and other animal products; and as a result these sensitive people enter a constant state of mourning with a weeping heart.
They question why God doesn’t do something to protect the animals, and why He has let it go on for so many years.
We have asked these same questions, too, and the only answer we seem to receive is that God gave us the responsibility as peacemaking children of God to free creation from its present corruption; so, for more than 30 years that’s what we’ve been trying to do.
Unfortunately, over these past 30 years more than 1.5 trillion animals have suffered and died, and we still have a weeping heart.
With these things in mind, let’s take a look at Jeremiah 8:18-22.
18. My sorrow is beyond healing,
My heart is faint within me!
And the weeping heart people of today tell us that they feel the same way because of their seemingly constant encounters with the suffering of the animals and human indifference to their suffering and death.
19. Behold, listen!
The cry of the daughter of my people from a distant land:
“Is the LORD not in Zion?
Is her King not within her?”
“Why have they provoked Me with their graven images, with foreign idols?”
To many of us who have compassion for animals, the human lust for animal foods, clothing, and other animal products is the same thing as having graven images before God, for having their meat appears to be more important than God.
20. “Harvest is past, summer is ended,
And we are not saved.”
This is the cry we hear from the animals who are about to be sent to slaughter, and from the rest of creation that is caught up in the corruption of the earth; they yearn to be saved and freed.
21. For the brokenness of the daughter of my people I am broken;
I mourn, dismay has taken hold of me.
22. Is there no balm in Gilead?
Is there no physician there?
Why then has not the health of the daughter of my people been restored?
The suffering animals in laboratories and on factory farms don’t receive healing balm or medicine to sooth their bodies.
They also don’t have a physician to heal them.
They only have the veterinarians who cause their suffering in laboratories, and those who witness their horrible deaths in slaughter houses and do nothing to alleviate their fears and pain.
The whole of creation continues to cry out to be set free from the present corruption.
And the caring children of God continue to mourn as does Jeremiah in 9:1.
1. Oh, that my head were waters,
And my eyes a fountain of tears,
That I might weep day and night
For the slain of the daughter of my people!
To us who care, the animals are the same as the slain of the daughter of my people, and the world needs to think about them in this way.
We need a weeping heart to bring peaceful changes to this world and free creation from its present corruption.
Let’s continue with our discussion by looking at Psalm 4:1-8.
1. Answer me when I call, O God of my righteousness!
Thou hast relieved me in my distress;
Be gracious to me and hear my prayer.
We know many weeping heart compassionate people who pray to God to relieve their emotional pain by ending the suffering of the animals, but we have come to believe that God doesn’t appear to work in this manner.
God has given us the responsibility for protecting the whole of His creation, which is the true meaning of the “rule” and “dominion” that was given to us in Genesis 1:26-28…
26. Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”
27. And God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.
28. And God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
In this light, we are also to rule over all the evil people who continue to corrupt the earth and cause so much pain, suffering and death.
We are to do everything we can to peacefully end the human caused warring madness and the cruel domination of the animal kingdom.
And if anyone doubts that this is God’s creation intent, they should take a closer look at the next three verses, Genesis 1:29-31…
29. Then God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the surface of all the earth, and every tree which has fruit yielding seed; it shall be food for you;
30. and to every beast of the earth and to every bird of the sky and to every thing that moves on the earth which has life, I have given every green plant for food”; and it was so.
This is proof that God’s creation intent was for humans and other animals to eat only plant foods, and to do otherwise is to go against God’s heavenly will from which He created the heavens and the earth and all they contain.
And, if there is still any further doubt, look at what we are told in Genesis 1:31…
31. And God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.
God considered everything He made to be very good, and this includes our responsibility to protect the whole of creation from those who seek to harm any portion of it or eat another living being.
This is why God Himself doesn’t seem to end the corruption, for He has given us the responsibility and the ability to do it.
Thus, we need to turn our weeping heart and depression into positive action to help free creation from its present corruption.
With this in mind, let’s go back and continue our look at Psalm 4:2-8…
2. O sons of men, how long will my honor become a reproach?
How long will you love what is worthless and aim at deception?
In order to truly honor God, we must also honor and protect the whole of His creation; to do otherwise becomes a reproach to God.
People try to deceive themselves and God by killing and/or destroying a part of His very good creation, and then proceed to thank God for it and ask for His blessings upon their destruction.
Such things are worthless and evil, and they show the true intent of their hardened heart.
3. But know that the LORD has set apart the godly man for Himself;
The LORD hears when I call to Him.
These are the ones who truly seek to live by God’s heavenly will, and who have a weeping heart because of all the corruption and ungodly things going on around them.
4. Tremble, and do not sin;
Meditate in your heart upon your bed, and be still.
The people who live according to the ways of the world truly need to look at their lives the way God sees them, and tremble because of it.
They need to truly seek the Lord and live according to His heavenly will as Jesus taught us to do.
This is what the psalmist is talking about.
5. Offer the sacrifices of righteousness,
And trust in the LORD.
These are the bloodless sacrifices that come from having a weeping heart.
6. Many are saying, “Who will show us any good?”
Lift up the light of Thy countenance upon us, O LORD!
7. Thou hast put gladness in my heart,
More than when their grain and new wine abound.
And He will also put gladness in our hearts, when we seek to do His will.
8. In peace I will both lie down and sleep,
For Thou alone, O LORD, dost make me to dwell in safety.
The Lord has been offering this to every single human being in the world for thousands of years, but for the most part they rejected it, because they wanted to live according to the ways of the world with its cruelty and bloodshed.
And God is still offering this to us, if we turn from our wicked ways and seek the Lord, and become the peacemaking children of God that Jesus call us to be.
God does see every weeping heart.