Passage: For Jerusalem has stumbled and Judah has fallen, because their speech and their actions are against the Lord, to rebel against His glorious presence. The expression of their faces bears witness against them, and they display their sin like Sodom; they do not even conceal it. For they have brought evil on themselves. Say to the righteous that it will go well with them, for they will eat the fruit of their actions. Woe to the wicked! It will go badly with him, for what he deserves will be done to him. O My people! Their oppressors are children, and women rule over them. O My people! Those who guide you lead you astray and confuse the direction of your paths.
Journal: The people have openly rebelled against God, do not try to conceal the transgressions, and do not believe that they will be held accountable. Is there a greater state of sin? Is there a greater level of self deception? Sin is on display (on parade), and its banner is taken from the private shadows to the public market. There can be no repentance where there is no shame.
We are reminded of the sin of Judah from chapters two and three. The sin of superstition (2:6), as religion becomes a means to express carnality of thought. The sin of materialism (2:7), as the pursuit of life becomes the pursuit of stuff. The sin of idolatry (2:8) as the Jews, though not disowning God entirely, robbed Him of His glory by disowning Him partially. The sin of sexual impurity (3:16-26), as the women especially sought outward beauty over inward beauty.
However, the greatest sin is arrogance, which has transformed itself into apathy. That is, in the midst of sinfulness, the people have forgotten that a holy and righteous God is just. It is His justice that protects His holiness and that portrays His righteousness. ("Say to the righteous that it will go well with them, for they will eat the fruit of their actions. Woe to the wicked! It will go badly with him, for what he deserves will be done to him.") God will hold His creation accountable, and we cannot isolate our actions from His penetrating gaze. It will go well with those that hide the word of God deep within and live its truth with a set jaw and a focused mind. It will go badly for those that place the word of God on the shelf of their mind and live with a jaw salivating for more and more, and with a focus ever narrowing on the pursuit of self. ("For Jerusalem has stumbled and Judah has fallen, because their speech and their actions are against the Lord, to rebel against His glorious presence.")