Jeremiah 28: Jeremiah and the False Prophet

(17 verses, 2:56 to read)


What I am about to READ

  • This is the record of Jeremiah’s encounter with the false prophet Hananiah.


  • vv. 1-4: Hannaniah responds to Jeremiah’s prophecy from chapter 27 regarding Nebuchadnezzar’s rule over the people of Judah.
  • vv. 5-9: Jeremiah responds to Hannaniah.
  • vv. 10-17: Hananiah break’s Jeremiah’s yoke-bars and is punished by the Lord for rebellion against Him.


  • Jesus warns the Church that the last days will be marked by a multitude of false prophets. However, we also see from this and other places in the Old Testament that false prophets were pretty common then, too. It is God Himself, through the first and greatest Old Testament prophet, Moses, who gives us the litmus test for a prophet’s veracity. “‘But the prophet who presumes to speak a word in my name that I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods, that same prophet shall die.’ And if you say in your heart, ‘How may we know the word that the Lord has not spoken?’—when a prophet speaks in the name of theLord, if the word does not come to pass or come true, that is a word that the Lord has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously. You need not be afraid of him” (Deuteronomy 18:20-22). Because Hananiah’s word did not come true, the people of Judah should not have listened to him. In fact, because he died in accord with Jeremiah’s prophecy, the people should have turned immediately, repented of their sins, and listened to Jeremiah.
  • Jeremiah also points to the fact that Hananiah did not have a call from God to speak on His behalf. It is a dangerous thing to presume to speak for God. St. Paul explicitly teaches that preachers cannot go unless they are sent (Romans 10:14-17). This is why it is important for you to listen to your pastor in your local congregation. God has sent him to you to bring you His word. Even if your pastor isn’t a Youtube star or have a podcast or a blog with a million followers, he is still the man God has sent to that particular place to preach His Word and administer His sacraments for the benefit of the people there.


  • Prayer: O Lord, You are the Lord of the harvest. Continue to send faithful pastors into Your Church to proclaim Your Word of Law and Gospel to Your people, that they may repent of their sins and believe that Jesus has removed their sins by shedding His blood for them. Guard our ears and hearts from the lying prophets whom You have not sent, that we might not be led away into unbelief. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Post below, or join the conversation in our Facebook group:

-Rev. Jordan McKinley, pastor
Trinity Lutheran Church, Vallonia, IN

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