According to the dictionary, blush means “to redden, especially in the face, from modesty, shame or embarrassment.” The word occurs in the Bible only in the writings of the prophet Jeremiah.
Before citing them, we need to understand the circumstances in which Jeremiah was prophesying:
- The Northern Kingdom, Israel, had become so wicked and apostate that God had delivered it into the hands of the Assyrians in 722 BC;
- One hundred thirty-six years later, in 586 BC, the Southern Kingdom, Judah, had also become so wicked and apostate that God moved the Babylonians to attack and destroy Jerusalem and carry its citizens to Babylon as captives. Jeremiah, in his prophecy, was warning Judah that this would happen.
Listen to what he said, Jeremiah 6:13-15, “From the least to the greatest, all are greedy for gain; prophets and priests alike, all practice deceit. They dress the wound of my people as though it were not serious. ‘Peace, peace,’ they say, when there is no peace. Are they ashamed of their loathsome conduct? No, they have no shame at all; they do not even know how to blush. So they will fall among the fallen; they will be brought down when I punish them, says the LORD.”
Jeremiah 8:12, “ Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? No! They were not at all ashamed, nor did they know how to blush. Therefore they shall fall among those who fall; In the time of their punishment they shall be cast down, says the LORD.”
Notice the litany of evil in these two passages that the people and their leaders were guilty of: greedy for gain; practicing deceit; talking of peace when there was none; unashamed of their loathsome conduct; committing abomination.
God, through Jeremiah, was denouncing His people (equivalent to the Church today) who had so seared their consciences that no amount of evil could make them blush. God also moved the prophet Isaiah to proclaim woes on such conduct, Isaiah 5:20-24, “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight! Woe to men mighty at drinking wine, woe to men valiant for mixing intoxicating drink, who justify the wicked for a bribe, and take away justice from the righteous man! Therefore, as the fire devours the stubble, and the flame consumes the chaff, so their root will be as rottenness, and their blossom will ascend like dust; because they have rejected the law of the LORD of hosts, and despised the word of the Holy One of Israel.”
What a perfect description of the USA today! And of most of the rest of the world also. And the whole world is suffering the woes that God pronounced against such evil behavior, though the world attributes these woes to global warming instead of to the judgment of God.
The prophet Amos cried out to his people, “Prepare to meet your God, O Israel!” (Amos 5:12b) What was the significance of these words? Simply this:
- They were in rebellion against God and His word;
- They would inevitably die some day;
- And stand before God to be judged (“It is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment,” Hebrews 9:27);
- And if it happens in their present condition the sentence would be Hell;
- So they better prepare to meet God by repenting of their sins and submitting to God and His word, the Bible.
So who will cry out “Prepare to meet your God, O America?” Thank God, there are a few. Franklin Graham is probably the most notable. God bless him and all who are crying out for and praying for Americans to:
- Repent of their sins;
- Receive God’s love. John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life;”
- So that we can learn to blush again!