“Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will punish all them which are circumcised with the uncircumcised;….all these nations are uncircumcised, and all the house of Israel are uncircumcised in the heart ((vv.25-26)”.
Here Prophet Jeremiah predicts the day of the Lord and the events mentioned in the Book of Joel. “Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision! For the day of the LORD is near in the valley of decision (Joel3.14)”. In the preceding chapter it is what we read and Tophet is a stand-in for places all across the world where all the dead shall be heaped pellmell regardless of their station in life. “And the carcases of this people shall be meat for the fowls of the heaven, and for the beasts of the earth; and none shall fray them away(7:33)”.
Jeremiah compares the nation of Israel to an assembly of treacherous men and adultery is spiritual and ‘they are not valiant for the truth upon the earth; for they proceed from evil to evil (v.3).’ Valley of Hinnom and Valley of Jehoshaphat are geographically apart but the Spirit in comparing the uncircumcised and those who are uncircumcised in the heart makes it a valley of slaughter; it is also a valley of decision. Jehoshaphat means God judges and of which Jeremiah had earlier referred as a prelude to the second advent of Jesus Christ as the Messiah-King “Even a full wind from those places shall come unto me: now also will I give sentence against them./ Behold, he shall come up as clouds, and his chariots shall be as a whirlwind: his horses are swifter than eagles. Woe unto us! for we are spoiled (Je.4:12-13)”. The Millennial Reign shall be God’s will as fulfilled to reinstate the circumcised according to law but not circumcised in the law to learn of the righteousness of God. They followed outwardly provisions but missed the most essential aspect of it. When Jesus summarized the decalogue it was only two which is what circumcision of the heart demands. Love thy neighbor as thyself.’ Even this day Israel has no clue and in denying Palestinians their land, water and basic amenities they have debased the law. So valley of Hinnom and Valley of Jehoshaphat are but two aspects of God’s mercy and Justice. The Gentiles are also judged by the same measure. “And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious (Is.11:10)”.
We shall go back to the Book of Joel and examine the verses before the v.14. Who are these heathens? “ Proclaim ye this among the Gentiles; Prepare war, wake up the mighty men, let all the men of war draw near; let them come up:/ Beat your plowshares into swords and your pruninghooks into spears: let the weak say, I am strong./ Assemble yourselves, and come, all ye heathen, and gather yourselves together round about: thither cause thy mighty ones to come down, O Lord. Let the heathen be wakened, and come up to the valley of Jehoshaphat: for there will I sit to judge all the heathen round about./ Put ye in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe: come, get you down; for the press is full, the fats overflow; for their wickedness is great (Joel 3:9-13).” The heathens or the Gentiles are uncircumcised and they are graded by the law of gradation as the nation of Israel which are uncircumcised in the heart. God shall be avenged for their perpetual backslidding.
Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for the slain of the daughter of my people!
2 Oh that I had in the wilderness a lodging place of wayfaring men; that I might leave my people, and go from them! for they be all adulterers, an assembly of treacherous men.
3 And they bend their tongues like their bow for lies: but they are not valiant for the truth upon the earth; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they know not me, saith the Lord.
4 Take ye heed every one of his neighbour, and trust ye not in any brother: for every brother will utterly supplant, and every neighbour will walk with slanders.
5 And they will deceive every one his neighbour, and will not speak the truth: they have taught their tongue to speak lies, and weary themselves to commit iniquity.
6 Thine habitation is in the midst of deceit; through deceit they refuse to know me, saith the Lord.
7 Therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts, Behold, I will melt them, and try them; for how shall I do for the daughter of my people?
8 Their tongue is as an arrow shot out; it speaketh deceit: one speaketh peaceably to his neighbour with his mouth, but in heart he layeth his wait.
9 Shall I not visit them for these things? saith the Lord: shall not my soul be avenged on such a nation as this?
10 For the mountains will I take up a weeping and wailing, and for the habitations of the wilderness a lamentation, because they are burned up, so that none can pass through them; neither can men hear the voice of the cattle; both the fowl of the heavens and the beast are fled; they are gone.
11 And I will make Jerusalem heaps, and a den of dragons; and I will make the cities of Judah desolate, without an inhabitant.
12 Who is the wise man, that may understand this? and who is he to whom the mouth of the Lord hath spoken, that he may declare it, for what the land perisheth and is burned up like a wilderness, that none passeth through?
13 And the Lord saith, Because they have forsaken my law which I set before them, and have not obeyed my voice, neither walked therein;
14 But have walked after the imagination of their own heart, and after Baalim, which their fathers taught them:
15 Therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel; Behold, I will feed them, even this people, with wormwood, and give them water of gall to drink.
16 I will scatter them also among the heathen, whom neither they nor their fathers have known: and I will send a sword after them, till I have consumed them.
17 Thus saith the Lord of hosts, Consider ye, and call for the mourning women, that they may come; and send for cunning women, that they may come:
18 And let them make haste, and take up a wailing for us, that our eyes may run down with tears, and our eyelids gush out with waters.
19 For a voice of wailing is heard out of Zion, How are we spoiled! we are greatly confounded, because we have forsaken the land, because our dwellings have cast us out.
20 Yet hear the word of the Lord, O ye women, and let your ear receive the word of his mouth, and teach your daughters wailing, and every one her neighbour lamentation.
21 For death is come up into our windows, and is entered into our palaces, to cut off the children from without, and the young men from the streets.
22 Speak, Thus saith the Lord, Even the carcases of men shall fall as dung upon the open field, and as the handful after the harvestman, and none shall gather them.
23 Thus saith the Lord, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches:
24 But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the Lord which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the Lord.
25 Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will punish all them which are circumcised with the uncircumcised;
26 Egypt, and Judah, and Edom, and the children of Ammon, and Moab, and all that are in the utmost corners, that dwell in the wilderness: for all these nations are uncircumcised, and all the house of Israel are uncircumcised in the heart.