“For twenty-three years, from the thirteenth year of Josiah the son of Amon, king of Judah, to this day, the word of the Lord has come to me, and I have spoken persistently to you, but you have not listened.” (Jeremiah 25:3, ESV)

Could there be a sadder verse in all of the Scriptures than this one?  Jeremiah has spoken and spoken and spoken to the people, pleading for them to turn away from their sins and follow the Lord with their whole heart…

But you have not listened.  As haunting a testimony as one can find in the Bible.  Jeremiah faithfully preached the word, the people unfaithfully did not listen.  It is a stinging indictment, a terrible truth, an awful thing to contemplate.

The Expositor’s Bible Commentary comments here: “Nineteen years under Josiah and four under Jehoiakim (Jehoahaz and Jehoiachin ruled only three months each) did not suffice to turn Judah to repentance; she would not hear.”

It leads one to the question, how are we not listening to the word of the Lord?  How are we like the Israelites who were led off to captivity because of their unwillingness to listen to the word of the Lord?