|Today is Sunday! It is rainy outside, but in Oregon, that simply means that more people will come out to Church today. That is good news. We are looking for a great day! As I read in Jeremiah today, I enjoyed it perhaps more than ever before. I enjoyed reading chapters 37 through 46. Here we have the history of how Jerusalem fell, the conflict between Egypt and Babylon, and the disobedience of the King of Judah as well as their people. In the midst of it all is Jeremiah. He stands as a voice for God. Hated by his own people and treated well only by the leaders of Babylon. He is beaten, thrown in prison several times, almost stared to death, put down in mire and stuck there. Yet... he stays true to God no matter the price. Wow! You have got to read the story found in God's Holy Word. Here are a few thoughts:|
1) THEY DIDN'T LISTEN! Jeremiah 37:1-2 "And king Zedekiah the son of Josiah reigned instead of Coniah the son of Jehoiakim, whom Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon made king in the land of Judah. 2 But neither he, nor his servants, nor the people of the land, did hearken unto the words of the LORD, which he spake by the prophet Jeremiah."
Having national leaders and people of the land not listening to God and His Word is not new. We certainly can see that in our land today. We see the reproach given to any man or woman who takes a stand for Christ or righteousness. One who is against the sins of abortion and homosexuality, etc. They bear reproach while those who march in their parades gain the favor of the people. God knows! God will deal with that mess don't you forget that for one moment. Let us be those who listen to the Lord and follow His Word!
2) FAVOR FROM THE GENERAL OF BABYLON- Jeremiah 40:4 "And now, behold, I loose thee this day from the chains which were upon thine hand. If it seem good unto thee to come with me into Babylon, come; and I will look well unto thee: but if it seem ill unto thee to come with me into Babylon, forbear: behold, all the land is before thee: whither it seemeth good and convenient for thee to go, thither go." We can see that he set Jeremiah free and then he gave Jeremiah a choice. He let Jeremiah do whatever he wanted to do. God remembers the efforts of His servants and will ultimately vindicate them. If not on earth, then certainly in Heaven. Our rewards are for another time. When we are in Heaven!
3) THEY WANT TO HEAR, BUT NOT OBEY- Notice these verses: Jeremiah 42:1-2 "Then all the captains of the forces, and Johanan the son of Kareah, and Jezaniah the son of Hoshaiah, and all the people from the least even unto the greatest, came near, 2 And said unto Jeremiah the prophet, Let, we beseech thee, our supplication be accepted before thee, and pray for us unto the LORD thy God, even for all this remnant; (for we are left but a few of many, as thine eyes do behold us:)" AND... Jeremiah 42:5-6 Then they said to Jeremiah, The LORD be a true and faithful witness between us, if we do not even according to all things for the which the LORD thy God shall send thee to us. 6 Whether it be good, or whether it be evil, we will obey the voice of the LORD our God, to whom we send thee; that it may be well with us, when we obey the voice of the LORD our God." Now, then Jeremiah gives the Word of the Lord about escaping to Egypt: Jeremiah 42:17 "So shall it be with all the men that set their faces to go into Egypt to sojourn there; they shall die by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence: and none of them shall remain or escape from the evil that I will bring upon them." BUT... Here is their response: Jeremiah 43:2 "Then spake Azariah the son of Hoshaiah, and Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the proud men, saying unto Jeremiah, Thou speakest falsely: the LORD our God hath not sent thee to say, Go not into Egypt to sojourn there:" Their final decision: Jeremiah 43:7 "So they came into the land of Egypt: for they obeyed not the voice of the LORD: thus came they even to Tahpanhes." AND... this is what they say to Jeremiah: Jeremiah 44:16-17 "As for the word that thou hast spoken unto us in the name of the LORD, we will not hearken unto thee. 17 But we will certainly do whatsoever thing goeth forth out of our own mouth, to burn incense unto the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto her, as we have done, we, and our fathers, our kings, and our princes, in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem: for then had we plenty of victuals, and were well, and saw no evil." So, they wanted to hear.... but not obey. So we see today as well. Let us decide to be faithful, and focused; no matter what others decide to do or not do.
Well, so much for today friend. May your day be blessed! Pastor Mike Mutchler