Read Jeremiah 49
Jeremiah delivers a prophecy concerning Ammon (Jer. 49:1-6), Edom (49:7-22), Damascus (49:23-27), Kedar and the kingdoms of Hazor (49:28-33), and Elam (49:34-39). Next, a prophecy of judgment on Babylon and hope for Israel, Judah, and the remnant (chap. 50). The Good Shepherd speaks of His sheep and the wayward shepherds (50:6).
Jeremiah sent a written prophecy to the exiles in Babylon concerning its overthrow — The Word that the Lord spake against Babylon (capital of Chaldea) and against the land of the Chaldeans (Jer. 50:1). He was to reassure them that Jehovah had not forgotten His Covenant promise to their forefathers and was still in mercy lovingly working out His purposes for His covenant people.
Babylon's defeat was foretold to prepare the exiles for their return to Jerusalem: Therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel; Behold, I will punish the king of Babylon and his land. . . . And I will bring Israel again to his habitation . . . and his soul shall be satisfied (50:18-19). How would those in exile accept this prophecy? Surely, it should restrain them from participating in Babylon's idolatries and reaffirm their trust in the sovereignty of Jehovah. Later, to fulfill the Word of God, Cyrus did urge the Jews to return to Jerusalem and rebuild the Temple (II Chr. 36:22-23).
As foretold by the prophets (Is. 14:22; 21:9; 43:14; Jer. 25:12; 50:9; 51:37), King Cyrus of Persia successfully led his armies against Babylon to destroy it after it had served the purpose of God who allowed it to exist.
Judah's faith in the prophetic message of God was a precious type of the repentant backslider who believes that God has freed him from sin, who leaves the world of slavery, and returns to worship the Lord.
What a contrast from the time when Judah was carried into its captivity! By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat down, yea, we wept, when we remembered Zion. We hanged our harps upon the willows in the midst thereof. For there they that carried us away captive required of us a song; and they that wasted us required of us mirth (Ps. 137:1-3). Now, they left the land of their captivity where they were slaves to idolaters.
Now these are the children of the province that went up out of the captivity, of those which had been carried away. . . . The whole congregation together was forty and two thousand three hundred and threescore, beside their servants and their maids (Ezra 2:1,64-65).
Jesus promised: If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed (John 8:36).
Thought for Today:
And I will be found of you, saith the Lord: and I will turn away your captivity, and I will gather you from all the nations, and from all the places whither I have driven you, saith the Lord (Jer. 29:14).
As the Redeemer who pleads our cause (Jer. 50:34). Blessed (Praised and extolled and thanked) be the Lord God of Israel; for He hath visited and redeemed His people (Luke 1:68). It is Christ . . . who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us (Rom. 8:34).
49:1 their king ammonite god known as Malcham/Malcam, Milcom, Molech or Moloch, to whom children were sacrificed through fire; 50:5 thitherward toward it; 50:31 visit punish.
Pray for Staff: Ilene Wallace • Country: Thailand (60 million) in Southeast Asia • Major languages: Thai and English • Limited freedom of Christian ministry; Buddhism is the state religion • 92% Buddhist; 4% Muslim; 2% Chinese folk-religionist; 1% Christian • Prayer Suggestion: Remember that the Lord is always ready to help you in times of trouble (Ps. 46:1).
Memory Verse for the Week: