Read Jeremiah 34 - 36
In Today's Reading:
Jeremiah's warning to Zedekiah; obedience of the Rechabites; scroll read by Jehudi and destroyed by King Jehoiakim
Four years after the Egyptians conquered Judah and appointed Jehoiakim as its king, Nebuchadnezzar defeated the Egyptians, invaded Jerusalem, and appointed Jehoiakim as his servant-king. Unlike his godly father Josiah, Jehoiakim was a ruthless ruler.
At that time, Jeremiah instructed his secretary Baruch to record the judgment of God on a roll (scroll) of a book, and write therein all the words that I have spoken to you against Israel, and against Judah, and against all the nations (Jeremiah 36:2).
Then Jeremiah commanded Baruch . . . go . . . and read . . . the words of the LORD . . . in the LORD'S House. . . . in the ears of all Judah. . . . It may be they will . . . return every one from his evil way (36:5-7). The princes (leaders) were disturbed by the prophet's words and immediately informed the king, who sent Jehudi to bring the roll (scroll) (36:21).
After Jehudi had read three or four leaves (of the scroll, Jehoiakim flew into a rage, snatched it from Jehudi, and), he cut it with the penknife, and cast it into the fire that was on the hearth, until all the roll (scroll) was consumed in the fire (36:23). But, that was all he could do. It was beyond his power to destroy the truth that the scroll contained.
In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah came Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon to Jerusalem, and besieged it. And the Lord gave Jehoiakim . . . into his hand (Daniel 1:1-2).
Like Jehoiakim, some today seal their fate by refusing to read the truth that God considers necessary to fulfill His will. History records many Bible burnings; but what is the difference between burning it and not reading it?
Without a doubt, the godly, such as Daniel and his friends, suffer because of the sins of others. But, God is able to bless the faithful as he did Daniel. Without exception: All things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).
As the One who desires liberty for those in bondage (Jeremiah 34:13-16; compare Isaiah 61:1). Jesus said: The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me . . . to preach deliverance to the captives (Luke 4:18-19; compare II Corinthians 3:17).
34:5 burnings = ceremonial incense burning; 35:19 not want = be without.
Pray for BP Staff: Gina Lesnefsky · Government Officials: Sen. Max Cleland (GA), Rep. William Coyne (PA), Rep. John Culberson (TX), Gov. Kenny Guinn (NV), Gov. Bob Holden (MO), Gov. Mike Huckabee (AR), Rep. Steve Pearce (NM) · Country: Niger (10 million) in west-central Africa · Major languages: French and Hausa · Christian evangelism is limited · 89% Muslim; 10% animist; .4% Christian
Prayer Suggestion: Remember that the Lord is faithful to keep His promises (Hebrews 10:23).
Optional Reading: II John 1
Memory Verse for the Week: Romans 6:4