August 28

Read Jeremiah 49 -- 50

In Today's Reading:

Prophecies against Ammon, Edom, Damascus, Kedar, Hazor, Elam, and Babylon foretold; redemption of Israel promised.

Verses for Today:

The days come . . . that I will cause an alarm of war . . . in Rabbah (the capital) of the Ammonites; and it shall be a desolate heap. . . . Concerning Damascus. . . . All the men of war shall be cut off. . . . And I will kindle a fire in the wall of Damascus, and it shall consume the palaces of Ben-hadad (title of kings of Syria). . . .The Lord spake against Babylon. . . . Declare ye among the nations . . . Babylon is taken, Bel (its patron god) is confounded (put to shame) . . . For out of the north there cometh up a nation (Media) against her, which shall make her land desolate (49:2,23-27; 50:1-3).

Jeremiah prophesied that the Ammonites, descendants of Lot who were historically hostile to the people of God, would be destroyed (2 Chronicles 20:1-3; 2 Kings 24:1-2; Jeremiah 27:3). The Lord then turned His condemnation south of Ammon to Moab, also descendants of Lot, saying: Ye shall be driven out (49:5).

Next, our attention is turned to Edom, a nation that descended from Jacob's twin brother Esau. Edom had always been a jealous enemy of Jacob's descendants and rejoiced when Nebuchadnezzar destroyed Jerusalem (Psalms 137:7). Edom had joined Nebuchadnezzar in plundering the city of Jerusalem and even expanded their territory into southern Judah, forming the land of Idumea. Because of this, Edom's destruction was accurately foretold by the prophet: I have made Esau bare. . . . [his offspring will be destroyed] . . . he [will be no more]. . . . he . . . shall [not] go unpunished (Jeremiah 49:10-12).

After this, the judgment of God was pronounced upon Damascus, the capital city of Syria, along with Hamath and Arpad, which were smaller kingdoms controlled by Damascus. All were enemies of Judah. Jeremiah foretold judgment against Kedar, Hazor, and Elam, which the king of Babylon shall smite. . . . Hazor shall be . . . a desolation for ever. . . . I will. . . . scatter them (Elam) (49:28-39). Finally, judgment was pronounced upon Babylon, the empire that appeared to be invincible.

Despite man's attempt to rebuild, more than 2500 years later the ruins of Babylon remain uninhabited as a witness to the accuracy of Scripture. Almost as much space in the Bible is given to the judgment upon Babylon as to all the other nations combined.

Following the prophecy of the destruction of Babylon and the release of Israel from captivity, we see that Israel will eventually experience genuine repentance and accept their Messiah Jesus. In those days, and in that time, saith the Lord, the children of Israel shall come, they and the children of Judah together, going and weeping: they shall go, and seek the Lord their God. . . . saying, Come, and let us join ourselves to the Lord in a perpetual Covenant that shall not be forgotten (Jeremiah 50:4-5).

Christ Revealed:

As the Redeemer Who pleads our cause (Jeremiah 50:34). Blessed (praised and extolled and thanked) be the Lord God of Israel; for He has visited and redeemed His people (Luke 1:68). It is Christ . . . Who is even at the right hand of God, Who also makes intercession for us (Romans 8:34).

Word Studies:

49:1 their king known as Malcam, Molech, or Moloch, Ammonite god to whom children were sacrificed through fire; 49:2 daughters = villages; 50:5 thitherward = toward; 50:31 visit = punish; 50:36 shall dote = will become fools.

Prayer Needs:

Pray for your Church · Country: South Korea (47 million) in northeastern Asia · Major languages: Korean and English · Religious freedom · 33% Buddhist; 24% Protestant; 22% Confucianism and other eastern religions; 4% Roman Catholic · Prayer Suggestion: Put on God's whole armor so that you may be able to successfully stand up against Satan's evil attacks (Ephesians 6:11).

Optional Reading: Revelation 2

Memory Verse for the Week: Romans 8:13