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 prophesied that the Ammonites, descendants of Lot who were historically hostile to the Israelites, would be destroyed (Jer. 27:3-6; also II Chr. 20:1-3; II Kin. 24:1-2). Rabbah of the Ammonites (now known as Amman, Jordan) . . . shall be a desolate heap, and her daughters (villages) shall be burned with fire (Jer. 49:2). The Lord then turned to Moab, saying: Behold, I will bring a fear (terror) upon thee, saith the Lord God of hosts .. . . and ye shall be driven out (49:5).
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 had, for self-serving advantages, joined with Nebuchadnezzar in plundering Jerusalem. They even expanded their territory by occupying part of southern Judah, inhabiting an area later called Idumea, the birthplace of Herod, the king. Because of their antagonistic actions toward Israel, Edom's fate was foretold by the prophet: I have made Esau bare. . . . and he is not (49:10-12).
Judgment was then pronounced against Babylon . . . the land of the Chaldeans. . . . there cometh up a nation against her, which shall make her land desolate (50:1-3).
Not only was the release of Israel from captivity foretold but that the Israelites would eventually repent and accept their Messiah Jesus in a perpetual Covenant that shall not be forgotten (50:4-5).
We can expect the forces of evil to discourage us in an effort to destroy our faith in God. However, God is not glorified if we give way to our fears, doubts, or frustrations. We must keep our eyes on the promises of God that have never failed. Consequently, there is never a valid reason to allow the pressures and problems of life to depress or frustrate us. In fact, despondency is a sin. Count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations (various trials); Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. . . . Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love Him (James 1:2-4,12).
Thought for Today:
Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need (Heb. 4:16).
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 Country: Zaire, Democratic Republic of the Congo (63 million) in south-central Africa • Major languages: French and Lingala • Limited religious freedom • 42% Roman Catholic; 28% Protestant; 12% magical practices, ancestor worship, and witchcraft; 1% Muslim • Prayer Suggestion: Thank the Lord for hearing your prayers (Ps. 28:6-7).
Optional Reading: Revelation 2
Memory Verse for the Week: 2 Corinthians 4:18