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Bible Pathways 08/28/2003

August 28

Read Jeremiah 49 -- 50

In Today's Reading:

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

Jeremiah prophesied that the Ammonites, descendants of Lot who were historically hostile to the Israelites, would be destroyed (Jeremiah 27:3-6; also II Chronicles 20:1-3; II Kings 24:1-2). Rabbah (an Ammonite city, now known as Amman, Jordon) . . . shall be a desolate heap, and her daughters (villages) shall be burned with fire (49:2). The Lord then turned to Moab, also descendants of Lot, saying: Behold, I will bring a fear (terror) upon thee, saith the Lord GOD of hosts . . . and 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 had joined Nebuchadnezzar in plundering the city of Jerusalem. They even expanded their territory into southern Judah, inhabiting an area later called Idumea, the birthplace of Herod, the king. Because of their actions toward Israel, Edom's fate was accurately foretold by the prophet: I have made Esau bare. . . . and he is not (49:10-12).

Finally, judgment was pronounced upon Babylon, the empire that appeared to be invincible. Jeremiah said: The word that the LORD spake against Babylon . . . the land of the Chaldeans. . . . there cometh up a nation against her, which shall make her land desolate (50:1-3).

Following these prophecies of destruction, the release of Israel from captivity is foretold. We note that the Israelites will eventually demonstrate genuine repentance 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, we must keep our eyes on the coming King. There is never a valid reason to allow the pressures and problems of life to depress or frustrate us. When Satan attempts to bombard you with gloom, lift up your voice and say aloud with the psalmist King David: Because Thy lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise Thee. Thus will I bless Thee while I live: I will lift up my hands in Thy Name. My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness; and my mouth shall praise Thee with joyful lips (Psalm 63:3-5).

God is not glorified by our fears, doubts, or frustrations. Instead, in every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you (I Thessalonians 5:18).

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 maketh intercession for us (Romans 8:34).

Word Studies:

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

Prayer Needs:

BP Staff: Jim Ryan · Pray for Pastor U Htwe Minn, Myanmar translator · Country: Philippines (79 million) in Southeast Asia · Major languages: Filipino and English · Religious persecution in some areas · 64% Roman Catholic; 11% Protestant; 8% indigenous Catholic; 8% Muslim; 7% cults · Prayer Suggestion: Intercede in prayer for those in authority over you (I Timothy 2:1-2).

Optional Reading: Revelation 2

Memory Verse for the Week: Romans 8:13

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