Bible Pathways - Aug. 19, 2009
Read Jeremiah 19
Highlights In Today's Reading:
God speaks to (1) Judah, that's you (19:3-15); (2) Zedekiah and the rebellious people, Babylon wins (21:7-10); (3) the Royal Family, do right or else (21:11—22:5); (4) the Palace, destroyed (22:6-9); (5) Jehoahaz (Shallum), you're gone (22:10-12); (6) Jehoiakim, you're dead and no one cares (22:13-23); (7) Jehoiachin (Coniah), exited, no heirs, nothing (22:24-30).
At last the opposition to Jeremiah breaks out into open persecution. It was no surprise to him since at the beginning of his ministry the Lord had said to speak judgments against them touching all their wickedness, who have forsaken Me, and have burned incense unto other gods, and worshipped the works of their own hands . . . Be not dismayed at their faces . . . they shall fight against thee; but they shall not prevail against thee (1:16-17,19).
Driven by malicious hatred, they said: Come, and let us devise devices against Jeremiah . . . let us smite him with the tongue, and let us not give heed to any of his words (18:18). With this united effort to back him, Pashur the son of Immer the priest, who was also chief governor in the House of the Lord . . . smote Jeremiah the prophet, and put him in the stocks (20:1-2).
In prison, alone, and for the moment discouraged, Jeremiah thought: I will not make mention of Him, nor speak any more in His Name. But His Word was in mine heart as a burning fire shut up in my bones . . . I could not stay (20:9). In the midst of his continuous persecution, he was never tempted to reject the Lord, to cooperate with false prophets, or to condone the evils that were so popular in his day. He was truly a man of unquestioned loyalty to the Word of God.
The Lord's servants must not be surprised by opposition, for there is a Pashur in every generation to oppose those actively speaking for God and doing His will. No matter how dark the circumstances, the believer must trust in the abiding presence of God. Furthermore, Jeremiah by no means stands alone in his hopelessness and belief that he was a failure. Remember how Elijah thought he was a failure, even after fire fell from heaven on the sacrifice he offered (I Kin. 19:4).
No one is ever a failure when he is proclaiming the Word of God, and no one who is reading and living by the Holy Word of God can be a failure, for God has said: My Word . . . shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it (Is. 55:11).
Thought for Today:
The Lord loveth judgment, and forsaketh not His saints, they are preserved forever (Ps. 37:28).
As the One who pronounces judgment upon those who refuse to obey His Word (Jer. 19:15). The Father . . . committed all judgment unto the Son (John 5:22).
19:3 his ears shall tingle = will be utterly stunned by the news; 19:9 straitness = anguish, distress; 20:3 Magor-missabib = terror on every side; 20:11 mighty terrible one = awe-inspiring one, heroic champion.
Pray for English International Shortwave Broadcasts sponsored by Iva Jo Swinsburgh • Staff: Barbara Jean Loyd • Country: Australia (19 million) an island continent between the Indian and Pacific Oceans • Major languages: English and native languages • Religious freedom • 40% Protestant; 27% Roman Catholic; 3% Orthodox; 2% Muslim • Prayer Suggestion: Delight in the Word of God; prayerfully meditate upon it for daily guidance (Ps. 1:2).
Optional Reading: 1 John 1
Memory Verse for the Week: Matthew 10:32