Thursday, May 22, 2014

Jeremiah 52

Day 52: Jeremiah 52:1-34

            As we wrap up Jeremiah we see a recap of the very things that God told Jeremiah to speak regarding the fall of Jerusalem due to disobedience. Everything that Jeremiah said would happen took place because he was speaking the word of God. One of the notes in the life application study bible discussed success and how a lot of people would have looked at Jeremiah as being unsuccessful from looking at his life just from a natural stance. He had been put in prison, the people disliked him because he challenged their rebellion against God, and pretty much no one listened to him. In spite of all of this he accomplished the task that God had for him. It’s important to be careful how we measure success especially when we’re doing so by the world’s standard. Throughout these chapters we have seen the growth of Jeremiah as he accepted the calling that God put on his life at a young age, to his moments of being upset or afraid. Most importantly we saw him be obedient and speak the word of God boldly. We also were able to see God fulfill the very things that He spoke to Jeremiah the whole way through. God showed Himself to be faithful to Jeremiah and every word that He told Him to speak cane true. This was not just regarding Judah but also the word that He would protect Jeremiah even when people would come against Him. I pray that these last 52 days have encouraged you to not only trust God with the calling He has placed on your life but also to obey Him fully.  

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Jeremiah 51

Day 51: Jeremiah 51: 1-64

Just as Babylon killed the people of Israel and others throughout the world, so must her people be killed (Jeremiah 51:49, NLT).

Who can understand the mind of God? That’s what I began to think as the prophecy of destruction unfolds for Babylon. On one hand God sent the Babylonians to destroy Jerusalem for its disobedience yet now He’s punishing them. We may not always understand what God is doing but we can rest assured that He is well aware of the plan from beginning to end. Something else that stood out regarding Babylon is that there is nowhere stated that they will be restored as Israel had been promised in previous chapters. If we’ve learned nothing else throughout reading Jeremiah we’ve most certainly learned that God will take care of those that belong to Him. God keeps taking me back to Jeremiah 29:11 because the plans that He has for us are always to work out for our good. Sometimes He has to allow bad things to happen so that we return to Him so receive all that He has for us which is the good. Oftentimes we don’t understand why God allows bad things to happen and then we get upset because He doesn’t punish the “bad people” as quickly as we would like or in the way that we would like. What a lot of people fail to realize is that vengeance is the Lord’s and that those who disobey Him will be judged in due time. Furthermore, we’re also reminded that He can use anyone that He wants to. God sent the Babylonians to destroy the town as a means of wiping out the sin and although the Babylonians weren’t perfect people by any means or even believers, God still used them for a purpose. We may not understand the direction that God takes or why He takes it, but what we do know is that in all that He does there is a purpose and we don’t have to have the answers we just need to trust Him.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Jeremiah 49-50

Day 50: Jeremiah 49-50

        God is giving messages to different cities about the destruction that was going to take place. It made me think of in revelation where the churches are addressed and God commends them on what they've done well but He also addresses the faults that He found with them. In contrast, in Jeremiah there aren't any praises off what they've done well. God rebukes them for worshipping false idols, disobedience, pride, and other faults. He plainly lays out the path of destruction that is to come due to these faults. But even as He addresses these things He still goes back to His chosen people, the Israelites. As I got to chapter 50 verse 20 it really made think about how deep the love of God runs. He says, "in those days, at that time, declares The Lord, search will be made for Israel's guilt, but there will be none, and off the sins of Judah, but none will be found, for I will forgive the remnant I spare." God is still showing that He's fighting for His people. Even in spite of all their mess and wrong, God has still made a plan of restoration for them. It puts Jeremiah 29:11 into context of a big picture through a love story of redemption for Gods people. This is a sweet reminder that God is fighting on your behalf and if you just surrender to Him, He will take care of you and receive you back. 

Monday, May 19, 2014

Jeremiah 47-48

Day 49: Jeremiah 47-48

                In these two chapters and the chapters to come we see the prophecy of the destruction to come on the Philistines and the Moabites. It is important for people to really understand that unrepented sin will not go unpunished and that the wrath of God is real. The Lord reveals to Jeremiah all that is going to take place and what is leading up to the fall of Jerusalem; it’s all a result of disobedience. People don’t realize that the bible is the blueprint for how to please God. There are a number of examples provided of how to live for God as well as what He doesn’t like in the best way to put it. The bigger picture however is that He also provides the end result of people being obedient and disobedient. It’s easy to look at the bible, especially in the Old Testament, and want to write it off as ancient history that is no longer applicable to today’s time. If people paid closer attention they would see that the saying “history repeats itself” is very accurate. Wars are still taking place and people continue to worship false idols but it is seen as not a big deal because it is deemed acceptable and not problematic in today’s time. Just because times change that does not mean God’s word becomes null and void. What people must understand is that God does not have to tolerate sin or disobedience. Even if everyone in the world is rebelling, He does not have to sit back and accept it. On the contrary, people must understand that the wrath of God is real and even if everyone else is falling away from Him, each of us will have to stand before Him and give an account for why we didn’t follow Him if we chose not to.