Bible Reading in 2018: Reading the Major Prophets, God’s Good Word in Bad Times
Jeremiah 21, July 19, Thursday
This chapter occurred after the first invasion of Nebuchadnezzar in which the king and skilled workmen had been taken captive and Zedekiah had been installed on the throne. Now Zedekiah had rebelled and the Babylonian army had returned.
Note that Jeremiah is viewed in a new light. He had prophesied the first Babylonian invasion and it had occurred. Apparently, he was now viewed as truly speaking for God.
Zedekiah sent a two-man delegation to Jeremiah with the appeal to inquire of the Lord for the nation, v. 1-2. Their language may indicate that they wanted a miracle like that done in Isaiah’s day at Samaria, Is 36. Note that no evidence of repentance of the king and the nation is given. They apparently just wanted a miracle to get them out of the present trouble.
Jeremiah’s message, v. 3-7, is that God would not relent of the destruction of pestilence, sword, and famine that had been prophesied earlier, Jer. 15:2-3.
In v. 8-10, the Lord offers them a choice: surrender and live or continue to rebel and die as the city is overcome and burned.
In v. 11-14, the Lord again calls on the king to execute justice or suffer God’s wrath. God would use fire to punish their wickedness, something they deserved, v. 14.
Message of the chapter: An appeal to God without repentance did not work. A fiery destruction from the Babylonians would come.
Application: Today we must repent of our sins and obey God before we can expect forgiveness.
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