Archive for October 9th, 2017

Jeremiah is regarded as a spiritual giant in the Old Testament by many scholars, and one of the reasons for this is that he never flinched from his responsibility. We have seen in chapter 26:11 that he was tried for heresy. The people stood up for him – it was the false prophets who spoke against him, yet he was faithful to God’s word.

At the beginning of this chapter, Jeremiah had a yoke on his neck, and a false prophet, Hananiah, was speaking, saying that Israel would be free in two years and would return home. In v.5, Jeremiah spoke sarcastically, pretending to agree with Hananiah, and then in v.8, he said that only when a thing that had been prophesied comes to pass, would a prophet be recognised as a true prophet of God.

But Hananiah did not listen. He broke the yoke off from Jeremiah’s neck saying that Israel will be free from their yoke as Jeremiah was free from his. Sometime later, God sent Jeremiah with a message to Hananiah saying, “You have broken the yoke bars of wood but you have made bars of iron instead, and you have made the people of Israel trust in a lie, and for that you will die this year.” Hananiah died two months later.

Faithfulness to God is important. In Revelation 2:10, Jesus says to the Church in Smyrna, who were suffering all kinds of persecutions, “I know your affliction and distress and pressing trouble and your poverty – but you are rich! And how you are abused and reviled and slandered by those who say they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan. Fear nothing that you are about to suffer. The devil is indeed about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested and approved and critically appraised, and for ten days you will have affliction. Be loyally faithful unto death (even if you must die for it) and I will give you the crown of life.” (Amplified Version)

We do not (in the U.K.) live in the days of the early Church when such terrible things happened to Christians, but equally, we do not live in a society that allows us to be as free in our faith as we could be. We will suffer at some time for loving the Lord Jesus. Let us take Jeremiah as an example and not flinch from our responsibility of sharing the gospel with those Jesus calls us to. Let us be faithful unto death.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Prayer: Lord help me to be faithful to You today in everything.

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