每日诗歌: 這一生最美的祝福 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2VDhujHrIbQ)
Jeremiah 40 [Read]
Jeremiah 41 [Read]
Jeremiah 42 [Read]
Hebrews 2 [Read]
Jerusalem finally fell in the hands of the Babylonians, and almost all were taken exile to Babylon along with their possessions (Jer 39:9). Today’s reading recorded things happened afterwards among those left behind. A few warning lessons I observed.
First, the irony in how the Babylonians treated Jeremiah is unmistakable. The prophet of God was captured by his own people, imprisoned in the courtyard of the guard (37:21), thrown into a cistern that was filled with mud (38:6), and threatened to be killed repeatedly by the leaders of Judah. It is all because he refused to say things that were pleasing to their ears and insisted on preaching the message from the LORD. Whereas the invaders actually released him from prison, gave him provisions and present and let him go wherever he wanted (40:5). Such irony should cut to our heart when I think of the similarity in how we sometimes behave towards our fellow Christians.
Second, the new governor Gedalilah may be overly submissive to the Babylonians, but Ishmael and his followers, probably acted out of self-righteousness, killed his own kin in an excessively cruel manner (41:1-7). The zeal of men, although may look godly on the outside, often can cause tragedy among God’s people. The delicate balance between being righteous and being gracious is indeed a life-long lesson for any Christians who genuinely want to pursue godliness in their daily life.
Finally, the hypocrisy of Johanan and his companies is unbearable to read. They started with “your God” in talking with Jeremiah (42:2), then they quickly switched to “our God” (42:6) upon the cue of the prophet (42:4). They seemed to be genuine in asking for God’s guidance, but their mind had already made up in running to Egypt (42:20-21). They were looking for confirmation instead of information, and they readily rejected the prophecy when it was different from what they expected (43:1-7). Such behavior bears remarkable resemblance with what we sometimes do to our Lord. When afflictions come or when we have to make difficult decisions, our mind often has already made up based on advice from others. We come to God looking for confirmation. When we receive something that is different, we often ignore it. This makes the warning by the author of Hebrews ever so real (Heb 2:1-4). May the Lord have mercy on us and help us pursue him with a genuine heart.
Keep on reading.