Saturday, October 27, 2018

Jeremiah 37

Today's reading in our daily plan is Jeremiah 37. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)
  • King Zedekiah was the last king of Judah and ruled for 11 years (from 597 to 586 B.C.). Jeremiah prophesied to the king that the Egyptian army, who had agreed to fight with Israel against the Babylonians, was going to return to Egypt and then the Babylonians would return and destroy Jerusalem (see verses 7-8).
  • As Jeremiah was leaving the city, he was arrested for suspicion of defecting to the Babylonians. Although Jeremiah denied it, he was beaten and imprisoned in the house of Jonathan the secretary.
  • King Zedekiah secretly called for Jeremiah to ask for more messages from God. Jeremiah again told him that he would be defeated by Babylon. Then Jeremiah pointed out that he was the only prophet telling the truth and should not be in prison as he had done nothing against the king or the people. King Zedekiah listened and commanded that Jeremiah not return to Jonathan’s house but would instead be held in the courtyard in the palace and would be given a loaf of fresh bread daily until all the bread in the city was gone.
SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)
  • King Zedekiah and his officials did not want to listen to Jeremiah’s words of defeat, they only wanted his blessings. God is not pleased with those who come to him seeking only what they can get rather than seeking to have a relationship with him.
  • Jeremiah is an example of living in relationship with God. God never promised Jeremiah a peaceful and easy life for following God, but God never deserted Jeremiah and in this passage he gave Jeremiah favor in the eyes of the king.
NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)
  • Do you find yourself only talking to God when you are seeking answers to questions? Or perhaps it’s only when things aren’t going well. Maybe you seek God when your relationship is rocky, when your job is stressful, when money is tight. Maybe you only talk to God when you want things to change. God wants you to talk to him during times like this and he also wants you to talk to him when things are good, or mediocre, or neutral. Today, talk to God and share with him your frustrations but also share with him your happiness. Think of one positive thing in your life today (maybe something as insignificant as seeing a cute puppy or hearing a child laughing) and thank God for that as well.