Saturday, 4 April 2020 Jeremiah 20:1-13
But the LORD stands beside me like a great warrior. Before him my persecutors will stumble. They cannot defeat me. They will fail and be thoroughly humiliated. Their dishonor will never be forgotten. [Jeremiah 20:11]
Jeremiah was appointed by God to prophesy to His own people in a very troublesome time in the history of Judah. His ministry was one of the toughest among the Prophets of the Old Testament. He saw by his own eyes what he had prophesied and lamented at the destruction that had happened to his people. On the other hand, when he was calling people to repentance and to get right with God they persecuted him. In today's reading, one such occasion is described in detail; also his own complaint to God regarding the persecution he was facing (Jer 20:7-10).
God's servants are always called to follow the path of their Master- Jesus Christ. He came to serve, irrespective of the repulsive treatment from the people who were served by Him. We live in a world which has rejected and gone astray from the true God. People want to be their own god. They want their desires to be fulfilled and when we talk the true word of God, they will persecute the servants of God. So persecution is a sure outcome in these last days. As Apostle Paul records in 2 Timothy 3:1-4 “… that in the last days there will be very difficult times. For people will love only themselves and their money. ….. They will consider nothing sacred….. … puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God.” So as we are in these end times, we can expect the same type of persecution as in the days of Jeremiah. Jesus has foretold this in His Sermon on the Mount of Olive. Luke 21:12 “… there will be a time of great persecution. You will be dragged into synagogues and prisons, and you will stand trial before kings and governors because you are my followers.” So we need to be prepared to face this as servants of the most High God. Like our Master, they will mistreat us and challenge us to the brim and even we need to lay down our lives for the sake of our brethren. That is the ultimate display of our love for them.1 John 3:16 We know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us. So we also ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters.
Also, we see how the Word of God and the Love of God acts in a person. Read for yourselves the following verses: Jer. 20:9: But if I say I’ll never mention the LORD or speak in his name, his word burns in my heart like a fire. It’s like a fire in my bones! I am worn out trying to hold it in! I can’t do it!
Here we see that Jeremiah the Prophet wants to shut his mouth and keep quiet but the Word of the Lord and the Love of God for His people compels him from inside, until he opens his mouth to speak the truth. In the same way the end time servants of God will be compelled by God's abundant love to cry out to this world about the imminent danger of eternal punishment and how to escape that before the door is closed. This cry of truth will be heard from every true servant of God who are led by the Spirit of God, who is full of love. Let’s be prepared.
Prayer: Dear Lord, I will follow you; wherever you want me to go. Please fill me with your love that cast away all fear. In Jesus name. Amen.