Day 178 – Thru the Bible
Today we continue in Jeremiah.
Jeremiah 37 – Jeremiah continues to be persecuted for speaking God’s words of judgment. The disobedient of the world lose patience with the constant reminders of the coming judgment. As it was then, so it is now. Proclaiming the kingdom of God means speaking judgment for the unrepentant as well as salvation for those who repent and believe. Praying “Your kingdom come” (Matthew 6:10) has serious implications for judgment as well as for joyful hope. The message of the kingdom will inevitably invite rejection and, often, outright persecution of the messengers.
Jesus said, “In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33, see also John 15:18–25; 17:14; Romans 8:18; Philippians 1:29; 1 Peter 2:21; 4:12–19; Revelation 1:9). Jeremiah was beaten, and we today will face hazardous hostility from unbelievers, whether physical or verbal or in some other way. But we can take heart in the astonishing fact that Jesus Himself was beaten with the ultimate beating that we deserved, absorbing God’s righteous wrath. The result is that any pain unbelievers inflict on us can only work out for our glory. It is pruning (John 15:2), not punishing (John 15:6).
How do you stand firm in your love for Jesus?
Jeremiah 38 – King Zedekiah swore not to put Jeremiah to death or deliver him over into the hand of the men seeking his life. This is the very language that would be used to describe the handing over of Jesus to the men who would seek His life. Jeremiah was spared; Jesus was not. The same loving Lord ruled over both Jeremiah’s life and the life of His own Son (Matthew 11:27). Jeremiah was delivered in this instance, and will be restored perfectly to God in the new earth, because Jesus was not delivered, but was “delivered up for our trespasses” (Romans 4:25).
How does Jesus sacrifice lead you to worship Him?
Jeremiah 39 – After Jeremiah suffers further imprisonment and again warns Zedekiah (38:14–28), the inevitable happens and Jerusalem falls to the Babylonian invaders. The word of the Lord can be ridiculed and repudiated only for as long as the Lord permits. Then comes the judgment. All the temporal judgments of the Bible foreshadow the final judgment that will take place at the end of time before the judgment seat of Jesus (2 Corinthians 5:10). For “it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment” (Hebrews 9:27).
Amid the chaos and devastation, Jeremiah’s life is spared. He is given a message of deliverance for the Ethiopian who had secured his release from the pit (38:7–13). God’s word to the Gentile Ebed-melech is, “I will deliver you on that day . . . because you have put your trust in Me, declares the Lord.”
This saving trust is the same as putting one’s hope in Jesus, God’s provision for our deliverance (Ephesians 1:12–13). Jeremiah’s word of salvation to a Gentile echoes the program of world evangelization originally promised to Abraham and fulfilled in Christian mission (Genesis 17:5; Acts 1:8). God’s mercy washes into the life of anyone who will bank on Jesus for forgiveness and joy.
How do you share the love of God in your every day life?
What other thoughts or questions does today’s reading bring up?
Some of these notes are from the ESV Gospel Transformation Bible study notes. We highly recommend this study Bible.
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