Week 44 Day 4
Wednesday (Jeremiah 41 – 46)
Jeremiah also reported on similar events as in Kings and Chronicles …
Just as Jeremiah had warned, the failure of the king to surrender to the Babylonians resulted in terrible consequences; not only was Jerusalem destroyed and the people taken away to Babylon “There at Riblah the king of Babylon had Zedekiah’s sons put to death while Zedekiah was forced to watch. The king of Babylon also had all the nobles of Judah put to death. Then he had Zedekiah’s eyes put out and had him bound in chains to be led off to Babylon.”
Jeremiah was protected by the orders of the Babylonian king and allowed to remain among the people. Ebed-Melech the Ethiopian was also protected for acting from faith in rescuing Jeremiah.
Gedaliah was appointed by the Babylonians to oversee the remnant people and a community rose at Mizpah. Some soldiers who had been hiding, as well as civilians who also managed to hide from the Babylonian army, joined them. “Thus they harvested a large amount of wine and dates and figs.”
Ishmael (son of Nethaniah) and his small army murdered Gedaliah and many others and then took the rest of the people captive – marching them away to the Ammonites. Johanan (son of Kareah) and his small army heard what had happened and rescued the people, but Ishmael escaped with a few men to the Ammonites.
Johanan wanted to go to Egypt but feared the Babylonians would catch them so they asked Jeremiah to consult God. He prophesied that they should stay and not flee to Egypt but arrogant members of leadership called him a liar and insisted that they flee to Egypt, despite the warning from the Lord that they would be worse off there.
Jeremiah was taken with the people to Egypt and there prophesied doom for Egypt, and the rebels from Judah, at the hands of the Babylonians – who would destroy Egypt.
Baruch, Jeremiah’s scribe, was having a pity-party for himself and the Lord said to him “I am about to tear down what I have built and to uproot what I have planted. I will do this throughout the whole earth. Are you looking for great things for yourself? Do not look for such things. For I, the Lord, affirm that I am about to bring disaster on all humanity. But I will allow you to escape with your life wherever you go.”
Isn’t it amazing that the Lord caused the king of Babylon to preserve Jeremiah and the Ethiopian in the midst of the battle and the deportations?
Dear Lord, The persistent arrogance and rebellion of the people angered You, yet You retained a remnant so that You could keep Your covenant with Abraham, Issac, and Jacob. May I rest in the certainty that Your every sovereign promise will always be kept. Please reveal to me any place where I am, like Baruch, too obsessed with my own stuff to notice what You are doing all around me. Amen. dmc2016