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Grateful For God’s Mercy???    A Word from THE WORD!!! #79

Jeremiah is one of my favorite Old Testament prophets, and while his message is severe, often harsh, and ‘in-your-face’, it was the calling that God placed on his heart and life, and we must never shrink from the call of God on our lives–even when it may mean that we spend some time in the mud.

Thou therefore

gird up thy loins,

and arise,

and speak unto them

all that I command thee:

be not dismayed

at their faces,

lest I confound thee

before them.

18 For, behold,

I have made thee this day

a defenced city,

and an iron pillar,

and brasen walls

against the whole land,

against the kings of Judah,

against the princes thereof,

against the priests thereof,

and against the people of the land.

19 And they shall fight against thee;

but they shall not prevail against thee;

for I am with thee,

saith the LORD,

to deliver thee.  Jeremiah 1:17-19

Jeremiah was called to a difficult task, and he is often called the weeping prophet, for his message was a call to repent and not well-received, but he preached on because of God’s call, and his love for his people, Israel; even when he felt like quitting, he made it clear that God was his focus, his source, and his call!

Then I said,

I will not make mention of him,

nor speak any more in his name.

But his word was in mine heart

as a burning fire

shut up in my bones,

and I was weary with forbearing,

and I could not stay.”  Jeremiah 20:9

Understand that “not stay” doesn’t mean he quit, but that he couldn’t stop (stay meaning stop or stand still)!  God’s message was in his heart and soul, no matter the cost–and for Jeremiah it was often a high price.  Yet, his message is one that we need to heed today. And in the beginning of his call, God made it clear what the problem was in what I believe to be a most concise and precise statement in chapter 2.

For my people

have committed two evils;

they have forsaken me

the fountain of living waters,

and hewed them out cisterns,

broken cisterns,

that can hold no water.” Jeremiah 2:13

And while this message fits our present condition in this United States of America (and most of the rest of the world–yet our heritage calls us to a higher standard!) of doing it our way, God is still calling people to repent, both the saved and the lost, and while it is a hard message to hear it is one that if ignored will produce a grievous result–much of which we are seeing today.  What are you drinking out of?  The fountain of living waters or a broken cistern?

Through some forty years of preaching, Jeremiah finally saw the fall of his precious Jerusalem, and his people taken into Babylonian captivity, because they wouldn’t heed God’s call to repent; yet he still proclaimed a message in his grief and sorrow. So, I want us to consider an additional message today–a message that I praise God for!  May we take an honest look at our lives, our homes, our standards, our vocabulary, because we do have a God-given influence on those following in our steps.  May we praise God for HIS mercy and follow in HIS steps for those behind us!

And I said,

My strength and my hope is perished

from the LORD:

19 Remembering

mine affliction

and my misery,

the wormwood

and the gall.

20 My soul hath them still in remembrance,

and is humbled in me.

21 This I recall to my mind,

therefore have I hope.

22 It is of the LORD’S mercies

that we are not consumed,

because his compassions fail not.

23 They are new every morning:

great is thy faithfulness.

24 The LORD is my portion, saith my soul;

therefore will I hope in him.

25 The LORD is good unto them

that wait for him,

to the soul

that seeketh him.

26 It is good that a man should

both hope

and quietly wait

for the salvation

of the LORD.”  Lamentations 3:18-26

I leave us with the call of the Psalmist:

Search me, O God,

and know my heart:

try me,

and know my thoughts:

24 And see if there be any wicked way

in me,

and lead me

in the way everlasting.”  Psalm 139:23-24

 Amen and Amen!!!