Friday, November 10, 2006

Devotional Note for Jeremiah 11-20

DAILY DEVOTION
Psalm 73:28: “It is good to be near God. I have made the Sovereign Lord my refuge; I will tell of all Your deeds.”

Mark 1:35: “Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where He prayed.”

Deuteronomy 8:3, Matthew 4:4: “Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.”

Text: Jeremiah 11-20

Discovery through A.C.T.I.O.N.S. (Psalm 119:18-Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in Your Law)

Adoration-for who God is

Jeremiah chapter 11-20 are very inspiring and stimulating! These 10 chapters highlight God as a righteous and compassionate Covenant-Keeper, a just and jealous Judge who doesn’t tolerate prolonged wickedness and many backslidings, a good listener to prophet Jeremiah’s bare confessions, and a sovereign Potter to the His people.

It would be very enlightening to note the unique pattern of the message from chapter 11-17: Bad news of destruction...Bare confession of Jeremiah before God...Bad news of destruction again.

1st round (Chapter 11-13):
Covenant with God was broken by house of Israel and house of Judah because of idolatry (11:1-17)...Confession of Jeremiah (11:18-12:4)...Captivity surely comes, God would forsake His house and abandon His inheritance (12:5-13:27).

2nd round (Chapter 14-16):
Calamity (drought, famine and sword) would be poured out on people and four destroyers (sword to kill, dogs to drag, birds of the air to devour, and beasts of the earth to destroy) may come against the people of Judah (14:1-15:9)...Confession of Jeremiah (15:10-21)...Day of great disaster are coming, Jeremiah must not get married; God had withdrawn His blessing, love and pity from His people who had followed the stubbornness of their evil hearts (16:1-21).

3rd round (Chapter 17):
Cursed is Judah who trusted in man and depended on flesh, whose deceitful hearts were beyond cure; God would give all their wealth away as plunder (17:1-11)...Confession of Jeremiah (17:12-18)...Unquenchable fire would be kindled in the gates of Jerusalem if the people still did not keep Sabbath holy (17:19-27).

4th round (Chapter 18-20):
God would mar the pot (Judah) they He shaped from clay and formed it into ‘another pot’ as seemed best to Him, because of Virgin Israel had forgotten God (18:1-17)...Confession of Jeremiah (18:18-23)...God would devastate the city of Jerusalem, smash the nation, and hand all Judah over to the king of Babylon who would carry them away to Babylon, because the stiff-necked people worshipped Baal and the starry hosts, they even persecuted the true prophet Jeremiah by beating him and put him in the stocks (19:1-20:6)...Jeremiah’s confession (20:7-18)

Confession-for what I sin

15:6-7: Forgive me, O Lord, for rejecting You, keep on backsliding, and not changing my ways.

Thanksgiving-for what God does

15:19-21: If I repent, God will restore me that I may serve Him. God will make me a wall to His people, God will be with me to rescue and to save me, to redeem me from the grasp of the cruel.

Inspiring verse(s)-for what help it gives

17:7: Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in Him.

Obedience-for what it teaches or orders

18:1-10: I must let God shapes me as seem best to Him, even allow God to mar me and form me into ‘another’ pot.

Now-action-for what I must do

I must imitate Jeremiah to lay bare the struggles of my inmost being before God, pray to God, seek His forgiveness and listen to His response.

Supplication-for strength and wisdom to do

15:15: “You understand O Lord; remember me and care for me…You are long-suffering…When Your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear Your name, O Lord God Almighty. I never sat in the company of the revelers, never made merry with them.”

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