Category Archives: Jeremiah

Evil scares me

“you trust in your riches and say, ’Who will attack me?’” Jeremiah 49:4.

“The terror you inspire and the pride of your heart have deceived you.” Jeremiah 49:16.

“I will chase Edom from its land in an instant.” Jeremiah 49:19.

Note the sequence: I’m not afraid. I have everything under control.  I’m gone in an instant.

God is in charge whether we know it or not.

Evil exists.  Powerful evil, in fact.  North Korea has missiles that can reach us.

But if you follow the sequence you can see North Korea.  However, can you also see the United States?

We have no special immunity from disaster.

We live in a culture that trusts in counterfeit gods.  But those counterfeits are anything but secure.

We need note that Edom is removed in an INSTANT.  Their so-called defenses were useless.  Their pride in their own capabilities was similarly useless.  And they went down the drain in a hurry!

They were helpless before God.

The enemies in our midst are known to God.  No matter what evil they generate, they will not overpower the God we trust in.  We have chosen the past, present, and future Winner.

“Lord, it is easy to be overwhelmed by the forces of evil that inhabit earth.  They are everywhere and at times are in our neighborhoods.  We scare easily and when we do it reveals that our trust in not in the Almighty God but in the gods we, instead, trust to keep us out of trouble.  Forgive us for minimizing You.  In You we have the only trustworthy One.  The God for all seasons.  Keep us active in resisting the Devil.  You have promised that the Devil will flee from us is we submit ourselves to You.  I submit to You now.  Guide me, O thou great Jehovah.”

Has the evil in the world got you down?  God is in charge.  Evil flees before Him.  We win in the end!  Live confidently in Him.

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Perhaps

“Perhaps they will listen and each will turn from their evil ways.”  Jeremiah 26:3.

“Perhaps when the people of Judah hear about every disaster I plan to inflict on them, they will each turn from their wicked ways…..” Jeremiah 36:3.

Verses chosen from today’s Bible reading: Jeremiah 26,35-36, and John 20.

God is offering a way out.

These folks are being told, now it’s up to them to respond.

God is like that.  We have choices.

If I chose to continue down a wrong road, I will surely get to a wrong location.

God loves me.  He wants me to change for the better and He gives me insight into my wrong and a viable solution.

Sounds simple but how often we resist.  The folks in the Jeremiah story heard and heard and heard that captivity was in their future.  The consequence was clear unless they changed their ways.  Spoiler alert: They don’t change their ways!

Each of us has at least an inkling in almost every situation of what will happen if we do certain things: If I drink coffee at night I will have trouble trying to sleep later on.  I reap what I sow.

I must keep my connection to God tight.  I cannot let it slip or get loose.  If I mess up the connection, then I will get into assorted difficulties.  It always works that way so, why do I keep going there?  I’m a sinner and so are you.

Paul lamented similarly when he asked no one in particular, why he continued to do the things he didn’t want to do.

How will we react after waywardness.  We must recognize it, ask for forgiveness, and do better at getting things right in the future.

“I thank You for Your Word.  I thank You that You wait patiently for me to turn my life over to You.  Forgive me for getting so easily disconnected from You.  I reconnect to You now.  Take me over, I beg.”

God is waiting for us to recognize our waywardness and change our ways.

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You didn’t think I’d notice?

“’Am I only a God nearby,’ declares the Lord, ‘and not a God far away?  Who can hide in secret places so that I cannot see them?’ declares the Lord.  ‘Do not I fill heaven and earth?’ declares the Lord.” Jeremiah 23:23-24.

Verses chosen from today’s Bible reading: Jeremiah 23 & 25, and John 19.

Our view of God is often so human.  So limited.

We imagine Him as one of us but with special powers.

We think of God as the Jesus of the Bible.  But God is not the Jesus of the Bible, He is omnipresent, omnipotent, and omniscient.

Thinking you can get away from God……..forget about it!

If I know that God is always listening and watching, I am certain to behave better.  Sometimes when I am on the computer and seductive sites show up on the sidebars, the temptation at times is strong to take a quick look.  But if I instantly realize that Someone is watching, I quickly move on.

We need the awareness of His presence.

Also we need to know that God is tuned into things going on elsewhere.  People are having surgery.  People are traveling.  God is with them and we can thank Him for it.

“Lord, how blessed I am to have You close and to have You elsewhere.  We are truly under Your care.  Forgive me for trying, at times, to act as if You weren’t around.  That’s sin.  What a great God You are.”

God is always with us.  We must act accordingly.

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What does it take to get God to change His mind?

“If at any time I announce that a nation or kingdom is to be uprooted, torn down and destroyed, and that nation I warned repents of its evil, then I will relent and not inflict on it the disaster I had planned.”  Jeremiah 18:7-8.

Verses chosen from today’s Bible reading: Jeremiah 18-20, Psalm 96, and John 16.

Can the Bible be believed?  I certainly hope so!

God is telling Israel and Judah the way out of the disaster He has planned for them.

How does this fit in our lives?  We can do something about impending disasters: Repent of the evil we’re committing.

If I am living in sin, I can be fairly certain that there will be consequences.  If I repent of my sins, God can change the result those sins were leading me into.

He can turn the storms of live away from us.

If I want God’s protection, I must be right with Him.  Am I guaranteed a life of happy times?  Certainly not.  But I must not resign myself to disasters.  Instead, I must get myself clean before Him and claim this “turning around” Scripture.  In today’s verses, God was willing to change His mind about an upcoming disaster if the intended recipients of that disaster would get clean with Him.

“Lord, I must never underestimate You.  You love me so much that You provided a way for me to escape my sins’ consequences.  Help me to fully trust You with every part of my life.  I want that cleanness before You.  You amaze me, Father.”

God can change His mind if we will change our ways.

 

 

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Someone is listening

“What passes my lips is open before you.”  Jeremiah 17:16.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading: Jeremiah 16-17, Psalm 96, and John 16.

Verses like today’s show up all the time in the Bible.

And every time I read them I get a shot to my conscience.  I start to play back the day so far and cringe.

“Everything” I say is known to God!  Rest your brain on that.  We are indeed completely accountable and yet we live as if there is no third party within hearing range.

What would a conversation, in any location, sound like if I knew that Someone else was tuned to it?  That’s an easy one to answer: Different!

How often do you speak harshly about someone not in the conversation?  Unkind words cannot be part of my conversations.

How controlled by God would I have to be to speak only His Words?  A lot more than I am now, for sure.

And it is not that I don’t want to use just His Words, it’s that I am so undisciplined in my relationship to Him that His Words are not fully my words.

I also have a lousy memory of Scripture because I forget that He is in my midst always and hears it all.

“O Lord, a direct-hit Scripture for certain.  I must be tightly connected to You.  My words betray our relationship.  My words are supposed to benefit listeners not titillate or infuriate them.  I surrender to You.  Fill me with You.  May my words please You, I ask.”

Just imagine that God hears everything you say…………because He does!

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That’s my God!

“Tell them this: ‘These gods, who did not make the heavens and the earth, will perish from the earth and from under the heavens.’  But God made the earth by his power; he founded the world by his wisdom and stretched out the heavens by his understanding.  When he thunders, the waters in the heavens roar; he makes clouds rise from the ends of the earth.  He sends lightning with the rain and brings out the wind from his storehouses.”  Jeremiah 10:11-13.

Verses chosen from today’s Bible reading: Jeremiah 10-12, and John 14.

Do you want to brag about God?  Jeremiah gives us plenty of ammunition!

This is not some “other” god.  He’s the real deal.

Our earthly concept of “greatness” is so world oriented.  Someone hits a home run: “That was great!”  A home run is great?  What would such a person say about what God has done?  I would hope that the first thing they would realize is that God is the One who is great.  These other things are trivial in comparison.

But do we live out the concept of a great God?  I am quite certain we don’t.  I believe that we seldom recognize what God has done and is doing.

God is in charge of the wind?  How does that happen?  Does He have a large fan somewhere?  We miss Who He is and wallow in our own little things.  We see a rock but miss the mountain.

I need to see Him better.  I need to admire His handiwork that is already in place.  I need to notice His Doings in my daily living.  How dare I ignore Him.  His love for me is amazing.  It always has been and always will be.  How blessed I am!

“Lord, I live in the midst of Your amazing handiwork.  Forgive me for not seeing it and recognizing You for it.  How blind of me.  You are an awesome God!”

How are we missing God’s greatness?

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HBO hackers leak top executive’s emails

“The word of the Lord came to me saying, ‘Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you are a prophet to the nations.’”  Jeremiah 1:4-5.

Verses chosen from today’s Bible reading: Jeremiah 1-2, and John 10.

(My wife’s biopsy surgery yesterday morning came back clean.  Thank you for your prayers.)

Don’t let the headline make you think that you are in the wrong site!  It’s still me and I couldn’t help but connect today’s major news headline to today’s reading of the Bible.

Certainly the news from HBO is alarming.  Now folks can see what the executives wrote.  It could be embarrassing and all those other “could be’s” that an invasion of this sort could produce.

BUT God already knew what those HBO executives wrote.  He even knew that they would write it before they actually did!

You and I are no less off-limits to the eyes of God.  He knows all about us and I suspect that much of that “knowing all” does not reflect well on us.

We revel in the knowledge that HBO executives are going to be found out but there but for the grace of God go we.  We really dare not revel too much because we have our own skeletons to worry about.

There is comfort in knowing that God is with us.  There is discomfort in knowing that God knows everything about us.

How dare we think that we are worthy of His grace!  We deserve exclusion from Him forever.  YET GOD, knowing our sinfulness, found a way for us not to suffer the consequences that sinfulness deserved.  God hacked into our lives and then provided a way for us to still join Him in the after-life.

How comforting it is to know that we will be in the clear on Judgment Day because of our belief in His sin-covering death and resurrection.  Hallelujah, what a Savior!

“Lord, You are amazing and I am so limited.  I lose track so easily of Your ability to know everything about me.  I stand embarrassed before You yet You still love me.  Forgive me for my rampant sinfulness.  Wash me clean, I beg.  Reveal to me the errors of my way so that I can walk Your Way.  I love You, Lord.”

God has hacked into our lives and still loves us………….that’s what you call Good News!

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