The Gospel Story : The Prophets – Jeremiah

The book of Jeremiah shows us the letters the prophet wrote to Jerusalem, reminding them that, amidst their suffering, God is still with them. Jerusalem was suffering due to their rebelliousness toward God. When sin brings negative consequences into our lives, we must turn to God instead of becoming bitter.

Now these are the words of the letter that Jeremiah the prophet sent from Jerusalem to the rest of the elders in exile and to the priests, the prophets, and all the people whom Nebuchadnezzar had carried away captive from Jerusalem to Babylon. 2 This was after King Jeconiah [also called Coniah and Jehoiachin] and the queen mother, the eunuchs, the princes of Judah and Jerusalem, the craftsmen and the smiths had departed from Jerusalem. 3 [The letter was sent] by the hand of Elasah son of Shaphan and Gemariah son of Hilkiah, whom Zedekiah king of Judah sent to Babylon to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon. It said: 4 Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, to all the captives whom I have caused to be carried into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon: 5 Build yourselves houses and dwell in them; plant gardens and eat the fruit of them. 6 Take wives and have sons and daughters; take wives for your sons and give your daughters in marriage, that they may bear sons and daughters; multiply there, and do not be diminished. 7 And seek (inquire for, require, and request) the peace and welfare of the city to which I have caused you to be carried away captive; and pray to the Lord for it, for in the welfare of [the city in which you live] you will have welfare.

Jeremiah 29:1-7 AMPC

No matter what season we are in, we are called to seek the peace and comfort of those around us. We are called to be impactful in every season. Our circumstances should not define us; we are still called to impact those around us. Instead of being bitter, we must be impactful.

For thus says the Lord, When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will visit you and keep My good promise to you, causing you to return to this place.

Jeremiah 29:10 AMPC

God’s promises never change. The same promise to Abraham remains unaltered. The people may change, but God does not. The Lord told them it would not be a quick season, but there would be an end. Sometimes our seasons are not quick, but they will end. To every season, there is an appointed end. Revelation is not about what needs to end, but what we need to learn. That’s why some seasons take longer than others.

For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.

Jeremiah 29:11 NKJV

God is saying to these rebellious people that He knows the plans He has for them. God thinks about us; He doesn’t just have thoughts towards us, He thinks about us. His thoughts are good, for a future and hope, regardless of what we do. But remember, all things are permissible, but not all things are beneficial.

Psalm 40:5 echoes this sentiment: ‘Many, O Lord my God, are Your wonderful works which You have done; and Your thoughts toward us cannot be recounted to You in order; if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered.’

God not only thinks of His people, but His thoughts are toward them. God has a future and a hope for His people, even when we suffer and hurt under deserved discipline or judgment. It is the devil’s deception to rob people of our sense of God’s future and hope for us. If the enemy can get us to not believe what God thinks about us, then we will start believing what we think about ourselves.

12 Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. 13 And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. 14 I will be found by you, says the Lord, and I will bring you back from your captivity; I will gather you from all the nations and from all the places where I have driven you, says the Lord, and I will bring you to the place from which I cause you to be carried away captive.

Jeremiah 29:12-14 NKJV

Keep in mind here that Jerusalem is still in captivity, but they still must seek Him and God promises that they will find Him, we will find Him when we seek Him. God also promises that He will bring us to the place He has called us. God does not hide Himself from His people when we seek Him.

God remains faithful to His promise even when we are faithless. 2 Timothy 2:13 reminds us that ‘if we are faithless, He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself.’ Our response to this should be a life surrender.

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