Jeremiah 16:1-18:23; Jeremiah 35:1-19
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There are a lot of great verses in Jeremiah's readings today! Jeremiah 17:5 stands out: "Cursed are those who put their trust in mere humans and turn their hearts away from the Lord." I think oftentimes we put more trust in others than the Lord - our spouses, our pastors, our friends, our family, and even ourselves. The risk here is that people are human and are not perfect. They will eventually disappoint at some point. God is the only perfect option to place our ultimate trust in. I do think we can still "trust" others to a degree - marriage of course being a prime example of this trust in another human. But, marriage will really only ultimately work if God is the "third cord" in the marriage (see Ecclesiastes 4:12). Overall, this verse wisely cautions that our highest level of trust should be reserved for God! Who will not fail us. Ever. Who do you trust these days the most? Do you trust God above anything or anyone else? Do you trust God more than you trust yourself?
Jeremiah 17:7-8 has some great imagery! ""But blessed are those who trust in the Lord and have made the Lord their hope and confidence. They are like trees planted along a riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water. Such trees are not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought. Their leaves stay green, and they go right on producing delicious fruit." These verses remind me a lot of Psalm 1, verses 1 through 3. Is God your hope and confidence? If so, do you feel like a tree planted along a riverbank with roots that reach deep into the water? How deep are your roots in God's living water these days?
Jeremiah 17:19-27 are some powerful verses on the Sabbath! I talk a lot with my friends about taking Sabbaths. I am really bad at it... and I know I need it. And I know my friends need it too. I'll have to remember verse 27 next time I'm having the Sabbath discussions with my friends... :) "`But if you do not listen to me and refuse to keep the Sabbath holy, and if on the Sabbath day you bring loads of merchandise through the gates of Jerusalem just as on other days, then I will set fire to these gates. The fire will spread to the palaces, and no one will be able to put out the roaring flames.'" How are you doing on taking a Sabbath each week? What would your response be to a modern day Jeremiah standing at the gate and telling you to keep one day a week as a holy day unto the Lord?
I like this verse in Jeremiah 18:15 - "They have stumbled off the ancient highways of good, and they walk the muddy paths of sin." I like that metaphor - the ancient highways of good. These sound nice! You want to be on these. And not veering off into the muddy paths of sin...
Jeremiah chapter 35 today is a fantastic example of obedience from the Recabites! Interestingly, the Recabites are being obedient to a human's word... This stands in stark contrast to the Israelites disobedience to God's Word... Do we do this sometimes in our lives? Obey human words and disobey God's Word?
Worship Video: Today's readings remind me of Casting Crowns song "If We are the Body." Here's a live version of this powerful song:
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