11 October 2011

"Neither he [King Zedekiah] nor his servants nor the people of the land listened to the words of the Lord that he spoke through the propher Jeremiah." (v. 2)


Jeremiah and his secretary Baruch had sent the king a stark warning about the likelihood of catastrophic invasion, but the king did not want to hear such a message and he destroyed the scroll on which the warning was written. By the time Baruch and Jeremiah had rewritten the scroll (and strengthened its message), Jehoiakim was no longer king. The Babylonians had taken over and set up Jehoiakim's uncle Zedekiah as a puppet king. It was to him that the rewritten scroll was finally delivered. But Zedekiah and his court paid no attention, even though the shadow of Babylon loomed large over them. Jeremiah's predictions were coming very close indeed, but still they chose to ignore what God was telling them.

Throughout this story we have examples of human obstinacy and pride resisting the wisdom of God. First Jehoiakim closes his ears to God's message, then Zedekiah, despite the clear evidence from current events. Delusion and confusion seem to determine the course of events in Judah.

To Ponder

It is very easy to find 'reasons' for not listening to God. What are yours?

As circumstances change are we to expect that our response to God will change also? Or should we expect that Thursday's response will always be the same as Monday's? How do we keep a firm footing as things change?

Bible notes author: The Revd Dr John Ogden

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