“O LORD, you know; remember me and visit me, and take vengeance for me on my persecutors. In your forbearance take me not away; know that for your sake I bear reproach. Your words were found, and I ate them, and your words became to me a joy and the delight of my heart, for I am called by your name, Of LORD, God of hosts. I did not sit in the company of revelers, nor did I rejoice; I sat alone, because your hand was upon me, for you had filled me with indignation. Why is my pain unceasing, my wound incurable, refusing to be healed? Will you be to me like a deceitful brook, like waters that fail? Therefore thus says the LORD: “If you return, I will restore you, and you shall stand before me. If you utter what is precious, and not what is worthless, you shall be as my mouth. They shall turn to you, but you shall not turn to them. And I will make you to this people a fortified wall of bronze; they will fight against you, but they shall not prevail over you, for I am with you to save you and deliver you, declares the LORD. I will deliver you out of the hand of the wicked, and redeem you from the grasp of the ruthless.” ~ Jeremiah 15:15-20 (English Standard Version)
Jeremiah was called to speak God’s truth to the people of Jerusalem during a revival under King Josiah. He also continued to speak from the heart of God during Jerusalem’s final fall into the hands of the Babylonians. His call was to give a clear and bold message that Jerusalem’s fall was not due to any fault on God’s part but was a result of Judah’s unfaithfulness toward God specifically by listening to false prophets (Deuteronomy 15:18-22). As a result, Jeremiah’s soul experienced conflict: will God’s people listen to God’s warnings and repent of their sin, or will they reject the message of God’s prophet and be destroyed?
Jeremiah loved his beloved Jerusalem and it’s people. He wept over them continually before a holy God! This weeping prophet was one of the God’s choicest servants.
The Word of God which was very sweet to Jeremiah was instead rejected and tasted bitter to many… yet, he was the one who was accepted by Father God. Jeremiah was commanded to abide, to be faithful, to deal boldly, to speak truthfully, and if so, the LORD promised to continue to speak through him. We who are Christ-follower’s are called to do the same!
With all the turmoil in the world today (Luke 21:10-12, Mark 13:7-9) many have sought after false gods (Zechariah 10:2) and secular philosophies (Exodus 20:1-3) that appear to usher in a directional sense of peace but in reality provide a temporal – fleeting false peace. Only as we choose to surrender and stand boldly for truth is there any reality of eternal peace that passes all understanding (Philippians 4:6-10).
The Ten Commandments (Exodus 20) were given to reveal our inadequacy to meet God’s standard for holiness, our desperate need for a Savior, therefore pointing us to Christ. We all fall short (Romans 3:23).
Christ was sent into the world not to condemn but to save us (John 3:17). God’s mercy! We can never measure up simply with our good works. Salvation is in Christ alone. Sometimes, most likely more often than not, standing for and with Christ prompts persecution and misunderstanding (2 Corinthians 12:10, Mark 13:7-9, Luke 21:10-12).
Be ever so diligent to stand firm in His truth, weep before God on their behalf. It is not you they are persecuting but the one you follow … Christ!