Observations from today’s readings and today’s S-WOD, Sunday, 18 October 20:
Jeremiah 32:2, 8 – At that time the army of the king of Babylon was besieging Jerusalem, and Jeremiah the prophet was shut up in the court of the guard that was in the palace of the king of Judah…. Then Hanamel my cousin came to me in the court of the guard, in accordance with the word of the Lord, and said to me, ‘Buy my field that is at Anathoth in the land of Benjamin, for the right of possession and redemption is yours; buy it for yourself.’ Then I knew that this was the word of the Lord….
Today, Jeremiah provides a great example of faith. Jeremiah is in prison while the city is about to be captured by Nebuchadnezzar, and then Jeremiah’s cousin comes and asks Jeremiah to buy his field. It took a lot of nerve for Jeremiah’s cousin to ask Jeremiah to buy a field that was about to be captured, but it took far more faith for Jeremiah to buy the field. How shocked Hanamel must have been when Jeremiah bought the field though he was in captivity within a city under siege! What Jeremiah was displaying was complete trust, faith, and hope in God. God spoke, and Jeremiah obeyed, though he didn’t understand what God was doing.
Jeremiah 32:24, 25 — Behold, the siege mounds have come up to the city to take it, and because of sword and famine and pestilence the city is given into the hands of the Chaldeans who are fighting against it. What you spoke has come to pass, and behold, you see it. Yet you, O Lord God, have said to me, ‘Buy the field for money and get witnesses—though the city is given into the hands of the Chaldeans.’
God’s clear instruction to Jeremiah defied all human reasoning and understanding. Jeremiah obeyed before he understood and then prayed for understanding. When we don’t know what God would have us do in a particular situation, we must study God’s word and pray before we act. However, when God’s word is clear, delay is only disobedience. Faith obeys first and asks question later. Too often people ask a lot of questions first to put off or avoid obedience. When we delay in fear or doubt, we only create space to justify disobedience in our own minds. Remember Satan in the Garden – “Did God actually say?” (Genesis 3:1) “So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.” (James 4:17)
Jeremiah 32:27 — “Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. Is anything too hard for me?”
Jeremiah did not hesitate to tell the king that he would soon lose his throne and become a prisoner of war; nor did Jeremiah hesitate to buy his cousin’s field, even though he knew the Chaldeans would besiege the land. Jeremiah did not hesitate because he believed His God was truly God, Almighty and Sovereign. Jeremiah’s instant and willing obedience was the natural product of faith. “And without faith it is impossible to please Him.” (Hebrews 11:6) Do you have the faith to please God as Jeremiah did? Likely God wont direct you today to such extreme actions as He did Jeremiah, but through His word, he will command you to love your enemies, to forgive unconditionally, to give abundantly, to do good and to share the Gospel with others. Are you ‘all in’ for the Lord?
“Cross” Fit S-WOD (Spiritual Workout of the Day) – 18 October 20: Don’t hesitate to obey what you know God has told you to do. Delay no longer. Trust God with the outcomes. “Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. Is anything too hard for me?” (Jeremiah 32:27)