Jeremiah 29:24-32 – Causing Drama

Read Jeremiah 29:24-32

cinema clapboard

In our last reading, Jeremiah had sent God’s message to the captives in Babylon to beware of false prophets. Apparently, Jeremiah’s message ruffled some feathers with rival prophets. It would appear Shemaiah is instigating the drama in this reading to take down Jeremiah and get him out of the way.

We know from being on this side of history that Jeremiah was a true prophet speaking the word of God. Others calling themselves prophets in that day were not. God’s doom for them has already been set. Did Shemaiah think he would fool the priest, Zephaniah with these words? “So why have you done nothing to stop Jeremiah from Anathoth, who pretends to be a prophet among you?”

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Jeremiah 27:1-22 – A Heavy Yoke

Read Jeremiah 27:1-22

old fashioned wooden yoke

Why do you think God had Jeremiah put on a heavy yoke before he sent these messages out? Again, it was a teachable moment for Jeremiah. God used a real-world example to help Jeremiah understand the weight of the people’s rebellion. The yoke served as a sign to the ambassadors (v.3), King Zedekiah (v.12), the priests and the people (v.16). The message was to submit to the yoke of Babylon.

A yoke in the literal sense is an apparatus that is put on working animals attaching them to a plow or cart to be pulled. The Bible uses the reference of a “yoke” as a metaphor for bondage or servitude. In this case, the heavy yoke was likely to signify the oppression of Babylonian captivity about to become reality. That was certainly going to be something uncomfortable to bear.

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Jeremiah 14:11-18 – Beware of False Prophets

Read Jeremiah 14:11-18

wolf in sheep clothing

People being led astray has been happening for centuries. What’s frightening is when, like in our reading today, the prophets claim to be sharing a message from God. Clearly, these prophets were lying and totally deceived if they believed what was coming out of their mouths. That was certainly not the message God wanted the people to hear!

The Bible warns us to expect false prophets. In Ezekiel 13, there are false prophets saying whatever they please. Just like in our reading today, these false prophets would face the punishment promised by God for their folly.

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