Jeremiah – Faithful Servant
I just finished the book of Jeremiah, and was struck by all this prophet had to go through. He prophesied before, during, and after the fall of Jerusalem. One of the things that strikes me about Jeremiah is his faithfulness to proclaim God’s Word, no matter what happens to him. He goes from well liked in the royal court of Judah early in his ministry (Josiah honors him, although he doesn’t listen to him at one point, which costs Josiah his life) to someone who is hated by the king. The King Zedekiah does not like Jeremiah at all.
Jeremiah is greatly persecuted for his constant prophetic word that God is going to judge his people. The king throws him in prison, and at one point, throws him into a dry well. His book is obtained by the king, and burned, forcing Jeremiah to write it again. Throughout all of this, he continues in faithfulness to God. Then comes the point where God visits judgement on his people. At this point, Jeremiah is freed by the Babylonians, who allow him to go where he pleases. This seems like a nice retirement for Jeremiah, right?
Well, it may have been for a while . . . but then the governor is assassinated, and the inhabitants of Judah panic. They want to go to Egypt, and when Jeremiah prophesies against it, suggesting that they should trust God to keep them safe, they accuse Jeremiah of treachery, and not only don’t listen to him, but take him with them. Even this does not stop Jeremiah from being faithful to God.
The book of Lamentations is thought to be written by Jeremiah, and here we get a glimpse into Jeremiah that we don’t see elsewhere. He is very sorrowful that Judah has abandoned God, and is saddened by God’s judgement. At times, he seems to accuse God of doing wrong, but he always comes back to praising God as loving. This was a man of faith that I can only hope to emulate in my own life.