Taking the “rest of the story” by faith
Jeremiah 39: I’ll most certainly save you.
The hero who rescued Jeremiah from the muddy prison is Ebed-melek. Now, as Jerusalem totters on the brink of destruction Jeremiah seeks him out. The Lord has a message specifically for this hero, and it’s a good one. The Lord has taken note of this good man’s courage and faithfulness. Things are going to get really bad very soon but Ebed-melek is going to be spared because God’s going to see to it. In a sense, we see here God’s message to all those who are faithful to him. There’s no promise for any of us of an easy life in which bad things never come, but there is the promise of God’s watch care over us. It must have been, at the same time, welcome and unbelievable news for Ebed-melek. Of course, he’s happy to hear such a message from Jeremiah, God’s prophet. At the same time, he, and all Jerusalem, is very aware of the mighty army that’s poised on their doorstep. The reality of it all nearly overwhelms the message of assurance from Jeremiah. It’s the same for you and me. The hard facts of pain and disappointment and disaster can nearly obliterate the promise of God’s presence. Still, none of that negates it. Interestingly, the writer of the sacred text doesn’t follow up on the story. Jeremiah promises Ebed-melek that God will save him and that’s it. Maybe there’s a lesson for us in what isn’t included here. We’re to read this promise and conclude that, even though we don’t know the details, God keeps his word. In the same way, I, right in the middle of life without any specific knowledge of what’s coming, must conclude that God will “most certainly save” me too.
Take Away: Even we don’t know how he’s going to do it we can rest assured that the Lord will, indeed, keep his promises.
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