God’s direction or just his blessing?
Jeremiah 43: Liar! Our God never sent you with this message.
It starts when Johanan and others come to Jeremiah asking him to pray as they decide on their course of action. It won’t be long before the king of Babylon hears of the murder of the governor he appointed over their territory and they want to get out of town before he comes to finish the destruction that was started when Jerusalem fell. They promise that they’ll do whatever God says. Jeremiah agrees to go to the Lord for a plan of action but the instructions he receives from the Lord surprises everyone, maybe even the prophet, himself. God says stay put and he’ll take care of them. That doesn’t sit well with any of the leaders. You see, they don’t really want God’s direction. Instead, they want God’s blessing on what they’ve already decided to do. When Jeremiah returns with a word from God that contradicts their plans they immediately declare Jeremiah to be a liar who has an agenda of his own. In spite of dire warnings from him they load everyone up and head for Egypt…and for more destruction. I’m glad I never make the mistake Johanan and the others did and ignore the “asking for directions” part and leap directly to the “Lord, bless what I’m about to do” part. Well, at least I know how it’s supposed to work. Maybe one of the reasons I end up in “Egypt” so often is that I spent all my prayer time explaining to the Lord why he ought to bless my predetermined course of action instead of asking him what it is, exactly, he wants me to do in the first place.
Take Away: Do we really want the Lord’s directions or just his rubber stamp on what we what to do?
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