Focal Passage: Jeremiah 36:19-31
The nation repeatedly rejected Jeremiah’s messages for 23 years. God commanded Jeremiah to write down his messages in order that God’s instruction would be preserved and accurate.
What does the text say? Jeremiah 36:19-31 recounts a significant event during the reign of King Jehoiakim. In obedience to God’s command, Jeremiah dictates the Lord’s message onto a scroll. The scroll is read aloud in the temple, stirring concern among the people. Word reaches the royal court, and the king’s officials summon Baruch, Jeremiah’s scribe, to read the scroll before them.
After hearing several portions, the officials fearfully report the scroll’s contents to King Jehoiakim, who orders the scroll to be brought to him.
As each section is read, the king cuts it with a knife and burns it in the fire. Unperturbed, Jeremiah and Baruch rewrite the scroll, including even more prophecies of God’s judgment against Judah and its king.
What does the text mean? This passage emphasizes the unwavering commitment of Jeremiah and Baruch to faithfully deliver God’s message despite facing opposition and the threat of persecution.
Jeremiah’s message proclaimed divine judgment upon Judah for their sins and rebellion against God. King Jehoiakim’s actions symbolize the nation’s rejection of God’s Word and refusal to repent.
In this passage, we see God’s sovereignty displayed through the preservation of His Word. Despite attempts to destroy the scroll, God ensures the message is rewritten, emphasizing the unchangeable nature of His divine plans. It serves as a reminder that human attempts to suppress God’s Word are futile, and His truth endures forever.
How does the text apply? From this passage, we learn valuable lessons applicable to our lives as believers today. We are reminded of the importance of upholding God’s Word, despite the opposition we may face. Like Jeremiah and Baruch, we should boldly share God’s message of love, grace and judgment with a world in need of salvation.
The example of King Jehoiakim teaches us the danger of rejecting God’s Word and hardening our hearts to His warnings. As believers, we must heed God’s Word and continually examine our lives, repenting of any sins that hinder our relationship with Him.
The theologian Jonathan Edwards once said, “Lord, stamp eternity on my eyeballs.” Edwards recognized the transient nature of this world and urged believers to focus on eternal matters.
In the context of Jeremiah 36:19-31, Edwards would likely emphasize the unshakable truth of God’s Word and its eternal significance. He would encourage us to remain steadfast in proclaiming God’s truth and to trust in His sovereign purposes, knowing that His Word accomplishes what He desires (Isaiah 55:11).
Conclusion. In conclusion, Jeremiah’s unwavering faith in delivering God’s message and King Jehoiakim’s refusal to heed God’s Word offer contrasting lessons. As Christ’s disciples, we must uphold and share God’s unchanging truth with courage and humility.
May we remain steadfast in our commitment to God’s Word, trusting in His sovereignty and striving to live in obedience to His will. Let us remember the words of Jonathan Edwards, seeking to fix our gaze on eternity as we faithfully follow our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. B&R