Explore God's Word Daily

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Persecuted for preaching

Does following God mean that your life will be fun and trouble-free? Not if Jeremiah's life is any indication!

Prophet in the stocks

Read Jeremiah 20 v 1-6

  • - How does Pashhur's job make his treatment of God's prophet even more inexcusable?

Never mind whether or not Jeremiah was speaking the truth—Pashhur thought it was a crime just to suggest that bad things would happen to the city! But Jeremiah would be proved correct.

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APPLY

  • - How would your friends respond if you told them about the Bible's message, that God will punish them for their sins?
  • - What makes something true: what God says about it, or how we feel about it? When do you find it easy to forget this?

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Dark night of the soul

Read verses 7-18

In these verses we see Jeremiah's prayers and cries to the Lord.

  • - Does anything he says surprise you? What?
  • - What kinds of mistreatment was Jeremiah experiencing at the hands of his countrymen?
  • - Why doesn't he just stop preaching and prophesying (v 9-12)?
  • - Does God take away the cause of Jeremiah's suffering? What does God do for him?

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TIME OUT

  • - What do you think of Jeremiah's complaints to God? Is he justified?
  • - Jeremiah is clearly feeling terrible. What does he teach followers of God to hang on to when they are depressed (v 11-13)?

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PRAY

Pray for any Christians you know who are suffering with depression (perhaps yourself). Ask God to help them remember the truths of v 11-13 as they battle with teh feelings of v 14-18.

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The darkest day

Jeremiah was persecuted by a powerful priest, taken into custody and publicly mocked, abandoned by friends and left feeling abandoned by God. In those ways, his sufferings point us towards the way the Lord Jesus suffered for us.

Read Hebrews 2 v 17-18

  • - How do the life adn experiences of Jesus encourage us to go to Him for help when we're struggling with depression or sadness?
  • - If you are in a dark place, it does not mean you are not a Christian, or that God doesn't love you. If you haven't done so already, speak to a trusted Christian friend or pastor, so that they can pray for and help you.

We're speeding up in Jeremiah now, and won't cover every verse. If you have time, use the verses in brackets to read the whole book.

 

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This devotional is taken from Explore—a daily Bible-reading devotional from The Good Book Company which enables you to engage with Scripture and which will encourage, equip and inspire you to live for Christ. Explore features contributions from pastors such as Dr Timothy Keller, Mike McKinley and Tim Chester.

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About Explore God's Word Daily

Explore God's Word Daily helps you open up the Bible to be refreshed and encouraged in your walk with God. "Explore" is the daily Bible-reading devotional from The Good Book Company (www.thegoodbook.com). Contributors include: Dr Timothy Keller, Senior Pastor at Redeemer Presbyterian Church, New York; Mike McKinley, Senior pastor of Guilford Baptist Church; Tim Chester, author and pastor of Crowded House, Sheffield, UK; Mark Meynell, Senior Associate Minister at All Soul’s Langham Place, London, UK. Editors: Tim Thornborough and Carl Laferton.

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