Explore God's Word Daily

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With a foe like that...

Time has passed--and now destruction is looming outside the city walls. A desperate King Zedekiah sends a delegation to Jeremiah to see if the LORD will help.

A shot in the dark

Read Jeremiah 21 v 1-10

King Zedekiah was not a righteous man (2 Kings 24 v 18-19). But here, as the king of Babylon besieges the city, he reaches out to the LORD for help.

  • - Who is in this delegation (v 1)? Why does this not bode well (20 v 1-2)?
  • - Given what you know about the book of Jeremiah so far, would you expect that God would turn back the Babylonian invaders because Zedekiah has asked? Why/why not?
  • - How does God answer him (v 4-7)? What options do the people of Jerusalem have (v 8-9)?

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TIME OUT

Read Deuteronomy 3 v 22.

The LORD is making a promise to Israel as they prepare to capture the land of Canaan (part of which would become Judah).

  • - What was the promise tht the LORD made? Why would that have been important to Israel as a small nation?
  • - Now compare that promoise to the LORD's response in Jeremiah 21 v 5. What is the significance of what He says there?

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Why has He done such a thing?

Read 22 v 8-9

The LORD offers Jeremiah a script for responding to those who want to understand Jerusalem's destruction.

  • - What specific reasons did He give?

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TIME OUT

Read Leviticus 26 v 3-8, 14-19.

  • - What's the promise and the warning?
  • - How do the events of Jeremiah 21 mirror the punishments God warns about here in Leviticus?
  • - How does that help us make sense of what God says in Jeremiah 22 v 9?

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Judah was guilty of breaking God’s law, though they refused to accept it; they deserved the punishment of God, though they were unwilling to confront that. We too are law-breakers and deserve God’s wrath (Romans 3 v 9-18, 23). But Jesus obeyed God’s law perfectly for us. And when we become followers of Christ, God gives us Jesus’ righteousness as a gift. We are counted as law-keepers in God’s sight.

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APPLY

  • - How does this enable you to go to God for forgiveness when you sin?
  • - How does the love God has shown you in the life and death of His Son motivate you to obey Him?

 

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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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