King Zedekiah sent an official to Jeremiah. The king was well aware of the specific threat against Judah. His only hope was that the Lord would do a wonderful deed as He had done in the days of Hezekiah when Isaiah announced a merciful delay in God’s judgment.
The oracle that he received was nothing like what he wanted. The Lord said that the weapons of Judah would be turned back against them. God would “strike down the inhabitants” of Jerusalem. He would “give Zedekiah king of Judah into the hand” of the king of Babylon.
The time had come for Judah to face the sanction of the Sinai Covenant. Anyone who resisted the Lord’s discipline could expect to die by the sword, by famine, or by pestilence.
The chapter closes with a statement regarding the house of David, now represented by Zedekiah. The Lord was against the king. The pride of the one who presumptuously declared that no one would be able to take Jerusalem would not in any way please Almighty God. The evil deeds of both the king and the people testified against them. The destruction of Jerusalem would be like a fire that devoured everything for miles around.
When the sun turns to darkness and the moon to blood on that great day of judgment, there will be no remaining opportunity for anyone to send a messenger to inquire of the Lord as to whether there might be a way of delaying divine justice for another generation. Today is the day to respond to the Lord with true faith and complete surrender.
For many centuries, believers throughout the world have placed their only hope in Jesus Christ. They have heard the word of God and have put their trust in the Lord who lived and died for us. There is no benefit that comes from delay, or from efforts at alignment with God on some future occasion. Now is the day of salvation.
Prayer from A Book of Prayers
O Lord of Hosts, what shall we do when Your enemies persecute and kill the righteous? Many think of themselves as vastly superior to the humble. Yet who will heal them of the pride that destroys their lives? Pity us. Spare us. Have compassion upon us. We will follow Your Son throughout our days among the city of men unto everlasting life. We will execute justice and mercy for the weak, as much as it is in our power to do what is good. Look beyond our sin, and gaze at the perfect righteousness of Your holy Son, Jesus, for He has destroyed death for us on the cross, and won eternal life for all who call upon His Name.