September 17

Jeremiah 11:18-20

“It was the Lord who made it known to me, and I knew; then you showed me their evil deeds.” vs. 18

Jeremiah lived in turbulent times. The Jerusalem of his day was beset by powerful enemies on every side. Factions within the city fought for influence and position. Jeremiah had been called as a prophet to speak a word from the Lord in those difficult circumstances…but no one seemed to listen to him. But even worse, he had discovered that there were some in the city who wanted him dead. He had been so naive…he couldn’t believe that his own people would betray him. When he found out he offered deep and profound laments to the Lord. He even asked that his enemies be struck down…he wanted retribution. It is a surprise when we discover that people we have trusted are not acting in our best interest…that instead of doing good they are involved in evil schemes. But it happens! Sometimes it seems as though there is a cascade of ugliness in our society. Accusations are made and lies proliferate. We wonder if there’s anyone capable of telling the truth. When we discover who our enemies are there’s a natural desire to get even…we may even ask God to punish them. Jesus shows us a better way. He says that we should pray for those who do evil against us and that there will be blessings if we remain committed to goodness. It’s not easy…but the Jesus way never is!

Thought for the Day: How do I react to betrayal?

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