Jeremiah 19:7-9 Voice “I will spoil the plans of Judah and Jerusalem to defend this city against Babylon. I will cause their people to be killed by enemies in battle and by those who hunt them down to take their lives. No one will bury them; I will feed their dead bodies to the birds of the air and the wild beasts of the land.
8 I will destroy this city, making their homeland a wasteland, a place of scorn. Those who pass by and see this desolation will shake their heads in horror.
9 As the enemy lays siege to the city and closes in around them, food will run out and those inside the city walls will become desperate. Then they will turn on each other, eating one another and even their own children to stay alive.”
15 “This is what the Eternal, Commander of heavenly armies and God of Israel, has to say: “Watch as I bring every disaster I have promised onto Jerusalem and all the towns and villages of Judah, because they are a stiff-necked, stubborn people who refuse to listen to what I say.”
Disaster and a person’s world falling apart is a by-product of being a stiff-necked stubborn person. The “every disaster” God is speaking about is from Deuteronomy chapter 28.
Babylon represents Satan, who will come to steal, kill, and destroy, and in verse 7, God will allow the plans of His people to be overturned and taken by Babylon. What is the context of the book of Jeremiah? God’s people have turned against HIM, deluded, thinking they can save themselves, refusing to submit to God through the authority and word of Jeremiah. They rather believe in the false voices that everything will be alright when circumstances show they are drowning and everything is falling apart.
Even when the enemy was sieging the city and food was running out, they stubbornly refused to admit they were wrong. It’s like saying, even though they kept getting poor and money was dwindling (food running out), they were about to lose their house or place of dwelling, and their cars about to be repossessed or breaking down, they continue to be stiffed necked, stubborn, and refusing to admit they are in the wrong repenting. In Jeremiah’s time, people thought they could outlast God and go the distance because they believed in their lies even though reality showed they were in the wrong. Today is no different. People can live in their cars, and still, that is not the bottom to them. Why would it be? In Jeremiah’s time, when they were starving, they ate their own children, even that was not bottom. Being homeless and living in a car is still considered luxury.
Many are called, but few are chosen. Only a few will actually be chosen out of many from their obedience. And just because you are in this church does not mean you are fully chosen as some are on the sidelines watching. God will continue shaking the tree to see what colors come from you. The Rock will either be a stumbling block for those who do not want to submit and surrender, or it will be Salvation to those who will humble themselves.
This is only the beginning of a process a long journey. And God has a high expectation from us, and no one in this church, whether you stay or leave, can break or make this ministry. So please do not think so highly of yourselves, thinking without you, we wouldn’t have gotten this far or that we would not have gone far without you. Read your own circumstances and discern how stiffed-necked you may be. If you stay offended, you will be shaken out. If you allow God to refine you continuously even as it hurts, you will be able to feast with HIM at His Table. This is the price you are fighting for to be seated at His Table. Or else fight for the scraps which will be on the floor below the table.
Pastor Steve Kim