Monday, January 28, 2013
And when Jeremiah had finished speaking all that the LORD had commanded him to speak to all the people, then the priests and the prophets and all the people laid hold of him, saying, "You shall die!"
Rejection is never really the response any servant of The Lord looks for when giving God's Word to people. But it was what came again to Jeremiah here at the halfway point of the book. And this is worse than the first round of persecution he suffered at the hands of the leaders. This time the entire nation from leaders, to prophets, to common people wanted him dead.
This is no idle threat. The text goes on to tell the stories of two recent prophets killed for prophesying the fall of Jerusalem. The people want Jeremiah to join this club of martyred prophets. And they want it immediately. This is a serious threat and shows just how far the nation had come in rejecting God. No true message from God would be welcomed by them with repentance.
But God was not finished with His prophet. The circumstances worked where a leader protected Jeremiah. No harm came to him despite the serious threats (Jeremiah 26:24). The chapter ends with Jeremiah kept safe by the sovereign hand of God in one sympathetic man. The Lord will honor His Word and protect His servants while His Word goes forth. And even when a messenger dies, in God's wisdom, the message goes on and cannot be silenced.