Saturday, May 9, 2015

Jeremiah-The People's Choice

By Mary Vee
Jeremiah 43

From Jeremiah's Journal

Photo Courtesy- On the way to Egypt
My name is Jeremiah. I am a prophet, a person sent from God to give messages to the Israelites who still live in Jerusalem.

The evil Ishmael had take us as prisoners and we were marching toward Egypt. Johanan and his army heard what had happened and rushed to save us. Once Ishmael left, the people requested I ask God what He wanted them to do.

God told me to tell the people they needed to go back to Judah. And although they would be under the power of Babylon there, He would keep them safe.

Johanan, the man who saved us, was willing to do whatever the people wanted. The men discussed my words among themselves. I could hear their thoughts about going to Egypt. They wouldn't have to be under the rule of Nebuchadnezzar. They could have their own gardens and live in peace.

The problem was, God said they should stay in Judah and take care of the land until the other prisoners returned from Babylon in seventy years.

Several men shouted at me. "You are lying! The Lord our God has not sent you to say we must not go to Egypt and settle there. Baruch, your scribe is causing you to say these things against us. You both want us to serve the Babylonians."

Photo Courtesy

When will they ever learn? These Jews have a chance to live in their own homes. They can farm all the land and reap the crops. They had everything they needed and more. I don't understand why they would choose Egypt over their homeland.

But they did.

Johanan and his officials did what the people asked. He led us to Egypt. We enter the country in disobedience to the Lord and went as far as Tahpanhes

The men and women made homes in Tahpanhes. They didn't care at all that they were not obeying God.

One day, God gave me another message for the people. "While the people are watching you, take some large stones and bury them in clay in the brick pavement at the 
Photo Courtesy
entrance to Pharaoh's palace in Tahpanhes. Say to the Jews, "The Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says 'I will send for Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon to come and attack. He will set his royal canopy over these stones. He will attack Egypt. He will set fire to the Egyptian temples. He will come and destroy the land then leave without having any injuries.

"As for the Jews living in Tahpanhes, who have left Jerusalem without anyone to take care of the city and are busy offering sacrifices to the Egyptian gods, you will be punished and Judah will be destroyed. You have chosen to not listen to my warnings. Now the punishment will come. The men and women from Judah who went to live in Egypt will not escape or survive to return to the land of Judah. Only a few fugitives will escape to return to Jerusalem and care for the land."

My heart broke. It broke not so much because of the punishment, but because the people still did not care. No one said they were sorry.

Come back to see what happened next.

1.  Where did the people ask Johanan to take them?
2.  Did this please God? Why?
3.  Where was Jeremiah?
4.  What did the people do in the new place?
5.  What new message did God tell Jeremiah to give the people?

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