12/4: Even in Fear and Danger

Jeremiah 11:18-23

Reflection:
In Jeremiah 7:1-11 (Tue), Jeremiah said the people of Judah oppress foreigners, orphans, and widows, shed innocent blood and worship other gods, steal, murder, commit adultery and giving false witness, follow other gods. Basically they disregard the commandments from God yet they think they are safe as long as they hide in the temple of God.

In Jeremiah 11:18-23 (Wed), we see a conversation between God and Jeremiah. God revealed to Jeremiah that his own people (the Anathoth) are trying to kill him. That unless he stops prophesying against them, they will kill him. Jeremiah then prayed to God. He said God judges righteously and test the heart and mind, and asks God to have vengeance upon them for wanting to kill him. God then responds to Jeremiah saying that He will punish them and bring them to justice, but in His timing.

Here we see a lot of similarities between Jeremiah and Jesus.
1) The Lord showed them the plot of the people who wanted to kill them.
2) Both prophesized the truth and what God wanted them to say but people did not want to listen to the truth and confront their sin and pride and thus wanted to put them to death
3) Both Jeremiah and Jesus were threatened by their own people

And some differences we see between Jeremiah and Jesus
1) Jeremiah prayed for justice but Jesus prayed that the cup be taken away. Here we see the difference between law and grace. Jeremiah prayed that the offenders be punished for what they have done and they received their punishment. Yet Jesus prayed that “Father forgive them for they do not know what they do.” Where sin abound, grace abounded even more. Jesus brought in grace. And grace was what we needed. Let us learn from Jesus and pray for more grace in our lives.
2) Jeremiah’s enemies ended in death but Jesus’ enemies ended up in ???

Application:
The reason why I used to be discouraged to share God’s word because I feel that I’m not good enough. Like who am I to share God’s word. Am I qualified to share? What if my behaviour or my actions do not reflect God? Then how? I began to realize that I need to accept who I am today. With all my imperfections and flaws and struggles. And I’m a work in progress. God is still in the process of sanctifying me. I realize that if all my energy is on changing my behaviour, it either produces a temporary change, or I will revert back to my old self when nobody’s looking. Only when my energy is pursuing a deep relationship with God, my attitudes, my motivation and then it will change my action. It is from the inside out and not the outside in. When I change from inside out, my focus will be on what God wants me to change, and I’ll learn to listen to him. That doesn’t mean I don’t listen to anybody, but when people tell me I need to change in one area, I will humbly accept it and go to God and ask Him to help me, but I do have many areas in my life I need to change, so I need to do it in His time. God’s not rushing me to change, but He wants me to have a relationship with Him so that He can change me. With this perspective, I am better able to tell others about Jesus, how He accepts me for who I am yet wants me to change so that I can live the abundant life He has for me.

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