from Lynda Lindsey
When you finish reading this scroll, tie a stone to it and throw it into the Euphrates. Then say, ‘So will Babylon sink to rise no more because of the disaster I (God) will bring upon her. And her people will fall.’ Jeremiah 51:63
Come out of her, my people! Run for your lives! Run from the fierce anger of the Lord. Do not lose heart or be afraid when rumors are heard in the land … Jeremiah 51:45-46(a)
“In those days, at that time,” declares the Lord, “the people of Israel and the people of Judah together will go in tears to seek the Lord their God. They will ask the way to Zion and turn their faces toward it. They will come and bind themselves to the Lord in an everlasting covenant that will not be forgotten.” Jeremiah 50:4-5
God cannot be mocked; He always carries out His purposes. The Babylonians, victorious over Jerusalem and the southern kingdom, eventually brought downfall upon themselves. Discontent to be used as God’s instrument of discipline, they pridefully and arrogantly set themselves up in active opposition to the Lord. As if they were the Lord’s equal, instead of the Lord’s agent, they destroyed, desecrated, and defiled God’s Temple. Mad with power, the Babylonians thought they were invincible. God, promising defeat to Babylon, made good His word; they sank like a stone. To usurp God’s role invites disaster. There is only One God. He reigns Supreme.
No matter how fast the enemy binds us, our Redeemer is strong; the Lord Almighty will vigorously defend our cause. He forgives, restores, and returns us from sin and bondage into relationship. When God forgives, no matter how hard anyone searches, there is no record of guilt! Just as God did not forget or forsake Israel and Judah, He will not forget or forsake us. Once vindicated by God’s gracious mercy, we are acquitted, cleared, absolved. God remembers our sins no more, He puts our sins as far away as the east is from the west. Restoration with God results in peace; we are secure and at rest.
God compared His exiled people to lost sheep whose shepherds had led them astray. They roamed, wandering and lost, so far from home they forgot how to return, easy prey for enemies. God promised that a remnant of His people would be saved, that together Israel and Judah would tearfully seek the Lord God, ask for directions back home, turn their faces toward Zion, and bind themselves to the Lord in an everlasting covenant. Exiled? Lost? Wandering? Don’t remember the way home? Come out of Babylon. Run from sin. Call on the Lord. Tearfully seek His face. Don’t lose heart or be afraid; His arms are open wide!