TOPIC: A City Of Paradoxes (DCLM Daily Manna 12 March 2021)
TEXT: Jeremiah 22:1-12 (KJV)
1 Thus saith the LORD; Go down to the house of the king of Judah, and speak there this word,
2 And say, Hear the word of the LORD, O king of Judah, that sittest upon the throne of David, thou, and thy servants, and thy people that enter in by these gates:
3 Thus saith the LORD; Execute ye judgment and righteousness, and deliver the spoiled out of the hand of the oppressor: and do no wrong, do no violence to the stranger, the fatherless, nor the widow, neither shed innocent blood in this place.
4 For if ye do this thing indeed, then shall there enter in by the gates of this house kings sitting upon the throne of David, riding in chariots and on horses, he, and his servants, and his people.
5 But if ye will not hear these words, I swear by myself, saith the LORD, that this house shall become a desolation.
6 For thus saith the LORD unto the king’s house of Judah; Thou art Gilead unto me, and the head of Lebanon: yet surely I will make thee a wilderness, and cities which are not inhabited.
7 And I will prepare destroyers against thee, every one with his weapons: and they shall cut down thy choice cedars, and cast them into the fire.
8 And many nations shall pass by this city, and they shall say every man to his neighbour, Wherefore hath the LORD done thus unto this great city?
9 Then they shall answer, Because they have forsaken the covenant of the LORD their God, and worshipped other gods, and served them.
10 Weep ye not for the dead, neither bemoan him: but weep sore for him that goeth away: for he shall return no more, nor see his native country.
11 For thus saith the LORD touching Shallum the son of Josiah king of Judah, which reigned instead of Josiah his father, which went forth out of this place; He shall not return thither any more:
12 But he shall die in the place whither they have led him captive, and shall see this land no more.
KEY VERSE: “And many nations shall pass by this city, and they shall say every man to his neighbour, Wherefore hath the LORD done thus unto this great city?” (Jeremiah 22:8).
The fame of the city was to attract foreigners from far and near. The laws of God were to be the rule ensuring justice and equity. But what happened? Great paradoxes. A city established to be great but was small. It was created to be populous but alas, it was uninhabited. It was to be the centre of commerce and economic wealth but it was characterised by joblessness and hunger. Rather than being secure and safe, killings and bloodshed filled the land. Instead of obedience and the knowledge of God in the hearts of the rulers and the people, ignorance, disobedience and ungodliness prevailed. Cheating, oppression and nepotism pervaded the land. This was a city, which should be the centre of innovation and attraction, but it was deserted and loathed by visitors and onlookers.
Our text depicts the story of a city forsaken by God because the rulers had refused to follow the Lord and to do the right thing by helping the poor and the vulnerable. God gave clear and explicit commandments to the kings, but one after the other, they rejected Him and His word. So they got a harvest of judgments and punishments.
God hates disobedience and rebellion among His people. Whenever we ignore His commandments, we lose His fellowship and favour. Where we have been destined to enjoy a great and glorious life, there will be frustrations and failures. Where we should have made progress, we experience retrogression. Instead of peace and prosperity, we witness confusion and lack.
The pathway to a life of continuous favour, abundance and happiness is constant obedience to God and His word. When we commit ourselves to living in obedience to His word, we are guaranteed His unstoppable favour, blessing and prosperity.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY:
“Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people”.
THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR:
DCLM Daily Manna was written by Pastor William Folorunso Kumuyi; is the founder and General Superintendent of the Deeper Life Bible Church situated at KM 42 on the busy Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Nigeria.