Today’s Scripture Reading: Jeremiah 42:1-44:30; Ezekiel 33:21-33
Do you ever ask someone for advice knowing that you aren’t going to take it?
Maybe you ask 5 or 6 people and take the advice that got the most votes.
Maybe you do what Azariah son of Hoshaiah and Johanan son of Kareah and all the other proud men did… you refuse the advice because it wasn’t what you wanted to do in the first place. They wanted God to approve their plans and when He didn’t they decided to go their own way.
Then all the guerrilla leaders, including Johanan son of Kareah and Jezaniah son of Hoshaiah, and all the people, from the least to the greatest, approached Jeremiah the prophet. They said, “Please pray to the Lord your God for us. As you can see, we are only a tiny remnant compared to what we were before. Pray that the Lord your God will show us what to do and where to go.” –Jeremiah 42:1-3
Jeremiah prayed and ten days later the Lord answered:
‘Stay here in this land. If you do, I will build you up and not tear you down; I will plant you and not uproot you. For I am sorry about all the punishment I have had to bring upon you. Do not fear the king of Babylon anymore,’ says the Lord. ‘For I am with you and will save you and rescue you from his power. I will be merciful to you by making him kind, so he will let you stay here in your land.‘ –Jeremiah 42:10-12
But, it wasn’t what they wanted to hear:
When Jeremiah had finished giving this message from the Lord their God to all the people, Azariah son of Hoshaiah and Johanan son of Kareah and all the other proud men said to Jeremiah, “You lie! The Lord our God hasn’t forbidden us to go to Egypt! Baruch son of Neriah has convinced you to say this, because he wants us to stay here and be killed by the Babylonians or be carried off into exile.” –Jeremiah 43:1-3
The people refused to obey the voice of the Lord and went to Egypt.
It’s one thing to refuse advice from family, friends, or coworkers, but it’s a whole different ballgame when you ask advice from the God of the universe and refuse to take it.
Friends, because of Jesus we don’t have to go to a prophet or priest for advice, we can hear from God ourselves. God sent the Holy Spirit to be our counselor, but how often to we take advantage of this gift?
If we are smart, we will
- Ask God’s advice about anything that has life-changing impact
- Wait for Him to speak (Jeremiah waited 10 days)
- Do what He says
Heavenly Father, it’s so easy to read about these guys and analyze and criticize but how many times have I done the same thing? Because of Your Word, the Bible I know Your advice on many topics yet, I have either refused to read it or gone directly against it time after time. Lord, forgive me. Holy Spirit, speak loudly! I want to hear Your voice. I want to take Your advice. Make me like You Jesus!
© 2012 Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Ezekiel 34:1-36:38