Prayer: O God, let your Word guide us and keep us focused on your leadership. In Christ. Amen.
Left out here alone!
19 Give heed to me, O Lord, and listen to what my adversaries say!
When people don’t like what you say, they feel threatened. In Jeremiah’s case they were so angry and afraid they plotted to kill Jeremiah. Jeremiah therefore felt persecuted and alone and turned to God for help. After all the words and prophecies the people didn’t like came from God.
Our devotion writer explains; “There are times when conveying a difficult message or speaking the truth to those who would rather not hear it is lonely work. It can feel like everyone is out to get us. At times like these, where do we find the strength and determination to continue?”
If we read on in Chapter 19, we will see that God is there, and had been beside Jeremiah all along. God hears Jeremiah and provides further instructions. God never leaves us alone not matter what we might feel, when we are set about doing God’s work. God is with us every step of the way.
Prayer: “Loving God, thank you for your presence, especially when I feel persecuted and alone. In Christ’s name. Amen.”
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
A Plot against Jeremiah
18 Then they said, “Come, let us make plots against Jeremiah—for instruction shall not perish from the priest, nor counsel from the wise, nor the word from the prophet. Come, let us bring charges against him, and let us not heed any of his words.”
19 Give heed to me, O Lord, and listen to what my adversaries say! 20 Is evil a recompense for good? Yet they have dug a pit for my life. Remember how I stood before you to speak good for them, to turn away your wrath from them. 21 Therefore give their children over to famine; hurl them out to the power of the sword, let their wives become childless and widowed. May their men meet death by pestilence, their youths be slain by the sword in battle. 22 May a cry be heard from their houses, when you bring the marauder suddenly upon them! For they have dug a pit to catch me, and laid snares for my feet. 23 Yet you, O Lord, know all their plotting to kill me. Do not forgive their iniquity, do not blot out their sin from your sight. Let them be tripped up before you; deal with them while you are angry.