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July 11, 2023 - Jeremiah 24-27

Reading through Jeremiah and remembering all the opposition that the prophet faced reminds us that still, today, all over the world, God’s messengers face threats and dangers. Regarding Jeremiah, he said to the nation, for “twenty-three years . . . the word of the Lord has come to me, and I have spoken persistently to you, but you have not listened” (25:3). And what did he get for his all his troubles? “When Jeremiah had finished speaking all that the Lord had commanded him to speak to all the people, then the priests and the prophets and all the people laid hold of him, saying, ‘You shall die!’” (26:8)

But even if they kill Jeremiah, God will still have his people who will speak for him. Remember John the Baptist’s confrontation with the Pharisees and Sadducees? They were opposed to the baptism of John and the people following him. They sought to put an end to the work. John’s reply? “And do not presume to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father,’ for I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children for Abraham” (Matthew 3:9). In the same way, God is able to raise up and send forth his messengers. Strictly charged not to preach in Jerusalem, “Peter and the apostles answered, ‘We must obey God rather than men’” (Acts 5:29). In every age and against all threats, God’s messengers speak. And Paul encourages, “"How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!” (Romans 10:15) In 1858, George Duffield wrote:

Stand up, stand up for Jesus

ye soldiers of the cross;

lift high his royal banner,

it must not suffer loss.

From vict’ry unto vict’ry

his army he shall lead

till ev’ry foe is vanquished

and Christ is Lord indeed. -- George Duffield (1858)

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