We will not listen to your messages from the Lord! We will do whatever we want. – Jeremiah 44:16-17a
The remnant of Jews left after the exile of Judah had returned to Israel. The LORD told them through Jeremiah to live and dwell in the land and live. They refused to obey, killed their appointed leader, and emigrated to Egypt for safety. The LORD told them that because they refused to obey both his verbal commands through the prophets and his written word through the Law of Moses that he would destroy them all in Egypt, except a very few people who would survive. The people demanded that they would do things their way despite the fact that God knew of their wrongs and had been the one who saved them. They, instead, wanted to honor and sacrifice to a god that was not God. This enraged the LORD who eventually carried out his word and brought certain destruction on the rebellious Jews.
It is crucial that when we hear the voice of the LORD either through his written Word or his spoken Word from either himself, another child of God or even a non-believer. Yes, God does use the unsaved to speak to the saved. He used Nebuchadnezzar to “speak” his judgment to the Jews. So, we had best learn to do the opposite of the Jews in this passage. We need to learn how to humble ourselves before the mighty hand of the LORD when we hear him speak to us. There is always some price to pay for refusing to hear and obey the Word of the LORD. The ultimate price for refusing and obeying God is death.
Father, you have spoken to me today through that still, small voice of your Holy Spirit. He tells me to humble myself and to flee from the things of this world. Your Spirit knows your mind and will and sees all that I do. You even make your home in me through your Spirit’s residence there. How can I hear the voice of the LORD and refuse it or disobey it? Would I not invite your resistance of me for being proud and arrogant and begin to set myself up for a fall and destruction, just as your Word says? Therefore, I repent of my pride and arrogance for not fully trusting in you and thinking that I can do anything without you! I need to and must seek you first above everything in order to know your provision and guidance. I don’t want to be like the stubborn Jews, who refused you and lost out accordingly. I love you, Dad, and want to be obedient to you out of my love for you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.