Jeremiah 29:4-14 – “Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, to all who were carried away captive, whom I have caused to be carried away from Jerusalem to Babylon:
5 Build houses and dwell in them; plant gardens and eat their fruit. 6 Take wives and beget sons and daughters; and take wives for your sons and give your daughters to husbands, so that they may bear sons and daughters — that you may be increased there, and not diminished. 7 And seek the peace of the city where I have caused you to be carried away captive and pray to the LORD for it; for in its peace, you will have peace. 8 For thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: Do not let your prophets and your diviners who are in your midst deceive you, nor listen to your dreams which you cause to be dreamed. 9 For they prophesy falsely to you in My name; I have not sent them, says the LORD.
10 For thus says the LORD: After seventy years are completed at Babylon, I will visit you and perform My good word toward you and cause you to return to this place. 11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. 12 Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. 13 And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. 14 I will be found by you, says the LORD, and I will bring you back from your captivity; I will gather you from all the nations and from all the places where I have driven you, says the LORD, and I will bring you to the place from which I cause you to be carried away captive.” NKJV
Jeremiah was not always well-received because he refused to say what people wanted to hear. He said what he heard from the Spirit of God. Some called him a traitor when he told Israel not to resist and the letter, he wrote to the captives was not well received by everyone but provided insight and hope for the nation.
Israel was in a dilemma. They could resist and ultimately be wiped out or become so diminished in numbers that when the day of deliverance came, they would be too few to carry out the purposes of God.
Therefore, the prophet instructed them, with a word from God, to live as near normal as possible in the midst of their captivity. He gave as a chief reason, “…that you may be increased there, and not diminished.” He warned them not to buy the deception that other prophets were offering and informed them that their captivity would be 70 years in duration but afterward, in their strength and numbers God would bring them out.
God’s purpose was not to destroy them but ultimately to lead them to victory. They were going through difficulties because of their failure to follow His directive but ultimately God’s heart was their victory. He says in verse 11, “For I know the thoughts I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
They, as we, had the choice to endure hardship for a season. We are encouraged and instructed to keep our eyes on the ultimate prize. We are enjoined to conduct our lives in such a manner as to ensure that we are not weakened beyond repair in times of trouble and trial.
There may come a time, in America, when we are faced with the decision to resist or submit, for a time. It will be a most difficult choice for we will see terrible calamity and many who become docile exterminated.
I do not know what the future holds and if God will instruct us to submit to captivity or resist, as did our forefathers in the American Revolution. There is a time to rise up and a time to remain silent. A time to resist and a time to submit. There is a time to live and a time to die.
I realize from scripture and history that immediately taking up arms is not always the right answer. Therefore, it is imperative, in these coming days, for each of us to pray and seek the face of God. It is time that we incorporate the words of 2 Chronicles 7:14 in our daily lives, “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”
My prayer is LORD give us eyes to see, ears to hear, and courage to do that which You direct.
God bless you as you go through this beautiful day in Him!