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Exactly The Message

Exactly The Message

07 September 2010

Today’s Reading: 2 Kings 25; 2 Chronicles 36; Jeremiah 40-41; Revelation 12

Scripture:

This is exactly the message of God that Jeremiah had preached: the desolate land put to an extended sabbath rest, a seventy-year Sabbath rest making up for all the unkept Sabbaths. (2 Chronicles 36:21 MSG)

Jeremiah prophesied that Jerusalem would fall to the Babylonians and that God’s people would live in exile for seventy years, and then God would restore his people to their land. Jerusalem did fall, the city was destroyed, and who could even imagine the way things would go from there!

Daniel, one of the Jewish exiles, rose to influence in Babylon. His friends became influential government officials in exile. A young Jewish woman named Esther became queen of Babylon. Then suddenly, literally overnight, the Babylonian empire collapsed and the Persian king Cyrus took over – almost bloodlessly, almost seamlessly – and as one of his first acts of government, proclaimed the return of Jews to Jerusalem to rebuild God’s Temple and restore the city. Amazing!

22 In the first year of Cyrus king of Persia—this fulfilled the message of God preached by Jeremiah—God moved Cyrus king of Persia to make an official announcement throughout his kingdom; he wrote it out as follows: 23 “From Cyrus king of Persia a proclamation: God, the God of the heavens, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth. He has also assigned me to build him a Temple of worship at Jerusalem in Judah. All who belong to God’s people are urged to return—and may your God be with you! Move forward!” (2 Chronicles 36:22-23 MSG)

Then first Zerubbabel, then Ezra, then Nehemiah led progressive movements of the restoration process and the prophecy of Jeremiah was fulfilled… Exactly!

God watches over his word to fulfill it. When God speaks his word, it’s alive and at work even though it seems like nothing is happening – the word God spoke may even be mostly forgotten. But all the while, out of sight, below the surface, all kinds of things are happening with people and circumstances and interactions and decisions and it all seems unrelated to the word God has spoken. Then it happens. God fulfills his word, exactly! That’s what I’m talking about!

Prayer:

Father, Thank you for reminding me that you will fulfill your word. Now help me believe that in the most practical way, so that I think, decide, act, and feel based on your word to me and not based on circumstantial evidence. Amen.

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