Jeremiah 42-45
(The Aftermath)
August 17th

Produced by The Listening for God Ministry
Copyright 2016

Please refer to one or more Bible versions of your choice to read this section. We recommend that you read at least two versions for added understanding. For your convenience, we have provided six links below, each of which takes you directly to today's chapters in a specific version:

Key Verse

"This is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says: You saw the great disaster I brought on Jerusalem and on all the towns of Judah. Today they lie deserted and in ruins because of the evil they have done. They aroused my anger by burning incense to and worshiping other gods that neither they nor you nor your ancestors ever knew. "

- Jeremiah 44:2-3 (NIV)

Summary of Chapters

These chapters conclude the historical account of the aftermath of the fall of Jerusalem and include a brief epilogue regarding Baruch. Johanan and his officers approached Jeremiah to seek the LORD's blessing for their plans to go to Egypt with the remnant of people they had rescued. After ten days Jeremiah returned with the message: Stay and live or go to Egypt and die.

Despite the recent events which proved Jeremiah's credibility, the people called him a liar because he gave them an answer that was different than what they wanted. They decided to migrate to Egypt and take their chances there.

A debate picks up in chapter 44, in which Jeremiah reviews some of the recent history and tries to explain the fallacy of the people's plans. He also calls them to task over the worshipping of idols, which they refused to give up. They would not listen, so Jeremiah prophesized regarding their demise, because the king of Babylon would eventually return to attack Egypt and crush the people there.

Chapter 45 is a brief account of a message for Baruch, probably delivered prior to the fall. Baruch had complained of suffering, perhaps due to his association with Jeremiah. The LORD told Jeremiah to inform Baruch that the disaster will come as predicted, but that Baruch will be spared because of his service and loyalty.

Reflection and Application

How often do we go to God looking for his signature on our proposal, unwilling to accept any answer except yes. This is the attitude that reveals our misguided thinking. God is the potter, and we are the clay. We can ask for anything in his name, but we must be prepared to accept his will, not our own. Jesus reminds us of this truth in the words of the Lord's Prayer.

Jeremiah devoted his life to warning the people of their sins and of the opportunity to repent. Even after the disaster that he predicted came to pass, the survivors still did not want to listen. Maybe they were more afraid of the Babylonians and Chaldeans then they were of God. Let us learn from these mistakes and seek to listen to God's word - even if it appears in the most unlikely places and contradicts with the plans we have in mind.

Questions and Prayers for Further Reflection

Related Questions

  1. What is the most unlikely source of good advice that you ever encountered?
  2. Baruch stuck by Jeremiah and Jeremiah stuck by the LORD. They both received their reward and their legacy is recorded in this book. Who do we stick by and what will be our legacy?
  3. How do we prepare ourselves to accept situations where God's will is different from our own?

Recommended Prayer
Father in heaven, help us to accept your will, even when it conflicts with our plans or appears to be the dangerous choice

Suggested Prayer Concerns
People of Egypt

Looking Ahead

Tomorrow's reading: Jeremiah 46-47 (Oracles Against Other Nations)

Comments and Questions
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