16/8/11 2 Kings 24; Jeremiah 22; Psalm 112; John 18
S: 2 Kings 24:12 King Nebuchadnezzar took all of Jerusalem captive, including all the commanders and the best of the soldiers, craftsmen, and artisans—10,000 in all. Only the poorest people were left in the land.
Jeremiah 22:3 This is what the Lord says: Be fair-minded and just. Do what is right! Help those who have been robbed; rescue them from their oppressors. Quit your evil deeds! Do not mistreat foreigners, orphans, and widows. Stop murdering the innocent!
Psalm 112:1 Praise the Lord! How joyful are those who fear the Lord and delight in obeying his commands.
O: Judah had become exceedingly wicked. They stopped following the Lord, and were practising all sorts of injustice. However, when God allowed Babylon to conquer Judah as a consequence of this, the minority who still followed the Lord also suffered the consequences.
Nonetheless, people like Jeremiah, Daniel, Hannaniah, Mishael, and Azariah*, even as they got carried off to exile, stayed faithful to the Lord and the Lord blessed them even in exile. Doubtless some of the people who still followed the Lord died in the war, but they ended up in Abraham's bosom.
A: Juliane & I were just discussing over dinner that we fear for the future of Malaysia, what with the corruption in high places and the mistreatment of foreigners. God may well bring judgement upon our land, and we as Malaysians would be caught up in that judgement.
However, we need not fear and can still trust the Lord, that even if we are caught up in God's judgement, as we are faithful to Him, He will look after us like He did Jeremiah, Daniel, Mishael, Hannaniah and Azariah.
P: Father, help us to trust You, keep following You, and not fear even as we see evil abound. In Jesus' name, amen.
* Otherwise known as Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.