Text: Jeremiah 42:1-6

 

I.         Imagine living during the last days of Judah

            A.        Josiah was a wonderful king - II Kings 23:25

            B.        But he was killed by the king of Egypt - II Kings 23:28-29

            C.        But Jehoahaz, the king who succeeded him, only lasted three months - II Kings 23:31-33

            D.        His brother replaces him as an appointee of the king of Egypt - II Kings 23:34

            E.        But three years into Jehoiakim reign he is killed by Nebuchadnezzar - II Kings 24:1-4

            F.        His replacement, Jehoiachin, his 18-year-old son, manage to last 3 months before Nebuchadnezzar besieged Jerusalem. In his eighth year he was taken into captivity along will all the best of Israel - II Kings 34:8, 12-14

            G.        Zedekiah, Jehoiachin’s uncle, is then appointed by Nebuchadnezzar - II Kings 24:18-20

II.        God told Zedekiah to submit to Nebuchadnezzar - Jeremiah 27:1-7

            A.        God even warns him what would happen if he refused - Jeremiah 27:8-10

            B.        And the benefits of listening to what God said - Jeremiah 27:11

            C.        After all, Babylon would not remain in power for long - Jeremiah 27:7

            D.        But Zedekiah rebelled

III.       Thus, the people left ask Jeremiah what to do - Jeremiah 42:1-6

            A.        Notice that they said they would do whatever God said, no matter how unpleasant it might be

            B.        They were told to stay put and they would be safe - Jeremiah 42:7-12

            C.        Like before God warned them what would happen if they tried to make a deal with Egypt - Jeremiah 42:13-17

                        1.         Egypt looked so safe at the moment. It was far from Babylon. It had a strong army. It had food.

                        2.         But Egypt was not safe - Jeremiah 42:18-22

            D.        Clear? Yet, these same people decided Jeremiah was lying to them - Jeremiah 43:1-7

            E.        God wasn’t happy - Jeremiah 44:26-28

IV.      Why did the people reject the safest option?

            A.        They were afraid

                        1.         People make rash choices when they are afraid

            B.        They felt that they had to do something

                        1.         But God told them to wait

                        2.         Children don’t do well when they are told to wait, neither do many adults

                        3.         Waiting is actually harder than doing something difficult

            C.        People were telling them something different than what God said

                        1.         What God said went against what they thought was obviously true

            D.        They just weren’t patient

V.        Wait for God

            A.        We see the evil around us and feel something must be done.

                        1.         But God’s answer is to not worry about the evil. Instead, focus on doing righteousness - Psalms 37:1-11

                        2.         Don’t take vengeance. God will handle it - Proverbs 20:22

                        3.         We have to be righteous and wait for God - Isaiah 26:7-12

            B.        We see overwhelming problems and we despair

                        1.         But we need to trust that God loves His people and He will deliver - Psalms 33:18-22

            C.        We see our sins and fear - Psalms 130:1-3

                        1.         But we need wait for God and put our hope in His word - Psalms 130:4-8

                        2.         We wait for His mercy - Psalms 123:1-2

            D.        Therefore, observe kindness and justice and always wait for God - Hosea 12:6

VI.      I have observed that when disaster strikes, people want to change

            A.        A husband found out his wife was cheating on him. He wanted to know why was he living a righteous life. Look at what it gave him!

            B.        Job looked at the misery of his life and wondered why the wicked were not being punished - Job 21:7-9

                        1.         Even so, Job would not follow them - Job 21:16

                        2.         Job endured. He remained steadfast and was rewarded - James 5:11

            C.        Being a Christian is not always easy, but we must endure - Matthew 10:22

                        1.         John faced tribulation, but had patience in Christ - Revelation 1:9

                        2.         Be faithful unto death - Revelation 2:10

                        3.         Preserve and we won’t face the trials as the rest of the world - Revelation 3:10

            D.        Therefore, be steadfast, unmoveable - I Corinthians 15:58

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