“And do you seek great things for yourself? Seek them not for behold I am bringing disaster upon all flesh, declares the Lord, but I will give you your life as a prize of war in all places to which you may go.”
The context here is so humbling. This is God speaking through Jeremiah to Baruch who was writing down this revelation, these words from God through the prophet, Jeremiah. The problem here is Baruch is thinking narrowly about himself, and his own future. “And do you seek great things for yourself,” in the midst of an entire nation going down? His eyes are so focused on himself that he doesn’t see the gravity, and the weight, of what is being prophesied here, and the effect of that on other people.
God, help us to live with urgency for others today that we may contend for the faith.
So, we see in the selfishness here a picture. Oh, it’s so humbling because it’s a picture of my own selfishness, and I’m gonna assume for a moment, just in light of sinfulness, your selfishness. How easy is it for us to be just concerned about ourself? Think about eternity. Think, “I know, I know I’m okay for eternity,” like that’s what matters most. Which, it matters, it totally matters. I’m concerned about my eternity; you’re concerned about your eternity, having eternal life. We need to realize it’s not just about us here, there are people all around us. Their eternity is at stake, too. If we’re not careful we can be so focused on ourselves and the things in our lives that we turn a deaf ear and a blind eye to urgent need around us, the need for people to hear the gospel. Around us, around the world, like this is really, really important, and yet we, if we’re not careful, can be so focused on seeking great things for ourselves that we miss the weight, and the gravity of the message we believe for people all around us.
Think about people all around you and me right now who don’t know Jesus. It is eternally important, urgently important, that they hear about Jesus. If we’re not careful we can live our Christian lives, the day in and day out, not telling them, focused on ourselves and ignoring the weight of what we are hearing from God, what we know from the Word of God, for people around us, and not just here but around the world.
I think about Brahmin in India. I was praying recently for them. There are nearly 60 million of them, very few believers at all among them, and I just plead with God, “Please make your grace and your mercy known among them,” like “Oh, God, keep me from posting on myself and seeking great things in this world for myself, Lord. I want to live for the spread of the gospel to the Brahmin in India, as well as the person that I exercise with on a daily basis. God, please, please, please save us from focus on ourselves.” Keep us from seeking great things for ourselves and ignoring missing the weight and the gravity of your Word and it’s ramifications for people right around us and all around the world.
God, help us to live with urgency today, not for ourselves but for others. Lord, help us to not just think about, “Okay, my eternity is safe,” which we praise you, Oh God, our eternity is safe, but God help us to live so that others’ eternity is safe in you. Deliver us from our inclinations to think about ourselves. Help us to live for your glory, not just in our lives but in others’ lives and to be concerned for their good, for their eternal good. In Jesus name we pray. Amen.
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