“Go tell Hannaniah, thus says the Lord, ‘You have broken wooden bars, but you have made in their place bars of iron.'”
– Jeremiah 28:13
So the context for this passage is a prophet who is claiming to proclaim God’s word, but was actually uttering a lie among God’s people, ignoring the judgment of God that he was about to bring basically saying that peace is coming when there was no peace coming. And not only was the prophet ignoring the judgment that God was about to bring, he was making it worse, driving the people into further condemnation because they were hoping in themselves and hoping in a lie and not in God.
Jeremiah 28:13 Shows Us the Danger of Sin
Do you see the same temptation in all of our lives today? We can convince ourselves that things will be okay if we continue down this path. Even when we are doing that which is in disobedience to God’s word, we can still convince ourselves that it’s okay, that things will go well, even when we are walking in direct disobedience to God’s word.
And so when I read Jeremiah 28:13, I think, “Oh, I need God’s help to protect me. We need God’s help to protect us from ourselves.” What Jesus says to us about what it means to follow him is true. It means to deny ourselves daily, to die to ourselves, to our ways, to our thoughts, to our ideas, and to align our lives completely around his word.
Jeremiah 28:13 Leads Us to Pray for Others
God, we pray for that in each of our lives. We pray one, that you would help us to hear your word and listen to your word and pay attention to it, to meditate on it day and night. God, I pray that in my own life, I pray in the life of every single person that’s listening right now that you would help us to live attuned to your word. We are all prone to go off in our own thoughts and our own ideas and our own ways.
And we need to meditate on your word day and night and we praise you for it. We praise you for giving it to us. We praise you for speaking to us through your word and your spirit. God, help us to hear. Give us humble hearts and open eyes and ears to see and hear your word and then to obey it.
Keep Us from Walking in Disobedience
God, we pray that you’d keep us from walking in disobedience to you and thinking that this will lead to good. God, guard us from that. Guard us from ourselves. Save us from ourselves daily. Help us to deny ourselves daily, and to die to our thoughts and our desires and our ways, and to live with your truth guiding us, with your desires in us, with your ways marking our lives.
And then, oh God, please help us to faithfully share your word. To pass your word on to others, to be faithful mouth pieces of your word in others’ lives to keep others from stumbling. To keep others from walking in disobedience to you, to warn others, lovingly and compassionately. And to call others to trust in you and obey you, to share the gospel with those who don’t know you. And to be a constant source of encouragement and spurring on towards you in the lives of our brothers and sisters in Christ, all with your word in our mouths as we obey your word in our lives. God, we pray for this in each of our lives. In my life, in the life of every single person that’s listening to this right now. We pray this according to Jeremiah 28:13 in Jesus’ name. Amen.