“Now Pashhur the priest, the son of Immer, who was chief officer in the house of the Lord, heard Jeremiah prophesying these things. The Pashhur beat Jeremiah the prophet and put him in the stocks that were in the Upper Benjamin Gate of the house of the Lord.”
That’s a very humbling passage to see Jeremiah proclaiming the word of God, and as a result of proclaiming God’s word, he’s beaten and put in the stocks. I automatically think about brothers and sisters around the world for whom that verse is a reality today. We have brothers and sisters who today proclaim the word of God, shared the word of God, maybe a pastor who stood up and preached the word, maybe just a man or woman in a village somewhere where they shared the word of God and they were immediately beaten by friends, family even, by government officials. This is a reality for our brothers and sisters in different parts of the world right now. And Jeremiah 20, one and two is a reminder of the faithfulness of the follower of God even in the midst of threats to their own danger, to proclaim the word of God even when it costs.
We have brothers and sisters all over the world facing persecution. When one part of the body hurts, the whole body hurts. Let’s pray for them and for their families.
So, God, we pray right now for … We pray for our North Korean brothers and sisters who re labor camps. We pray for our brother or sister who right now might be headed to a labor camp because they just got caught sharing your word. God, we pray for them. We pray for their sustenance, we pray for their strength, we pray for your provision of them in every way, for your physical provision for them, God. These are our brothers and sisters, oh Father. Please help them. Please help them spiritually to be steadfast, Lord. In chains, help them to know your grace and your mercy in even greater ways, even to proclaim your grace and mercy in even greater ways, God. Use them for the spread of the Gospel in those labor camps, we pray.
God, we pray for their family members. We pray for kids whose moms or dads or moms and dads have been taken away, who are now being indoctrinated in a godless view of life. God, we pray for those kids’ salvation, separated from their moms and dads. God, we pray for those kids to know your grace and your love and your mercy. God, we pray that they would know your love for them even if they’ve seen their parents taken away from them for faith in you. God, we pray, please, please, please show yourself strong on behalf of our brothers and sisters, oh Father, who are in chains, who are being beaten right now. Oh, God, when one part of the body hurts, the whole body hurts, and we are hurting for them right now. So please, oh God, please, please, please show your grace, strength, mercy, glory, in and through them. We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.