Refusing to Obey God’s Voice (Jeremiah 43:4)

“So Johanan the son of Kareah and all the commanders of the forces and all the people did not obey the voice of the Lord to remain in the land of Judah.”
– Jeremiah 43:4

God had told his people in the book of Jeremiah, through the prophet Jeremiah, stay in the land. Those of you who are not taken into exile, don’t flee the land. Stay here. And God’s people refused to obey God’s voice, and the result was their destruction.

Jeremiah 43:4 Leads Us to Obey God

We prayed in light of this in Jeremiah 42, now it’s happening in Jeremiah 43, the people did not obey the voice of the Lord, and it’s interesting. My other Bible reading today is in Psalm 19, where we see such a clear picture of the opposite, Psalm 19 that describes just the beauty of God’s word and how it reveals his glory. Listen to the phrases here.

So you hear Jeremiah 43 depicting eventual death and consequences as a result of not obeying the voice of the Lord. Those who do obey the voice of the Lord though, listen to this description. Their souls are revived, they’re made wise, their hearts rejoice, their eyes are enlightened, they grow in righteousness, they experience more reward than gold, than fine gold, it’s sweeter than honey drippings of the honeycomb.

Jeremiah 43:4 Reminds Us of the Choice Before Us

So yes, Psalm 19:14, “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight according to your word, oh Lord, my rock and my redeemer.” Do you see the picture here? Of two ways you and I can live today? We can hear and obey the voice of the Lord, and we can experience wisdom, joy, righteousness, light, reviving of our souls. Or we can either ignore or hear and disobey the voice of the Lord, and it will cost us, tragically and significantly in our lives.

Help Us Choose Obedience

God, help us to choose the former we pray. We praise you for your word. We praise you for loving us so much through your word that you warn us. That you encourage us, that you comfort us. That you instruct us, that you teach us, that you guide us, that you lead us all through your word. Oh God, what a gift. We have your voice. You have spoken to us, we have your word. Thank you so much for your word, oh God, please help us to hear it and obey it.

Jeremiah 43:4 Leads Us to Pray According to God’s Word

To listen humbly to it. Today, tomorrow, every day of our lives, to meditate on it, day and night. And to do according to all that is written in it, to obey your voice, to live according to your word. God we pray that that would be true in our lives.

And we pray that you would help us to spread your word to people right around us today who don’t know your word. Who didn’t get up this morning to read your word because they don’t have relationship with you. God, we pray that you would help us to encourage others with your word. Your voice today, use us as your mouthpieces, your witnesses by the power of your Holy Spirit in us. God, help us to live fully in this privilege, of sharing your word with others.

Praying for the Unreached in Libya

Right around us and far from us, God we pray today for the Sanusi Bedouin people of Libya. 647,000 of them. 0.0% followers of Jesus. The Sanusi Bedouin people of Libya, who have little to no knowledge of your word. God, we pray for the spread of the gospel to the Sanusi Bedouins.

For the spread of your word, that they might have life in it. God, please, may it be said that we … God, may it be said of us, may it be true of us. That we heard, obeyed, and spread your word in each of our lives. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

David Platt serves as a pastor in metro Washington, D.C. He is the founder and chairman of Radical. He is the author of several books, including Radical, Radical Together, Follow Me, Counter Culture, and Something Needs to Change.

Less than 1% of all money given to missions goes to unreached people and places.*

That means that the people with the most urgent spiritual and physical needs on the planet are receiving the least amount of support. Let's change that!