The Way of Life (Jeremiah 21:8) - Radical

The Way of Life (Jeremiah 21:8)

“And to this people you shall say, thus says the Lord. Behold, I set before you the way of life and the way of death.”
– Jeremiah 21:8

The context here in Jeremiah 21:8 is really clear. God is telling his people through Jeremiah that the Chaldeans, the Babylonians are about to come and to destroy Jerusalem. He is telling them, here’s a way you can live and here’s a way you will die and it’s a very stark choice. He outlines how to live through trust in God, how to die through continuing to rebel against God. God says, here they are, here are your options. Obviously God in giving them this warning, is calling them to life, to trust in him and do what he says. As we read this verse in Jeremiah 21:8, there’s a sense in which we see the gospel invitation before every one of us and every single person in the world who hears the gospel. Here’s the way to life, here’s the way to death, eternal life and eternal death.

Jeremiah 21:8 Reminds Us We Have a Choice to Walk in Life

There’s a sense in which you and I have this choice every day even as followers of Jesus. Yes, we have eternal life secured by faith in Jesus by his grace in our lives. Yet every day we have an opportunity to choose to walk in this life we have been given or to turn away from this life we have been given.

To experience the consequences of sin that we have been saved from, to succumb to the power of sin that we have been saved from. In light of this choice, I just want to lead us to pray. God, help us to choose life today. Help us to choose obedience today. Help us to choose all that you’ve made possible for us today through faith in you. Lord, help us to choose to walk humbly with you, to experience your strength, your peace, your joy, your hope, your abundance. What you said, Jesus, that you came to give us abundant life.

God, we want to experience that today through humbly hearing and obeying your word and walking in step with your Spirit. As part of our obedience, O God, we pray that you would help us to share these choices with others today. We know that people all around us that we work with, we live with, we live next to, who are headed on a road to either eternal life or eternal death.

Praying that the Word of God Would Lead Us

God, we pray that you’d help us to bring your word to bear on their lives that they might live, that they might experience eternal life. Help us to faithfully share the gospel today. God, we pray that you would help us to faithfully make this message known among all the nations. God, we pray specifically today for the Yaeyama people in Japan, God, for this unreached people group on remote islands in the southwest of the mainland. We pray for the spread of the gospel to men and women and children, the good news of life, abundant life.

God we know there are so many across Japan who have little to no knowledge of the gospel including the Yaeyama people. God, we pray for the spread of this good news to them. That they might choose life by your grace, that they might be saved from sin and brought to eternal life. We intercede for them today.

We intercede for the country of Japan. God, we pray for the spread of the gospel there. That people might experience the way of life and not the way of eternal death. God, we pray all of this according to your word in Jeremiah 21:8. Even as we praise you, even as we praise you, Lord Jesus, for making life possible for us, making life possible for the Yaeyama people of Japan and every single group of people in the world by your grace, through faith in you. Help us to choose and experience abundant life in you through Jesus, in whose name we pray. Amen.

David Platt serves as pastor at McLean Bible Church in 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.

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