Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | August 3, 2017

“But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ”

Today’s devotion comes from Jeremiah chapter 21.  Here is a link to this chapter – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Jeremiah+21&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord when King Zedekiah sent to him Pashhur the son of Malchijah, and Zephaniah the priest, the son of Maaseiah, saying, “Please inquire of the Lord on our behalf, for Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon is warring against us;  perhaps the Lord will deal with us according to all His wonderful acts, so that the enemy will withdraw from us.”

Then Jeremiah said to them, “You shall say to Zedekiah as follows:  ‘Thus says the Lord God of Israel, “Behold, I am about to turn back the weapons of war which are in your hands, with which you are warring against the king of Babylon and the Chaldeans who are besieging you outside the wall;  and I will gather them into the center of this city.  I Myself will war against you with an outstretched hand and a mighty arm, even in anger and wrath and great indignation.  I will also strike down the inhabitants of this city, both man and beast;  they will die of a great pestilence.  Then afterwards,” declares the Lord, “I will give over Zedekiah king of Judah and his servants and the people, even those who survive in this city from the pestilence, the sword and the famine, into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of their foes and into the hand of those who seek their lives;  and he will strike them down with the edge of the sword. He will not spare them nor have pity nor compassion.”’

“You shall also say to this people, ‘Thus says the Lord, “Behold, I set before you the way of life and the way of death.  He who dwells in this city will die by the sword and by famine and by pestilence;  but he who goes out and falls away to the Chaldeans who are besieging you will live, and he will have his own life as booty.  10 For I have set My face against this city for harm and not for good,” declares the Lord.  “It will be given into the hand of the king of Babylon and he will burn it with fire.”’

11 “Then say to the household of the king of Judah, ‘Hear the word of the Lord, 12 O house of David, thus says the Lord:

“Administer justice every morning;
And deliver the person who has been robbed from the power of his oppressor,
That My wrath may not go forth like fire
And burn with none to extinguish it,
Because of the evil of their deeds.”  Jeremiah 21:1-12.

—————–

“You shall also say to this people, ‘Thus says the Lord, “Behold, I set before you the way of life and the way of death.”  Verse 8. 

“O house of David, thus says the Lord:

“Administer justice every morning;
And deliver the person who has been robbed from the power of his oppressor,
That My wrath may not go forth like fire
And burn with none to extinguish it,
Because of the evil of their deeds.”  Verse 12.

In the face of the fierce wrath and power of the LORD, who would not choose life and administer justice?!

But, as much sense as it is to choose life and administer justice, we will still not do so because of our natural condition of “Total Depravity”.  We are dead in sin, hostile to God, and enslaved to sin and Satan.

10 as it is written,

There is none righteous, not even one;
11 There is none who understands,
There is none who seeks for God;
12 All have turned aside, together they have become useless;
There is none who does good,
There is not even one.”  Romans 3:10-12.

“And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience.  Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest.”  Ephesians 2:1-3.

Thus, our hope is not based on our goodness nor our wisdom nor our alleged free-will.

Instead, our hope is based on God, His goodness, His wisdom, His will, and His mercy.

But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.  For by grace you have been saved through faith;  and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God;  not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.”  Ephesians 2:4-8.

But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption, so that, just as it is written, “Let him who boasts, boast in the Lord.”  1 Corinthians 1:30-31.

God is the One Who gives life.

Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life;  he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst.  But I said to you that you have seen Me, and yet do not believe.  All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out.  For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me.  This is the will of Him who sent Me, that of all that He has given Me I lose nothing, but raise it up on the last day.”  John 6:35-39.

God is the One Who administers justice.

For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us;
And the government will rest on His shoulders;
And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.
There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace,
On the throne of David and over his kingdom,
To establish it and to uphold it with justice and righteousness
From then on and forevermore.
The zeal of the Lord of hosts will accomplish this.”  Isaiah 9:6-7.

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