READ: Jeremiah 47-49
THINK: Moab was one of the great and longstanding enemies of the nation of Israel. There were constant conflicts between the to nations and the Moabites not only oppressed the Israelites but also continually tried to turn their hearts toward false gods. This section of Jeremiah contains a powerful prophecy against Moab. Destruction, devastation, and shame are to be heaped upon Moab and upon their evil god Chemosh. The prophecy indicates that they are facing total devastation.
The thing that jumps out at me from this passage, though, is the “why?” Moab is being judged for pride. It was a wealthy, affluent, comfortable nation with a strong military and it had grown to believe that its riches and its might made it secure. Moab had no reason to trust in God or humble herself before him because she was successful, in her own mind, without him. Moab defied God, worshipped all manner of false gods, and had an incredible amount of pride and hubris and self-belief.
Sound like any other nation you know? Rich. Powerful. Successful? Comfortable? Chasing after false gods and turning it’s back on God because they don’t believe they need him? I can think of one…cough…America…cough. I actually think this applies to most of the modern West. Once dominantly Christian, now pragmatically atheist, our long history of wealth and military power has left us in a state of incredible pride. And that pride has caused us to turn our backs on God.
There will be consequences. That much is certain. So what do we do? Well, I want to draw 2 simple implications from this for each of us: 1. We make sure that individually we don’t reflect the spirit of the age. We read this and caution ourselves against letting our affluence and comfort bring us to a place of pride whereby we believe we don’t need God and we somehow got here without him. And 2. We pray for redemption and revival. Even though God’s pronouncement against Moab was harsh and he promised destruction, his heart of mercy and redemption was still powerfully evident! He cries out, weeps, and laments for Moab. And in the end promises to restore Moab. God’s heart is tender and he loves people and wants to draw them to himself. No matter how dark our days become and how bleak the future of our nation may look, never ever stop leveraging yourself for those around you and being used of God to draw them back to himself. He is a God of hope; hope is never lost.
PRAY: Confess your pride. Confess the times when you’ve lived as though you don’t need God because things have been going well for you. And pray for our country. Pray for the lost people around you and ask God how you can reflect to them his deep love for them.
So sobering! Thanks!