Everyone, including Johanan, wants to feel good about fleeing to Egypt. They want Jeremiah to tell them this is God’s will. Everyone pledges to obey God’s word – and no one does, when it contradicts what he or she wants to do. Do you see yourself here?
Words of intent don’t mean much at all without acting out the intent.
We see this truth in today’s passage.
The people were so earnest! “Whether it is good or bad, we will obey the voice of the LORD our God to whom we are sending you, that it may be well with us when we obey the voice of the LORD our God.”
They even speak true wisdom – That obedience to God brings blessing!
Notice too how the Lord answers Jeremiah’s prayer, an answer to Johanan and the people.
“Do not fear the king of Babylon, of whom you are afraid. Do not fear him, decalres the LORD, for I am with you, to save you and to deliver you from his hand.”
You can almost imagine them looking around, “Who me, afraid of that king? Pwfahh, no way!”
And more, God says “Don’t go to Egypt! Don’t think you will be safe there!”
He is so clear.
They went to Egypt. They disobeyed the word of the Lord.
And God’s judgement came on them.
* Father God,
You speak to us in mercy and grace, marking us as Your people in Your love, covenanting with us in Your faithfulness.
And yet we disobey. Even when we know that obedience brings blessing! Even though You have said disobedience and foolishness brings curse!
Help us Lord, because we cannot help ourselves.
Thank You for all that You are to us, all that You have done, all that You are in and of Yourself.
Thank You for Jesus, our King and Saviour.