Jeremiah 20: Remaining Faithful
We knew that it was coming for Jeremiah. Throughout this entire book, he has been saying controversial things, and it could not have made him very popular among the political leadership at the time. In Jeremiah 20, he is arrested.
Jer 20:1 Now Pashur the son of Immer the priest, who was also chief governor in the house of the LORD, heard that Jeremiah prophesied these things.
Jer 20:2 Then Pashur smote Jeremiah the prophet, and put him in the stocks that were in the high gate of Benjamin, which was by the house of the LORD.
Jer 20:3 And it came to pass on the morrow, that Pashur brought forth Jeremiah out of the stocks. Then said Jeremiah unto him, The LORD hath not called thy name Pashur, but Magormissabib.
Jer 20:4 For thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will make thee a terror to thyself, and to all thy friends: and they shall fall by the sword of their enemies, and thine eyes shall behold it: and I will give all Judah into the hand of the king of Babylon, and he shall carry them captive into Babylon, and shall slay them with the sword.
I thought that this is interesting because it must not have been easy for him to be arrested. As you read through the end of chapter 20, you get a taste of the depression that Jeremiah was sinking into. This would not have been something that most of us would be excited to live through.
However, Jeremiah had a very interesting sense of a higher calling. Remember that he was in jail for basically prophesying against those in power and exposing their wrongdoing. When he had his audience referenced above, he keeps on doing what he was doing. He told them that God was going to judge them.
These two images are important. On one hand, he definitely was not thrilled to be in jail. However, on the other hand, he knew what he had to do. He knew that he was there as a prophet of God, and no matter what happened, he could not shirk that responsibility.
I wish I could say that I would have this type of dedication. I don’t know; I have never been in a situation where my life has been literally in danger because of my faith. However, I think that we can learn a lot from Jeremiah. Even though the easy thing to do would have been to take it easy and not create any more attention, he knew what God called him to do, and he was faithful.