Jeremiah 47: God Speaks Seriously
In Jeremiah 47, we receive a rather interesting prophecy that Jeremiah made regarding the fate of the Philistines. I know that I tend to use the word interesting an awful lot to describe prophecy, but it is particularly notable in this case that this probably would have been viewed as a good sign to most of the people of Judah. The Philistines were longtime enemies of God’s people, so this might have been a kind of welcome sign.
Babylon was going to come rolling into the land of the Philistines as well.
Jer 47:4 Because of the day that cometh to spoil all the Philistines, and to cut off from Tyrus and Zidon every helper that remaineth: for the LORD will spoil the Philistines, the remnant of the country of Caphtor.
Jer 47:5 Baldness is come upon Gaza; Ashkelon is cut off with the remnant of their valley: how long wilt thou cut thyself?
Jer 47:6 O thou sword of the LORD, how long will it be ere thou be quiet? put up thyself into thy scabbard, rest, and be still.
Jer 47:7 How can it be quiet, seeing the LORD hath given it a charge against Ashkelon, and against the sea shore? there hath he appointed it.
Verses six and seven combine in such a way that demonstrate the power of the prophecy of God. We don’t take it as seriously as we ought to.
Verse six points out that the sword of God, figuratively speaking of Babylon, has been busy for a long time, and Jeremiah is asking when that might slow down.
Verse seven says that it simply can’t slow down because God said that Babylon was going to conquer all the way to the seashore. The prophecy was powerful. It was not just a kind of thing that God said kind of haphazardly. When He said that history was going to develop in a certain way, it was going to happen in that way.
I think that we sometimes forget about this when we talk about God and His prophecies which He delivered to people like Jeremiah. It was not as if they were just instructions on what to do if something happened. They were statements that something was going to happen. There was a power that God has when He speaks that certainly ought to compel us not only to listen to but also to trust.