READ : Jeremiah 39:1–14
Then Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, carried into exile to Babylon the rest of the people who were left in the city. (v. 9)
As God had warned through Jeremiah, the end came. It was a terrible destruction for the city of Jerusalem, and the people were carried into captivity. All the schemes of men had failed. The attempts to shut the mouth of the prophet had failed. It is strange, as one looks in retrospect, to realize that the leaders seemed to feel that if only they could silence the prophet, all the things he predicted would not happen. However, now only the memory of what might have been remains.
All people have some sympathy with a condemned man. There is pressure brought on him to confess Christ before the day of execution. It is strange indeed that we can generate so much energy and sympathy for such a man and very little for all of mankind that is outside the Christian faith. All men stand before God as condemned and none of us knows what day will be our last day on earth, our last chance to confess Christ before men. Yet we all feel that we have so much time left in which to do all the necessary things.
The people of Israel also thought they had time on their side. Then the end came and it was too late and only a memory was left. As we read about the end of the kingdom, let it stir us to action today. (originally published April 29, 1964)
Lord, open our eyes to the lessons contained in sacred history. Amen.