Jeremiah Complains to the Lord
1 Whenever I complain to you, Lord, you are always fair.
But now I have questions about your justice. Why is life easy for sinners? Why are they successful?
2 You plant them like trees; you let them prosper and produce fruit.
Yet even when they praise you, they don't mean it.
3 But you know, Lord, how faithful I've always been, even in my thoughts.
So drag my enemies away and butcher them like sheep!
4 How long will the ground be dry and the pasturelands parched?
The birds and animals are dead and gone.
And all of this happened because the people are so sinful.
They even brag, “God can't see the sins we commit.”One ancient translation; Hebrew “He won't live to see what happens to us.”'
The Lord Answers Jeremiah
5 Jeremiah, if you get tired in a race against people, how can you possibly run against horses? If you fall in open fields, what will happen in the forest along the Jordan River?
6 Even your own family has turned against you.
They act friendly, but don't trust them.
They're out to get you, and so is everyone else.
The Lord Is Furious with His People
7 I loved my people and chose them as my very own.
But now I will reject them and hand them over to their enemies.
8 My people have turned against me and roar at me like lions.
That's why I hate them.
9 My people are like a hawk surrounded and attacked by other hawks.'
Tell the wild animals to come and eat their fill.
10 My beautiful land is ruined like a field or a vineyard trampled by shepherds and stripped bare by their flocks.
11 Every field I see lies barren, and no one cares.
12 A destroying army marches along desert roads and attacks everywhere.
They are my deadly sword; no one is safe from them.
13 My people, you planted wheat, but because I was furious, I let only weeds grow.
You wore yourselves out and gained only shame!
The Lord Will Have Pity on Other Nations
14 The Lord said:
I gave this land to my people Israel, but enemies around it have attacked and robbed it. So I will uproot them from their own countries just as I will uproot Judah from its land. 15 But later, I will have pity on these nations and bring them back to their own lands. 16 They once taught my people to worship Baal. But if they admit I am the only true God, and if they let my people teach them how to worship me, these nations will also become my people. 17 However, if they don't listen to me, I will uproot them from their lands and completely destroy them. I, the Lord, have spoken.
As a journalist in Russia, I have had the opportunity to cross paths with some of the country’s wealthiest and most powerful business leaders. These millionaires are intelligent, astute and insightful. Some are even self-professed Christians. But many of these wealthy people have built their fortunes through ruthless tactics including theft and murder. Their public lives might be the object of envy, but their personal lives are being destroyed by their immoral tactics.
Sometimes I wonder why these leaders of industry have received such prosperity. Why does God allow them to possess and squander money that someone else would use, to say, construct a church building and feed the hungry?
Jeremiah asked a similar question in Chapter 12: “Righteous are You, O Lord, when I plead with You; yet let me talk with You about Your judgments. Why does the way of the wicked prosper? Why are those happy who deal so treacherously? You have planted them, yes, they have taken root; they grow, yes, they bear fruit. You are near in their mouth but far from their mind (vs. 1, 2).
There’s nothing wrong with questioning God’s judgments. Remember how Abraham questioned God’s decision to destroy wicked Sodom? Abraham pointedly asked, “Suppose there were 50 righteous within the city, would you also destroy the place?” (Gen. 18:24). When the Lord said He would save the city for the sake of 50 righteous residents, Abraham dropped the number of people to 45, and then 40, 30, 20 and finally to 10. The Lord said He would withhold His judgment for the sake of just 10 people.
God welcomes questions and the chance that they provide to show His love and mercy. “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you” (Matt. 7:7).
Prayer: “Dear God, I don’t understand why the wicked prosper while the righteous fall on hard times. I don’t understand why a wicked person may live to the age of 90 while a righteous person may die young. But I am glad that You are willing to listen to me and discuss my questions. Open my eyes as I seek to understand Your judgments, and keep my faith in You strong. Amen.”
Journalist in Russia.
This text caught my attention, as I read it seemed that my eyes were being opened clarifying what I have always supported my father never wrong, I ask Him to give me the words in His time so I can take you a more clearly to the pages of my life.