This month has been about courageous love. We have tried to connect the fact that when we love, we are compelled to have the courage to risk ourselves for the benefit of those we love. Christ’s entire ministry was conducted with the risk (certainty in His case) that his loving but courageously firm actions would lead to his death. That death was for the world, yet would only spiritually benefit the few who would take advantage of it. Our text for today is Jeremiah 36:1-32. God had warned Jeremiah that his work and teaching would not be well received. In Jeremiah 1:10 that he would root out, pull down, destroy and throw down before he could build up and plant. Knowing his work would not be well received, the Lord told him in Jeremiah 1:16 to “gird up thy loins, speak what I command thee and be not dismayed at their faces…” There was no question about the courage of Jeremiah as he carried out the work of the Lord which led to his imprisonment (Jer. 37:4), his force removal from Jerusalem and some scholars say that he died at the hands of his brethren.
What I am interested in is the love of Jeremiah for these people who treated him so badly. As his love led him to pray on their behalf, God told him not to pray for this people (Jer. 14:11). As he sent the scroll to be read that would send him to prison, his thought was that it might bring them to repentance (Jer. 1:7). Brothers and sisters, courageous love does the difficult work of the Lord with the prayer and hope that it will bring men to repentance. Whether we are teaching the lost, restoring the erring or disciplining the rebellious, our love and courage go together.
Mike Glenn (e-bulletin 1-9)