February 05, 2019
Settle Down in Your Captivity
Jeremiah 29:4-7 (KJB) Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, unto all that are carried away captives, whom I have caused to be carried away from Jerusalem unto Babylon; 5 Build ye houses, and dwell in them; and plant gardens, and eat the fruit of them; 6 Take ye wives, and beget sons and daughters; and take wives for your sons, and give your daughters to husbands, that they may bear sons and daughters; that ye may be increased there, and not diminished. 7 And seek the peace of the city whither I have caused you to be carried away captives, and pray unto the LORD for it: for in the peace thereof shall ye have peace.
God clearly owned this captivity according to these above verses from a letter divinely recorded by Jeremiah the Prophet.
What do I mean in making the statement that God owned this confinement?
Clearly, this imprisonment was brought about and allowed at God’s divine direction.
“What, you may say?
Why would a loving God seek any person be carried away into captivity?”
Especially in the life of His own Jewish people? This kind of ill-treatment seems rather cruel and quite unlikely to come from the hands of a loving God to His own people.
Yes, but that is what these verses from the Old Testament are telling us. God does judge everybody and even His own people harshly. This season of captivity for the Jews was divinely brought about by God for their learning and spiritual maturity. It was for their growth and future opportunity! Not only were they to be found in captivity, but God was evident in telling them they were going to dwell here for a time. He instructed them to continue in peace and to settle down and build homes and bear children.
Despite what was going on about them, these Jews were to continue living as if they were free people in this harsh land of Babylon.
You see, God loves mankind so much that He desires His best for each of us. Jeremiah was loved dearly by God. God loved him enough to give him a dose of truth. Sometimes God’s best for us is carefully wrapped in a difficult time of trials and personal troubles. Sadly, many people, including you and me, learn best when God has our ultimate attention. Sometimes this requires that He allows us to be moved from our current comfort zone into a time of struggles.
So that we can learn to rely upon His presence and power rather than try to figure things out in our own limited perception and weaknesses. You see, a man cannot find real peace without the presence of God at work in his life. This is precisely why God allowed these men to be carried away as captives. So that they could come to know and understand the power and peace only found in relying upon the working of God.
Maybe you find yourself stuck in a tight spot this very moment. Take heart, likely you are not there by accident. God placed you here, or He allowed you to meander to such a crux of captivity a spiritual “fork in the road.” Listen carefully for God’s divine direction and look for an open door for removing you from this present spiritual incarceration and onto savoring and serving God as you sojourn in this world.