by Christopher Harbin

Rewards of Sin
Christopher B. Harbin
Psalm 13; Jeremiah 28:5-9; Mat 10:40-42; Romans 6:12-23

There is a difference between what we want to happen and what we can expect to happen. We want a rapid turn-around in our economy. We want gas prices to decrease. We want life as we knew it, but we know that the causes of our economic woes have not yet been addressed. While we look for a quick fix we know will solve nothing. We can deny reality, but denial will not prepare us for a future we desire to see. We reap what we have sown, not what we wish to have sown. Is it any different if we pretend that wanting God's blessings is the same as living so as to receive them?

Jeremiah was not a very popular guy. Somebody listened to him. At least enough people heard his message that it was recorded and preserved for us as a verifiable word from God. That did not mean his preaching drew a large crowd. The largest crowd was composed of those who ridiculed and mocked what he had to say. They took delight in telling Jeremiah and the rest of the population that his words were not very patriotic, not very encouraging, and not what they wanted to hear.

Unfortunately, our wants cannot change the truth. Jeremiah understood that the people did not want to hear the message God had for them. Jeremiah himself did not like the message he was given to share. There were plenty of other more comforting messages out there. There were those who said there was no way God would allow the nation to be carried off into captivity. The same God, Yahweh, who had brought the nation out of Egypt, into the Promised Land, and built it into a kingdom through David and Solomon would keep them from such a disgrace. It would look bad for Yahweh to allow the nation to be dragged off under the banner of the gods of Babylon. Surely, God would not close the doors to the temple in Jerusalem. It would send the wrong message--that Yahweh was impotent against Babylon. No way would God let t ...

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