Monday, May 08, 2006

The Yoke of Christ: Jeremiah 27

Jeremiah 27

This chapter gives us another “illustrated prophecy” of Jeremiah’s to the rulers of his day. In this case, it involves not only the king of Judah, but the ambassadors of several small surrounding nations as well. And Jeremiah’s prop of choice this time is a piece of farm equipment-he enters the king’s chambers wearing a yoke meant for two large oxen. God never said being a prophet would be easy…or cool.

Jeremiah’s message is simple: surrender to the coming Babylonian army or suffer the consequences of a loosing battle. Notice that with this message, the illustration of the yoke is not one of impending doom and destruction-it is an invitation. The yoke is intended for two oxen, so there is one free opening in the yoke and Jeremiah invites the king and ambassadors to join him in willing submission to Nebuchadnezzar. In verse 8 he says:

But if any nation or kingdom will not serve this Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and put its neck under the yoke of the king of Babylon, I will punish that nation with the sword, with famine, and with pestilence, declares the LORD, until I have consumed it by his hand.

God has given the region to the Babylonians and there is nothing Zedekiah or the other nations can do to change that. They, however, feel differently. We know from the Babylonian’s own records that at this time they are facing battle on their eastern border, battle with the Syrian army, and an internal insurrection all at the same time. So it is not surprising that Zedekiah and the others feel confident of their chances to throw of the Babylonian yoke. Throw in the mixture the false prophets who are telling Zedekiah what he wants to hear, and he is sure there is a third way out of this situation.

But Jeremiah is persistent about his two options. Either Zedekiah goes with God and remains in his own land, or he takes his fate into his own hands and suffers the fortune of the looser in battle. (2 Kings 25 details Zedekiah’s rebellious choice and his fate worse than death.) Both choices are yokes, but one leads him to safety and the other to doom.

Paul has something similar to say about the choices before all of us in Romans 6:16-18.

Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness? But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness.

Like Zedekiah we want to be in charge of our own destinies, to be absolutely autonomous. But also like Zedekiah we have only two choices set before us. Either we enslave ourselves to our own shortcomings, passions and sins, or we willingly take on the yoke of Christ and open ourselves to abundance, grace, forgiveness, and life eternal. The autonomous choice is blindness and death; taking on the yoke of Christ is life more abundantly. Christ spoke to his disciples saying this,

Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. Matthew 11:29-30

9 comments:

JOY TEKSON said...

Dearest In Christ,


I am Sister JOY TEKSON from Kuwait. I am married to Mr. TEKSON who worked with Kuwait embassy in Ivory Coast for nine years before he died in the year 2003.We were married for eleven years without a child. He died after a brief illness that lasted for only four days.

Before his death we were both born again Christian.
Since his death I decided not to remarry or get a child outside my matrimonial home which the Bible is against. When my late husband was alive he deposited the sum of $2.Million USD in bank here in Abidjan.

Recently, my Doctor told me that I would not last for the next Eight months due to cancer problem. Having known my condition I decided to donate this fund to a church that will utilize this money the way I am going to instruct herein.
I want a church that will use this fund for rphanages, widows, propagating the word of God and to endeavor that the house of God is maintained.

The Bible made us to understand that "Blessed is the hand that giveth". I took this decision because I don't have any child that will inherit this money and my husband relatives are not Christians and I don't want my husband's efforts to be used by unbelievers.
I don't want a situation where this money will be used in an ungodly way. This is why I am taking this decision.

I am not afraid of death hence I know where I am going. I know that I am going to be in the bosom of the Lord. Exodus 14 VS 14 says that "the lord will fight my case and I shall hold my peace".
I don't need any telephone communication in this regard because of my health hence the presence of my husband's relatives around me always. I don't want them to know about this development.

With God all things are possible. As soon as I receive your reply I shall give you the contact of the Bank in Abidjan. I will also issue you an authorisation letter that will prove you the present beneficiary of this fund.
I want you and the church to always pray for me because the lord is my shephard. My happiness is that I lived a life of a worthy Christian. Whoever that Wants to serve the Lord must serve him in spirit and Truth.

Please always be prayerful all through your life.Contact me on my email any delay in your reply will give me room in sourcing another church for this same purpose. Please assure me that you will act accordingly as I Stated herein. Hoping to receive your reply.

Remain blessed in the Lord.

Yours in Christ,
Sister JOY TEKSON

Anonymous said...

Thankyou brother for taking the time to explaine this story for anyone who needs it, i did and here it was, thanks , little sis

Anonymous said...

Thanks Sister Joy, I need it, and pray that you're healed.

Anonymous said...

You do realize, don't you, that "Joy" is a fraud?

Anonymous said...

It was not Jeremiah's choice to wear the wooden yoke, but a command from the Lord.
Jeremiah 27:2 Thus saith the LORD to me; Make thee bonds and yokes, and put them upon thy neck,

shaniquehanna said...

SISTER JOY ITS A BLESSING FOR WHAT YOU WANT TO DO WITH YOUR MONEY AND THATS GREAT, BUT THE GOD I SERVE IS A HEALER HE WILL AND SHALL HEAL YOU I DECLARE THAT YOU WILL LIVE AND SHALL NOT DIE. THE PLAN OF THE ENEMY IS TO TELL US WE ARE SICK WHEN WE ARE REALLY AND TRULY NOT, WHO'S REPORT YOU'LL BELIEVE THE ENEMY OR GOD? THE ENEMY SEE'S YOUR PURPOSE WHICH IS GREATNESS SO AM HERE TO TELL THAT CANCER IT HAS KNOW AUTHORITY IN YOUR BODY AND IT HAS TO LEAVE IN JESUS NAME. YOU ARE A KINGS CHILD. BE BLESS in the name of JESUS.

Anonymous said...

Amen,GOD is able and healing GOD. He said by his stripes we are healed. May the Living GOD I serve heal you and touch you. GOD said he will bless us with abundant life and just believe that as you read this you are healed.

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Yong
www.gofastek.com

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