Accounts of how God chooses His servant are always fascinating and helpful. In Jeremiah 1, we read of how God called Jeremiah to be His prophet to the nations.
Notice several things:
- Jeremiah was chosen by God to deliver God’s Word. First and foremost, he job was to be a messenger (v.7). He could not determine or control the response, but he could be committed to delivering the message.
- Jeremiah was set apart (sanctified) and chosen (ordained) before he was even born or conceived (v.5). God had a special plan for His life. He has been set apart by God for this calling.
- Jeremiah felt unable to do what God was asking (v.6). He said, ‘Ah, Lord GOD! behold, I cannot speak, for I am a child.’ Likely he was very young when God’s word came to him, and he felt inadquate for the huge task before him.
- God equipped Him for the job (v.7-10-16). Notice how God helped him:
- By rebuking His excuses – ‘Don’t say you are a child.’
- By clarifying His responsibility – ‘All you have to do is go to everyone that I send you to, and say everything I tell you.’
- By confirming His presence – ‘You don’t need to be afraid of their face, because I am with you to deliver you.’
- By equipping His mouth. God touched his mouth and told him that He had put His words in his mouth and would use Him like a farmer and a builder to plant/root up and build/destroy.
- By giving Him two more visions.
- Jeremiah then simply had to obey (v.17-19). After God clarified His call, His mission, and His equipping, it was time for Jeremiah to ‘gird up his loins’, to get up and get going. Start speaking my words. Don’t be afraid. I will make you strong like a defenced city, an iorn pillar, and brass walls. It will be you versus the whole land. They will resist you, but they will not prevail against you, becuse I am with you!
There are so many helpful things in this passage. We know from the New Testament that God saves us to do good work that He has before ordained (Eph 2:10). We know that in Christ, we are God’s kings and priests. We know that we have the Holy Spirit within us to be God’s witnesses. We know that we will feel weak, but He gives us strength.
The lesson is that we have all we need to do what God asks us to do. Even when we feel inadquate and oppossed by everyone, we can still obey and do what God wants because He is with us and will help us.
So, let us stop making excuses. Let us stop living in fear. Let us stop being intimidated by the opposition. And let us rise up and do what God has called us to do!