And seekest thou great things for thyself? seek them not: for, behold, I will bring evil upon all flesh, saith the Lord: but thy life will I give unto thee for a prey in all places whither thou goest.Jer 35:5
Baruch was Jeremiah’s scribe and companion. He was there with Jeremiah for many of the prophecies. He recorded them, read them, and re-wrote them after they were destroyed by the king.
After hearing what was going to happen to Jerusalem and Judah, he was quite upset. He said, “Woe is me now! for the Lord hath added grief to my sorrow; I fainted in my sighing, and I find no rest.”
What God was doing in the world was very dramatic and drastic. Baruch’s entire way of life and his home was about to be destroyed. So, he had good reason to be concerned and upset.
But, then notice what God has to say to Baruch. God gives Jeremiah a special message for Baruch. He tells him, “that which I have built will I break down, and that which I have planted I will pluck up, even this whole land.”
Basically God is telling him: This is my land. I will do what I want with my land.
Then God asks him, “Why are you seeking great things for yourself? Don’t seek great things for yourself. I will bring evil on all flesh and judge everything, but I am going to spare you and protect you.”
A few lessons I think we can take from this chapter:
- God is in control, and God’s plans are much bigger than us.
- We need to stop seeking great things for ourselves and seek great things for God. Our main desire should be that God does what He wants, not that we get what we want.
- In the midst of great difficulty, we still have much to thank the Lord for. God let Baruch know that he would be protected and cared for.