September 11, 2020: Day 20 – Jeremiah 20

We find in this chapter another example of why Jeremiah is called the weeping prophet.  We begin the chapter by finding that Jeremiah’s boss  physically abuses him and then throws him into prison.  We read about Pashhur who was the chief officer in the temple, which is the house of the Lord.  As the chief officer he was responsible for all the prophets of the Lord which included Jeremiah.  He heard Jeremiah say that God  was bringing disaster upon Jerusalem  and all of the towns in which the people of Israel lived.  This is what he said the chapter before.  The boss didn’t like that because destruction was being preached against his church and against his people.   He had to put this employee in line.

Once he gets out of prison as a result of his boss striking him and putting him in prison, he doesn’t slink away with his tail between his legs and stay quiet.  He right away gets in Pashhur’s face and calls him out and says that he now has a different name, and it is not a really nice name.  He calls him “terror all around.”  Basically anyone who comes into contact with him will be terrorized.  This includes his family to his friends to he himself.  He then says in vs.6 “You, Pashhur, and all who live in your house, shall go into captivity.”  He doesn’t shy away from creating for him a future that is not at all appealing.

Look at the whiplash that we find in this chapter.  Look at vs. 13 and then vs.14.  “Praise the Lord…cursed be the day on which I was born.”  Wow, Jeremiah really goes on an emotional roller coaster here as he gives thanks to God and yet recognizes that his current state is one where he is being beat up by his boss and thrown into prison.  The question he leaves us with is: “Why did I come forth from the womb to see toil and sorrow, and spend my days in shame?”  This is the life of a prophet who sees the people and the church turn their back on him.

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