Courage Tested

Read Jeremiah 38:1-6

“Then took they Jeremiah, and cast him into the dungeon of Malchiah the son of Hammelech, that was in the court of the prison: and they let down Jeremiah with cords. And in the dungeon, there was no water, but mire: so Jeremiah sunk in the mire” (v. 6).
Bringing unfavorable news to the royal court has always had its risks. Kings of ancient times were notoriously bad losers. If they didn’t like the message, they took it out on the messenger. And people still do this today. Many have been the times that an attendee felt the sharp steel of God’s truth against his neck and decided that it was the preacher who was the problem and never came back. Today, sounding forth the Lord’s message might decrease the congregation; in Jeremiah’s day, it decreased one’s life!
Jeremiah offended the high ranking officials in the court of Zedekiah. They felt sure his words would weaken the morale of the military men. When they asked permission to do away with the prophet, the king did not stand in their way. And so Jeremiah found himself in the muddy, slimy bottom of a well – friendless, dirty, and awaiting death.
Have you ever been in that place? Has your courage for Christ been rewarded with a smelly, filthy situation? Don’t despair. Take it from Jeremiah, it’s best to obey the Lord, even if it means sitting in the mud for a while. (Valorie Quesenberry)

Sure I must fight if I would reign;
Increase my courage, Lord.
I’ll bear the toil, endure the pain,
Supported by Thy Word.
(Isaac Watts: Public Domain)

p style="text-align:center;font-style:italic;">A test of courage can only be passed through, not gone around.
This devotional is the Thursday, September 22, 2016 entry of Opening the Word.