Daily Devo 8/24/13 “The Sinking of Babylon”

“Now it shall be, when you have finished reading this book, that you shall tie a stone to it and throw it out into the Euphrates. Then you shall say, 'Thus Babylon shall sink and not rise from the catastrophe that I will bring upon her. And they shall be weary.' Thus far are the words of Jeremiah” (Jeremiah 51:63-64).

It is a great comfort to me to consider God’s Sovereignty. In His Sovereignty God watches over my physical needs and has sent His Son to redeem me from my sins (Galatians 4:4-5). In addition, as part of His reigning power, God rules over the nations. Job said, “He makes nations great, and destroys them; He enlarges nations, and guides them. He takes away the understanding of the chiefs of the people of the earth, and makes them wander in a pathless wilderness. They grope in the dark without light, and He makes them stagger like a drunken man” (Job 12:23-25).

Throughout the book of Jeremiah, there is a dark cloud as Jeremiah prophesies about the upcoming destruction of Jerusalem by the nation of Babylon because of the sin of God’s people. One can only imagine the anxiety which must have weighed on Jeremiah’s heart and on the hearts of the faithful remnant as they saw the growing power of Babylon and her threatening Israel’s borders. However, as the book closes, God comforts His people by reminding them of His Sovereignty and that He will be punishing the nation of Babylon. Over a hundred verses in the last few chapters of the book of Jeremiah are dedicated to Babylon’s looming destruction (Jeremiah 50:1-51:58).

It is interesting, but 7 years before the destruction of Jerusalem (Jeremiah 52:1-5), through the prophet Jeremiah, God tells His people of the upcoming destruction of Babylon. Jeremiah goes with King Zedekiah to Babylon and notice what God has Jeremiah do: “The word which Jeremiah the prophet commanded Seraiah the son of Neriah, the son of Mahseiah, when he went with Zedekiah the king of Judah to Babylon in the fourth year of his reign. And Seraiah was the quartermaster. So Jeremiah wrote in a book all the evil that would come upon Babylon, all these words that are written against Babylon. And Jeremiah said to Seraiah, ‘When you arrive in Babylon and see it, and read all these words, then you shall say, “O Lord, You have spoken against this place to cut it off, so that none shall remain in it, neither man nor beast, but it shall be desolate forever” ’ ” (Jeremiah 51:59-62). Then as the opening verses above indicate, Seraiah throws the book containing these words into the Euphrates river and says, 'Thus Babylon shall sink and not rise from the catastrophe that I will bring upon her. And they shall be weary' (Jeremiah 51:63-64).

As we look at the news of today, there are lots of things in it that can create anxiety in our hearts today such as wars, violence, poverty, economic struggles, and the questionable decisions of many of our elected officials. It is comforting to be mindful that God still rules the nations and will ultimately execute His Sovereign judgment upon them: “The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God” (Psalm 9:17). As Christians, we can rejoice that we are part of a greater kingdom. We are part of the Kingdom of Christ (Colossians 1:13). Unlike Babylon of old or even the United States of America where I live today, Jesus’ Kingdom will never be sunk (Matthew 16:18-19). Today, I rejoice in being able to let go of my anxieties regarding the fate of earthly kingdoms and rejoice that my Heavenly Father in His Sovereignty has placed me in the Kingdom of His Son!

For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself” (Philippians 3:20-21).