Experience the power that has authority over nations and kingdoms.
Jeremiah 1:4–10 (NIV)
The Call of Jeremiah
4 The word of the Lord came to me, saying,
5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,
before you were born I set you apart;
I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”
6 “Alas, Sovereign Lord,” I said, “I do not know how to speak; I am too young.”
7 But the Lord said to me, “Do not say, ‘I am too young.’ You must go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you. 8 Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you and will rescue you,” declares the Lord.
9 Then the Lord reached out his hand and touched my mouth and said to me, “I have put my words in your mouth. 10 See, today I appoint you over nations and kingdoms to uproot and tear down, to destroy and overthrow, to build and to plant.”
Listen to passage & devotional:
Belgic Confession of Faith, Article 3: The Written Word of God
We confess that this Word of God
was not sent nor delivered by the will of men,
but that holy men of God spoke,
being moved by the Holy Spirit,
as Peter says.
Afterwards our God—
because of the special care he has
for us and our salvation—
commanded his servants,
the prophets and apostles,
to commit this revealed Word to writing.
He himself wrote
with his own finger
the two tables of the law.
Therefore we call such writings
holy and divine Scriptures.
"The word of the LORD came to me," writes Jeremiah. There's no indication as to what Jeremiah was doing when the LORD showed up, how God manifested Himself, or any other external detail; just that the LORD's word came.
We do know that Jeremiah was young when this occurred, if only because Jeremiah tries to use his youth as an excuse and his inability to 'speak' as an out, although he seems to do quite well talking back to God! We don't have time to explore this rabbit trail today, but isn't it amazing how many people God personally shows up to, only to find that the first thing the chosen representative does is argue with Him regarding why God made a mistake in choosing them? That's humanity in a nutshell: arguing with God (which is exactly what the Hebrew word yiś·rā·ʾēl means).
Of course the LORD didn't come to consult Jeremiah's opinion about the situation. Before Jeremiah's unfortunate response, God told him that Jeremiah's prophecy had been planned for long before he was even conceived. Lest you think that such pre-planning on God's part is only reserved for super important prophets like Jeremiah, re-read the opening verses Ephesians to be reminded that God says the same exact thing about you.
God commissions Jeremiah, giving him authority "over the nations and kingdoms to uproot and tear down, to destroy and overthrow, to build and plant." That's significant power!
But God doesn't give Jeremiah vast sums of money or advanced armies with superior military tactics with which to wield this world-shaping control. God gives him something much more powerful: He gives Jeremiah His Word.
This is why we read last week that Paul calls the gospel the "power of God." It was the very same mighty word that God used to speak the entire universe into existence that He put into young Jeremiah's mouth. It's that same word that Jeremiah and so many other prophets would write down at God's command, preserving them for subsequent generations.
This is the word that God places before you, neatly bound in sixty-six books, made complete and visible in the person and work of our Savior, Jesus Christ. God hasn't given you personal authority over the nations, but He has grafted you into the One to whom all authority has been given to (Matthew 28:18)!
These words we implore you to read daily and hear proclaimed on the Lord's Day have tremendous power. The better you know them, the more confidently you can live in them, knowing no nation or kingdom can threaten you. "Do not be afraid of them," the LORD says to you, "for I am with you and will rescue you (v8)."
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: God our Father, whose Word has all authority in heaven and on earth;
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Pray for the confidence to live by the power of God's Word rather than by the pathetic manipulations of society and your own excuses;
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED:
Read the New Testament in a year! Today: Acts 1