Reading: Jeremiah 1: 4-10
The opening lines of Jeremiah are powerful. The Lord is staking a claim on Jeremiah’s life. God tells him that before he was formed in the womb the claim had been made. And Jeremiah was not just claimed as a child of God. The Lord informed him that he had been set apart to be a prophet to the people if God. Powerful and encouraging words. Intimidating and frightening words.
Webster’s defines ‘prophet’ as, “a member of some religions who delivers messages that are believed to come from God”. For Jeremiah, who is speaking directly with God in today’s passage, the message is surely from God. The timed certainly dictated a need for God’s intervention. Jeremiah’s place in history was one of turmoil, fear, and threats from outside. Nations around them were growing in power and the nation of Israel was divided. Instead of turning to God, the Kings of Judah and Israel tried to make alliances with other kings. In the end, because of a lack of trust in God’s protection, both nations fell and many were taken to exile in Babylon.
We live in a time when our world needs to hear the Word of God and to experience the love of Jesus Christ. Beginning in Genesis and running through Revelation we have the inspired Word of God, found in the writings of the Old Testament and the New Testament. We too have a message to share that comes from God.
Jesus was clear that He was just the beginning. Starting with the disciples, empowered by the Holy Spirit, the work of Jesus was continued. Paul, Timothy, and others joined in, filled with the same Holy Spirit. The Word of God was proclaimed and lives were changed. The world was changed. Right up to today many have gone forth into the world to share their faith in Jesus with a world in need of love, hope, and light. Brothers and sisters in Christ, fellow prophets of God’s Holy Word, we too are called. May we each go forth, armed with God’s messages of love, hope, forgiveness, and resurrection to change lives and to change our world.