Friday, August 17, 2007

Instruments

When the Jews’ sins became more than God could take, he sent the Babylonians to defeat and scatter them. The Lord intended for it to happen. He made sure his chosen people lost in battle, and he even called the Babylonian king “my servant.” No doubt about it: the Babylonians were on top.

Does that mean the Jews were now the bad guys and the Babylonians the good? Not at all. Almost as soon as Babylon did God’s will in punishing the Jews, God punished Babylon for its wickedness too. And he went on to punish just about every other nation nearby. The Lord said in effect, “Did you really think I’d demolish my own city and leave you other wicked nations in peace?” (Jer. 25:11-29). So everybody suffered, but after seventy years God brought the Jews back home.

What’s the point? For a time it looked as if the Lord had forsaken Israel in favor of another nation. But in reality Babylon was only a hammer God was using to reshape and refine his real treasure.


(c) Copyright 2007, A. Milton Stanley

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Reminds me of a verse so many folks like to quote; it begins... 'no weapon formed against thee shall prosper...' They fail to note the preceding verses that speak of God creating the smith that forms the weapons.

Milton Stanley said...

Yes, that's a fine example of both the topic here and of the dangers of pulling verses out of context. Thanks.