The Bigger Picture.
“His cry of judgment will reach the ends of the earth, for the Lord will bring his case against all the nations. He will judge all the people of the earth, slaughtering the wicked with the sword. I, the Lord, have spoken!” – Jeremiah 25:31 NLT
For 23 years, Jeremiah had been bringing his message of God’s coming judgment to the people of Judah. Over and over again he called them to repent and return. He pleaded with them to turn away from their false gods and return to the one true God. But they continued to refuse Jeremiah’s message and God’s call. “Again and again the Lord has sent you his servants, the prophets, but you have not listened or even paid attention. Each time the message was this: ‘Turn from the evil road you are traveling and from the evil things you are doing. Only then will I let you live in this land that the Lord gave to you and your ancestors forever. Do not provoke my anger by worshiping idols you made with your own hands. Then I will not harm you.’” (Jeremiah 25:4-6 NLT). The formula was simple: turn away from worshiping false gods and turn back to God, then they would escape destruction. But they refused His offer. The continued to live in open rebellion against God.
So God told them exactly what would happen – 20 years before it actually took place. He predicted the fall of Jerusalem and the 70 years of Babylonian captivity. He also predicted their return to the land after the 70 years of captivity. Then God went on to tell them what was going to take place beyond that point. He predicted the future destruction of the nations at the time of the second coming of Christ. God would be forced to deal with the growing sin and rebellion against Him by bringing one final round of punishment on them. This will all take place when Jesus returns the second time to the earth and judges the earth. “They are demonic spirits who work miracles and go out to all the rulers of the world to gather them for battle against the Lord on that great judgment day of God the Almighty. Look, I will come as unexpectedly as a thief! Blessed are all who are watching for me, who keep their clothing ready so they will not have to walk around naked and ashamed. And the demonic spirits gathered all the rulers and their armies to a place with the Hebrew name Armageddon” (Revelation 16:14-16 NLT). The rebellion of mankind against God will continue. The destruction of Babylon was not going to stop nations from rising up against God. The restoration of Judah was not going to make the people of God return to Him. The nation of Israel continues in disobedience to God to this day. But there is a day coming when the Messiah will return to restore all things to the way they should be. He will bring an end to all wrong and restore righteousness to the land.
ThenI saw heaven opened and here camea white horse! Theone riding it was called “Faithful” and “True,” and with justicehe judges and goes to war. His eyes are like a fieryflame and there are many diadem crownson his head. He hasa name writtenthat no one knows except himself. He is dressed in clothing dippedin blood, and he is called the Word of God. Thearmies that are in heaven, dressed in white, clean, fine linen,were following him on white horses. From his mouth extends a sharp sword, so that with it he can strike the nations.Hewill rulethem with an iron rod,and he stomps the winepressof the furiouswrath of God, the All-Powerful.He has a name written on his clothing and on his thigh: “King of kings and Lord of lords.” (Revelation 20:11-16 NET).
God has a long-term plan for the world. He will not allow evil to win. He will make all things right. That is His promise to all mankind. And He has never failed to keep a single promise He has made.
Father, You are not done yet. You are still at work and You have a divine plan that You are working out in Your perfect timing. Your Son is going to return one day and restore all things. He will bring perfect righteousness to the land. Never let us lose sight of that fact. No matter how bad things may appear, You are still in control and working Your perfect plan to perfection. Amen
Grow Pastor & Minister to Men