THE POTTER’S HOUSE
Today’s Reading: Jeremiah 18-19
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Key Verses: Jeremiah 18:2 &11b
Arise and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will cause you to hear my words…Thus says the Lord: “Behold, I am fashioning a disaster and devising a plan against you. Return now every one from his evil way, and make your ways and your doings good.”
Jeremiah heard God’s Words and proclaimed them to the people of his time and ours too! God’s invitation, which we can accept or reject, is conditional. If we RETURN, REPENT, and decide to DO WHAT IS RIGHT, the vessel of our lives and our land will be made by the Divine Potter into a new creation of God, “As it seemed good for the Potter to make!!!” (18:4b). See Romans 9:20-23 as a New Testament example of the Divine Potter and we who are to be the clay which is molded by His hands.
What horror and evil the people brought upon themselves. During the siege by the Babylonians, people turned into cannibals. The same happened, according to the historian who wrote on the destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans, following the rejection of the Messiah Jesus by the political and religious leadership. There were many exceptions to this extreme evil. In Jeremiah’s day, there were young men like Daniel and the three Hebrew children who lived righteous lives (Daniel 3:10-30). The same courage was shown by many during and following the Roman destruction (see yesterday’s blog). As was the case with the Babylonian destruction prophesied by Jeremiah, so the Romans, according to Josephus’ “Jewish Wars,” took 700 prisoners back to Rome, paraded them in chains behind Titus’ chariot through the streets, and then sold them as slaves to Roman households. Some were believers in Jesus. Some were even part of the Royal household of the Caesar (Philippians 4:20-23). God continues to mold human clay into vessels which He can fill and employ in His good purpose.
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
O, Potter of my life, I yield myself in wholehearted willing surrender to Your hands. I pray that I will be “as the clay is in the Potter’s hand!” I’m aware that the fire is necessary to complete my vessel in order that I may be useful to carry the Water of Life to others. May I be poured out, filled again and again, and poured out often for Your purposes, Lord God! In the Name of the One whose very life was poured out for the entire world, Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen!!!
100 PERSONAL WORDS:
It was 1992, in Seville, Spain, at the great World Expo attended by at least 40 million people from all over the world where Crossroads built “La Pabillion de la Promessa” (The Pavilion of Promise). During the months of the Expo, over 53,000 people made first-time decisions to receive Jesus, not as a religion, but as personal Saviour and Lord! The Roman Catholic Archbishop of Seville wept as he said, “My people, my people need this message!” However, my memory backs up 500 years to the Spanish Inquisition, the persecution and martyrdom of many, not by the common people, but by religious and political leaders, as it was at the time of Christ. Two Seville priests had made their way to England where they translated the Bible into Spanish for the first time. In Seville, each morning as I walked from our apartment to the Expo grounds, I would walk through the square where at least 1,500 were burnt at the stake for their contention that the only Words of salvation were in the Bible, which they had recently acquired from those two priests. Crossroads had run out of money to pay our bills and human reason said, “Pack it in, stop construction, and head home.” However, I believe I heard that still small Voice saying to me, “Look down at the ancient dust packed beneath and around the cobblestones under your feet. There are minute particles of the ashes left from the bodies of those who simply wanted to cherish the Scriptures and its message of eternal life, and their blood cries out to Me from the ashes of their sacrifice!” These priests and people believed that salvation was theirs, not by a religious ceremony, but by faith through grace according to the Scriptures (Ephesians 2:1-9). I think it was 1959 when Pope John XXIII proclaimed that all Roman Catholics were to get a Bible of their own and read it!!!
Yours for being molded in the hands of the Divine Potter according to the Scriptures,
P.S. For a fuller story of Expo ’92 and Crossroads’ mission, please get my book, find the pictures of our pavilions in four World Expos, and then turn to page 138. Click here to order your own copy of This Far By Faith!