December 9

Jeremiah 1:5, 9-10 (NIV) 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."

9Then the LORD reached out his hand and touched my mouth and said to me, "Now, I have put my words in your mouth. 10See, today I appoint you over nations and kingdoms to uproot and tear down, to destroy and overthrow, to build and to plant."

Archeologists have discovered extra-biblical evidence that Jeremiah and his scribe, Baruch, existed. Pottery shards have been discovered upon which someone complained that the prophet's message was demoralizing. Jeremiah was telling the nation to surrender to their captors because God had determined the nation must go into exile. During the battle for Jerusalem, Baruch's seal was buried and remained there until it was uncovered in this century.

In the introduction to Jeremiah, we read of the call of God upon his life. God had ordained him to be the prophet of doom before he was even formed in his mother's womb. What did God make you to be? The psalmist said that the days of our lives were ordained before our birth, (Psalm 139:16) yet, we have the freedom to choose. Are you walking in God's ordained plan for your life?

In Jeremiah's case, God put His words in Jeremiah's mouth. His message was to foretell the fall and return of Judah. Because he had such a message of doom, he shed many tears and was called the weeping prophet. Though the nation rejected God's message, Jeremiah faithfully delivered it. It was a lonely job, and though he was tempted to refuse to do it, he was faithful to the end. What an example to us to live in God's call for us!

Consider: Let us be faithful to walk in all that God has called us to that we might have the testimony of being faithful to God.

December 9

2 Peter 1:3-5 (NIV) 3His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. 4Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires. 5For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge;

Jesus came to rescue us from a fate worse than death. He came to make it possible for us who receive Him to have the power of the Holy Spirit so that we may truly know life and godliness. Life and godliness come through our increasing knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness.

Through the goodness and glory of God, we have received very great and precious promises. We know He will never leave us or forsake us. We know that He will finish the work He started in us. We know that He will one day wipe away every tear from our eyes. We know that He will strengthen us with power through the Spirit in our inner being.

It is through these precious promises that we participate in His nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires. We hold those evil desires along side these great promises and see that the desires are not only deceitful but destructive. We would much rather cling to the great and precious promises.

Because of the great promises of God that help us participate in His nature, we are to make every effort to increase in the likeness of His nature. Peter made a list of attributes that we, through cooperation with the Holy Spirit, should see increased in us.

Consider: Peter encourages us to make every effort. Are you? Look at the list in 1 Peter 1:5-7 and see where you may need to increase your efforts in cooperation with God's Spirit in you.