Jeremiah chapter 39: The poorest who owned nothing became the owners of vineyards & fields
When King Zedekiah learned that the wall of his country or that his army was defeated, he decided to run away with his family, princes, and guards. However, this could not be possible for the Chaldean found this out and surrounded him in the plains of Jericho. Some historical writers say that the King`s palace had underground tunnels through which the king walked through and got out in plains of Jericho. However, by the time he got out, the enemy had already surrounded his life. The King and all that were with him (according to writer, John Gills, some of his officials might have escaped leaving him with the most loyal ones by the time he was captured by Babylonian army) were escorted and taken to the king of Babylon who was now in one of Syria`s hot towns, Riblah. There Zedekiah met his judgment just as it had been prophesied (verses 4-5).
Zedekiah`s children were killed in front of him, Great officers and those who had been loyal to him were slain too. The king`s eyes were put out and he was heavily chained. Then, all those who had been captured, people who had earlier surrendered and Zedekiah were matched to Babylon as captives. Jerusalem was burnt down, including the temple, the King`s palace and the common man`s houses. The commander in charge of the field work left some few, poor people behind and left them with the vines and fields that had been for big officers and the rich men of Judah (verses 6-10).
God is all-knowing and can predict with perfection our future events and so King Zedekiah perfectly met his long-time prescribed sentence. The prophet had always said that surrendering was the only way to save himself, his country and his people but he had kept a deaf ear. So finally he met what he feared most yet he had done nothing right about it. Also, the fact that those who were the poor people of the land were left home with some richness is another great lesson. I remember there is a verse in the bible that says that the richness of a wicked person will finally be for the righteousness. Yeah, at times we use all the means possible to acquire world treasures and by the time we are to sit and enjoy it, we find having no more life to do so and see how we die and those we hated, fought against or called poor remain enjoying our vines and fields.
The commanders in the field had orders from the Babylonian king to find Jeremiah and not hurt him in any way but provide him with whatever he asked for. So they got Jeremiah from the court yard where he had been under surveillance. Those who had been keeping an eye on him as a prisoner had been defeated by the greater enemy and so he was in the hands of the Babylonians. When he was asked to make his requests, he requested to be left in his country with the few left-overs and so he was released and he remained with his poor people under the command of their own governor Gedaliah (verses 11-14). While he had been falsely accused of turning back on his country by his enemies as we saw in our previous chapters, Jeremiah loved his land and he still chose to stay even when he had all the chances to be taken to Babylon and in a respectful way.
Earlier before the actual penetration of the enemy into the King`s court yard, the Lord had promised to save Ebed-Melech, the cushite from Ethiopia and this promise of salvation had been brought to him by prophet Jeremiah. If you still remember, this man is the one who noticed that Jeremiah had been put in well to die from there, went and reported to the king, and took part in the rescue mission of the prophet as we saw in our previous readings. So here the Lord remembers his faith and rewards him with life (verses 15-18).
Our focus today is verse 10, " But Nebuzaradan, commander of the guard, left some of the poorest people of Judah behind. They owned nothing, but that day he gave them vineyards and fields". This verse has a very great message. Usually, every country has poor people and rich ones but these were the poorest and really owned nothing. Yeah, there are those who the world has considered as poor as such, they really have nothing. This message inspires two kinds of people. Those who are poor in physical things like money, good health, houses, cars or even land can probably get rich too someday. So do not give up, God can use His means and bring you success as well. I know these days, we are doing everything dirty as long as we make money, but when God`s hand moves against us, even what we worked for or snatched from the poor will be eaten by others or those we call poor nowadays.
This message also carries a spiritual inspiration to those who are poor and thirst for they shall own the heaven and earth (Matthew 5:3 and 5). Yeah, blessed are those who are poor, who feel they wronged God enough and have nothing good to boast about, who believe that their living is God`s grace but not the richness of their souls for these kind of people shall surely be saved. On that day, those who pretended to be full of the gospel, who made others repent without repenting themselves will lose what they held in dreams and it will be a real gift to those who truly confessed their emptiness.
This may be challenging to understand but the simple message is that we are sinners and poor in our souls and if we accept this, then we are likely to be saved by the grace and made rich with it. The method is simple: To accept that you are a sinner, believe that Jesus died and rose for you to have life and allow Him into your life as lord and savior. If you have not yet given your life to Jesus, do so today and now. Say this prayer, " Oh God, i realize i am a sinner and Your son Jesus died to save me. I accept Him in my life as my Lord and savior. Amen". Find any church that has right teachings near you, join and become part of christian family. God bless you
Nemvicx. The Complete You Project