The Daily Fountain Daily Devotional of the Church Of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) 14 October 2019 – Our Basic Christian Duty
TOPIC: Our Basic Christian Duty
READ: Jeremiah 29:1-9 King James Version (KJV)
- Now these are the words of the letter that Jeremiah the prophet sent from Jerusalem to the remainder of the elders who were carried away captive—to the priests, the prophets, and all the people whom Nebuchadnezzar had carried away captive from Jerusalem to Babylon.
- (This happened after Jeconiah the king, the queen mother, the eunuchs, the princes of Judah and Jerusalem, the craftsmen, and the smiths had departed from Jerusalem.)
- The letter was sent by the hand of Elasah the son of Shaphan, and Gemariah the son of Hilkiah, whom Zedekiah king of Judah sent to Babylon, to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, saying,
- Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, to all who were carried away captive, whom I have caused to be carried away from Jerusalem to Babylon:
- Build houses and dwell in them; plant gardens and eat their fruit.
- Take wives and beget sons and daughters; and take wives for your sons and give your daughters to husbands, so that they may bear sons and daughters—that you may be increased there, and not diminished.
- And seek the peace of the city where I have caused you to be carried away captive, and pray to the Lord for it; for in its peace you will have peace.
- For thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Do not let your prophets and your diviners who are in your midst deceive you, nor listen to your dreams which you cause to be dreamed.
- For they prophesy falsely to you in My name; I have not sent them, says the Lord
And work for the peace and prosperity of the city where I sent you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, for its welfare will determine your welfare (Jeremiah 29:7; NLT). This was the basic advice of Jeremiah to the captives in Babylon. They had been under the deceitful prophecy of the false prophets with them in their land of captivity that the captivity would soon be over. God moved Jeremiah to encourage them to settle down and be prepared for a long stay. While doing this however, they should keep praying for the peace, prosperity and welfare of the land where they lived. What an irony of life!
As believers, though we are on the earth, we are not of the earth. This however does not mean that we should stand aloof and become unconcerned with what goes on in our society. It is true that our commonwealth is in heaven (Philippians 3:20), yet we should realize that we have an obligation to this present society. We are expected to seek its peace, prosperity and welfare through prayer (1 Timothy 2:4), performance of our civic duties like paying taxes etc., (Psalm 13:1-7), witnessing for Christ (Matthew 28:18-20) etc. While doing all these, we should be careful to maintain our Christian testimonies as Daniel and the three Hebrew children did in the land of Babylon.
PRAYER: Help us, dear Lord, to discharge our duties to our world as we witness for You through our service to You and humanity.