90 Days of Prayer – Day Forty Nine
God Imparts Something Worth Boasting About
“This is what the Lord says: “Let not the wise boast of their wisdom or the strong boast of their strength or the rich boast of their riches, but let the one who boasts boast about this: that they have the understanding to know me, that I am the Lord, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight,” declares Lord.”
Nothing to Brag About
In the passage before us we have a contrast of values, the first is what the wayward people of God desired, and the second what God considered the highest valuables anyone can possess. Apart from God the people were boasting of what they had, pursuing the self-centered trappings of wealth power and fame. This is something the nation was doing during the entire time of Jeremiah’s ministry.
Jeremiah is known as the weeping Prophet, and with good reason. He ministered with a broken heart his whole career because his people would not listen to God, and therefore would not follow Him. Paul was feeling the same thing when he wrote; “Brothers and sisters, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for the Israelites is that they may be saved. For I can testify about them that they are zealous for God, but their zeal is not based on knowledge” (Romans 10:1-2 ). Jeremiah confronted false teachers and prophets his entire ministry. The people sought wisdom and knowledge everywhere but in the God who loved them. To make matters worse, everyone (false prophets and teachers included) were fighting for bragging rights!
The word translated “boast” appears five times in our passage above. This word is a Hebrew word which means “to flash,” “shine,” or “brag.” This word is often translated “praise,” which is exactly what they were doing. The problem was that all the praise was for themselves. Any wisdom or knowledge that considers wealth, power, influence and personal achievements, as the criteria of success, is not from God and can never save people from an eternity without God. Enter Jeremiah, with wisdom from above to redirect the attention of a lost and dying generation, to what really matters in God’s eyes.
Something To Brag About
Since the fall of our first parents in Eden, humanity has been on a search for wisdom, knowledge, the meaning and purpose of our existence, and ultimately immortality. All the genuine wisdom and knowledge of the universe is with God. Knowing and respecting God is where any search for wisdom, knowledge, and understanding begins. I’m reminded of 17th Century Pastor Richard Baxter who said;”In the study of the cosmos, if we do not see God, we truly see nothing at all.” This was precisely the point of Jeremiah’s prophesy in our passage above. God wants His people to brag about what they know, if of course they’re referring to a wisdom and knowledge that has come from God.
This is precisely what the Great Commission is all about! We the Church are entrusted with the genuine wisdom and knowledge of God, and are instructed to tell it the nations! We the Church have something to brag about. We have been given the meaning and purpose of life! Knowing Christ is genuine wisdom in and of itself… We have something to brag about (for the glory of God). Paul wanted the Church to “have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge“ (Colossians 2:2-3).
Treasure Knowing God
You and I have the only wisdom and knowledge that matters. This knowledge leads to the only life that matters, and that is the one God wants all people to have -Eternal Life. Jesus said that knowing him is eternal life; “Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent” (John 17:3 ). This is the origin of the phrase “come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. In Jeremiah’s day as still is the case today, the people went after a false wisdom and knowledge which could not save them from destruction.
If you are in Christ, you have come to “know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God” (Ephesians 3:19 ). Treasure the fact that you know God “that Christ is the Lord, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth.”
Be grateful that you have been chosen by God, Be joyful in the fact that God who is good to all, is especially so to you. Be secure in the fact that you are a son/daughter of the King of Kings. Be aware that you have been given something worth boasting about, And Be Encouraged. -JSP