15 However, all the men who knew that their wives were burning incense to other gods, all the women standing by — a great assembly — and all the people who were living in the land of Egypt at Pathros answered Jeremiah, 16 “As for the word you spoke to us in the name of Yahweh, we are not going to listen to you! 17 Instead, we will do everything we said we would: burn incense to the queen of heaven and offer drink offerings to her just as we, our fathers, our kings, and our officials did in Judah’s cities and in Jerusalem’s streets. Then we had enough food and good things and saw no disaster, 18 but from the time we ceased to burn incense to the queen of heaven and to offer her drink offerings, we have lacked everything, and through sword and famine we have met our end.” (Jeremiah 44:15-18 HCSB)
Stubborn: “Having or showing dogged determination not to change one’s attitude or position on something, especially in spite of good arguments or reasons to do so.”
Rebellion: “The action or process of resisting authority, control, or convention.”
Have you ever had a conversation with someone who sought your wisdom concerning a situation they were dealing with? They asked your advice–you invested time, energy, and prayer to help walk them through the troublesome time–only to have them politely say, “Thanks…but no thanks!”
When I began ministry, I determined to stick close to scriptural principles when providing counseling. I’ve held tightly to that policy when meeting with individuals in need of guidance. In fact, I usually instruct them in the first meeting that I’m not a licensed counselor, and do not use secular methods to remedy spiritual matters. If they want secular wisdom, they can seek that out. I’m a pastor. It’s what I’m called to do, and I must remain in my gift-set if I am to be successful in helping others. The best tool I have in my bag is scripture because it reveals the principles established by God. It works!
One of the most difficult things to do is get people to try a different approach. They say they want a change in their circumstance but they don’t want to do anything different. It’s a certain recipe for failure. It reeks of rebellion and stubbornness.
The Prophet Jeremiah found himself in a similar situation. The people listening to him were in quite a dilemma; facing the judgment of God they had come to Jeremiah to hear the word of the Lord. Jeremiah gave them the whole load! He held nothing back–no mincing of words. He revealed every evil thing they had been involved in and provided a clear path to victory. Good news! Right?
“…All the people who were living in the land of Egypt at Pathros answered Jeremiah, 16 “As for the word you spoke to us in the name of Yahweh, we are not going to listen to you! 17 Instead, we will do everything we said we would…” Rebellion and stubbornness reigned supreme! And, it kept them from experiencing the blessings of God.
Hear my heart… You cannot be rebellious with God and expect to come out on top! He will not tolerate a stubborn spirit. It repels His blessings as much as any attitude you can possess. So, do you need to experience a breakthrough? Why not start with an attitude adjustment!
PRAYER: Father, help me to overcome the fleshly desire to rebel against You. Your words are life and liberty. Help me to submit my will to yours so that blessing can be mine! Amen.