Jeremiah 36:24 “The king and all his attendants who heard all these words showed no fear, nor did they tear their clothes.” (NIV)*
The same fire that warmed King Jehoiakim’s body burned the words that could have saved his life. As the scroll was read, the king cut off those portions and threw them into the firepot…until the entire scroll was burned. King Jehoiakim showed no fear towards the word of God Jeremiah had sent to him.
The heart too hardened to receive is in a scary place—when the word doesn’t bring a twinge of fear or inspire respect for its author. I’m referring to a disdain for God’s Word…not dry spells here and there.
If I read the word and it brings remorse—that’s a good thing. That’s the word doing its job. Hebrews 4:12 tells us: “For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” (NIV)
Be encouraged if reading the word brings conviction or evokes a desire to change. Those emotions reveal a soft heart towards God and his word…and that’s a good place to be.
*The One Year Bible, October 20, NIV, copyright 1986, Tyndale House Publishers, Wheaton, Illinois.
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