...but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; They will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
ISAIAH 40:31

A Blog for Kids and Everyone.

This is a journey through God's word. The Bible is so amazing! There are a lot of great stories. Some that we know well and some will surprise us. We will have a lot of fun as we color, watch short cartoons and tell funny stories.

Thursday, January 27, 2022

Faithfulness: God's desire from us (Jeremiah 38:7 -52)

 When we left Jeremiah last time, he was sitting at the bottom of a muddy well, left for dead. But God........still had more for Jeremiah to do. God touched the heart of one of the king's servants, an Ethiopian named Ebed-Melech. The servant took his own life in his hands by telling the king that allowing Jeremiah to be thrown into the well to die was wrong. Instead of killing Ebed-Melech, the king had a change of heart and told the young Ethiopian to gather some men and pull Jeremiah out of the well.

Sometimes saying the right thing, or telling the hard truth is not easy. God says to do the right thing, not the easy thing. Just as Ebed-Melech risked his life, sometimes we have to risk being made fun of or losing friends. But know this. We always have God on our side when we do right.

So Jeremiah was saved..... well sort of. The king had Jeremiah brought before him. "Tell me what you know!" He ordered. Jeremiah was concerned that if he told him the truth, the king would have him killed anyway. But the king promised that he would not have Jeremiah killed if he told him the truth. So Jeremiah told the king that Babylon would soon attack Jerusalem, but that he should surrender peacefully to them or some bad stuff would happen to the king's family as well as to the king himself. The king was not happy with what Jeremiah said, but he had promised not to kill him, so he had Jeremiah tossed into dungeon.... again.

While Jeremiah was imprisoned, Jerusalem was taken over by the Babylonians, (just as God said) and the king of Judah didn't listen to what God said through Jeremiah. And remember what God told Jeremiah to tell the king... Some bad stuff would happen? Well the king tried to flee the city during the take over. He was caught and his eyes were gouged out! Also his wife and kids were killed in the palace when it was set on fire.

Even though Jeremiah was taken to Babylon during the siege, God protected him. Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon set Jeremiah free to live in Babylon. Jeremiah was even given food and some gifts to help him settle in. Since Jeremiah was a prisoner of Judah, and the king of Judah was an enemy of Babylon, Nebuchadnezzar showed kindness to Jeremiah. So I guess getting thrown into prison again turned out pretty well for Jeremiah.

Sometimes things don't work out like we planned. I'm sure Jeremiah didn't want to be pulled from a well, just to get tossed into a dungeon. God sees all things. We need to trust Him. Have you ever had something go the wrong way, only to find out later that it was absolutely for the best? I have.

When Jerusalem was taken over by the Babylonians, a lot of the Jews were taken captive, however, the poorest Jews were left behind and a small governmental system was put in place. Many of the Jews saw that the fighting was over and returned to Judah. The Jews that fled to Egypt however, found life very comfortable there and decided not to return. 

Jeremiah returned to Judah with a word for the people. He said that the people in Egypt should return as well. That Egypt would soon fall to Babylon just like Judah did. He said that the Jews that have remained in Egypt are now worshipping false gods. God said that He would pass judgement upon them and anyone else who is worshipping idols. Some of the new leaders did not like Jeremiah and what he was saying. So they captured Jeremiah and took him to Egypt.

While in Egypt, Jeremiah faithfully continued to speak the words that God had put in his mouth. The final 5 chapters of the Book of Jeremiah tell of God's judgement on Egypt, Moab, Philistine and neighboring countries. Jeremiah is not mentioned again in these final chapters. Some say he was killed, others say he escaped Egypt. No one really knows for sure.

So even though Jeremiah spent his whole life trying to get his people to turn from their sin and to turn toward God, the people never listened. The outcome was not in Jeremiah's hands. He simply did what the Lord asked him to do. That is called faithfulness. God delights in our faithfulness. We don't have to "save the world". That is God's job. All we have to do is obey Him, and leave the consequences to Him. If you tell someone about Jesus and they accept Him as their savior, God did that, not you. To Him be the glory! And on the same note, if the person you shared Christ with rejects the message, it's not on you. You did what God asked. Leave the rest to Him.

Tuesday, January 18, 2022

The People and the King Refuse to Listen to God (Jeremiah 1-38:6)

 Today we begin a new book of the Bible. It is the 24th book and it is called the Book of Jeremiah.

 Jeremiah was born in Judah. His father was a priest named Hilkiah. So Jeremiah was taught many religious things as a boy. His father had hoped that Jeremiah would become a priest like him. But God... had different plans.

 A lot of times we make plans or our parents make plans ...  (But God). So we should hold on to our plans loosely as God may have other plans. His plans are always better. Sometimes they are harder, as we will see in the story of Jeremiah, but they are always better. (Isaiah 55:8-9)

When Jeremiah was a boy, there was a good king of Judah named Josiah. He had all the idols destroyed and led the nation in the ways of God. But as soon as Josiah died in a battle, the people of Judah went right back to idol worshipping and sinning. The people were following their king and not following God. 

When we go to church, we should be putting our hearts in the hands of God and not our trust in a minister or pastor. They are human beings just like we are. If they mess up or even die, our faith should not be shaken or crumble, because our faith is in God.

When Jeremiah was a young man, about 20 years old, God spoke to him. He said that He knew Jeremiah before he was even born... and He had a plan for him to speak for Him as a prophet. But Jeremiah was scared. He told God that he was way too young to speak for Him.

Remember last time in Isaiah we learned that God has a plan for us before we are even born? Well here it is again as God spoke to Jeremiah. God had a plan for Isaiah, and for Jesus, for Jeremiah and He has a plan for you and me!

Jeremiah took his new job as God's prophet very seriously. He knew that telling the people that they must repent of their wickedness would not go over too well. It would be difficult, and sometimes dangerous, but Jeremiah was up to the task and began to tell the people what God was saying about their evil ways. Jeremiah loved God and he loved his country. He preached for over 40 years, but the people turned their back and refused to listen. This made Jeremiah sad and he became known as the "weeping prophet".

How was Jeremiah able to do such a hard thing? God told him to do it, and God gave him the wisdom, courage and strength to carry it out. When God touches our hearts and wants us to do something for Him, don't be fearful, because God will give you all the tools you need, and He'll be right there with you. (Isaiah 41:10)

Jeremiah told the people that they were doing wrong. And he told them that God loved them and that they needed to repent or God would punish them by sending an army from the north to take them over just like He did 100 years earlier. The people laughed. Then Jeremiah went to the king and told him the same thing.

Has anyone ever laughed at you? It doesn't feel good. Especially if it is for doing the right thing. Don't let that stop you. God says that If He is for us, who can be against us. (Romans 8:31) He also says that we should do things that please him, instead of doing things that people want us to do. (Galatians 1:10) God is always on our side when we do what is right. (2 Corinthians 12:9)

God told Jeremiah to go to the temple and tell the people that they have turned away from the one true God. The High priest were infuriated that Jeremiah would come to their temple and preach such words. They called the temple guards and had Jeremiah brought before the judges. The judges had Jeremiah exiled (kicked out of the country). Even in exile Jeremiah sent messages through Baruch, his scribe ( a person who writes down on a scroll what a prophet dictates) to the palace and had a priest read the scroll to the king. After hearing what Jeremiah had written on the scroll, the king cut up the scroll in tiny pieces and burned it. Then the king then had Baruch arrested.

One of the most well-known verses in Jeremiah is Jeremiah 29:11. It says: "For I know the plans I have for you," says the Lord. "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future." God was warning Israel against false prophets, but that is a promise that we can hold onto for ourselves.

Some time later,  Jeremiah heard a message from God to go to the palace wearing a yoke. (a collar that oxen wear to pull a plow) He wasn't supposed to enter the palace, but God wanted to send a message to the king that his kingdom would be  taken over by Nebuchadnezzar, and unless he surrendered to his yoke (his will) the king's kingdom would be destroyed. Hananiah, one of the king's false prophets pulled the yoke off Jeremiah's shoulders and broke it.  The high priests and false prophets were getting tired of Jeremiah and his hard words and so was the king. So the king told the priests to do whatever they wanted with the prophet. So guess what they did? They called the kings guards who threw him in a muddy well with no food and left him to die!

Monday, January 3, 2022

(Isaiah 57-66) God's promises

 Chapter 57 begins with God telling His people that they are treating good people badly. He says that the righteous man is teased and ridiculed. God tells the righteous man not to worry. He will give them peace. Have you ever been teased for doing the right thing? (that is what righteousness is) Well, God promises you His peace, which according to Philippians, surpasses all human understanding. So continue to do the right thing. God has your back.

God says that his patience with the ungodly is running out. And He says that there is no peace for the wicked,  but then by the end of the chapter, He tells them  four ways to find His peace. 1. Know that He is holy and He alone is to be worshipped 2. Humble yourselves before Him. 3. Know that God loves

you and wants the best for you. 4. And by accepting the gift of peace. (which we know is Jesus) When we receive God's gift of peace, it doesn't mean that everyone will love everyone around us.... It is an inner peace; a rest for our souls; a peace with God; a contentment even in difficult circumstances. Have you accepted God's gift of peace, grace and love through His son, Jesus?

Chapter 58 is a beautiful chapter that addresses the question. God why don't you answer my prayers? First He tell about how the people were fasting and praying with the wrong motives. God always sees our heart. He knows why we do things. Even if it looks good, like praying or sacrificing something, God knows if our heart is in the right place. It may look good to others but "Man looks at the outward, God looks at the heart" (1Samuel 16:7) God continues the chapter by telling the people that if the pray and fast along with love and doing the right thing; And if they extend love with help to the poor and needy, then their lives will be filled with light and they will hear from God. Wouldn't it be great to hear from God and to have our lives filled with His light. Well, this is straight from God. Do right unto others and help the needy. But do both with love in your heart. Ask God to help you to do things out of love. He will be glad to help you.

In chapter 59 God tells his people that He not only knows their heart, (Chapter 58) but He sees all we do, good or bad. God told them that the reason that they don't feel Him shining His face upon them is because they are sinning in secret, trying to hide from God. While speaking to Job in Job 34:22 God says, "There is no darkness or deep shadow where the one who sins may hide themselves from me." Ever since Adam and Eve felt shame and tried to hide from God because of their guilt, man has been doing the same thing. Have you ever felt guilty for doing something wrong. Don't try to hide it. Confess it. God is a God of light. He wants all things brought into the light. He wanted His people to confess their sins to Him and He wants us to do the same thing."The light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the
light because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed." (John 3:19-20) At the end of the chapter, God says that He will send a Redeemer. That Redeemer is Jesus Christ! 

Chapter 60 tell of how wonderful it will be when Jesus comes for all men who believe. Then It talks about the second coming of Jesus, (which we are still waiting for) when Jesus rules over all the world and He will be our everlasting light!

Chapter 61-66 tell of the Millennial Kingdom which is not yet here. The book of Isaiah is so amazing! It has prophesies about the first coming of Jesus which has already taken place, and all of the prophesies concerning Jesus' first coming have come true. But Isaiah also prophesies about the second coming. For example; Those who persecuted Israel will now realize that Jerusalem is the City of the Lord. God will make all things new. Violence will be no more. There will be no need for the sun. Jesus will be our light of day. Jesus will rule over all the earth. Here are a few more straight from Isaiah 65:20-25

“No more shall an infant from there live but a few days

Nor an old man who has not fulfilled his days; 

For the child shall die one hundred years old, 

They shall build houses and inhabit them;
They shall plant vineyards and eat their fruit.

For as the days of a tree, so shall be the days of My people,
And My elect shall long enjoy the work of their hands.
They shall not labor in vain,
Nor bring forth children for trouble;
For they shall be the descendants of the blessed of the LORD,

“It shall come to pass
That before they call, I will answer;
And while they are still speaking, I will hear.

The wolf and the lamb shall feed together,
The lion shall eat straw like the ox.