Monday, April 10, 2017

Devotion 16: Angered Through A Broken Heart


"I remember...how you loved me...
yet you do all the evil you can."
Jeremiah 2:2; 3:5.
(Read Jeremiah 1-3)

As angry and bitter sounding are the accusations God makes against Israel in chapters two through three of the book of the prophet Jeremiah, nevertheless, it comes from a broken heart.

I am of the personal opinion that atheists deny God, not on the grounds of science or facts as they may claim, but because they had a tragic experience that has left them with a broken and bitter heart.  "If God exists, he is cruel and evil," they would say.  And there may be those who would sympathize with the atheists and see their anger as justified.

We ourselves may manage to use our hurt as an excuse to be cruelly angry towards others.

Yet, just as deeply broken is God's heart that he responds by rejecting his people, refusing to deliver them from the violence of their enemies.

Do we ever give God the same benefit of the doubt we give others who respond angrily because of hurt? Do we ever consider God justified in his anger?  We never seem to acknowledge God's brokenness behind the words of judgment we read in the Bible. Rather than sympathize with God's brokenness, we speedily condemn God as mean, harsh, and even evil.

However, although a man would not take back his wife who committed adultery by prostituting herself, God's broken heart, nevertheless, does not so overcome his love for His people that he would not take them back if they would only return in repentance to their "first love" (Jeremiah 3:12; Revelation 2:4-5a).

Prayer:  Lord, influence us in grace in such a way that our hearts would break with even the thought of breaking your heart.  And, in your anger, lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.  In Jesus name, amen.

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