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Jeremiah, the Weeping Prophet and the Value of His Work

October 3rd, 2004

(Rev. 19:10; Eccl. 7:2,3; Gen. 6:6; Rom. 8:26; 12:15; Eph. 4:30; Acts 20:19,31; 2 Cor. 2:4; Phil. 3:8; Matt. 5:4; Ps. 42:3; 126:5,6; Jn. 11:35)

 

“Keep your voice from weeping, and your eyes from tears, for
there is a reward for your work, declares the LORD”

(Jeremiah 31:16,ESV)

“They that sow in tears shall reap in joy. He that goeth forth and
weepeth, bearing seed for sowing, shall doubtless come again with
joy, bringing his sheaves with him”

(Psalm 126:5,6, ASV)

 

Yes, Jeremiah has come to be known as “the weeping prophet” of God (Lamentations 1;16; Jeremiah 9:1,10; 13:17; 22:10; 31:15,16); and, that he was. Those who work in the role of a servant of God, as Jeremiah did, soon realize that people can wear you out. And, Jeremiah was stressed to the limit with the obstinate and obnoxious people of his day. It is written concerning this people: “…I have become a laughing stock all the day; everyone mocks me”(Jeremiah 20:7). And, then, something happened. God told Jeremiah, “Keep your voice from weeping, and your eyes from tears, for there is a reward for your work” (Jeremiah 31:16). It is this certainty that our labor is not in vain in the Lord (1 Corinthians 15:58), which causes us to continue to care and to continue to carry the message of our God (Matthew 28:18-20).

The “Confessions” of Jeremiah remind us of his constant struggle (10:23,24; 11:18-12:6; 15:10-21; 17:9-11,14-18; 18:18-23; 20:7-18). But, the reminder of the value of the work itself is its own reason for being. Yes, the value of the work itself.

So, the work has value. The only question is, Do we value the work? Never give up; never give in! For, “They that sow in tears shall reap in joy!

–Robert M. Housby

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