“Then Jeremiah said to the family of the Rekabites, “This is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says: ‘You have obeyed the command of your forefather Jehonadab and have followed all his instructions and have done everything he ordered.’ Therefore, this is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says: ‘Jehonadab son of Rekab will never fail to have a descendant to serve me.’” Jeremiah 35:18-19 (NIV)
We are now in week three of our 2nd series of the Jeremiah study. As we began this week’s meeting, I prayed for God to use His Word to shake us to the core and bring a new light to the book of Jeremiah. I am not quite sure why these words came flowing out so quickly but…God…He answered!
Chapter 35 of Jeremiah is primarily about a group of people known as the Rekabites. This nomadic clan were faithful promise keepers who proved their allegiance over and over. When tempted or presented with a situation to fall back on their pledge, they were steadfast and unwavering. WOW!
We spent some time dissecting the major takeaways from this family. Let me share some of those with you:
- The Rekabites were tent dwellers and through this they displayed the understanding that this earth is not our destination in the end. We often get entangled by life and its “stuff”. It can bog us down and even overwhelm. Our material things are here today but gone tomorrow yet we can’t seem to do without, stop wanting more and more, and many times lack the ability to control it all. I am so guilty. I have WAY TOO MUCH and frequently forget that I am only passing through.
- This family had made an alliance to set rules and ways of living. They had determined what was best for them and they knew their why when it came to agreeing to these standards. They knew what they were pledging, the reason behind it, and how it was profitable for their living. When was the last time I thought about my values and absolutes?
- The Rekabites did not let culture, or the “modern” way of life sway their promises. While the world around them was falling apart and diving deeper and deeper into sin, this family stood firm against conforming to the “in thing to do”. They embraced their values and held tightly to this obedience regarding the established rules for their lives. I often make decisions based on “everyone else”. How am I different from the world in which I live?
- The Rekabites were steadfast. When they made their vows to abstain from things not productive for them, they knew how they would answer if temptation ever came. This family was prepared for situation where their faithfulness would be tested. They knew prior to any enticement what they would say and do. They were proactive in being successful when it came to their obedience. Am I steadfast or do I teeter and totter on average?
God honored the Rekabites for their obedience to their word. The Lord desires the same from each of us and craves to see us, His children, committed and unswerving. Our Father has proven His love and faithfulness to us over and over to the point of death. He is loyal, reliable, and constant. What a beautiful Father we have.
I challenge you to study this passage more and listen to a few sermons on the topic. Take some time this week and think about these “principled people”.
- Write down a couple of absolutes for your life. What is one value you have that you will not comprise no matter what?
- How is this profitable for God?
- What/Who might try to sway you from obedience?
- What will it take to be steadfast and faithful in the days ahead?
Once you have decided on a couple of absolutes, take some time to write them down and pray over them. Share them with a friend and ask them to pray for your devotion to be solid in the days ahead. Let God know the desire of your heart when it comes to these values and rules you have set for yourself.
May the witness of the Rekabites touch you in such a way that it also shakes you to the core and causes you to focus on what matters the most…
This is not your home…God’s ways are profitable…culture doesn’t dictate your values…and obedience is possible when you decide to be become a principled person.
Blessing and prayers for you in digesting Jeremiah 35. May you never be the same after reading it.