THE SEASON OF SURRENDER

For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; a time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; a time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; a time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace.” Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 ASV

The message of God through Jeremiah says now it is the season to surrender for God’s people.  To live is to surrender.  “You’ll lose everything—but not your life.”

Our only hope is to surrender today to the King of kings and Lord of lords.

Jeremiah 21, The Message

Start Each Day with a Sense of Justice

1-2 God’s Message to Jeremiah when King Zedekiah sent Pashur son of Malkijah and the priest Zephaniah son of Maaseiah to him with this request: “Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, has waged war against us. Pray to God for us. Ask him for help. Maybe God will intervene with one of his famous miracles and make him leave.”

3-7 But Jeremiah said, “Tell Zedekiah: ‘This is the God of Israel’s Message to you: You can say good-bye to your army, watch morale and weapons flushed down the drain. I’m going to personally lead the king of Babylon and the Chaldeans, against whom you’re fighting so hard, right into the city itself. I’m joining their side and fighting against you, fighting all-out, holding nothing back. And in fierce anger. I’m prepared to wipe out the population of this city, people and animals alike, in a raging epidemic. And then I will personally deliver Zedekiah king of Judah, his princes, and any survivors left in the city who haven’t died from disease, been killed, or starved. I’ll deliver them to Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon—yes, hand them over to their enemies, who have come to kill them. He’ll kill them ruthlessly, showing no mercy.’

8-10 “And then tell the people at large, ‘God’s Message to you is this: Listen carefully. I’m giving you a choice: life or death. Whoever stays in this city will die—either in battle or by starvation or disease. But whoever goes out and surrenders to the Chaldeans who have surrounded the city will live. You’ll lose everything—but not your life. I’m determined to see this city destroyed. I’m that angry with this place! God’s Decree. I’m going to give it to the king of Babylon, and he’s going to burn it to the ground.’

* * *

11-14 “To the royal house of Judah, listen to God’s Message!
    House of David, listen—God’s Message to you:
‘Start each day by dealing with justice.
    Rescue victims from their exploiters.
Prevent fire—the fire of my anger—
    for once it starts, it can’t be put out.
Your evil regime
    is fuel for my anger.
Don’t you realize that I’m against you,
    yes, against you.
You think you’ve got it made,
    all snug and secure.
You say, “Who can possibly get to us?
    Who can crash our party?”
Well, I can—and will!
    I’ll punish your evil regime.
I’ll start a fire that will rage unchecked,
    burn everything in sight to cinders.’

WHAT DO WE LEARN—HOW DO WE RESPOND?

God’s people knew but ignored the covenant God had made with them.  “I will be your God, you will be My people.” They turned their backs on God and walked away from Him.  They came out from under His “wings of protection” to live on their own without God.  They worshipped and idolized man-made gods and behaved in sickening, perverted ways that were literally killing them. 

God’s anger at their self-destructive ways, fueled by His compassionate love caused Him to bring promised justice to bring a halt to the sins of the people.  His words to his people who were about to be taken captive by the Babylonian enemy were simply: “Surrender to live.”  Take your punishment, surrender, and you will live through this punishment.

Now leap forward, four centuries later, to the birth of the One and Only, sent by God to move into the neighborhood of humanity to seek and to save the lost once and for all.  Jesus is the One and Only, perfect Son of Man and Son of God, assigned by God to take the punishment for all sins—yours and mine.  He was crucified on a cross to pay the debt of all the sins of the world—all sins of the whole world. The true enemy defeated. Our response is simple.  Surrender!  Believe that Jesus did this work for us, repent and be saved for eternity!

Jesus teaches what real surrender looks like.  “Then Jesus went to work on his disciples. Anyone who intends to come with me has to let me lead. You’re not in the driver’s seat; I am. Don’t run from suffering; embrace it. Follow me and I’ll show you how. Self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way, my way, to finding yourself, your true self. What kind of deal is it to get everything you want but lose yourself? What could you ever trade your soul for?” (Matthew 16: 25, MSG)

On THIS day, year, decade, and century, let this be our new season of surrender.  To live is to surrender all we are and all we think we possess to the One and Only who created it all, truly knows all and “so loved the world that He gave His One and Only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

“If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it.”  (Matthew 16:25, NLT)

Our response is simple:  Surrender—not to an earthly enemy but to the One who laid down His life for ours to save us from all enemies of God.  To truly live is to surrender. 

Lord,

I surrender all.  All to you, my blessed Savior, I surrender all.

In Jesus Name, For Your Glory, Amen

About randscallawayffm

Randy and Susan co founded Finding Focus Ministries in 2006. Their goal as former full time pastors, is to serve and provide spiritual encouragement and focus to those on the "front lines" of ministry. Extensive experience being on both sides of ministry, paid and volunteer, on the mission fields of other countries as well as the United States, helps them bring a different perspective to those who need it most. Need a lift? Call us 260 229 2276.
This entry was posted in Blessings, Christian Living, Christian Perspective, Christmas, Discipleship, Embrace, Encouragement, Faith, First, God, Following Jesus, Grace, Holy Spirit, Hope, Jesus, Listen, Love, Surrender, Uncategorized and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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