Bad News

Read: Jeremiah 10:17-22

A voice, a rumor! Behold, it comes! (v. 22)

“Fake news” is a new expression. But fake news itself is nothing new. It was all the rage in Jerusalem in the sixth century BC. Jeremiah faced condemnation from city leaders and competition from false prophets. These “shepherds” (v. 21) spun their own version of God’s word that was nothing but good news for Jerusalem. The problem was that their good news was fake news. The inhabitants of Jerusalem rejected Jeremiah’s truth in favor of their lies because the truth was unbearable: God was about to destroy their city and their way of life. How could a good God bring something so bad?

We exchange the truth for lies when the truth threatens our security or way of life. We instinctively reject any truth that demands a change in action or attitude. The problem is that our God is in the business of change. Often he commands change gently through his word. Sometimes he forces change dramatically through difficult circumstances.

In the exile, God forced change upon his people. They believed he had taken everything from them. But the city and the way of life that God threatened were full of the fake security of false gods. God would replace them with himself. If you belong to God through Jesus Christ, you can handle truth—even hard truth. You can expect his hand at work in all circumstances. And you can trust that he will use the most difficult circumstances to replace your fake security with the true gift: God himself. —Ben Van Arragon

As you pray, embrace God’s truth and trust his guiding hand.

About the Author

Ben Van Arragon is a pastor, husband, and father of two teenage daughters. He has served the First Christian Reformed Church of Detroit since 2008. He writes and produces video teaching on the Bible and Reformed creeds and confessions. His writing for Words of Hope includes series on Jeremiah, Exodus, and Work and Rest.