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A Fire in His Smokey Bones

The word of God is so powerful, and so potent, that it can never be contained. In fact, it’s like a fire which has within it either a destructive or driving force (Jeremiah 23:29Jeremiah 20:9, and Jeremiah 5:14).  The prophet Jeremiah knew this first hand. God gave him a very unpopular message.  Essentially, his message was one of impending judgment on the Hebrew people.  In Jeremiah 20:7-9, the prophet was faced with the unpleasantness of his task. He was thoroughly discouraged.  He felt like (and was) a laughingstock for the message he was bringing.  So strong was his discouragement that he accused God of deceiving him (Jeremiah 20:7). Right after that, he writes that the Word of God had become to him, “a reproach and a derision all day long (Jeremiah 20:8)!”  In Jeremiah 20:9, he is on the verge of walking away from the task and quitting, but he realizes that he can’t.  The Word of God is a fire in his bones, and burns in his heart.  He realizes that he simply cannot hold it in!  This is because the word is alive and active and sharper than any two edged sword. It is able to discern the thoughts and intentions of the heart (Hebrews 4:12). Because Jeremiah could feel it in him, he knew that active and living word was going to find its way out of him and reach its intended audience. He was wrestling with a living fire, and knew he couldn’t win.

Because Jeremiah was willing to receive the word of God, and to be a doer of the word rather than just a hearer (James 1:22), he became one of the most influential prophets of the entire bible. The word he agreed to take in, would not stay put. He impacted not just the Hebrew people, but the entire human race.

If you are a true follower of Christ, you are just like Jeremiah.  You have in you a living word that is intent on (and intended to) get out of you and into others. But there are some difference between you and Jeremiah.  In the time of Jeremiah, there was no church.  He was alone in his mission.  You are not.  You are surrounded by others who also have the Word of God in them, and you have the ability to stir up the fire in your bones, and fan it so that it is the most effective (Hebrews 10:24-25). Unlike Jeremiah, when you are discouraged, you have a cure for it right here on earth (1 Thessalonians 5:11).

And also unlike Jeremiah, you have a message of good news (1 Peter 1:3Hebrews 2:5-9Ephesians 2:5-62 Corinthians 4:14). One of the greatest truths of that good news message is that sin no longer has dominion over us (Romans 6:14). But it does have dominion over so much of the world.  The Word that is in you can fix a lot of that, so get it out of you, knowing that it WILL do what it was intended (Isaiah 55:11) which is to save the world from sin.

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