A Burned Scroll

King Jehoiakim Burns Jeremiah’s Scroll

“It was the ninth month and the king was sitting in the winter apartment, with a fire burning in the firepot in front of him.  Whenever Jehudi had read three or four columns of the scroll, the king cut them off with a scribe’s knife and threw them into the firepot, until the entire scroll was burned in the fire. The king and all his attendants who heard all these words showed no fear, nor did they tear their clothes.  Even though Elnathan, Delaiah and Gemariah urged the king not to burn the scroll, he would not listen to them.”

– Jeremiah 36: 22-25

Around 600 BC, the Lord gave the prophet Jeremiah words of warning for the people of Israel and Judah, to be written on a scroll and read to them.  When the scroll was read to Jehoiakim , who was king of Judah at the time, instead of heeding the warning, he burned the scroll, piece by piece.

When we don’t want to hear that we’ve been doing something wrong, or listen to a warning, what do we do?  We might not be so dramatic as to burn it.  We might not be such a callous, incorrigible rascal as Jehoiakim.   But do we rebel inwardly (or outwardly), ignore them just the same, and continue on our destructive path?


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