For years Jeremiah had been warning of the impending invasion of the Babylonian armies. Though our passage doesn’t share this, historically we know this reality had never been closer. The armies of Babylon had just descended from the north and sacked Philistia and Egypt, Israel’s eastern neighbors, at the Battle of Carchemish. While news of Babylon’s crushing cruelty should have jolted Israel from its rebellious slumber, King Jehoiakim and his armies thumbed their noses at God and continued in their evil practices.
The fall of neighboring countries should have been a massive wake-up call. Often God gives us wake-up calls before the bottom falls out in our own lives, be it an intervention from godly friends or confrontation of a sinful habit from a spouse. While uncomfortable, these wake-up calls are actually God’s mercy calling us to change course. If we don’t, we may experience severe consequences. Unfortunately for the Israelites, they never awoke from their slumber and they paid for it with their lives.
As you begin your day, ask God if he’s sending any wake-up calls your way. If God is prompting something in your heart, respond to him in obedience. Confess how you need to change to a close friend who will help you take the next step of obedience. Don’t wait till it’s too late and the consequences swallow you up.