Over the last few posts, I have been establishing that God speaks to us, and continues to speak to us through multiple and varied means. He also speaks to us through the small things of life. These small events can be the typical daily circumstances in which we find ourselves and which, by the next day, we have long forgotten.
Jeremiah 18:1-6 gives a good example of this type of circumstance.
“The Word which came to Jeremiah from Jehovah, saying, Arise and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will cause you to hear My Words.
Then I went down to the potter’s house, and, behold, he was working a work on the wheel. And the vessel that he made in clay was ruined in the hand of the potter; so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it. Then the Word of Jehovah came to me, saying, O house of Israel, can I not do with you as this potter? says Jehovah. Behold, As the clay in the potter’s hands, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel.”
Jeremiah had heard the urging of the Lord to go down to the local potter’s house so that the Lord could speak to him there. When Jeremiah arrived and looked upon the twisted lump of clay of an abandoned pot in the hands of the potter, the Lord spoke to him about Israel, comparing the two.
Without the soft, mouldable, 3D, tangible, smell-able and visible clay pots right there before Jeremiah, the words of the Lord would have been received and understood in a different fashion. But here was the potter, right in front of Jeremiah, twisting a misshapen pot from the wheel and reforming it into a new and perfect pot. Jeremiah would certainly have linked the visible scene in front of him to the Lord’s words exactly as God had intended. Jeremiah would certainly recognised that the Master Potter, the Maker of Heaven and Earth, has the absolute right to squash one of his creations which is turning out badly, and start again.
Long before that occasion we find in First Samuel 15:27-28 the following short story:
“And Samuel turned around to go, and he laid hold on the skirt of his robe, and it tore. And Samuel said to him, Jehovah has torn the kingdom of Israel from you this day, and has given it to a neighbour of yours who is better than you.”
God told Samuel to go to King Saul, and tell him that because of his failures and disobedience, both Saul’s anointing and Kingship had been withdrawn by the Lord. The effect on King Saul was not that of outrage, but of acceptance at the inevitable, for as is recorded in v30 a laconic answer: “I have sinned …… “ Saul acknowledged his guilt before this simple demonstration by Samuel of the words of God.
Yet you say, I am not like Jeremiah or Samuel! I am not a great man or woman of God that God should speak to me in this way, for myself, or others. But that is not what the Bible says of you.
Let us look at the story of Proverbs 7 where a man counsels his son on sexual immorality. The interesting passage for us is v7 which says: “and I saw among the simple ones, among the youths, a young man with no understanding…” Now what we can recognise here is that the writer of this passage was speaking from the simple personal experience of standing and observing someone and allowing his intuition, wisdom and yes the words of God, to formulate an understanding and teaching which has withstood the test of time. There is no specific evidence here that God intervened supernaturally, but rather the man was teachable and relied on his own God given abilities.
As Psalm 37:25 sagaciously teaches us: “I have been young, and am old; yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, or his seed begging bread.” Though we may not see the hand of God so clearly in our every day circumstances as Saul and Jeremiah above, here the psalmist is confirming for us that if we are walking righteously with the Lord, He will not forsake us, indeed, He will care of us. In other words, He will be with us.
As Christian, we have more certainty than that, for the New Testament confirms that the Holy Spirit dwelling within us and we ought to be recognising it in our daily walk, if, as the psalmist says, we are walking righteously with the Lord.
Amen and Amen.