Theology of Prayer: Scriptural Support (Part 13: Jeremiah)

Jeremiah 7 describes the message of the Lord that came to the prophet. Jeremiah was told not to pray for the Judeans. Prayer here is alternatively described as plea, petition, and pleading. The Lord said he would refuse to listen. Here we see prayer as request, and we also see that the Lord can refuse to listen. In this case, he refuses to listen because of the wickedness of the people. Again, there is a connection between righteousness and prayer.

In Jer 10, Jeremiah didn’t pray for the Judeans, but he did pray for himself and for God to act against the nations that have wronged his people. He mixed a simple and brief declaration, “Lord, I know that people’s lives are not their own; it is not for them to direct their steps,” and then he asked for the Lord to discipline him graciously and to punish those who have done wrong to the Judeans.

As in Jer 7, the prophet Jeremiah tells the people in Jer 11 what the Lord charged him to say, and he included the command not to pray for them.

Jeremiah 14 tells of how the people would fast and cry, offering burnt offerings and grain offerings in an effort to obtain drought and famine relief. This prayer and fasting would not work, for the Lord refused to listen to them, and instead punish them with the sword, famine, and plague. Once again, the Lord command Jeremiah not to pray for their well-being. Prayer here is seen also as request, in this case for relief from punishment in the form of drought and famine.

In Jer 29, the Judeans have been exiled. They are instructed to pray for the prosperity of the city to which they have been taken, because, if the city prospers, they would prosper. After the appointed time of exile, the Lord promised to prosper his people and again listen to their prayers.

The Lord declared, says Jer 31, when the people return from exile, they would pray and weep. Again, there can be a connection between praying and weeping.

Jeremiah prays in Jer 32 after obtaining the deed to a field. In this prayer he declares the sovereignty of God the Creator. He declares that the Lord is loving and just. He briefly recounts God’s deeds for his people before mentioning the erroneous way of the people and God’s ensuing punishment on them. He calls upon the Lord to look at the siege ramps set up against the city and that he had obtained the plot of land as instructed. The Lord answers this prayer as though Jeremiah’s words are a challenge-response. The Lord replies, “Is anything too hard for me?” He charges both Israel and Judah for all their evil they had done and recounts their deeds. Yet, he promises to gather them from exile and let them live in safety, making an everlasting covenant with them, doing good to them always. Prayer can be frank communication with God.

According to Jer 37, in contrast to the Lord’s instructions to Jeremiah not to pray for the people, the King of Judah, King Zedekiah, sent messengers to Jeremiah and asked him to pray to the Lord for the people.

Jeremiah 42 shows that Jeremiah decided to pray to the Lord against the Lord’s instruction as per the request of the people. The people wanted to know what to do; they wanted guidance from the Lord, so they sought help from the prophet. He prayed, and the Lord responded. We don’t have the prayer, but we have the message of the Lord as relayed by Jeremiah. The Lord promised to bless them if they stay in the land but to punish them if they leave. Jeremiah scorned the people for asking him to pray to the Lord, because now their judgment was sealed, because they did not stay. Here prayer is a request, a request for guidance.

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Psalm 119:89-96

All of these verses begin with the Hebrew letter lamed (ל).

Forever, Oh Lord,
your word is placed in the heavens.

From generation to generation is your faithfulness
You have established the land and it stands firm.

By your judgments they stand today
For all are your servants.

If your law was not my delight,
Then I would perish in my affliction.

I will not forget your precepts forever
For by them you have let me live.

I belong to you; save me!
For I have sought your precepts.

The wicked wait for me in order to destroy me
I will direct my attention to your decrees.

I have seen an end to all perfection
Your commandment is exceedingly far-reaching.

Chelsea 5-0 Genk

Livesoccer TV

The Blues won today in the group stage match of the Champions League against Genk, beating them 5-nil and rather easily.

Torres nearly scored on a nice run yet couldn’t help but hit the left post around the seventh minute. Meireles scored from 25 yards out or so around the eighth minute to open the goals. Torres earned a brace. He first scored in the 11th minute rolling the ball in the far post from the left side. Torres scored a second time in the 25th minute with a header. Fantastic! Before the end of the first half, Ivanovich put the ball into the back of the net also with a header around the 42nd minute. The second half was quiet and comfortable, but Kalou cleaned up the trash when Torres’ hat trick attempt didn’t find the back of the net in the 72nd minute.

Goals:

  • Anelka: 1
  • Bosingwa: 1
  • David Luiz: 1
  • Drogba: 1
  • Ivanovich: 1
  • Kalou: 1
  • Lampard: 5
  • Malouda: 1
  • Mata: 2
  • Meireles: 1
  • Sturridge: 4
  • Ramires: 3
  • Terry: 2
  • Torres: 4
  • Goals for: 27
  • Goals against: 10

Inter 1-0 Lille

Lille vs Internazionale Live Streaming and TV Listings, Live Scores, News, Videos :: October 18, 2011 :: UEFA Champions League :: Live Soccer TV.

Inter won another group stage match in this year’s Champions League against Lille. Zarate came alive and paired up with Sneijder to get to the bi-line and cross the ball back for Pazzini to connect on the volley and put it in the back of the net. Lille otherwise dominated the match, but we held fast and earned the 3 points.

Goals:

  • Cambiasso: 2
  • Forlan: 1
  • Lucio: 2
  • Milito: 3
  • Pazzini: 3
  • Sneijder: 1
  • Zarate: 1
  • Goals for: 13
  • Goals Against: 18

Real Madrid 4-0 Olympique Lyon

Real Madrid vs Olympique Lyon Live Streaming and TV Listings, Live Scores, News, Videos :: October 18, 2011 :: UEFA Champions League :: Live Soccer TV.

Real Madrid routed Lyon yesterday in a 4-nil win in the Champions League group stage. As is fitting, Benzema, former Lyon player, scored the first goal. Khedira scored his first goal in over a season, making it 2-nil. Ozil pushed a pass that the keeper knocked into the goal, but it went down in the books as Ozil’s goal. Maybe this one will be overturned later on as an own goal. Ramos found the back of the net late in the second half after colliding with two Lyon players.

Los Blancos looked rather comfortable and relaxed throughout the game–even dominating at times. Interesting, since Lyon has been the bane of our existence, or so I have gathered.

Goals:

  • Alonso: 2
  • Benzema: 6
  • Callejon: 1
  • Di Maria: 1
  • Higuain: 7
  • Kaká: 3
  • Khedira: 1
  • Marcelo: 1
  • Özil: 2
  • Pipita: 1
  • Ramos: 1
  • Ronaldo: 9
  • Varane: 1
  • Goals for: 36
  • Goals against: 11