Jeremiah 29 – The exile is not ended.

via Jeremiah 29 – The exile is not ended. « …are you pondering what I’m pondering?.

The above blog has become a real treat, finding some of our positions quite similar.

He takes us through Jeremiah 29.4-9, which reads in the NKJV (he uses the NIV, which is not a bad translation at all)

Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, to all who were carried away captive, whom I have caused to be carried away from Jerusalem to Babylon: Build houses and dwell in them; plant gardens and eat their fruit. Take wives and beget sons and daughters; and take wives for your sons and give your daughters to husbands, so that they may bear sons and daughters–that you may be increased there, and not diminished. And seek the peace of the city where I have caused you to be carried away captive, and pray to the LORD for it; for in its peace you will have peace. For thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: Do not let your prophets and your diviners who are in your midst deceive you, nor listen to your dreams which you cause to be dreamed. For they prophesy falsely to you in My name; I have not sent them, says the LORD.  (Jeremiah 29:4-9 NKJV)

Our friend says,

God was very clear in the Hebrew Scriptures how he did not want his people to be like everyone else (i.e. Egypt).  Hence the society codified, legally, economically, and socially, in the Pentateuch.  He also made it very clear what having a King would do to his people (1 Samuel 8).  He’s asking his people to get back to basics and put “the world” aside and focus on him.

And,

How can those who claim America is God’s nation honestly say that this nation is seeking him with all of their hearts?  Did we seek him during the slave trade?  Or when we drove out the Native Americans?  Or during “Manifest Destiny”?  Or when we killed each other over “property” during the Civil War?  Or when we denied women the right to vote?  Or when we treated blacks as less than human?  Or as we now treat hispanics as less than human? Or while we’re killing for “Democracy” thousands of miles away while we ignore the least of those among us in our own neighborhoods.

I have to agree, and allow me to add a bit. Too many people declare some sort of American Exceptionalism as biblical doctrine, claiming that this country above all others is the greatest. That might have been true some decades ago; however, in the intervening years, many European nations have recovered from the war and now tout strong Western freedoms as well as economies (or did before Monday). Yes, you say, but Europe has legalized prostitution. Indeed, but so does Nevada. Well, they are immoral. Of course, but have you seen the state of American teenagers. They are more likely to engage in unprotected pre-martial relations than Europeans.

What about drugs? Really? Have you seen the ‘War on Drugs’ here?

What about religion? Europe is a cesspool of anti-Christian teachings. Yes, perhaps, but just because we beat on our chests and proclaim St. George (Washington) and his twelve disciples does no way make us a Christian nation.

And honestly, isn’t that Christian nation thing getting a bit old? Especially since there is no biblical proof? Or for that matter, very little moral proof as well? When was freedom of speech, religion, and press considered Christian?

Well, anyway, take a look at this blog. It is well worth the time.

WARNING: RANT BELOW

But before I go, don’t mistake my words for some one that is anti-American. I am pro-Christian. I am blessed to have been born here, but as Paul said, we must learn to be content. I am not fooled into thinking we are the most free country on earth, or some exceptional country. There is a certain VP candidate (I will not mention Sarah Palin) that is criticizing a Presidential Candidate (I will not mention Obama) for Palin around with a ‘terrorist’ because this nation is just too imperfect (Something about William ‘Bill’ Ayers’) forgetting about her connection to Joe Vogler, the Alaskan Separatist who declared proudly that he was an Alaskan and not an American. The idea that this country is too perfect to seek change is to make an idol out of it. We have serious problems, and presently, some too serious, to ignore. If you seek to make this country an idol, even a ‘Christian’ one, then you have taken your eyes off of God.

I grew up with a deep patriotic love for this country, but something happened 6 years ago this October 30th that changed my life forever. I was born again, and although the labor pains were long, when it happened, my eyes opened and began to see the real beauty of the country and along with this beauty came the ugliness. This ugliness we cannot ignore. Patriotism, dear Christian reader, is not love for the country as it is, but a love for the country that we can become and indeed the fight to become that country. And we must always remember, political borders will never last, but our treatment of our fellow-man – regardless of nationality, creed, or even the color of his eyes – will. It is not our political votes that matter, but the Gospel. Not our tax dollars, but our tithes and our charity. Not our love for country, but our love for the Church. Not our devotion to the President, but our devotion to God.

Sorry for the rant, needless and pointless as it were, but I am just tired of our focus being on a non-entity instead of the Church and the Gospel. God bless our homeland.

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