Today, when reading Jeremiah, I read these two verses and scoffed at the audacity of King Zedekiah and his cronies.

The word came to Jeremiah from the Lord when King Zedekiah sent to him Pashhur son of Malkijah and the priest Zephaniah son of Maaseiah. They said: “Inquire now of the Lord for us because Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon is attacking us. Perhaps the Lord will perform wonders for us as in times past so that he will withdraw from us.”

Jeremiah 21:1-2 (NIV)

Jeremiah prophesied to the kings of Judah through the reigns of Josiah, Jehoiakim, and Zedekiah. Only Josiah tried to turn Judah away from the disaster Jeremiah prophesied, while Jehoiakim and Zedekiah did evil in the eyes of the Lord. All told, Jeremiah prophesied for 40 years. Yet, when Nebuchadnezzar attacked Judah, Zephaniah turned to the Lord for help. This is the audacious behavior that caused me to scoff.

Then I got to thinking. How often do we know we shouldn’t do something but do it anyway, and then, when trouble is coming upon us, we turn to the Lord? It reminds me of my dogs who pick “fights” with one another and when they’ve bitten off more than they can chew, come running to hide “under” my legs.

While I might scoff at Zedekiah, I shouldn’t because I’m not that different. There have been times when I didn’t listen to the Lord, and when I got into trouble, I ran to him for help. Fortunately, the Lord is gracious and merciful and has helped me.