I am studying Jeremiah right now and last night I was studying chapter 23; specifically:
For who has stood in the counsel of the Lord, and has perceived and heard His word? Who has marked His word and heard it?…I have not sent these prophets, yet they ran. I have not spoken to them, yet they prophesied. But if they had stood in My counsel, and had caused My people to hear My words, then [Israel] would have turned them from their evil way and from the evil of their doings. ‘Am I a God near at hand,’ says the Lord, ‘And not a God afar off?’
I am so gripped by this standing in the Lord’s counsel. The context of this passage in Jeremiah is that Jeremiah is preaching a message straight from the heart of God because he has spent time in His presence (Jer. 15:16). However, all the other prophets around were prophesying what they desired to be true. It was what made the people happy, but it was not of the Lord.
Yet the Lord says His judgment could have been prevented if someone had stood before Him! If someone had taken time to fellowship with Him. If only the prophets were spending time in His presence, asking Him what was on His heart…if only they knew the One they called Holy. You can’t just know about someone and say that you know them; you have to spend time with them to know their heart, know what they would do in each situation, know what would get under their skin…
Yet the prophets ran without waiting to hear words of life which were unpopular. How I desire rather to stand with Jeremiah:
“Your words were found, and I ate them, and Your word was to me the joy and rejoicing of my heart; for I am called by Your name, O Lord God of hosts.”