Jeremiah 51:46 Do not lose heart or be afraid
when rumors are heard in the land;
one rumor comes this year, another the next,
rumors of violence in the land
and of ruler against ruler.
And to think, this was written long before modern media, much less social media! People have been whipped around by rumors since the dawn of time. “Fake news” has always existed! The problem has always been distinguishing what is true. Sometimes the “authoritative sources” are the ones that are wrong, as was the case with the recent “pandemic.” Those with vested interest in a particular narrative will dismiss some information as “conspiracy theories,” but we have recently seen several examples of such “conspiracy theories” being proven as true. The expression, “knowledge is power,” has a lot of truth to it, but how do we know our “knowledge” is accurate? We are personally responsible to evaluate sources and do research as called for, but above all we need to rely on the Holy Spirit. God alone knows what is true in every detail! After all, Jesus promised that the Holy Spirit would teach us all things. (John 14:26) Rather than getting all worked up over the latest rumor, or for that matter, dismissing it as impossible, we need to submit it to God and ask Him to show us what is right, and what we need to do or not do about it. Going with the crowd just to get along is seldom wise, but going against the crowd just to be contrary isn’t wise either. All of this calls for both faith and strength of character. We don’t necessarily have those naturally, but God will supply them as we are submitted to Him. As James said, “If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.” (James 1:5) In this particular Word to Jeremiah, the Jews were being told that some of the rumors they would hear would be accurate, but they weren’t to be afraid. However, there were concrete steps they were to take. We need to be the same way, acting under God’s direction and not yielding to panic, either our own of that of those around us.
This seems remarkably timely. I am getting more and more information that makes me increasingly thankful that we didn’t yield to all the pressure to “get the shot.” At the same time, as bad and downright absurd as some of the results of the recent election were, just last night I heard someone pointing out some of the things that were not widely reported that are actually very good. I am not to ignore “news” just because it might be false, but at the same time I need to back off from being the “news junkie” I sometimes tend to be. God’s Word is always up-to-date and accurate, and the more I fill my mind and heart with it, the better I will be able to discern fact from fiction in the flood of other information that comes my way. Likewise, I need to be careful what information I pass along, because I don’t want to be party to false rumors myself. God alone is totally true, and I need to abide in Him.
Father, thank You for this reminder. Help me indeed run everything through Your filter and not let anything steal my peace or joy, for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!