A Devotional Thought From Jeremiah
For thus saith the LORD; We have heard a voice of trembling of fear and not of peace. Ask ye now, and see whether a man doth travail with child? wherefore do I see every man with his hands on his loins, as a woman in travail, and all faces are turned into paleness? Alas! For that day is great so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacob’s trouble; but he shall be saved out of it.
As Jeremiah is given a vision of Israel’s future he sees a dark and terrible day when great tribulation will be upon the people of God. As he views the terror of that day he asks rhetorically, is it possible for a man to be in labor pains to bear a child? Of course, a rhetorical question needs no answer. But just to be plain: no! Men cannot bear children. Jeremiah goes on to say, then why as I look in my vision do I see men holding their bellies like a pregnant woman holds hers to protect it, and ease the heaviness and pain of labor. Why have their faces gone pale in this false labor? Because the days of the tribulation that is coming are going to be awful. People will suffer the brutality of invasion and war. They will be in harm’s way, disease and death will be a daily possibility. Even if they are not physically harmed emotional pain will tear them apart, so that they will walk about holding their bellies as if in labor. Jeremiah calls this the time of Jacob’s trouble, a terrifying time in the future of the world. I would call that bad news, but here’s the good news: God will save his people out of that day.