GOD REWARDS THOSE WHO “STICK THEIR NECKS OUT” AND RISK EVERYTHING TO SUSTAIN, DEFEND AND HELP HIS FAITHFUL SERVANTS…
There’s a guy like that I read about this morning in the Bible… Not a guy with the “right national pedigree” (He was an Ethiopian” – He was even a bit different “biologically” (he was a “eunuch”) and he certainly “risked it” by helping someone who was not considered “politically correct” at the time (he risked everything to help Jeremiah who had been prophesying that Judah should surrender to Babylon’s invading armies, rather than resist them).
It was really rough to be an authentic “prophet of God” at the time – Just ask Jeremiah. He had been telling Zedekiah, the king of Judah, that rather than resist the invading armies of Babylon, they should accept God’s judgment and surrender. Some leaders in Judah accused Jeremiah of sedition – even treason. Weak Zedekiah could not withstand them, so they took Jeremiah and threw him into a stinking cistern filled with mud and left him there. Jeremiah sank into the muck up to his armpits and would have died there… except for EBED-MELECH, THE ETHOPIAN EUNICH – a servant in the king’s court!
Ebed-melech, risked everything, went to the king and said, “My lord the king, these men have done evil in all that they have done to Jeremiah the prophet by casting him into the cistern, and he will die there of hunger, for there is no bread left in the city!” And Zedekiah listened to Ebed-melech and allowed him to rescue Jeremiah by pulling him out of the cistern! (Read it for yourself in Jeremiah 38:7-13).
So what happened to Ebed-melech for the risk he had taken to rescue God’s prophet when Jerusalem and Judah fell to the Babylon? Here it is… “The word of the Lord came to Jeremiah, ‘Go, and say to Ebed-melech the Ethiopian, ‘Thus says the Lord of host, the God of Israel: Behold I will fulfill my words against this city for harm and not for good… But I will deliver you on that day, declares the Lord! You shall not be given into the hand of the men of whom you are afraid! I will surely save you, and you shall not fall by the sword, but you shall have your life as a prize of war, BECAUSE YOU HAVE PUUT YOUR TRUST IN ME, DECLARES THE LORD!’”
HEY, IT PAYS TO DO THE RIGHT THING – EVEN IF IT MEANS YOU HAVE TO “RISK IT!” Here it is from the mouth of Jesus Himself… “The one who receives a prophet because he is a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward, and the one who receives a righteous person because he is a righteous person will receive a righteous person’s reward. And whoever gives one of these little ones even a cup of cold water because he is a disciple, truly, I say to you, he will by no means lose his reward.” (Matthew 10:41-42) GOD BLESS PEOPLE LIKE EBED-MELECH!