A devotional thought from Christian George for “Judah”
They call it “selachophobia”—the fear of sharks. I’m pretty sure that’s exactly what I’ve got. Thanks to Jaws and other shark attack movies, whenever I’m swimming in the ocean, I’m constantly on the lookout for fins and teeth. In fact, whenever “Shark Week” comes on the Discovery Channel, I’m the first one to change the channel.
But there’s something about sharks that’s quite fascinating. Besides the fact that great white sharks can grow over half as long as a school bus, sharks have extraordinary perceptive capabilities. Not only do they hear prey from miles away, they can also detect electrical impulses emitted by other living creatures by using electroreceptor organs located along the snout. And they can smell one drop of blood in 25 gallons of water.
King Nebuchadnezzar had been circling around Judah for a long time. At last, he saw his moment of opportunity and he struck. With jaws wide open, he invaded Jerusalem. 2 Chronicles 36:15-21 describes the attack in words that paint a grizzly picture. By the time the water had settled, many were dead. Those who survived were taken into captivity.
But God would not allow the Babylonians to stay arrogant for long. In 539 B.C., the Persian army conquered the city of Babylon. The hunters became the hunted. And God’s people were allowed to return to Jerusalem to rebuild their walls. Jesus would later comment on a similar subject: “All who take up a sword will perish by a sword” (Matt. 26:52).
Pause and Reflect
• Why does God use evil to conquer evil?
• Where do you see irony about the way God orchestrated the Babylonian/Persian conquests?