The Hebrew prophet Jeremiah had a nickname. “Terror All Around.” Speaking of the future of a Jerusalem that was engaged in political games with the superpowers (Assyria, Egypt, Babylonia) around it, he declaimed that if the people of Judah did not rely on YHWH to get them through these troubled times, trouble would come to their streets. The city would be surrounded by a besieging army and they would know the terrible anxiety of terror all around. He said this often enough that when he walked the streets he would be taunted by the children: “There goes ole ‘Terror All Around.’” It’s difficult to know if the humiliation got to him. He was more concerned about being right.
He was. Although there were times when he was a prophet of hope, he was the prophet of nightmares coming true. And he bore the agony of witnessing them. Jerusalem fell, its inhabitants either slaughtered or left to tend a destitute city or taken into captivity hundreds of kilometres away. It brought him no peace.
I think of Jeremiah when I read George Monbiot’s columns. He is ridiculed by many but impossible to ignore. Here is an article about our governments will be responsible for the burning up of our planet. If we don’t get them to take our countries in a different direction than feeding the shareholders of the fossil fuel industries. It will give George Monbiot, nor the rest of us, any peace when he is proven to be right.
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