7But seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare.
The captives from Jerusalem abiding in Babylon might not be blamed for maintaining a self-protective edge. Why should they give themselves wholeheartedly to the success of Nebuchadnezzar and Babylon? Surely they want to get back to Jerusalem as quick as possible. They are longing for home. Wouldn’t it be a kind of betrayal if they pursued good for all of Babylon’s residents?
God has a surprising word for these exiles: Seek the welfare of the city and pray for the city. If the city thrives then they will thrive. God does not want them to isolate themselves nor does He want them to engage only for self-preservation. Rather, God wants them to actively seek the peace, the shalom, the well-being of Babylon.
Like these exiles, the Church of Jesus lives with a promise of what is to come. If we seek the welfare of our city we must nurture a vision of peace and blessing shaped by the presence of Jesus Christ our King. We proclaim Gospel Truth revealing who God is and we radiate His glory through persistent intercession and generous godly labour.