Jeremiah was a young man when he began to preach to Judah. He was not popular for his message either. His messages usually consisted of a denunciation of the rulers of his day, and coming overthrow of the government. He said they should just surrender to the enemy and God would let them live. He was jailed for this, after being slapped around. Later he was imprisoned in a dungeon, a hole in the ground where he stayed throughout the attack and siege by Babylon. Finally, when food became so scarce through the economic problems of the times and the siege they were under, that even free men had no food, and prisoners certainly could not be fed, a friend begged the king to allow Jeremiah yard privileges. He lowered cloth ropes into the hole and pulled the frail, half starved preacher out of the pit, where he fed him until the city fell into the hands of the Babylonians. They then treated Jeremiah kindly, because they had heard of his accusations of treason. They assumed Jeremiah was on their side, so he was carried to Babylon with the captives and treated very well until his death.
The key point here is that the government was failing to operate for the people. It was no longer serving but a disservice to their needs. Just like in the days of the judges, people were brutalized and the leaders looked on, doing nothing. Oddly, one of the biggest criticisms of the Bible comes from what is perceived as barbaric or inhumane from the Old Testament times like these. People can't believe God would condone such barbaric behavior. He did not condone, but it did occur, just like the wickedness of today. I wonder how the people who feel this way about the Bible will feel when they begin to see the same types of brutal killings in our day? I do know there is a division between old testament and new, and it is called grace. The grace line was drawn at the brutal execution on the cross, the execution of a man who once said, " ... all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword." (Matthew 26:52) In a sad after statement to the fact that they assassinated Jesus, Jerusalem was destroyed and burned by Rome around 70 A.D. (less than 40 years after the cross.) Rome's decline and fall began about 100 years later.
I don't know where our country is headed today. I do know our beloved America has changed. If she is a superpower, she is no longer the valiant face of Superman, but has developed a dark side, like Batman. The America I grew up in did not order the assassination of corrupt despots and terrorists. Even Saddam was brought to trial recently. Last year, Matthew McCabe and 3 other Navy Seals were brought to trial after bravely capturing Ahmed Hashim Abed, the terrorist who burned and hung Americans from a bridge over the Euphrates Bridge in Iraq. He was tried because the terrorist claimed to have gotten a busted lip while in their custody. He claimed they punched him in the mouth. The President denounced this behavior and they were tried. A year later, we are killing and celebrating.
I am not against the execution of criminals after a trial, as has always been the case in America. But, I believe in the sanctity of human life and the procedures of a trial. I can not understand why this changed suddenly. And, I can not understand our Navy Seals being tried for following orders. I can not stare blankly while our leaders become terrorists, taking credit on tv for a "killing," just as Osama did after 9/11. Same/ same! No difference between the two; a pair of evening wolves.