HOPE OF DELIVERANCE
Loving and faithful Father, thank you for the hope I have in you that is greater than anything the world has to offer.
Read JEREMIAH 30
Restoration of Israel
30 This is the word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord: 2 “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘Write in a book all the words I have spoken to you. 3 The days are coming,’ declares the Lord, ‘when I will bring my people Israel and Judah back from captivity[a] and restore them to the land I gave their ancestors to possess,’ says the Lord.”
4 These are the words the Lord spoke concerning Israel and Judah: 5 “This is what the Lord says:
“‘Cries of fear are heard—
terror, not peace.
6 Ask and see:
Can a man bear children?
Then why do I see every strong man
with his hands on his stomach like a woman in labor,
every face turned deathly pale?
7 How awful that day will be!
No other will be like it.
It will be a time of trouble for Jacob,
but he will be saved out of it.
8 “‘In that day,’ declares the Lord Almighty,
‘I will break the yoke off their necks
and will tear off their bonds;
no longer will foreigners enslave them.
9 Instead, they will serve the Lord their God
and David their king,
whom I will raise up for them.
10 “‘So do not be afraid, Jacob my servant;
do not be dismayed, Israel,’
declares the Lord.
‘I will surely save you out of a distant place,
your descendants from the land of their exile.
Jacob will again have peace and security,
and no one will make him afraid.
11 I am with you and will save you,’
declares the Lord.
‘Though I completely destroy all the nations
among which I scatter you,
I will not completely destroy you.
I will discipline you but only in due measure;
I will not let you go entirely unpunished.’
12 “This is what the Lord says:
“‘Your wound is incurable,
your injury beyond healing.
13 There is no one to plead your cause,
no remedy for your sore,
no healing for you.
14 All your allies have forgotten you;
they care nothing for you.
I have struck you as an enemy would
and punished you as would the cruel,
because your guilt is so great
and your sins so many.
15 Why do you cry out over your wound,
your pain that has no cure?
Because of your great guilt and many sins
I have done these things to you.
16 “‘But all who devour you will be devoured;
all your enemies will go into exile.
Those who plunder you will be plundered;
all who make spoil of you I will despoil.
17 But I will restore you to health
and heal your wounds,’
declares the Lord,
‘because you are called an outcast,
Zion for whom no one cares.’
18 “This is what the Lord says:
“‘I will restore the fortunes of Jacob’s tents
and have compassion on his dwellings;
the city will be rebuilt on her ruins,
and the palace will stand in its proper place.
19 From them will come songs of thanksgiving
and the sound of rejoicing.
I will add to their numbers,
and they will not be decreased;
I will bring them honor,
and they will not be disdained.
20 Their children will be as in days of old,
and their community will be established before me;
I will punish all who oppress them.
21 Their leader will be one of their own;
their ruler will arise from among them.
I will bring him near and he will come close to me—
for who is he who will devote himself
to be close to me?’
declares the Lord.
22 “‘So you will be my people,
and I will be your God.’”
23 See, the storm of the Lord
will burst out in wrath,
a driving wind swirling down
on the heads of the wicked.
24 The fierce anger of the Lord will not turn back
until he fully accomplishes
the purposes of his heart.
In days to come
you will understand this.
- Jeremiah 30:3 Or will restore the fortunes of my people Israel and Judah
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectWhere do you see God’s involvement in the threats of today’s world—pandemics, terrorism, Godless immorality?
There is now a shift in mood. To be sure, the next few chapters still include the standard Jeremiah ‘cheeriness’ such as ‘How awful that day…’ (v 7) and ‘Your wound is incurable’ (v 12). However, now these realities are held verse by verse within a brighter vision of hope to come. All the history of God’s covenants is embodied here, as expressed in his relationships with Abraham, Moses, and others. (See, for example, Deuteronomy 30:1-10.)
Jeremiah’s scribe and editor is someone called Baruch (e.g., Jeremiah 32:8–16; 36). His lines of connected reasoning here do not fall into modern patterns—which is fair enough (I am not sure I would like to explain Facebook to Baruch!). In this chapter, his points seem to flow in a bewildering sort of bad news/good news succession. However, a key idea is that, invariably, God’s deliverance is promised. Look out for the following: restoration in verse 3; salvation in verse 7; protection in verse 11; justice and healing in verses 16 and 17; thanksgiving for reconstruction in verse 18; the full accomplishment of God’s purposes in verse 24. There is even the promise that one day we will understand, for which I, at any rate, will be grateful.
Where do you see suffering in the world today? Are there places where can you be a part of God’s ministry that will bring hope, both temporal and eternal?
Thank you, God, for your mastery over all grim situations, whether they are personal or in the wider world. Thank you that I can trust you for the present, as well as for the future.
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