Sunday, August 21, 2011

Written on the Heart

Jeremiah 50-51

We're finally at the end of our study of the book of Jeremiah. And not a moment too soon. It's a sorrowful sequence of events with an honest message of the nature of God. There is no promise of a easy prosperous earthly life, not even for the righteous -- maybe especially not for the righteous. It's a hard book. Compare the triumphant Exodus story of  God's deliverance of the people from oppression and slavery with Jeremiah's account of the defeated people heading back to Egypt. Sigh.  It's not like we weren't warned, though. Back in Chapter 1 God tells Jeremiah, "See, today I appoint you over nations and kingdoms to uproot and tear down, to destroy and overthrow, to build and to plant." That's as good a definition of life as I've ever seen -- a never ending cycle of successes and failures, joys and hardships,  love and pain. 

Throughout the study, though, I keep returning to the beautiful words of Chapter 31.

31 “The days are coming,” declares the LORD,
   “when I will make a new covenant
with the people of Israel
   and with the people of Judah.
32 It will not be like the covenant
   I made with their ancestors
when I took them by the hand
   to lead them out of Egypt,
because they broke my covenant,
   though I was a husband to them,”
            declares the LORD.
33 “This is the covenant I will make with the people of Israel
   after that time,” declares the LORD.
“I will put my law in their minds
   and write it on their hearts.
I will be their God,
   and they will be my people.
34 No longer will they teach their neighbor,
   or say to one another, ‘Know the LORD,’
because they will all know me,
   from the least of them to the greatest,”
            declares the LORD.
“For I will forgive their wickedness
   and will remember their sins no more.”

My prayer is to have God's law in my mind and written on my heart. 

1 comment:

  1. I had the pleasure to teach that Chapter in your absence, and it is such a beautiful promise. I thought about the question you asked this morning in regard to what we thought of the study of Jeremiah, and as depressing a book as it was, I am so glad that it was included in the Bible and that we had a complete study on it, because the one thing that I remember most is that regardless of the mistakes they made and their turning away from God, He never once turned away from them, and provided them that beautiful promise of Chapter 31. Great study!!!