(44 verses, 5:20 to read)
What I am about to READ
Jeremiah buys a field, prays to the Lord his God, and receives from God the promise of restoration to the people of Israel.
MARK and LEARN
Vss 1-15: The city of Jerusalem is besieged by the Chaldeans. Jeremiah the prophet is under arrest because he proclaimed that very doom to the people of Israel because of their sins against the Lord. But even though things look grim, the Lord gives the prophet a message and token of hope for the restoration of Israel – He instructs Jeremiah to purchase “the family farm” from his cousin, which is currently under enemy occupation. As foolish as that would seem, it is a promise that the people of God will one day return to their homes.
This transaction is carried out with the help of Baruch the son of Neriah, Jeremiah’s personal secretary, who seals the deeds for the property with clay seals. Interestingly, seals bearing the name of Baruch the son of Neriah have been found in Jerusalem dating from this time period.
Vss.16-35: In these verses Jeremiah prays to God that he would be comforted in this tribulation. He recalls the mighty deeds of deliverance which the Lord had worked during the Exodus and after, perhaps thinking that the Lord would work something similar for them. And so, though he has preached faithfully what God has told him, he is still in need of understanding for the events that are coming to bear. The Lord reveals that Jerusalem will indeed be burned and the people carried off to Babylon, because they forsook the Law of God and worshiped Baal and Molech, sacrificing even their own children.
Vss 36-44: Here again, God reveals that he is a God of the Law and the Gospel. He reveals that after a time of chastening and the Law, he will again gather the people from their dispersion and bring them back to the land where “they shall be my people, and I shall be their God” (vs. 38). Moreover, the Lord “will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear me forever” (vs. 39). It is the Lord who creates and sustains faith. This return from exile would be fulfilled during the time of Ezra the prophet and after.
Consider what it means that Jesus has borne all our iniquities in his death, even the iniquities of his ancient people. Consider the fact that the people were sent into exile not so much that they sinned, but because they did not trust in the Lord God and his promises to them.
Pr. Brandon Ross
Faith Ev. Lutheran Church