October 17, 2021

Jeremiah 30:1–31:26

Here we have God’s instructions to Jeremiah to actually write these things down (Jeremiah 30:1), and once again we have that message in reference to the regathering of the Jews to their homeland. This has happened multiple times throughout the ages, but the two epic occurrences were after the Babylonian conquest, and in 1948 when Israel was born-again as a nation.

Jeremiah elaborates on the fact that God HAD to discipline His people. Their affliction was incurable, their wound was severe. The only way they had any hope of getting right with God, was the chastening of God – hence the Babylonians. But all along, God was with His people:

Jeremiah 30:11 (NKJV) “‘For I am with you,’ says the LORD, ‘to save you; though I make a full end of all nations where I have scattered you, yet I will not make a complete end of you. But I will correct you in justice, and will not let you go altogether unpunished.’”

All other nations will be judged by God, but one day Jesus will rule from Jerusalem, the capital of the world. As we read through the Scriptures we realize that God has special plans for Israel, this is why we should all bow to the King of Israel, King Jesus, now; and why we should bless and support this nation (Genesis 12:3).

In Jeremiah 31 the prophet continues to speak of the “salvation” of Israel’s remnant, God’s mercy on Ephraim, and the future prosperity of Judah. It won’t simply be a geographical work of God in bringing the people back to the land, it will be a spiritual work of God in bringing the people back to Himself. The day will come when Israel opens their hearts to the love of God:

Jeremiah 31:3 (NKJV) “The LORD has appeared of old to me, saying: ‘Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you.’”

God would rebuild His peopled their land, there would be builders, planters, watchmen, singers, a great throng would return (Jeremiah 31:8). God would not only bring them back to walk with Him, He would even help the lame to walk like Him (Jeremiah 31:8-9).

He really is the Great, Good, and Chief Shepherd.

Jeremiah 31:10 (NKJV) “Hear the word of the LORD, O nations, and declare it in the isles afar off, and say, ‘He who scattered Israel will gather him, and keep him as a shepherd does his flock.’”

In this section of Jeremiah we read frequently of the LORD’s goodness, how souls will be like well-watered gardens, people of all ages will dance, their mourning will turn to joy, God Himself would comfort them (Jeremiah 31:12-13). Even the priests would be blessed and satisfied with God’s goodness.

Jeremiah 31:15 speaks of tragedies among God’s people, close to the days of Jeremiah, but also in reference to days that were far off, when the children were killed by King Herod at the birth of Jesus Christ (Matthew 2:17-18).

But God would have mercy, there was hope for their future, their children would come back to their own border.

Bible Knowledge Commentary, “God called on the captives to set up road signs and guideposts as they traveled to Babylon (Jeremiah 31:21) and to remember the road they would take. They would need this information during His promised restoration so they could return to their towns. This time of promised restoration will be so remarkable that it will be as if God will create a new thing on earth.”

Jeremiah 31:22 has many opinions on its interpretation, I lean towards the idea of Israel (symbolic of the woman) encompassing, surrounding, or should I say “pursuing” the LORD. Back then a woman would not pursue a man to marry, but here we see something “new” symbolized in the nation of Israel.

After all the heartache…God would save, satiate, and satisfy His people. Just as He does with us. Have you come to Him? I pray you would know His love for you today, my friend, no matter what you’re going through.

Jeremiah 31:25 (NKJV) “For I have satiated the weary soul, and I have replenished every sorrowful soul.”

1 Timothy 2:1-15

As Paul begins to share the basic conduct of the body of Christ in the “church of God” (see also 3:15) he begins first of all with the men, that they would lead the way in prayers, supplications, and intercessions for all people, and all leaders, that they would all be saved, which would spill over into a quiet, godly, and peaceable life. Nowadays it’s hard enough just to get men to church, much less bringing them to that place of paving the way through prayer, but we must not give up – this is God’s code of conduct for the Christian church.

Believe it or not, there are some out there in Christendom who don’t believe that God wants “all men to be saved,” as we read so clearly here in 1 Timothy 2:4. Beware of such teachings often named after men (in this case Calvinism). The Bible explicitly teaches us that God wants all people to be saved, He is not willing that any should perish (2 Peter 3:9).

There are also those out there who believe that there are many ways to heaven, and yet the Bible clearly teaches that there is only one way (1 Timothy 2:5). There is one God and one mediator between God and men, the Man, Christ Jesus (see also John 14:6; Acts 4:12). Some people get offended at this truth, but I’m just grateful that God has provided a way! When Jesus was praying in the Garden of Gethsemane He asked His Father to let this cup pass, if there was any other way to get to heaven, Jesus would not have had to die – but there wasn’t any other way. Jesus therefore died for our sins, He gave Himself a ransom for all and hence, Paul’s call to be a preacher and teacher of this truth.

I get blessed when I see the men praying as described in 1 Timothy 2:8 – lifting up their hands to God, but Paul mentions the fact that those hands should be holy; that we shouldn’t be angry men, or doubting men. It’s obvious, in a simple reading of this chapter, however, that we should be praying men…O Lord, please help us.

Paul moves on to the sisters, it’s okay to fix yourselves up to be attractive (for your husband), but be careful not to dress to the point of being seductive. There is to be a beautiful modesty for the godly Christian woman. When she attends church service, she isn’t to call across the aisle, asking her husband questions, she’s to learn silently, quietly (in those days the men and women sat separately). As far as Pastors and Teachers go – in the public assembly – the Scriptures clearly declare that women are not to hold those positions over men. This doesn’t mean men are any better, it’s just our role and responsibility to lead in the home and at church. This was the order of creation, and yet when you look back to Eve’s deception in the Garden of Eden, things started out on the wrong foot. 

Blessed is that woman who values her role as a homemaker – I can’t think of anything more important in the entire universe, than being the primary one to influence our children to godliness! This doesn’t mean women can’t work, or serve at church – over the years I would honestly say that the ladies have been the backbone to every church body I’ve been a part of. Their faithfulness, prayers, godliness, and genuine loveliness have been instrumental and even fundamental in all my years as a Christian. I pray that both men and women would answer their respective callings in life.

Psalm 87:1-7

This Psalm is all about the city of Jerusalem, specifically this place called Zion, ultimately symbolizing our future home in heaven one day, the city of God.

Her foundations are holy, the LORD loves her gates – more than all other dwellings, glorious things are spoken of Jerusalem (Revelation 21:9-27).

Some people brag about the city of their birth (Psalm 87:4) but to be born in Jerusalem, to be born from above, is the only location that really matters.

John 3:3 (NKJV) “Jesus answered and said to him, ‘Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.’”

When we’re born again we’re registered in heaven (Hebrews 12:23).

Psalm 87:6 (NKJV) “The LORD will record, when He registers the peoples: ‘This one was born there.’ Selah”

Proverbs 25:18-19

Proverbs 25:18 (NKJV) “A man who bears false witness against his neighbor is like a club, a sword, and a sharp arrow.”

We’ve learned over the years and through the Proverbs that words can be deadly weapons; those comments can be emotionally and internally “violent.”

Proverbs 25:18 (NLT) Telling lies about others is as harmful as hitting them with an ax, wounding them with a sword, or shooting them with a sharp arrow.

This Proverb definitely applies to casual conversation, but the context speaks more of lies in formal court. Other translations speak of testifying.

Proverbs 25:19 (NKJV) “Confidence in an unfaithful man in time of trouble is like a bad tooth and a foot out of joint.”

Contrast this unfaithful man to the faithful man in 

Proverbs 25:13 (NKJV) “Like the cold of snow in time of harvest Is a faithful messenger to those who send him, for he refreshes the soul of his masters.”

But it’s not isolated to a man with a message, it’s applicable to anyone with an assignment.

It’s one thing if it’s a task in easy times, but other times it’s a time of trouble – will we be reliable then?

Proverbs 25:19 (NLT) Putting confidence in an unreliable person in times of trouble is like chewing with a broken tooth or walking on a lame foot.

If you have any questions or comments on today’s reading, or you’d like to share something the Lord showed you, feel free to leave a reply below. I’d love to hear from you as we grow forward in 2021.

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