Submitted by Visitor (not verified) on Mon, 18/10/2010 – 08:31
Year C (2009-2010)
Bible Book: Jeremiah / Jeremia
Chapter: 31
Verse: 27 – 34

“The day is coming!” says the Lord (v 27a). The promise that a new time will come is repeated in verse 31. These words must have been a wonderful encouragement for the distraught Israelites in exile. There is still hope! God is promising a new covenant (v 31).

According to Jeremiah 1:10 this priest and son of Hilkiah was appointed by God to demolish as well as to build. “Today I am appointing you to speak to nations and kingdoms. I want you to pull them up by the roots and tear them down. I want you to destroy them and crush them. But I also want you to build them up and plant them” (NIRV). It seems that most of Jeremiah’s energy was focused on the negative part of this assignment – to the effect that he was often tearful and depressed (cf 20:14-18).

How wonderful it must have been to at last receive this message from God. To realise that now the long, dark night is passing and a new day is coming.

How wonderful is the content of this promise. God himself will rebuild Israel and Judah (v 28). The new generation will no longer have to bear the burdens of their parents’ sins (v 29-30). God will make a new (or renewed) covenant with his people that will be better than the one made at Sinai (v 31-32). The crux of this new relationship will be that God is going to write his instructions on their hearts (v 33). The outcome of this will be that everyone will know God and understand his will (v 34). God’s astounding grace will make this possible, for He will forgive their sins (v 34b)!

It is obvious that God’s intentions for his people are good, and that He is the initiator of this new relationship.

There is still hope!

So it is time to build and to plant.

To think about or discuss: What are the signs of God’s work that you see in this time of HIV and AIDS? Are you also building and planting?

Author: N du Toit (Ds)
Language: English