restored land, restored relationship
Jeremiah 31:15-40 (JDV)
Jeremiah 31:15 This is what Yahveh says: A voice was heard in Ramah, a lament with bitter weeping – Rachel weeping for her children, refusing to be comforted for her children because they are no more.
Jeremiah 31:16 This is what Yahveh says: Keep your voice from weeping and your eyes from tears, because the reward for your work will come – this is what Yahveh declares – and your children will return from the enemy’s land.
Jeremiah 31:17 There is hope for your future – this is what Yahveh declares – and your children will return to their own territory.
Jeremiah 31:18 I have surely heard Ephraim complaining, “You disciplined me, and I have been disciplined like an untrained calf. Take me back, so that I can return, because you, Yahveh, are my God.
Jeremiah 31:19 After my return, I felt regret; After I was instructed, I struck my thigh in grief. I was ashamed and humiliated because I bore the disgrace of my youth.”
Jeremiah 31:20 Isn’t Ephraim a precious son to me, a delightful child? Whenever I speak against him, I certainly still think about him. Therefore, my gut yearns for him; I will truly have compassion on him. this is what Yahveh declares.
Jeremiah 31:21 Set up road markers for yourself; establish signposts! Keep the highway in mind, the way you have traveled. Return, Virgin Israel! Return to these cities of yours.
Jeremiah 31:22 How long will you turn here and there, faithless daughter? You see, Yahveh creates something new in the land – a female will shelter a man.
Jeremiah 31:23 This is what Yahveh of Armies, the God of Israel, says: “When I restore their fortunes, they will once again speak this word in the land of Judah and in its cities: ‘May Yahveh bless you, righteous settlement, holy mountain.’
Jeremiah 31:24 Judah and all its cities will live in it together – also farmers and those who move with the flocks –
Jeremiah 31:25 because I satisfy the thirsty person and feed all those who are weak.”
Jeremiah 31:26 At this I awoke and looked around. My sleep had been most pleasant to me.
Jeremiah 31:27 “Look, the days are coming” – this is what Yahveh declares – “when I will sow the house of Israel and the house of Judah with the seed of people and the seed of animals.
Jeremiah 31:28 Just as I watched over them to uproot and to break them up, to demolish and to destroy, and to cause disaster, so will I watch over them to build and to plant them” – this is what Yahveh declares.
Jeremiah 31:29 “In those days, it will never again be said, ‘The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge.’
Jeremiah 31:30 Rather, each will die for his own violation. Anyone who eats sour grapes – his own teeth will be set on edge.
Jeremiah 31:31 “Look, the days are coming” – this is what Yahveh declares – “when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah.
Jeremiah 31:32 This one will not be like the covenant I made with their fathers on the day I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt – my covenant that they broke even though I am their master” – Yahveh’s declaration.
Jeremiah 31:33 “Instead, this is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after those days” – Yahveh ‘s declaration. “I will put my teaching within them and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people.
Jeremiah 31:34 No longer will one teach his neighbor or his brother, saying, ‘Know Yahveh,’ because they will all know me, from the least to the greatest of them” – this is what Yahveh declares. “You see, I will forgive their violation and never again remember their failure.
Jeremiah 31:35 “This is what Yahveh says: The one who gives the sun for light by day, the fixed order of moon and stars for light by night, who stirs up the sea and makes its waves roar – Yahveh of Armies is his name:
Jeremiah 31:36 If this fixed order departs from before me – this is what Yahveh declares – only then will Israel’s descendants cease to be a nation before me forever.
Jeremiah 31:37 “This is what Yahveh says: Only if the skies above can be measured and the foundations of the land below explored, will I reject all of Israel’s descendants because of all they have done – this is what Yahveh declares.
Jeremiah 31:38 “Look, the days are coming” – Yahveh’s declaration – “when the city from the Tower of Hananel to the Corner Gate will be rebuilt for Yahveh.
Jeremiah 31:39 A measuring line will once again stretch out straight to the hill of Gareb and then turn toward Goah.
Jeremiah 31:40 The whole valley – the corpses, the ashes, and all the fields as far as the Kidron Valley to the corner of the Horse Gate to the east – will be holy to Yahveh. It will not be uprooted or demolished again permanently.”
restored land, restored relationship
The restoration Jeremiah sees for Israel’s future is more than just a political entity, and return to the land. It is participation in a new covenant, which features forgiveness of sins. It is also permanent. What the LORD plucked up, he will replant, and make it as permanent as the fixed order of the moon and stars at night. The God of justice who brought about their exile has a plan for their restoration.
LORD, restore us to a right relationship with you. Make us a city fit for your indwelling.