If you have ever made it through the entire book of Jeremiah, it feels exactly like watching a parent with a naughty child. The parent has warned, threatened, and begged their child to stop behaving so badly and the kid just. won’t. stop.
Finally, the parent has had enough. The hammer is coming down!
The first half of Jeremiah is God telling Jeremiah that this is the last straw with His people. God is absolutely done. He has done everything possible to bring them back to Him, but they just won’t listen or learn. Jeremiah is to go to the people and prepare them for their punishment.
Of course, God is completely justified in punishing His children. They are beyond excuse. Punishment is the only option at this point. God has systematically laid out the terms of their punishment and left no doubt about what is going to happen.
But then God says something interesting. After 25 chapters of punishment and anger, where we might assume that the Israelites were well beyond mercy, God told Jeremiah: “Tell them everything I command you; do not omit a word. Perhaps they will listen and each will turn from their evil ways. Then I will relent and not inflict on them the disaster I was planning because of the evil they have done.” (Jeremiah 26:2-3)
After all of that, up until the very moment of judgment, God was willing- even hoping- that His people would turn toward Him and repent. Just like a parent who tells their child, “this is going to hurt me more than it hurts you,” God was not taking any pleasure in the punishment. In fact, it was breaking His heart.
If we consider our sin from God’s perspective, it will be far less attractive to us. When we truly realize that our sin is separating us from our merciful Heavenly Father, we won’t be as concerned about the actual consequences of our sin as we are about our broken relationship with Him. Nothing is worth that. Absolutely nothing. Our sin won’t just break God’s heart, it will break ours.
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Reading Plan- Week Thirty
Day One- Jeremiah 15
Day Two- Jeremiah 30
Day Three- Jeremiah 31
Day Four- Jeremiah 32
Day Five- Jeremiah 33