God’s last word
Jeremiah 33: The last word is, I will have mercy on them.
This phrase is the conclusion of another of Jeremiah’s “prison epistles.” King Zedekiah feels he can’t have Jeremiah preaching defeat even as their enemies have their city under siege so he’s thrown Jeremiah into jail. It’s interesting that the prophet’s focus turns away from “right now” to looking to a much brighter day. In the future the people of Israel and Judah will return to this land. At that time the Lord will do “marvelous and wondrous things” for them (that is, their descendants). God has made some specific promises to this nation and even though, right now, it seems that everything’s falling apart, God has never lost sight of those promises. It’ll all start with the return of the people of Israel to this land. Every promise the Lord has given them will be fulfilled. While it’s true that things are going to get worse before they get better, it is just as true that things will get better; in fact, better than they can imagine. Right now it seems that God’s anger and dismissal of them will be their epitaph, but it isn’t so. Jeremiah says that in the end, when everything’s being summed up that the conclusion to it all will be that God has had mercy on them. Getting from where they are to that wonderful conclusion isn’t going to be easy, but in the end, when all’s said and done, it’ll be clear that everything that happened was an act of divine mercy. It’s hard to see the big picture when I’m in the middle of things that aren’t going to suit me. At times like that I have to simply trust the character of God: that he’s a good and merciful God who loves me. The last word concerning God’s dealings with me will be: “mercy.”
Take Away: Thank the Lord for his unfathomable mercy.
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