Creating A New HEART-Jeremiah 30-31

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Big Idea: Only God can create a new person out of the old one. (After 29 chapters focusing on judgment, we finally come to four chapters (30-33) that focus on hope, salvation and restoration.)

Jeremiah 30-33 presents God's great promise of redemption, deliverance, and restoration of his shattered people. It is called the "Book of Consolation." It may be better called the "Book of Restoration." Recent sermons:

I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness” (Jer 31:3).

“Is not Ephraim the child in whom I delight? Though I often speak against him, I still remember him. Therefore my heart yearns for himI have great compassion for him,” declares the Lord (Jer 31:20).

“This is the covenant I will make with the people of Israel after that time,” declares the Lord. “I will put my law in their minds and write it on their heartsI will be their God, and they will be my people” (Jer 31:33).

“‘The days are coming,’ declares the Lord, ‘when I will bring (shub) my people Israel and Judah back from captivity (shebut) and restore (shub) them to the land I gave their ancestors to possess,’ says the Lord” (Jer 30:3).

“’But I will restore you to health and heal your wounds,’ declares the Lord” (Jer 30:17a).

Outline:

  1. Ch. 30. What God will do: R______ (30:3, 18; 31:23; 33:7, 11, 26).
  2. Ch. 31. Why God does what he does: L____ (31:3, 10, 22, 31-34).
  3. Ch.32-33. What I should do: During a long (70 year) recession, b__ r____ e_______ (ch.32).

{Restore, Love, Buy real estate}

The major point of Jeremiah 30-33 is not necessarily to console (although consolation is present) but to create faith in God and hope in the great, glorious future restoration brought about by the coming messianic king and the new covenant. One of the major features of the Book of Restoration is that it picks up most of the negative judgment imagery of Jeremiah 1-29 (destroyed city, diminished population, exile, sickness, end of joy, broken covenant, Israel like a harlot, foreign domination, etc) and reverses it into imaggery of restoration (rebuilt city, increased population, regatering, healing, etc).

Jeremiah 30-33 opens and closes (Isa 30:3; 33:26) with the same phrase: "I will bring (shub) ... back from captivity (shebut)" (NIV) or "I will restore their fortunes (ESV, HCSB, NRSV). This promise of restoration is a central theme of Jeremiah 30-33, and in various forms this phrase occurs numerous times (Jer 30:3, 18; 31:23; 33:7, 11, 26).

Jeremiah 30-31 flow together, indicated by the introductory words in Jer 30:1-2 cf. Jer 32:1, which clearly starts a new unit. Characteristics of the restoration in Jeremiah 30-31 include:

  1. No mention of rebuilding the temple.
  2. Frequent allusions to the Davidic and Abrahamic covenants, which provides the theological basis for the restoration.
  3. No historical dates provided, pointing to the timelessness of the promised restoration.
  4. Unlike Jeremiah 27-28, the restoration in Jeremiah 30-31 is not tied to the downfall of Babylon; it seems to be "bigger" than the end of Babylon.

30:1-3 - The promise of restoration in Jeremiah 30:1-3 serves as a summary for Jeremiah 30-31.

30:4-11 is a lament, describing the same kind of judgment imagery seen throughout Jeremiah 1-29 but then transitioning to deliverance and restoration.

30:12-17 starts with judgment but concluding with restoration. It centers on the sickness/healing motif.

30:18-22 contains no judgment, only joyful restoration.

30:23-24 concludes with the wrath of God upon his enemies during the time of deliverance and restoration for God's people. It is identical to Jer 23:19-20 where the recipients of God's wrath are identified as the false prophets.

Questions:

  • How many times is “I will” repeated?
  • What (who) is Jacob (30:7,10,18;31:7,11), Israel (30:10; 31:4,9,10), Samaria (31:5), Ephraim (31:6,9,18), Judah and Zion.
  • Why does God say that Israel’s sin is incurable (30:12) and then announce that he can (will) heal it (30:17)? Is there a cure for sin in this life? Is there a balm in Gilead (8:22)? What does 31:20 tell us about God?
  • Based on the old and new covenant, might there be two stages of the Christian life (31:31-34)? Might the New Covenant be a description of a Deeper Life? Do you think so? Why? Why not? Three ways the new is better:
    • A new m___________ (31:33). Do you obey God’s law because you h___ to or because you w____ to?
    • A new r__________ (31:34a; 9:23-24). Do you k____ a_____ God? Or do you k____ God personally?
    • A new p_____ (31:34b; 33:8). Distinguish between the forgiveness of sins and the cleansing of sin. Why is this distinction important? [“He breaks the power of cancelled sin…” Charles Wesley.]

{motivation, relationship, power}

 

 

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