A Promised Hope

Jeremiah 23:5-6
Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth.  In his days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely: and this is his name whereby he shall be called, THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS.

God is getting ready to send the people into captivity, to allow them to be conquered.  His wrath is about to come down upon them, and the idolatrous people will be judged for their sin.  The stiff-necked people will be judged for not repenting when God had called to them.  The lying prophets will be judged for misleading their flocks.  But there are always reminders even in times of judgment of God’s mercy and faithfulness.  To Israel and through Judah, God would send a new King to the people who had forsaken Him.  Despite their behavior, God would still go forth with His plan for redemption, because He always keeps His promises.

What a reminder this was to God’s people, especially at this time in history, on the cusp of being conquered.  What a statement to make when God is telling the people He will no longer hear them and there is no changing His mind, that this judgment is surely coming and it will be horrible and there will be no escape.  It was the perfect time to remind hopeless people that eventually things would change, that a deliverer would come, that salvation was on its way.

In our most sinful and rebellious states, God reminds us that He has sent our Savior.  God reminds us that the King has come and we can make Him our Lord.  We may be conquered by sin at this very moment, but there is a Redeemer on the horizon who can make all things new.  The one prophesied had come, and now all we need to do is accept Him in order to be set free and experience the peace that was promised.  Right now, there is time to turn aside from sin, to forsake worldliness and evil and all the powers of darkness and cling to the righteousness of Jesus Christ.

Can we see God’s mercy even in the midst of His wrath?  Do we understand His judgment and why it must come?  Can we see His grace in Jesus, and will we accept it for ourselves?  There is nothing beyond the reach of it.  It extends eternally in both directions from any point in time.  It began before this world existed and will continue on even after it has passed away.  The promised King has come, and He reigns over all, and He can reign in our hearts and lives if only we will call upon Him.