Jeremiah began prophesying at a young age and continued for over forty years. Several resources call Jeremiah the “weeping prophet” because of his dramatic and emotional pleas, along with his deep compassion for his people. Jeremiah’s prophecy of the coming of Jesus as God’s new covenant is especially significant. At www.insight.org, Chuck Swindoll tells us that:
Significantly, the book of Jeremiah also provides us the clearest glimpse of the new covenant God intended to make with His people once Christ came to earth. This new covenant would be the means of restoration for God’s people, as He would put His law within them, writing it on hearts of flesh rather than on tablets of stone. Rather than fostering our relationship with God through a fixed location like a temple, He promised through Jeremiah that His people would know Him directly, a knowledge that comes through the person of His Son, Jesus Christ (Jeremiah 31:31–34).¹
Light the Prophecy Candle.
Jeremiah 31:31-34 (NRSV)
The days are surely coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah. It will not be like the covenant that I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt—a covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, says the Lord. But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. No longer shall they teach one another, or say to each other, “Know the Lord,” for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, says the Lord; for I will forgive their iniquity, and remember their sin no more.
Jeremiah prophesies a new covenant- our reason for hope today. This Promise of Hope, this promised new covenant, became the person of Jesus. God came to us in Jesus; Jesus IS the new covenant. This new covenant is our assurance of God’s love and forgiveness, superseding anything we could ever do. Our brighter future is in the words, “for they shall ALL know me, from the least of them to the greatest, for I will forgive their iniquity and remember their sin no more.” This incredible hope- God’s presence with us- is for everyone.
Prayer: Thank you, God, for the promise of this new covenant, Jesus- your universal gift for all of us. Help us to receive him, to receive YOU anew- not only at Christmas, but every moment of our lives. Amen.