Words to reach in a heartⅠ Restoring LoveJeremiah 3:19-4:4
I touched about the connection of the Gospel a little that the frame of the central message of Jeremiah were opened, last time. Jeremiah is going to touch the new frame in a text of this morning.
"Then I said, 'How I would set you among My sons, and give you a pleasant land, the most beautiful inheritance of the nations!' And I said, 'You shall call Me, My Father, and not turn away from following Me.' Surely, as a woman treacherously departs from her lover, so you have dealt treacherously with Me, O house of Israel,' declares the Lord." (3:19-20) Israel is expressed with a daughter at here. He (God) says He will incorporate that daughter in "sons". Here, it is conscious of the superiority of the son by the inheritance of Jewish law. It was the fate from the old days of this country; a son, the eldest son with a right of inheritance had a right to succeed to the double of the thing which put other boys together. But there was some property distribution to other sons, when the accident of such as the death of his eldest son occurred, and even if it did not move up, there was a slight distribution of property to them. However, in the case of a daughter, there was not even such a possibility. A daughter was put outside a law of inheritance. But it might also be dispensed property rarely; but, even in that case, it was not allowed to take out property into other tribes when she married. In the case of land inheritance, it is even more so. Therefore, a daughter only lives just by her father's blessing. However, it is said that the blessing of God incorporates her into "sons". This is a declaration from the benefit. It is not the right of the side to receive. It should be considered that love of father became such a benefit. He gave her that ground, beloved ground, the most beautiful inheritance among the countries; and there, there were expectations that she would respond with sincere love for her father in that land. And there, there was the expectation that she is accordance with God, and walks so as to please the heart of God, and she would never come away from there. In that way, she becomes chosen people of God. Will "the ground of the most beautiful inheritance" be a pre-model of the kingdom of God by the Gospel of Jesus?
It is said, "But,". "So you have dealt treacherously with Me," (3:20) As for this betrayal, its meaning will be clarified by learning a love of God. Their all personalities which were brought up by God were twisted. Without sincere repentance, the restoration is not possible anymore. If say further more, that love can not be restored without intervention by God Himself. Will it have to depend on the Gospel of God? It becomes the subject from Verse 3:21 to 4:2. The treachery (the most of Japanese translation of 7,8,11. is translated as insincerity), it is the loss of the love and an entrance to illegality. As modern.
Ⅱ As Heat Haze
"A voice is heard on the bare heights, the weeping and the supplications of the sons of Israel; because they have perverted their way, they have forgotten the Lord their God. Return, O faithless sons, I will heal your faithlessness. Behold, we come to Thee; for Thou art the Lord our God." (3:21-22) A certain annotator says this is "the very delicate inner ear of the prophets". It was such a cry of supplication, which had reached the ears of Jeremiah. They lost sight of their way. We do not know the way to come back though we want to return. Until now, many prophets said "Return, I will heal your betrayal", and it will be sure that they wanted to return. However, would it not be true confession we can say, after we know love of God who said "I would set you among My sons"? The cry of supplication reached to the ears of Jeremiah was their repentance. "Behold, we come to Thee; for Thou art the Lord our God. Surely, the hills are a deception, a tumult on the mountains. Surely, in the Lord our God is the salvation of Israel. But the shameful thing has consumed the labor of our fathers since our youth, their flocks and their herds, their sons and their daughters." (3:22-24) They confessed, "Thou art the Lord our God.". The offering religion of Canaan Baal that they were engrossed devoured them, and they were only false gods. "Let us lie down in our shame, and let our humiliation cover us; for we have sinned against the Lord our God, we and our fathers, since our youth even to this day. And we have not obeyed the voice of the Lord our God."; their confession continues. It says "shame"; this shows the figure of the collapse broken feeling that they have sinned before the Lord deeply into their inner. It was the true repentance before God.
However, would they have really prostrated themselves before God with such a repentance? It is thought that it would be the hope and wish that they (God and Jeremiah) wanted. Unfortunately, that hope did not come true, and the kingdom of Judah had become captivity of distant Babylon by the army of Nebuchadnezzar who came from the north. At that time, they make this confession the first time. As for this confession of Jeremiah which was not in reality he has shown it as Heat Haze, would it be a warning to the people, I think. Deep wound of the prophet seems painfully come into view.
Ⅲ Words to reach in a heart
"If you will return, O Israel," declares the Lord, "Then you should return to Me. And if you will put away your detested things from My presence, and will not waver, and you will swear, 'As the Lord lives,' in truth, in justice, and in righteousness; then the nations will bless themselves in Him, and in Him they will glory." (4:1-2) To their repentance, the response of the God called the promise of salvation is given. It does not come out from desire of Israel, in any sense. Even if it was accompanied by tears of sad entreaty so much. It is a thing based on the love of God. Please hear words of Hoshea. "Come, let us return to the Lord, for He has torn us, but He will heal us; He has wounded us, but he will bandage us. He will revive us after two days; He will raise us on the third day that we may live before Him, So let us know, let us press on to know the Lord. His going forth is as certain as the dawn; and He will come to us like the rain, like the spring rain watering the earth." (6:1-3) Jeremiah succeeded to the genealogy of the prophet. All of the prophets announced these messages, while feel the love of God to Israel. Jeremiah is no exception, too. He mediate with severe condemnation so much, but he speaks repeatedly that there is God's love there. He will talk hard believing the love of God can surely reach to the people, even if it is a few people.
Please hear. The love of God. It is only one necessary. "Admit God, and get rid of the evil of own in front of God", it is asked only that. It is to recognize God above all. It would be connected to our modern age also. God is only God who has been brought in from Christianity, the foreign country; the modern Japanese people hear only that yet. Though I have wanted them to recognize God who lives and to hear the words of God, they have put up a big wall at there; a voice of worries of Jeremiah seems to be heard. Israel who should have been the chosen people of God stood in the same place with us Japanese, and has lost the sight of God who lives. "For thus says the Lord to the men of Judah and to Jerusalem, 'Break up your fallow ground, and do not sow among thorns. Circumcise yourselves to the Lord and remove the foreskins of your heart, men of Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem, lest My wrath go forth like fire and burn with none to quench it, because of the evil of your deeds.'" (4:3-4) Though it should touch their heart, they put up a thick wall there, and words of God can not reach them. It seems to overlap with a voice of Jesus, "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, who kills the prophets and..." (Matthew 23:37-39). Is it an era of barren? However, we want to wish to continue preaching words of God without giving up like Jeremiah.