Whereas a central focus of Jeremiah 11:1-20:18 is Jeremiah’s roller coaster ride of frustration and desperation, in this week’s installment we see a series of confrontations Jeremiah has with Judah’s kings (21:1-23:8), false prophets (23:9-40), the people (24:1-25:38), and false belief (26:1-29:32).
In the midst of condemning the wicked shepherds (i.e., the kings) of Judah, Yahweh makes a stunning promise: “Behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land. In his days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell securely. And this is the name by which he will be called: ‘The LORD is our righteousness.'” (Jer 23:5-6). God had promised David that he would raise up one of his descendants to rule over an eternal kingdom (2 Sam 7:12-16). YHWH reaffirms that promise here in Jer 23:5-6. That promise is fulfilled in Jesus Christ, who as a descendant of David (Rom 1:3) “became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption” (1 Cor 1:30). God “made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God” (2 Cor 5:21).
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