Advent Day 6: Jeremiah 31:31-34

December 8, 2022

31 “Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah, 32 not like the covenant that I made with their fathers on the day when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, my covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, declares the Lord. 33 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares 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. 34 And no longer shall each one teach his neighbor and each his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the Lord. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.”

Increased neglect, blatant ignorance, and willful disobedience reduced God's covenant to Israel and Judah a mere mockery. Though the LORD God took them by the hand out of the land of Egypt, though He was their husband, the covenant made between God and his people was broken. Broken not by God's unfaithfulness, for He has none. Broken because of Israel and Judah's unfaithfulness, treachery, idolatry, immorality, and rebellion against the Faithful One. Yet Thou has shown oh Lord, how generous, how abundant are Thy mercies, for instead of finding someone else, Thou has stayed with the unfaithful and unreliable Israel.

To them Thou has made a new covenant. How is this different Oh Lord, from the covenant of the past? Thou has made this covenant personal. When in times past you wrote Thy covenant on stones of tablets, now Thou writest Thy covenant on each of our stony-turned-flesh heart. When in times past, Thou redeemeth them from slavery without, now in Thy new covenant, Thou redeemeth my soul from the slavery of sin and misery. When in times past, Thou instruct them to teach one another to 'Know the Lord,' now Thou art our Teacher oh Holy Spirit, instructing us through Thy Word made available for us, reminding us and convicting us of the things that Thou has taught us through Thy Word.

How else it is also different? Thou has made this covenant plenary. At times past, the poor, the weak, the sojourner, the widow, and the orphan are at the mercy of the rich, the powerful, the haves. Yet the unfaithfulness of the strong led to the neglect of the weak. Yet now, Thy covenant is available and applied from the least to the greatest! Oh, what reversal! How awesome Thou art oh Lord, to shame the wise with the simple, to shame the strong with the weak. From the weak to the strong, from the least to the greatest! That is the order of thy new covenant.

Oh Lord, let me see my leastness, my weakness. Let me not be boastful, but draw near to you, humbly recognizing that I am guilty of breaking Thy old covenant, which Thou has written in my heart. Yet it is by Thy matchless grace, that Thou personally and in plenary, bestowed to Thy servant, Thy amazing new covenant, in Christ Jesus our Lord.


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