Scripture reading – Jeremiah 32Imprisoned, but Not Forgotten!

In spite of Judah’s sins, Jeremiah assured the people the LORD would not forget them (Jeremiah 29:11-13). Nevertheless, they were to accept the consequences of their sins being 70 years of captivity in Babylon (29:10).

What became of Jeremiah, the LORD’s prophet?

The answer to that question is recorded in Jeremiah 32:2, where we read, “Jeremiah the prophet was shut up in the court of the prison, which was in the king of Judah’s house” (32:2b). Rather than heed Jeremiah’s admonitions, the king of Judah had “shut him up” (32:3), literally and physically!  As the army of Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon, laid siege to Jerusalem, Jeremiah was “shut up in the court of the prison” (32:2), where he was treated with disdain.

With Jerusalem under siege, and the rest of Judah fallen, Jeremiah purchased a field in Anathoth, his home village (32:6-12). Why purchase land at such a time? Purchasing the land appeared foolish; however, for Jeremiah it was an act of faith. He proved his confidence that the LORD would restore Israel to the land as He promised (32:13-15).

Jeremiah’s Prayer and the LORD’s Affirmation (32:16-44)

The LORD rehearsed with Jeremiah the sorrow that would come upon Israel and Judah because of the sins of the people (32:26-44).  Nebuchadnezzar would destroy the city of Jerusalem with fire, and the people would suffer disease and famine (32:26-29). Should anyone question why Judah was left desolate, Jeremiah was to remind them of the depths of depravity to which Judah had fallen (32:30-35). In spite of Judah’s wickedness, the LORD promised He would not forget or forsake His people (32:27-44), and would restore them to the land (Jeremiah 33:1-26).

Closing thoughts – How would Judah and Israel find their way back to the LORD? The answer is found in Jeremiah 31:21, where we read, “Set thee up waymarks, make thee high heaps: Set thine heart toward the highway, Even the way which thou wentest” (31:21).

“Waymarks” and “high heaps” marked the way, not only through the wilderness, but back to the LORD. Spiritually, “the waymarks” were God’s Laws and Commandments. 70 years later, the Jewish people were freed to go home. They not only rebuilt Jerusalem, but more importantly, they re-established their covenant with the LORD.

Someone reading this devotional may be far from the LORD. As He waited on Israel, He waits on you to turn from your sin, repent, and come home to Him. Some of Judah did recognize God’s chastening was His way of loving them, and calling them to Himself.

Hebrews 12:11 – “Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.”

The LORD is waiting! 

Copyright © 2022 – Travis D. Smith

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