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We have in this Chapter the imprisonment of Jeremiah for his faithfulness. The Prophet complains to God. The Lord confirms the word of his servant. The Chapter closeth with God's gracious promises of a return to the people.
There was some considerable space, it should seem between the close of the former Chapter and this, for, according to the date of the eighteenth year of Nebuchadrezzar, it could not be very far from the time of the total overthrow of the kingdom. Let the Reader not overlook the faithfulness of God's servant upon this occasion. Where is the servant, where is the minister of God in the present hour to be found for such integrity?
The Lord was pleased by this token, of causing Jeremiah to buy a portion of land, in the prospect of the loss of all the land, to testify, that his word should stand: and though for a time he gave his people up, he would not cast them finally away. I pray the Reader not to overlook the Lord Jesus in this. He was and is our Kinsman Redeemer, to whom the right of our lost and long forfeited possessions belonged, of redemption, Ruth 4:7-11 .
What a beautiful view is here given of the piety and faith of the Prophet! With what zeal and earnestness doth he set his heart to seek the Lord. Though all his remonstrances and entreaties had failed, in seeking to persuade men; yet who can say, the Prophet thought with himself, what prayer shall do with God. Reader! let such views lead the heart to Jesus? Think of him and his all-prevailing intercession in all seasons of distress!
We have here the Lord's gracious answer to the Prophet's prayer, Isaiah 65:24 . I think it not altogether improbable, but, as the Lord had directed Jeremiah to buy the field in Anathoth, even in the prospect of the ruin of the whole nation; that Jeremiah had some hopes that the Lord would still spare the people from captivity. The Lord's answer throws down all those hopes. The sentence is gone forth, and the Lord will not reverse it. Oh! what a lesson in all ages of the Church, to seek the Lord while he may be found, and not to put off from day to day.
Reader! I beseech you to ponder well the precious things which are contained in the bosom of this scripture; and read them over again and again. Were there ever promises more gracious, even in the midst of the most flagrant impiety? Can there be any form of words equal in point of tenderness, to show the Lord's love to his people? He makes use of human affections, and expresseth himself by human feelings, in saying, that he will do what he will do, in love and mercy, with his whole heart, and with his whole soul. And who but Jesus is this? Are not these words peculiarly his? Oh! dearest Lord, what affection must there have been in thy heart toward thy people, who thus so many years before thou didst openly tabernacle in substance of our flesh, even then to condescend to speak to thy redeemed under the expression of human passions.
READER! behold in the example of Zedekiah King of Judah, how sin hardens. Though every tittle Jeremiah had foretold during the many years of his preaching, had come to pass, and not one thing had failed: though the false prophet Hananiah, that prophesied smooth things, and had promised peace, had suddenly died for his daring impiety; yet no one effect had either wrought upon the mind of Zedekiah, or his princes, or the people. Oh! what an awful state to be given up to a judicial blindness, and to the obduracy of a hardened and impenitent heart!
Behold the faithfulness of Jeremiah in the times of such impending danger. What a blessed state is that, which grace alone can induce, when neither the frowns nor smiles of men bring a snare!
But chiefly from this Chapter, may the reflections both of him that writes, and him that reads be directed, to behold Jesus in his unceasing tenderness and compassion over his people. Can the imagination form a representation of anything so lovely, as what is here said, of God's gathering his dispersed, and bringing home his captives, notwithstanding all their obstinacy and rebellion against him? Precious Lord! let everyone of thine say, be it unto us according to thy word. If thou Lord wilt undertake both for thyself and people in this everlasting covenant, then most assuredly all those blessings must come to pass, and in the gift of one heart and one way, to fear thee and love thee forever; neither the father nor the children shall depart from thee! Oh! the sweetness and blessedness of that promise, in which thou hast said: I will not; and they shall not; I will not turn from them, and they shall not depart from me. Oh! for grace to live in the constant belief of this most blessed truth, by which all thy redeemed are safe, and shall not be cast down nor destroyed forever. Amen.
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Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Jeremiah 32". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/
the Fourth Sunday after Epiphany