John T. Willis

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Yahweh will Heal Sick, Feed Sheep, Restore the Davidic Dynasty and the Aaronic Priesthood--Jeremiah 33

Concluding the hope oracles in Jeremiah 30-33, there are three hope oracles in Jeremiah 33. Essentially, these oracles contain repetions of Yahweh's promises already presented in Jeremiah 30-32. But Jeremiah 33 portrays additional metaphors and details.

I. Yahweh will heal the sick. Jeremiah 33:1-9. This oracle is very similar to 30:12-17.
a. The composer informs the hearers that this oracle occurred when Jeremiah was confined in the court of the guard. 33:1. 37:21 refers to this event.
b. Yahweh has "made," "formed," "established" the earth. He is all powerful. 33:2.
c. Yahweh summons his audience to pay attention to his promises. If his hearers will call upon Yahweh, he will "tell them great and hidden things they had not known." 33:3. Yahweh then reveals TWO future events that will occur for Yahweh's people.
1. Yahweh will send the Chaldeans=Babylonians into Judah and punish God's people severely because they have forsaken Yahweh and gone after other gods. 33:4-5.
2. After punishing his people, Yahweh will "heal" his people. He will "restore the fortunes of Judah and Israel," and rebuild them as they were as first. 33:6-7.
d. Yahweh promises he will "cleanse" and "forgive" his sinful people who repent. Then "all the nations of the earth" will see the prosperity of Jerusalem and God's people. 33:8-9.

II. Yahweh will shepherd his scattered sheep. Jeremiah 33:10-13. This oracle is similar to 31:10.
a. At the present time, God's people in exile are depressed. They cry out: "It is a waste without human beings or animals." Life is "desolate." 33:10.
b. But Yahweh declares with enthusiasm that He is about to change this situation completely. "Once more," people will hear "the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride, the voices ofthose who sing, as they bring thank offerings to the house of the Lord." 33:11.
c. In this desolate waste, Yahweh will raise up shepherd to rest their flocks, and flocks will pass under the hands of shepherds as they count each one. Yahweh is the great shepherd, who leads his flock into green pastures. See Ezekiel 34. 33:12-13

III. Yahweh will restore the fallen dynasty of David and priesthood of Aaron. Jeremiah 33:14-26.
a. As throughout the Book of Jeremiah, Yahweh's messages are for and about North Israel and Judah, not Judah alone. 33:14. Recall 30:3-4; 31:31; 33:7.
b. Like 23:5, Yahweh again announes he will raise up "a righteous Branch to spring up for David" to maintain justice and righteousness among God's people. Zechariah 3:1-10; 6:9-15 clearly state this "righteous Branch" is Zerubbabel, who rebuilt the Jerusalem temple. 33:15.
c. The new name Yahweh will give is a word play on Zedekiah, which means: "Yahweh is righteousness." The new name is: "Yahweh is our righteousness." 33:16.
d. Yahweh promises David shall never lack a man to sit on the throne of the house of Israel, AND the levitical priests shall never lack a man to offering burnt offerings and other sacrifices. The first two successors are Zerubbabel the grandson of Jehoiachin and thus prince, and Joshua the descendant of Aaron through Zadok. 33:17-18.
e. Yahweh solemnly promises he will not break his covenant with the Davidic dynasty and the Levitical priesthood. Yahweh will INCREASE the offspring of David and Aaron. 33:19-22.
f. Yahweh declares that although things look very bleak for his people, Yahweh will establish his covenant with North Israel and South Judah, and Yahweh will prevail through them. 33:23-26.

Yahweh's promises are always IMPOSSIBLE, INCREDIBLE, UNBELIEVABLE. BUT Yahweh always rises above what is inevitable to carry out his purposes. The hope oracles of Jeremiah should give all people HOPE and a FUTURE.

Share YOUR experiences and dreams with others. Let me hear from YOU.

John Willis


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