Jeremiah Prophesies a New Covenant
Jeremiah 17:1-10; 31:31-34
Jeremiah – one of the Major Prophets prophesying to the nation of Judah (The Southern Kingdom)
A prophet both foretold the future and proclaim God’s Word and will for the present. They were generally black and white (told it like it was) in their communication and revelation of God’s message.
Dates: Approximately 620-586 BC
Jeremiah ministry spanned five kings: Josiah (a good king/reformer), Jehoahaz (Wicked), Jehoiakim (wicked), Jehoiachin (wicked) and Zedekiah (wicked). Most of Jeremiah’s ministry was met by the rejection of his message because he prophesied doom and gloom. He was on many occasions beaten, punished, and imprisoned; however, he remained faithful to the Lord’s calling.
The name “Jeremiah” means Yahweh (God) exalts or Yahweh (God) uplifts
Jeremiah’s call was young in his life (He referred to himself as a child)
God was at work in the life of Jeremiah prior to his birth. God was conforming Jeremiah for the call.
17:1 – The “pen of iron” and the “point of diamond” were tools that were used to write on stone. The illustration here shows exactly how hardened the hearts of the people had become.
We are so quick to deceive ourselves into thinking that our sinful condition is not really as bad as it actually is. Why do we do this? The Lord says in 17:5 "Cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh His strength." Our ways are faulty, and our minds are imperfect. 17:9 states that our hearts are “deceitful above all things, and desperately sick.” We cannot draw our strength from within ourselves. Psalm 73:26 says, "My flesh and my heart may fail, but GOD is the strength of my heart and my portion forever." We must trust in the Lord as is mentioned in 17:7-8.
Because our hearts are engraved with sin, the message of salvation can’t be singularly focused on behavior modification. Changing a behavior doesn’t necessarily change the heart, but a changing of the heart will always bring about different behavior.
Although sin will cling to us throughout our entire lives, the gospel of grace doesn't just forgive us and then leave us as we were. God changes us and gives a thirst for holiness.
The Lord searches our innermost thoughts; nothing is hidden from Him.
In chapter 31 verse 31 we see God’s promise of a new covenant. This passage in Jeremiah is one of the most significant in the book. It is quoted in Hebrews (8:8-13; 10:15-17) and alluded to numerous times throughout the New Testament (Matt. 26:28; Mark 14:24; Luke 22:20; 1 Cor. 11:23-26; 2 Cor. 3:3,6; Heb. 7:22)
This new covenant, to be initiated by the blood of Jesus, will be written on the hearts of the recipients.
“Because the gospel has solved our problem of a heart engraved with sin and given us the promise of a heart indwelled by God, we can live in the privilege of a heart that knows God.” – Gospel Projects Students Lesson
God promises to write His low on our hearts and send the Holy Spirit to dwell within us.
The gospel of Jesus Christ is the new covenant that meets us at the heart level. In this new covenant we are given a new heart not engraved with sin, but rather indwelled by Him.
We are called to spread the glory of God throughout the earth, making the gospel of Jesus known to everyone around us.