The Restoration of Yisra’el

30: 1-24

DIG: What happened to Yisra’el a century before Jeremiah (30:8; Second Kings 17:5-6, 24-44), a situation that will be rectified when they returned (30:16-18)? Who will be their king? What will he be like (30:21, also see 23:5)? What had King Josiah of Judah done for the northerners early in Yirmeyahu’s ministry (Second Kings 23:15-20) to serve as a prototype for this righteous King to come? What were the days of old like for Yisra’el under the reign of David? What fortunes, songs of praise and covenant promises would be restored? What accomplished this turnabout?

REFLECT: Is it easy or hard to detach yourself emotionally from people who were once important to you? Why? After a falling out, does “out of sight, out of mind” come naturally? Would you like a “restoration” with someone from your past? If Y’hudah had sinned and was restored, what does that say about your sin and God’s redemption?

595 BC during the eleven-year reign of Zedekiah

The primary work of the scroll of Jeremiah was to speak to the exiles in Babylon. While the prophet was given a twofold task to uproot and tear down, to destroy and overthrow, to build and to plant (1:10), the negative theme is emphasized more than the positive. The primary thrust of the book is that YHVH will dismantle Judah and Jerusalem according to His divine sovereign purpose. The counter theme of build and plant, however, is indeed present in Jeremiah. The Exile was not the end of the Jewish community or the Jewishness. On the one hand, Jerusalem was not “emptied” by the Babylonians, but many Jews continued to live in the City. On the other hand, the Jewish community in Babylon developed an intentional and intense identity as a faithful community in exile. This community understood and presented itself as the real Isra’el that would shape the post-exile experience.265

This is the word that came to Yirmeyahu from ADONAI while he was asleep (31:26) for sometimes God spoke to His servants through dreams (Dani’el 10:9; Zechariah 4:1). “This is what the LORD, the God of Yisra’el says: Write in a scroll all the words I have spoken to you (1:1). This is an example of verbal inspiration. Jeremiah is specifically commanded to write in Hebrew, write for yourself, or for your own benefit, the prophet’s heartache had been his ministry to proclaim and prophecy is a very unpopular message. It was really getting to him because he wanted to present something more positive. YHVH was therefore, answering that desire on the part of Yirmeyahu. He was given four chapters (30-33) of a very positive message.

The days are coming, declares the LORD. When Yirmeyahu (under the direction of the Ruach HaKodesh) uses the phrase in the days to come; the days are coming; in those days; in that day, at that time; or for the time will surely come, the context points either to the near historical future or the far eschatological future and which one should be used. This is the fifteenth of twenty-five times that one of these phrases above will be used in Jeremiah. The days are coming when I will bring back My people Isra’el and Judah back (shuwb) from captivity and restore them (shuwb) as a united people to the Land I gave their forefathers to possess, says ADONAI (30:2-3). This is a far eschatological prophecy. In these three verses, God spelled out, for Jeremiah’s sake, the details of the restoration of Isra’el. This Book of Comfort would not only encourage Jeremiah as he proceeds with his grim ministry, but it will later encourage the Jews in exile.

The time of Jacob’s trouble: These are the words the LORD spoke concerning the northern kingdom of Isra’el and the southern kingdom of Judah (30:4). Then Jeremiah begins to describe the Great Tribulation itself. First, he announces the voice of judgment, certainly not words of peace as one would expect from a book of consolation! This is what the LORD says: Cries of fear are heard – terror, not peace. He uses a figure commonly used by the prophets in the TaNaKh, a woman in childbirth. First he asked a rhetorical question then demands a negative answer. Ask and see: Can a man bear children? Then the prophet asked another question. Then why do I see every strong man with his hands on his stomach like a woman in labor, every face turned deathly pale (30:5-6)?

Then he tells us why this has happened. How awful that day will be! It will be a unique day, a specific day. None will be like it (Joel 2:2). It will be a time of trouble for Jacob (30:7a). The time of trouble for Jacob is a term used for the Great Tribulation (see the commentary on Isaiah Eu – The Rapture and the Great Tribulation). The last days of the Dispensation of Grace (before the Great Tribulation) are always viewed as a series of birth pains (see the commentary on Revelation Bg – The Sequence of Pre-tribulation Events).

The Day of the LORD is a general term and the most common one for the Great Tribulation. The day of trouble for Jacob, however, is specifically for Jews. While it is true that the Great Tribulation falls upon all men and women; however, there will be a particular effect upon the Jewish people. One of the purposes of it is to judge the world for sin, to make an end of wickedness and wicked ones, the other primary purpose is to bring Isra’el to repentance. This time will be far more severe for the Jewish people (Zechariah 13:8-9; Isaiah 40:1-2; Matthew 24:15-28; Revelation 12:1-17).

They will no longer serve human conquerors, they will serve ADONAI. In that day, declares ADONAI-Tzva’ot, “I will break the yoke off their necks and will tear off their bonds; no longer will foreigners enslave them. Instead, they will serve the LORD their God” (30:8-9a). He now elaborates on the Jewish deliverance during the time of trouble for Jacob. The promise in this far eschatological prophecy is that the Jews who survive the Tribulation will no longer be enslaved by foreigners.

The people will also submit to the authority of David their King (see the commentary on Revelation Fi – The Government of the Messianic Kingdom), whom God will raise up for them (30:9b). There is no compelling reason not to take Jeremiah’s words here in a literal sense. David is referred to by name elsewhere in passages that look to the future restoration of Isra’el (Ezeki'el 34:23-24, 37:24-25; Hosea 3:5). The term raised up is often used for the resurrected dead. Therefore, David, being one of the righteous of the TaNaKh, will be raised up from the dead during the 75-day period between the end of the Great Tribulation and the start of the messianic Kingdom (see the commentary on Revelation Ey – The Seventy Five Day Interval).

So do not fear, O Jacob My servant; do not be dismayed, O Isra’el, declares the LORD. Here for the first time Jacob is referred to as My servant and identified with Isra’el. For I will bring you home again from distant lands, and your children will return (shuwb) from their exile. She will return to a life of peace and quiet, and no one will terrorize her. I am with you and will save you,” declares ADONAI. I will not completely destroy you. I will discipline you but only in due measure; I will not let you go entirely unpunished (30:10 NLT and 11).

The healing of Yerushalayim’s wounds: This is what ADONAI says: Your wound is incurable from a human perspective, your injury beyond healing. There is no one to plead your cause, no remedy for your sore, no healing for you. It is so bad that new skin cannot grow over the wound. All your allies have forgotten you. ADONAI did the wounding: I have struck you as an enemy would and punished you as would the cruel, because your guilt (singular: the rejection of Messiah) is so great and your sins (plural: they did not have the means of having their sins atoned for since God ceased accepting animal sacrifice after the death of Yeshua) so many. Why do you cry out over your wound, your pain that has no cure? Because of your great guilt and many sins I have done these things to you” (30:12-15).

All the Gentile nations who persecuted Yisra’el during the Great Tribulation will go into exile. But all who devour you will be devoured; all your enemies will go into exile. Those who plunder you will be plundered; all who make spoil of you I will despoil. But I will restore (Hebrew: a’alah) you to health and heal your wounds, declares the LORD, because you are called an outcast, Tziyon for whom no one cares (30:16-17).

The restoration of Jacob: This is what ADONAI says, “I will return (shuwb) the fortunes of Jacob’s temporary tents (see the commentary on Isaiah Kg – The Second Coming of Jesus Christ to Bozrah) and have compassion on his permanent dwellings of the Promised Land. So God will rescue Jacob the place where he dwells temporally. The City (the Hebrew text does not have the article, so the word city should be taken as a collective singular of all the cities of the Promised Land) will be rebuilt on her ruins (Second Kings 19:12; Ezra 2:59; Ezeki'el 3:15), and the palace will stand in its proper place. The effect on the Jews will be clearly seen. From them will come songs of thanksgiving and the sound of rejoicing. I will add to their numbers, and they will not be decreased; I will bring them honor, and they will not be disdained. Their children will be as in days of old during the exodus and the Golden Age of David and Solomon. And their community will be established before Me; I will punish all who oppress them. Their leader (Hebrew: addirov, the rabbis teach that this is the Messiah) will be one of their own; their Ruler will arise from among them. I will bring Him near and He will come close to Me, for who is He who will devote Himself to be close to Me, declares the LORD? So you will be My people, and I will be your God (30:18-22). This will be true because Jacob will beregenerated. All Isra’el, all the Jews still alive at the end of the Great Tribulation will be saved (Romans 11:26) and living under a righteous Ruler.

The wrath of God: Jeremiah then concluded: See, the storm of ADONAI, or the wrath of God, will burst out in wrath, a driving wind swirling down on the heads of the wicked. The fierce anger (Hebrew: searah, violent whirlwind) of the LORD will not turn back (shuwb) until He finally accomplishes the purposes of His heart. In days to come, in the far eschatological future, you will understand this (30:23-24). This is the sixteenth of twenty-five times that one of these phrases above will be used in Jeremiah. Hosea 6:1-3 teaches us that in the last three days of the end of the Great Tribulation the Jewish remnant will indeed understand why judgment had fallen on them (see the commentary on Revelation Ev – The Basis for the Second Coming of Jesus Christ). The people of Y’hudah and Yerushalayim would experience terrible trials at the hands of the Babylonians. They would end up wearing the Gentile yoke, bearing the wounds caused by their sin, and having endured the storm of God’s wrath. But God would eventually deliver them, breaking the yoke, healing the wounds, and bringing peace after the storm. All of this will be a foreshadowing of what will happen to the Jews in the days to come as they go through the Great Tribulation, meet their Kosher King, and enter into their Kingdom.

 

< previous page
next page >

Genesis | Exodus | Isaiah | Ruth | Esther | Jeremiah
Life of David | Jonah | Jude | Life of Christ | Hebrews | Revelation
Acts | Ezra-Nehemiah
News & Updates | Links & Resources | Testimonials | About Us | Statement of Faith
Home | Español | Our FAQ