(Wednesday October 31, 2018)
Read: Jeremiah 31:16–26
Bible in a Year: Jeremiah 22–23; Titus 1
I will refresh the weary and satisfy the faint. Jeremiah 31:25
According to legend, Qu Yuan was a wise and patriotic Chinese government official who lived during the time known as the Warring States period (475–246 bc). It has been said that he tried repeatedly to warn his king about an impending threat that would destroy the country, but the king rejected his advice. Eventually, Qu Yuan was exiled. When he learned about the fall of his beloved country to the foe he had warned about, he ended his life.
Qu Yuan’s life resembles some aspects of the life of the prophet Jeremiah. He too served kings who scorned his warnings, and his country was ravaged. However, while Qu Yuan gave in to his despair, Jeremiah found genuine hope. Why the difference?
Jeremiah knew the Lord who offers the only true hope. “There is hope for your descendants,” God had assured His prophet. “Your children will return to their own land” (Jeremiah 31:17). Although Jerusalem was destroyed in 586 bc, it was later rebuilt (see Nehemiah 6:15).
At some point, we all find ourselves in situations that can cause us to despair. It could be a bad medical report, a sudden job loss, a shattered family. But when life knocks us down, we can still look up—for God is on the throne! He holds our days in His hands, and He holds us close to His heart.
Lord, fill me up with hope and give me a tangible reminder today that things will turn out right in Your way, in Your time.
The world hopes for the best, but the Lord offers the best hope. John Wesley
By Poh Fang Chia
God tells Jeremiah to “restrain your voice from weeping” (31:16). Hope shines through. Ephraim [Israel] and Judah will repent and be restored. In a rare respite from his grief, Jeremiah can say, “My sleep had been pleasant to me” (v. 26).
What causes your tears? Know that God sees and understands them.
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