Jeremiah 33 - Outline of Jeremiah (Book Notes menu page)
     We are nearing the end of chapters 30-33, in which the LORD shines a bright ray of hope into the midst of the dark days of Babylon's final siege of Jerusalem. Jeremiah is in prison. Nebuchadnezzar's armies surround Jerusalem and are making steady progress toward their inevitable conquest of the city.
     Now that the promised judgment is certain, and all human hope of escape has vanished, the LORD says that just as surely as His promises of judgment have been fulfilled, so, His promises to restore are certain (32:42).
     Before we look at ch. 33, here is a brief summary of these four chapters:
  1. Future Restoration is Promised: Preceded by the Time of Jacob's Trouble. (ch.30)
    "But he shall be saved out of it."
  2. The future Restoration is of the LORD:
    "Behold, the days come that I Will ... " (ch.31)
    1. ...bring them back from their captivity.
    2. their God... they shall be my people.
    3. ...make a New Covenant... write my laws in their hearts.
    4. ...establish them in their land... and in their city.
  3. The future Restoration is Certain,
    as illustrated by Jeremiah's Purchase of Hanameel's Real Estate. (ch.32)
  4. The future Restoration is Secured: in the Person of David's Righteous Branch. (ch.33)

The Security of the Kingdom of David, ch. 33
"The chapter contains three sections, each section being, in its turn, constructed in triplets." [GWms]
The major points (Roman numerals and Letters) of the outline below are from George Williams (GWms).
I. The Promise of Jehovah, 33:1-14
  1. Desolated Jerusalem, v.1-5
    • Background:
      Verses 4,5 describe the imminent destruction of Jerusalem.
      • The city's defenders were demolishing houses for materials to strengthen the fortifications.
        (In v.4, read "by" as "by reason of" or "on account of.")
      • The armies outside were building ramps to surmount the walls.
      • The houses employed by the city's defenders would be filled with their bodies,
        because their destruction was according to the LORD's purpose in judgment.

      Against this backdrop, the LORD instructs Jeremiah (and the believing remnant):
      • Call upon Me... - as opposed to calling upon false gods and political allies which had failed them.
      • I will answer thee... - cp. Jer 29:11-14
      • I will show thee great and mighty things which thou knowest not.
        • great - ie., large, overwhelming, powerful things - cp. Eph 3:20
        • mighty - lit., fortified; ie., inaccessible, secret things, which could not be known unless the LORD revealed and performed them. (This word is translated "withholden," ie., 'kept secret,' in Job 42:2.) cp. Mat 13:34,35; 1Cor 2:7-11; Joh 16:12,13.

      Though Jeremiah struggles to imagine a time of restoration, due to the pressing realities of the present destruction (cp. Jer 32:24,25), he is instructed to place his confidence in the LORD.
           The LORD identifies Himself (v.2) as the "maker" {ie., doer, accomplisher, worker} of His purposes (cp. this word in v.9 "I do... I procure," and v.15 "execute").
           It is He, the LORD, the ever-living One, who has "formed" and "established" Jerusalem and the nation of Israel (cp. 31:35,36; Isa 43:1,21; Heb 11:10,16).
      It is He who will ensure that Jerusalem is...
  2. Desolated Towns, v.10 (cp. Jer 7:34; 16:9; 25:10,11)
    • Gladdened, v.11a
    • Restored "as at the first," v.11b
  3. Desolated Land, v.12a
    • Enriched, v.12b,13
    • Restored as promised, v.14
      The promises of restoration, in the preceding verses, were only partially fulfilled by the return of the captives in the days of Ezra and Nehemiah. Although that restoration would prove to be temporary, it marked the beginning of "that good thing which I have promised," ie., the ultimate and permanent restoration (cp. 32:37-42).
II. The Branch of Jehovah (Isa 4:2-4), v.15-18
  1. as Jehovah, v.16
    The LORD our righteousness - cp. Isa 45:24,25; 1Cor 1:30; 2Cor 5:21; Php 3:9; 2Pet 1:1
    This name is applied to the Messiah, the Savior and King, in Jer 23:5,6. But here, it is this name whereby "she (ie., Jerusalem) shall be called." That is, His name will be applied to her, as the bridegroom's name is given to his bride.
  2. as King, v.17
    Today, while no king sits upon the throne of the nation of Israel (Hos 3:4), David does not lack a man for that throne. Until the time appointed for His earthly reign, He waits upon another throne (Psa 110:1; Rev 3:21; Eph 1:20-23; Php 2:9-11).
  3. as Priest, v.18
    Today, while Israel has no priest to offer sacrifices in an earthly Temple (Hos 3:4), they do not lack a Priest in the presence of God (Heb 4:14-16). In the restoration, Israel will be a nation of priests (Isa 56:7; 61:6). That restoration is foreshadowed in the spiritual nation of believer-priests, today (1Pet 2:5,9).
III. The Faithfulness of Jehovah, v.19-26
  1. Tokens: Day and Night, v.19-21
  2. Tokens: Stars and Sand, v.22
    • Children of David, v.22
      Here, the tokens given to Abraham concerning the multiplying of his seed (Gen 13:16; 15:5) are applied also to the multiplying of the seed of David (ie., of the Messiah, cp. Isa 53:10,11; Psa 22:30; Rev 7:9,10), and of the multiplying of priests (as in v.18 above).
  3. Tokens: Day and Night, v.23-26
    • Captivity of David, to return, v.26
      Jeremiah's contemporaries thought that the LORD had cast off His people (v.24). As they saw it, He had forsaken, not just one, but both families (the northern and the southern kingdoms). But their view revealed their unbelief: "Thus they have despised my people that they should no longer be a people before Me."
         Most of christendom has fallen into this same error. Contrary to their unbelief, the LORD makes it unmistakeably clear that He will never forsake the seed of Jacob (the children of Israel) nor the seed of David (the King of His anointing, cp. Psalm 2), but will fulfill His promises of complete restoration.
         In the last line of v.26, "I will" is doubled (in the HB text), emphasizing that the LORD alone will perform these things: "...for I will cause their captivity to return, and I will have mercy {ie., compassion, as translated in Deu 30:3} upon them."

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