Bible Study, Commentary

Jeremiah 33 – Solitary Man

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Jeremiah 33

February 9, 2024 1:54 PM
Solitary Man


Jer 33:1 Moreover the word of the LORD came unto Jeremiah the second time, while he was yet shut up in the court of the prison, saying,

This was a second word at the same time period as the previous chapter. Jerusalem was right in the middle of the siege that would end their sovereignty.

Jer 33:2 Thus saith the LORD the maker thereof, the LORD that formed it, to establish it; the LORD is his name;

Let us take the time to fully enjoy this chapter. This chapter, more than any other, will focus on future restoration and blessing. While the quantity of verses speaking of God’s positive promises are definitely in the minority, it is greatly comforting that even in the midst of the harshest discourses, God will not leave us without hope. It reminds me of Deut chapter 28. 14 verses of blessing for obedience, 54 verses of curses for disobedience. I am just going to throw one verse from that chapter right here, while it is on my heart:

Deu 28:61 Also every sickness, and every plague, which is not written in the book of this law, them will the LORD bring upon thee, until thou be destroyed.

God led me to watch more vax inured testimonies recently. From Pfizer’s own docs, 1291 side effects have been found from this wonder poison. That must of taken many years of clandestine testing to observe and compile. This is a direct fulfillment of the above verse. Every disease you can think of, and every one you never heard of, had been unleashed on this wicked generation. It was heartbreaking to listen to some of these poor innocents describe their awful conditions. Things you just never saw before 2021. No, these people were not saved, but neither did they deserve having a bunch of genocidal maniacs inject them with substances that would cause such suffering and trauma. God gave me a personal word over it. In essence, he wanted me to always keep these individual stories of suffering before my eyes, to keep my heart tender and sorrowful before him.

A million deaths is a statistic. One video of one person’s suffering will touch your heart far more deeply, as it brings home that this could happen to any one of us.

Jer 33:3 Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee (I will show you my front and not my back) great (mighty, noble) and mighty (isolated, inaccessible, fortified) things, which thou knowest not.

What a mighty promise to those who would truly seek him! Instead of running away from God when trouble hits, run to him. Don’t be like Cain, who responded to God rejecting his offering by taking offence (Gen 4:5). He became very angry. He ended up being cursed in a unique way that even today we don’t fully understand (see Gen chapter 4).

If we seek, God promises to answer. He promises to meet us face to face. Not only will he show us great things, but things that were previously inaccessible. I see the Hebrew implying that certain revelations that are out of reach to the average believer will be made accessible to the truly serious seeker of God. These will be things that you don’t know. You may think you know something, but when God comes and truly reveals his word unto you, you will be astounded at the truths that he will make manifest.

Jer 33:4 For thus saith the LORD, the God of Israel, concerning the houses of this city, and concerning the houses of the kings of Judah, which are thrown down by the mounts (ramparts), and by the sword;

God is speaking about the reality of their current situation. God is never afraid to speak of what really is, not what you want it in faith to be. Some believers are still scared to speak of their current reality, as somehow they think that speaking the truth exhibits some sort of lack of faith. Speaking the truth is never wrong. Speaking like one who refuses to accept reality is always dangerous, and kind of crazy.

The houses in the city have not only been destroyed by the invader, but most likely also by the defenders themselves, depending on the strategic purpose it could serve. Our wealth and property has also been thrown down by our own side, who is supposedly supposed to be defending us, but have long ago thrown in their lot with satan.

Jer 33:5 They come to fight with the Chaldeans, but it is to fill them with the dead bodies of men, whom I have slain in mine anger and in my fury, and for all whose wickedness I have hid my face from this city.

Unlike the previous promise where God promises to show his face to those who earnestly seek him, here he promises to hide his face from the wicked. Man’s purpose may be to fight the enemy, but if God has abandoned you, all you will accomplish is a body count. All the videos made, all the protests attended, all the resistance attempted, and all we’ve really accomplished is a minimum 17 million body count, and most likely 5 times that, if one counts all the collateral damage these last 4 years.

Jer 33:6 Behold, I will bring it health and cure (medicine and deliverance), and I will cure (heal, make whole) them, and will reveal unto them the abundance of peace (shalom) and truth (eh-meth – stability, certainty).

Sometimes God changes the thrust of a passage so suddenly that it leaves us wondering exactly what point is he trying to make. Is he talking about judgment or restoration? Cursing or healing? Positive or negative? Probably the reason why we struggle to understand is because we are dealing with a translation of a text that is thousands of years old. Even if we think we know Hebrew today, can we really be sure we fully understand the Hebrew used in 587 BC?

I think that this verse is meant to contrast with the previous one. God says that you have decided to fight in your own strength, relying on the arm of flesh. The result is a high body count. Now I am going to show up. Only I can bring healing and deliverance. True peace and a certain future can only be found in me. Man will always try everything else besides God to fix their self inflicted problems. Only when we’ve exhausted all other possibilities, do we finally turn to Him who can save us. I don’t know how God can be so long suffering, almost always taking us back, even when he has every right to leave us in our misery.

Jer 33:7 And I will cause the captivity of Judah and the captivity of Israel to return, and will build them, as at the first.

God loves to restore and rebuild. He loves to take our hopeless situations, and turn them around for his glory. God still speaks of both kingdoms as if they are one, and as if they both exist. Even if the church in North America is driven far underground and disappears from public view in the next few years, God still knows that we are there.

Jer 33:8 And I will cleanse (remove all contamination) them from all their iniquity (perversity), whereby they have sinned (missed the mark) against me; and I will pardon (forgive, spare) all their iniquities, whereby they have sinned, and whereby they have transgressed (broken away, apostatized) against me.

Where did this promise come from? All God has been saying for chapter after chapter is how Judah needs to be wiped off the map, at least for a season. Yet his heart has this deep, abiding, everlasting love for his people. He can’t stop from revealing his heart to Jeremiah. Although his people are currently breaking his heart, as they continually seem to do, yet he lets slip that there will come a day when their sins will be taken away.

God is giving us hints of the coming redeemer.

Jer 33:9 And it shall be to me a name of joy, a praise and an honour (ornament) before all the nations (goy – Gentiles) of the earth, which shall hear all the good (tobe) that I do unto them: and they shall fear (paw-khad – stand in awe, be startled) and tremble (raw-gaz – to quiver with violent emotion) for all the goodness (tobe – favor, kindness, graciousness) and for all the prosperity (shalom) that I procure unto it.

God is looking for a people that he can show off. Not only future Israel, but the bride of Christ as well. Col 3:4-5 hints at the fact that our life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ shall appear, then we also shall appear in glory. Even as the future glory of Israel is hidden as they go through the process of purging, refinement and ultimate redemption, so does the Church grow in secret. No one truly knows who is in the body. In due time, the body will be revealed to all creation and God will be all in all.

These promises seem to be primarily aimed for ultimate fulfillment during the Millennium. So many of these wonderful promises can only fully come to pass when Christ returns and sets up his earthly kingdom in person. We are simply too sinful and corrupt to let the fullness of the life of God dominate us like the Father desires.

After the horrors of the apocalypse, there will be a surviving generation of people who will have known no goodness, mercy or love. They will not know such things exist. When they see God’s love and mercy lavished upon his own people, they will tremble in awe at the goodness of God.

Jer 33:10 Thus saith the LORD; Again there shall be heard in this place, which ye say shall be desolate without man and without beast, even in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem, that are desolate, without man, and without inhabitant, and without beast,
Jer 33:11 The voice of joy, and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride, the voice of them that shall say, Praise the LORD of hosts: for the LORD is good; for his mercy (chesed) endureth for ever: and of them that shall bring the sacrifice of praise into the house of the LORD. For I will cause to return (shoob) the captivity (exile) of the land, as at the first, saith the LORD.

Quite a detailed statement of restoration! God is once again dealing in contrasts. Where there is emptiness and depopulation, there will be fullness and multitudes. God never tells us to be worried about overpopulation. Only the wicked are concerned about that. And that is upon direct orders from their lord and master satan. They want to kill us because they are afraid of us. Too many of us could overwhelm them. They are so insanely greedy, they don’t want to share the planet with anyone. They would rather destroy all the earth, than share it with any other human being, if they had their way.

God is now speaking not of a general far off promise of restoring all his people, but to the immediate situation of the imminent destruction of Judah and Jerusalem. Note he says nothing about defeating the Chaldeans (Babylonians). He simply states the fact that the devil will never have the last say about anything. He has tremendous power and latitude to destroy, but he can never win. He is temporal, God is eternal.

Jer 33:12 Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Again in this place, which is desolate without man and without beast, and in all the cities thereof, shall be an habitation (dwelling place) of shepherds causing their flocks to lie down (and rest).

Sometimes it feels like all human beings have left the planet, leaving us only these outer husks that are full of demons. The same goes for our churches. Who has kidnapped all the shepherds and replaced them with these caricatures of the real thing?

In this time of heresy, compromise and outright apostasy, God promises to restore true shepherds to pasture his flock. I don’t know if there is time to do so at this hour, but I presume that the Millenium will have some awesome preachers!

Jer 33:13 In the cities of the mountains, in the cities of the vale (lowland), and in the cities of the south, and in the land of Benjamin, and in the places about Jerusalem, and in the cities of Judah, shall the flocks pass again under the hands of him that telleth (counts) them, saith the LORD.

Benjamin is lumped in with Judah as Jerusalem actually sat in the land of Benjamin. Despite being a part of the 10 tribes, they were more closely related with Judah than Simeon was, who was swallowed up by Judah and heard from no more.

God is saying that he will send the good shepherd, who will care for the sheep, counting each one, so that none shall be lost. A wonderful prediction of the good shepherd who would come to shed his blood for us.

Jer 33:14 Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will perform that good thing which I have promised unto the house of Israel and to the house of Judah.

As God keeps repeating himself when he has made a promise to judge, so he keeps reiterating his promises to restore. You may of fallen. You may of stumbled. Do not despair. Do not give up. The good shepherd is here. He counts each and every one of his sheep. If he notices one missing, he will leave the flock to go and find you. All you have to do is be willing to come home.

Jer 33:15 In those days, and at that time, will I cause the Branch of righteousness to grow up (sprout) unto David; and he shall execute judgment (mishpat) and righteousness (tsed-aw-kaw – rightness, justice, virtue) in the land.

Who else but Jesus is being referenced here. Other scriptures that call him the branch are found in Is 4:2, 11:1, Jer 23:5. The promise to David is now brought into focus. This future restoration is all tied into the promise that a seed of David would sit on the throne forever (2 Sam 7:16).

What shall this righteous heir to the throne come to do? Forgive us all our sins? Spread the message of love? Bring peace and healing? Those things may all be so, but that is not what is spoken of here. God saw fit to talk about some of this favorite things – mishpat and tsed-aw-kaw. Judgment and justice. Dealing with evil is a far higher priority in God’s eyes than in the church’s. We want to deal with the healing of our hurts. The answering of our prayers. The promise of heaven. God wants to deal with sin. Without evil being dealt with, there is no way blessings can flow. Not personally, not corporately, not nationally, not globally. Let us prioritize dealing with sin personally. Once that is done, we can then move on to the other, larger scopes of concern out there.

Jer 33:16 In those days shall Judah be saved, and Jerusalem shall dwell safely: and this is the name wherewith she shall be called, The LORD our righteousness (tseh-dek).

As we see in the continuing war in Israel, that is almost guaranteed to escalate, even if there are temporary pauses, this promise cannot come to pass in our age. Only when Jesus comes riding in the clouds shall their eyes be open and they shall look upon him whom they have pierced. Then, and only then, will all these wonderful promises of God be fulfilled.

Jer 33:17 For thus saith the LORD; David shall never want (kaw-rath – to cut a covenant) a man to sit upon the throne of the house of Israel;

This is a repetition of the promise found in 2 Sam 7:16, 1 Ki 2:4, Ps 89:29,36. However those were given in a time of relative kingdom stability. This is now reiterated during a time of complete destruction. The promise mainly means that the line of David will never die out, no matter how hard the devil would work to extinguish it. We have already seen in a previous chapter how Coniah almost ended the bloodline through the curse God placed upon him. If not for the concept of the Levirite marriage, the line of David would not of been able to produce the messiah.

Obviously the verse did not mean that someone would actually sit on the David’s throne in all the future days to come. Indeed, the physical kingdom was coming to an end. It has still yet to be restored. Talk about having to wait a long time to see a promise fulfilled! The people of God have been waiting for over 2500 years for the descendant of David to take up the physical throne once again.

Note the strong Hebrew term used to clearly state that this Davidic promise is based on a covenant cut, which was the most sacred thing one could do to verify one’s oath. This promise is sure.

Jer 33:18 Neither shall the priests the Levites want a man before me to offer burnt offerings (o-law), and to kindle meat offerings (min-khaw), and to do sacrifice (zeh-bakh) continually.

Here is a much more difficult promise to comprehend. This opens up the whole new can of worms of Ezekiel’s Millennial temple in Ezekiel chapters 40-48. No one can adequately explain why a temple of animal sacrifice is instituted or needed in the Millennium. All one can do is speculate. Almost everyone ignores it, as if embarrassed to find it in the scripture.

I will not begin to go into the various theories here. My personal belief is that this is one of those areas in the text that has not yet been unlocked. God does work on the ‘need to know’ basis. We obviously do not need to know – yet.

Thus one can say this will be fulfilled in the Millenium. Just as the line of David will not be broken, so will the line of Aaron survive. Of course, spiritually, we are kings and priests so in a second meaning, the body of Christ will always have someone to exercise authority in Christ, like David. We will also offer our sacrifices of praise and worship and intercede, in a priestly role, like Aaron.

Jer 33:19 And the word of the LORD came unto Jeremiah, saying,

Another word was given during this time period.

Jer 33:20 Thus saith the LORD; If ye can break my covenant of the day, and my covenant of the night, and that there should not be day and night in their season;
Jer 33:21 Then may also my covenant be broken with David my servant, that he should not have a son to reign upon his throne; and with the Levites the priests, my ministers.

These are the sorts of texts that the replacement theologians use (while ignoring all other contradictory ones). They say since the Davidic kings ended with Zedekiah in 586 BC, and the Levitical priesthood in 70 AD (the destruction of the temple by the Romans), then the only way this scripture can be true is if the church has replaced Israel.

God is saying nothing about guaranteeing a physical king sitting on an earthly throne for every day of time until the end. He is simply stating that this eternal covenant with David, and the priesthood given to the tribe of Levi can never be broken. Thus, he is refuting replacement theology, not affirming it.

God is still calling the 10 tribes as if they physically exist throughout the book of Jeremiah, though they have been off their land for over 100 years. In any event, if the church replaced Israel, then how did God keep his promise of an unbroken kingship when there was no Davidic king, nor a spiritual kingship via the church body, between 586 BC and 32 AD, until the church was actually born? Wouldn’t that stretch of time when there was neither equally invalidate this prophecy, if you took it to mean that there had to be some form of kingly line in existence at all times?

Let us not fall into the trap of natural human reasoning. All these misguided ones will simply only let you see the ‘facts’ that they want you to see, and will wilfully omit other facts that completely refute their position.

I have really tried not to do that. In several instances, I try to present differing viewpoints, and leave it up to the reader to decide. While I may share my opinion, in cases where I do not genuinely know something (such as the purpose of Ezekiel’s temple), I do try and say just that. We should not feel pressure to try and explain everything. If the Lord has not revealed something to you, he has his good reasons. Be faithful with what light he has given you, and more will be given.

I see these verses as saying that the restoration of physical Israel is as sure as the sun rising in the morning, and setting in the evening.

Jer 33:22 As the host of heaven cannot be numbered, neither the sand of the sea measured: so will I multiply the seed of David my servant, and the Levites that minister unto me.

Another lovely piece of hyperbole to reiterate just how certain the promise is that Israel will once again flourish in the future. I find it interesting that the Levites are mentioned here as the recipients of such a sure promise as David. Normally it’s just David that God speaks about. Perhaps since Jeremiah is a priest, God wants to reassure him personally?

Now what sort of eternal covenant did God make with the Levites? This is found in Num 25:4-15. Phinehas did something that caused God to make an eternal priestly covenant with his bloodline. What did he do? Feed the hungry? Heal the sick? Cleanse the lepers? Set a new world record for slaughtering the most sacrificial animals in a one hour period? No, he killed someone. God was so impressed, he gave him an eternal covenant of priesthood.

What? Read it:

Num 25:6 And, behold, one of the children of Israel came and brought unto his brethren a Midianitish woman in the sight of Moses, and in the sight of all the congregation of the children of Israel, who were weeping before the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
Num 25:7 And when Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, saw it, he rose up from among the congregation, and took a javelin in his hand;
Num 25:8 And he went after the man of Israel into the tent, and thrust both of them through, the man of Israel, and the woman through her belly. So the plague was stayed from the children of Israel.
Num 25:9 And those that died in the plague were twenty and four thousand.
Num 25:10 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
Num 25:11 Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, hath turned my wrath away from the children of Israel, while he was zealous for my sake among them, that I consumed not the children of Israel in my jealousy.
Num 25:12 Wherefore say, Behold, I give unto him my covenant of peace:
Num 25:13 And he shall have it, and his seed after him, even the covenant of an everlasting priesthood; because he was zealous for his God, and made an atonement for the children of Israel.
Num 25:14 Now the name of the Israelite that was slain, even that was slain with the Midianitish woman, was Zimri, the son of Salu, a prince of a chief house among the Simeonites.
Num 25:15 And the name of the Midianitish woman that was slain was Cozbi, the daughter of Zur; he was head over a people, and of a chief house in Midian.
Num 25:16 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
Num 25:17 Vex the Midianites, and smite them:
Num 25:18 For they vex you with their wiles, wherewith they have beguiled you in the matter of Peor, and in the matter of Cozbi, the daughter of a prince of Midian, their sister, which was slain in the day of the plague for Peor’s sake.

God found a man after his own heart. What did God just say about the Branch of Righteousness? His main characteristic is he would execute mishpat. This is what mishpat looks like. What do you think Jesus will be known for when he comes this second time? He will be known for spilling blood, up to the horse’s bridle. He is coming to execute mishpat – judgment upon wickedness. God gives eternal covenants to those who do so perfectly, like Phinehas did.

Now if you want to get technical, Num 25:13 merely promises Phinehas’ seed an eternal priesthood. What if this scripture was fulfilled by having his descendants all believe in the messiah and become kings and priests before God? It’s a bit of a stretch, but I’ll throw it out there nevertheless!

Now we know that the book of Hebrews talks about the sacrificial/ceremonial aspect of the Mosaic law being done away with in Christ. Christ came after the order of Melchizedek, not Levi. There are several verses in Hebrews, speaking about how Christ has replaced the Levitical priesthood:

Heb 7:11 If therefore perfection were by the Levitical priesthood, (for under it the people received the law,) what further need was there that another priest should rise after the order of Melchisedec, and not be called after the order of Aaron?
Heb 7:12 For the priesthood being changed, there is made of necessity a change also of the law.
Heb 7:18 For there is verily a disannulling (cancellation, a putting away) of the commandment going before for the weakness and unprofitableness (uselessness) thereof.
Heb 7:19 For the law made nothing perfect (completed), but the bringing in of a better hope did; by the which we draw nigh unto God.
Heb 7:22 By so much was Jesus made a surety of a better testament.
Heb 7:23 And they truly were many priests, because they were not suffered to continue by reason of death:
Heb 7:24 But this man, because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood.
Heb 7:25 Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.
Heb 7:26 For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens;
Heb 7:27 Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s: for this he did once, when he offered up himself.
Heb 7:28 For the law maketh men high priests which have infirmity; but the word of the oath, which was since the law, maketh the Son, who is consecrated for evermore.

Here is the conundrum. Have we a contradiction? Has one replaced the other?

In David’s covenant, the new testament identifies Jesus as the eternal fulfillment of the kingship of David. Whether or not the book of Ezekiel speaks of David actually coming back to rule from Jerusalem in the Millenium, is a topic for another day. There is no contradiction here, as Jesus is of the Davidic bloodline, so he is the perfect, literal fulfillment of the promise to David.

This Levitical promise, on the other hand, is more problematic. We could make a strong case that Jesus has superseded, or replaced, the Levitical priesthood, based on the passages from Hebrews above. However, what do we do with Ezekiel’s temple? What do we do with this eternal promise in found here in Jeremiah? How do we reconcile all this?

The easiest answer is that this promise is seen by God as fulfilled in Christ, by Christ entering into the eternal priestly line of Melchizedek, which the book of Hebrews states was a superior priesthood to the Levitical one. We know the Levitical priesthood could never take away sin. Only the holy one who would spring out of the Melchizedek priesthood was eligible to do so. But then what do we do with this promise to Levi? In this case, I have to confess that I honestly do not know.

Perhaps one is satisfied that Christ has literally fulfilled the Davidic promise, and that he has replaced the Levitical promise with his eternal, Melchizedekian priesthood. Verses 21 and 22 are not hard to explain, as they only promise that the line of Levi will endure. Verse 18 is the stumbling block, as that one says that there will always be a Levite to offer the various animal sacrifices before God. However, if we have to accept the mystery of Ezekiel’s Millennial temple, then this verse is no more difficult to accept than those 9 chapters. Let us leave unknown things in the hands of God, until his good pleasure decides to unveil it to his church.

Suffice it to say that we have much, much revelation to ponder in this amazing book of prophecy rather than getting hung up over one verse!

Jer 33:23 Moreover the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah, saying,
Jer 33:24 Considerest thou not what this people (am – tribe, nation) have spoken, saying, The two families which the LORD hath chosen, he hath even cast them off? thus they have despised (scorned) my people (or, we as God’s people are scorned), that they should be no more a nation before them.

One more utterance is given to Jeremiah at this time. It is not completely clear as to who is making this remark. Is it Judah’s enemies, or the people of Judah themselves? The word ‘am’ is usually used to reference the people within the land. If God wanted to specify the heathen nations, he usually uses the word goy (Gentile). This is most likely the people themselves stating that it really looks like God has totally and permanently abandoned us. They cannot be made to remember and re-embrace the unconditional promise of Abraham, or the one to David. They look at themselves with self loathing, and believe that their time as a people of God is over.

Or, since it says these ‘am’ despise God’s people, perhaps it really does refer to Judah’s neighbors. Just like today, as in all ages, most nations reject the idea that Israel is still in any way God’s special chosen people.

God simply does not care what the current state of Israel looks like. His word is his word. No matter how impossible it looks, if God has promised something, he wants you to never let go of that promise.

Jer 33:25 Thus saith the LORD; If my covenant be not with day and night, and if I have not appointed the ordinances of heaven and earth;
Jer 33:26 Then will I cast away the seed of Jacob, and David my servant, so that I will not take any of his seed to be rulers over the seed of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob: for I will cause their captivity to return, and have mercy (raw-kham – compassion) on them.

Again God refers back to the one thing that no man can ever tamper with – the rising and setting of the sun! They may be able to tamper with the weather today, or even block out the rays of the sun, but they can never alter the rising and setting of it upon the earth. In the same way, you can’t tamper with the fact that Israel is eternally God’s people, and that David’s seed will always rule over them, whether or not a king is actually physically sitting on the throne at any one time.

Jesus is the true king, having won a kingdom at the cross. One of his parables talks about him going away for a long time to receive a kingdom, and then coming back to check on what his servants have been doing.

Whatever state of bondage the Jew is in, whether physical or spiritual, God will completely restore them. He will have compassion on them. Isn’t it wonderful to know that no matter how bad they behave, God will never permanently abandon his compassion towards them (ant to us)?

Rest assured, God keeps his word. Let us strive to imitate God in this area as well.

Solitary Man

Photos courtesy Depositphotos


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