A New Covenant
27 “Behold (listen carefully), the days are coming,” says the Lord, “when I will sow the house of Israel and the house of Judah with the seed of man and with the seed of beast. 28 It will be that as I have watched over them to uproot and to break down, to overthrow, destroy, and afflict with disaster, so I will watch over them to build and to plant [with good],” says the Lord.
“In those days they will not say again,
‘The fathers have eaten sour grapes,
And the children’s teeth are set on edge.’(A)
30 But everyone will die [only] for his own wickedness; every man who eats sour grapes—his [own] teeth shall be set on edge.
31 “Behold, the days are coming,” says the Lord, “when I will make a new covenant with the [a]house of Israel (the Northern Kingdom) and with the house of Judah (the Southern Kingdom),(B) 32 not like the covenant which I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, although I was a husband to them,” says the Lord. 33 “But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” says the Lord, “I will put My law within them, and I will write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they will be My people. 34 And each man will no longer teach his neighbor and his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they will all know Me [through personal experience], from the least of them to the greatest,” says the Lord. “For I will forgive their wickedness, and I will no longer remember their sin.”(C)
Thus says the Lord,
Who gives the sun for light by day
And the fixed order of the moon and of the stars for light by night,
Who stirs up the sea’s roaring billows or stills the waves when they roar;
The Lord of hosts is His name:
“If this fixed order departs
From before Me,” says the Lord,
“Then the descendants of Israel also will cease
From being a nation before Me forever.”
37 Thus says the Lord,
“If the heavens above can be measured
And the foundations of the earth searched out below,
Then I will also cast off and abandon all the descendants of Israel
For all that they have done,” says the Lord.
38 “Behold, the days are coming,” says the Lord, “when the city [of Jerusalem] will be rebuilt for the Lord from the [b]Tower of Hananel to the Corner Gate. 39 The measuring line will go out farther straight ahead to the hill Gareb; then it will turn to [c]Goah. 40 And the whole valley (Hinnom) of the dead bodies and [the hill] of the ashes [long dumped there from the temple sacrifices], and all the fields as far as the brook Kidron, to the corner of the Horse Gate toward the east, shall be holy to the Lord. It (the city) will not be uprooted or overthrown anymore to the end of the age.”(D)
32 The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord in the tenth year of Zedekiah king of Judah, which was the eighteenth year of [d]Nebuchadnezzar. 2 Now at that time the army of the king of Babylon was besieging Jerusalem, and Jeremiah the prophet was shut up in the court of the guard, which was in the house of the king of Judah. 3 For Zedekiah [the last] king of Judah had locked him up, saying, “Why do you prophesy [disaster] and say, ‘Thus says the Lord, “Behold, I am giving this city into the hand of the king of Babylon, and he shall take it; 4 and Zedekiah king of Judah will not escape from the hand of the [e]Chaldeans, but he will surely be given into the hand of the king of Babylon, and he will speak with him face to face and see him eye to eye; 5 and he will lead Zedekiah to Babylon, and he will be there until I visit him [for evaluation and judgment],” says the Lord. “If you fight against the Chaldeans, you will not succeed”’?”(E)
6 And Jeremiah [answered King Zedekiah and] said, “The word of the Lord came to me, saying, 7 ‘Behold (listen carefully), Hanamel the son of Shallum your uncle is coming to you, saying, “Buy my field that is in [f]Anathoth, for you have the right of redemption to buy it [in accordance with the law].”’ 8 Then Hanamel my uncle’s son came to me in the court of the guard in accordance with the word of the Lord, and he said to me, ‘Please buy my field that is at Anathoth, which is in the land of Benjamin, for you have the right of inheritance and the redemption is yours; buy it for yourself.’ Then I knew that this was the word of the Lord.
9 “I bought the field that was at Anathoth from Hanamel my uncle’s son, and weighed out the money for him, seventeen shekels of silver. 10 I signed the deed and sealed it, and called in witnesses, and weighed out the money on the scales. 11 So I took the deeds of the purchase, both the sealed copy containing the terms and conditions, and the unsealed copy; 12 and I gave the purchase deed to Baruch the son of Neriah, the son of Mahseiah, in the sight of Hanamel my uncle’s son and in sight of the witnesses who signed the purchase deed, in the presence of all the Jews who were sitting in the court of the guard. 13 And I commanded Baruch in their presence, saying, 14 ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, “Take these deeds, both this purchase deed which is sealed and this unsealed deed, and put them in an earthen jar, that they may last a long time.” 15 For thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, “Houses and fields and vineyards will again be purchased in this land.”’
Jeremiah Prays and God Explains
16 “Now when I had delivered the purchase deed to Baruch the son of Neriah, I prayed to the Lord, saying, 17 ‘Ah Lord God! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and by Your outstretched arm! There is nothing too difficult or too wonderful for You— 18 You who show lovingkindness to thousands, but repay the wickedness (sin, guilt) of the fathers into the bosom of their children after them [that is, calling the children to account for the sins of their fathers], O great and mighty God; the Lord of hosts is His name; 19 great [are You] in counsel and mighty in deed, whose eyes are open to all the ways of the sons of men, to reward or repay each one according to his ways and according to the fruit of his deeds; 20 who set signs and wonders in the land of Egypt, and even to this day [continues to do so] both in Israel and among mankind; and You have made a name for Yourself, as at this day. 21 You brought Your people Israel out of the land of Egypt with signs and wonders, with a strong hand and with an outstretched arm and with great terror; 22 and gave them this land, which You swore to their forefathers to give them, a land [of plenty] [g]flowing with milk and honey. 23 They entered and took possession of it, but they did not obey Your voice or walk in Your law; they have done nothing of all that You commanded them to do. Therefore You have caused all this disaster and suffering to come upon them. 24 See the siege ramps [of mounded earth that the enemy has built against the walls]; they have come up to the city to capture it. And the city is given into the hand of the Chaldeans [of Babylon] who fight against it, because of the sword, the famine and the virulent disease [that have overcome the people]. What You have spoken has come to pass, and behold, You see it. 25 Yet, O Lord God, You said to me, “Buy the field with money and get witnesses,” even though the city is given into the hands of the Chaldeans.’”
26 Then came the word of the Lord to Jeremiah, saying, 27 “Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh; is there anything too difficult for Me?” 28 Therefore thus says the Lord, “Behold, I am about to give this city into the hand of the Chaldeans and into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and he will take it. 29 The Chaldeans who are fighting against this city will come in and set this city on fire and burn it, along with the houses on whose roofs incense has been offered to Baal and drink offerings have been poured out to other gods to provoke Me to anger.(F) 30 For the children of Israel and the children of Judah have done only evil in My sight from their youth; for the children of Israel have been provoking Me to anger by the [idols that are the] work of their hands,” says the Lord. 31 “From the day that they built it [during the reign of [h]Solomon], even to this day, this city has been such a provocation of My anger and My wrath, that I must remove it from My sight,(G) 32 because of all the evil of the children of Israel and of the children of Judah which they have done to provoke Me to anger—they, their kings, their princes, their priests, their prophets, the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem. 33 They have turned their back to Me and not their face; though I taught them repeatedly, yet they would not listen and receive instruction. 34 But they put their detestable things (idols) in the house which is called by My [i]Name, to defile it. 35 They built the high places [for worship] of Baal in the Valley of Ben-hinnom (son of Hinnom) to make their sons and their daughters pass through the fire to [worship and honor] Molech—which I had not commanded them nor had it entered My mind that they should do this repulsive thing, to cause Judah to sin.(H)
36 “Now therefore thus says the Lord God of Israel concerning this city of which you say, ‘It is given into the hand of the king of Babylon by sword and by famine and by virulent disease.’ 37 Behold, I will gather them out of all countries to which I have driven them in My anger, in My wrath and in great indignation; and I will bring them back to this place and make them live in safety. 38 They will be My people, and I will be their God; 39 and I will give them one heart and one way, that they may [reverently] fear Me forever, for their own good and for the good of their children after them. 40 I will make an everlasting covenant with them that I will do them good and not turn away from them; and I will put in their heart a fear and reverential awe of Me, so that they will not turn away from Me.(I) 41 I will rejoice over them to do them good, and I will faithfully plant them in this land with all My heart and with all My soul. 42 For thus says the Lord, ‘Just as I have brought all this great disaster on this people, so I am going to bring on them all the good that I am promising them. 43 Fields will be bought in this land of which you say, “It is desolate, without man or animal; it is given into the hands of the Chaldeans.” 44 People will buy fields for money, sign deeds, seal them, and call in witnesses in the land of Benjamin, in the places around Jerusalem, in the cities of Judah, in the cities of the hill country, in the cities of the lowland, and in the cities of the South (the Negev); for I will restore their fortunes and release them from exile,’ says the Lord.”
- Jeremiah 31:31 The kingdom was united under David and his successor, Solomon, but split after Solomon’s son, Rehoboam became king.
- Jeremiah 31:38 Many times after the days of the Old Testament, Jerusalem was destroyed. Travelers in later centuries reported it to be an almost deserted city—its buildings were ruins filled with rubble, its inhabitants were few. Yet not only did God’s word declare that it would be rebuilt, but also drew a detailed word map of the outline the city would follow—from a well-known tower to the gate at a certain corner, then on over a particular hill, coming now outside the walls of the original city and taking in a large area marked by familiar landmarks. Eight recognizable details are given here, and Zechariah adds another (14:10). Also, the city’s expansion was to be toward the northwest. Twenty-five hundred years later, in 1935, the prophecy had been fulfilled, as if indeed with God’s “measuring line” (v 39). So unlikely seemed this prophecy’s fulfillment that some early commentators suggested that it should be interpreted spiritually.
- Jeremiah 31:39 The exact location of Goah remains unknown.
- Jeremiah 32:1 In Hebrew there are two ways of spelling the name of the ruler of Babylon resulting in two English variations: Nebuchadnezzar and Nebuchadrezzar.
- Jeremiah 32:4 The ruling tribe in Babylonia.
- Jeremiah 32:7 See note 1:1.
- Jeremiah 32:22 This phrase referred to the abundant fertility of the land of Canaan. Milk (typically that of goats and sheep) was associated with abundance; “honey” referred mainly to syrups made from dates or grapes and was the epitome of sweetness. Bees’ honey was very rare and was considered the choicest of foods.
- Jeremiah 32:31 Solomon was the first king of Israel to participate in idolatry.
- Jeremiah 32:34 See note Deut 12:5.
- Jeremiah 31:29 : Ezek 18:2
- Jeremiah 31:31 : Luke 22:20; 1 Cor 11:25
- Jeremiah 31:34 : Heb 8:8-12; 10:16, 17
- Jeremiah 31:40 : Zech 14:10, 11
- Jeremiah 32:5 : Jer 21:3-7; 34:2-5; 37:17; 52:7-14
- Jeremiah 32:29 : Jer 19:13
- Jeremiah 32:31 : 1 Kin 11:1-13
- Jeremiah 32:35 : Jer 7:30, 31
- Jeremiah 32:40 : Jer 31:31-34
1 Timothy 3
Overseers and Deacons
3 This is a faithful and trustworthy saying: if any man [eagerly] seeks the office of [a]overseer (bishop, superintendent), he desires an excellent task. 2 Now an overseer must be blameless and beyond reproach, the husband of one wife, self-controlled, sensible, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not addicted to wine, not [b]a bully nor quick-tempered and hot-headed, but gentle and considerate, free from the love of money [not greedy for wealth and its inherent power—financially ethical]. 4 He must manage his own household well, keeping his children under control with all dignity [keeping them respectful and well-behaved] 5 (for if a man does not know how to manage his own household, how will he take care of the church of God?). 6 and He must not be a new convert, so that he will not [behave stupidly and] become conceited [by appointment to this high office] and fall into the [same] condemnation incurred by the devil [for his arrogance and pride].(A) 7 And he must have a good reputation and be well thought of by those outside the church, so that he will not be discredited and fall into the devil’s trap.
8 [c]Deacons likewise must be men worthy of respect [honorable, financially ethical, of good character], not double-tongued [speakers of half-truths], not addicted to wine, not greedy for dishonest gain, 9 but upholding and fully understanding the mystery [that is, the true doctrine] of the [Christian] faith with a clear conscience [resulting from behavior consistent with spiritual maturity]. 10 These men must first be tested; then if they are found to be blameless and beyond reproach [in their Christian lives], let them serve as deacons. 11 [d]Women must likewise be worthy of respect, not malicious gossips, but self-controlled, [thoroughly] trustworthy in all things. 12 Deacons must be husbands of only one wife, and good managers of their children and their own households. 13 For those who have served well as deacons gain a high standing [having a good reputation among the congregation], and great confidence in the faith which is [founded on and centered] in Christ Jesus.
14 I hope to come to you before long, but I am writing these instructions to you 15 in case I am delayed, so that you will know how people ought to conduct themselves in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of the truth. 16 And great, we confess, is the mystery [the hidden truth] of godliness:
He (Jesus Christ) who was revealed in human flesh,
Was justified and vindicated in the Spirit,
Seen by angels,
Preached among the nations,
Believed on in the world,
Taken up in glory.
- 1 Timothy 3:1 Or bishop.
- 1 Timothy 3:3 I.e. like a bully.
- 1 Timothy 3:8 Though the Greek word for “deacon” does not occur in Acts (only Paul uses it), it is generally thought that the origin of the office or ministry is found in Acts 6:1-6, where Luke reports that seven men were appointed to assist the church leaders in serving and ministering to members of the congregation.
- 1 Timothy 3:11 In Greek, the same word is used for both woman and wife. This verse may refer specifically to either deacons’ wives or deaconesses, rather than the congregation in general.
A Petition to Be Saved from Death.
A Song. A Psalm of the sons of Korah. To the Chief Musician; set to chant mournfully. A didactic or reflective poem of Heman the Ezrahite.
88 O Lord, the God of my salvation,
I have cried out [for help] by day and in the night before You.(A)
Let my prayer come before You and enter into Your presence;
Incline Your ear to my cry!
For my soul is full of troubles,
And my life draws near the grave (Sheol, the place of the dead).
I am counted among those who go down to the pit (grave);
I am like a man who has no strength [a mere shadow],
[a]Cast away [from the living] and abandoned among the dead,
Like the slain who lie in a [nameless] grave,
Whom You no longer remember,
And they are cut off from Your hand.
You have laid me in the lowest pit,
In dark places, in the depths.
Your wrath has rested heavily upon me,
And You have afflicted me with all Your waves.(B) Selah.
You have put my friends far from me;
You have made me an [b]object of loathing to them.
I am shut up and I cannot go out.
My eye grows dim with sorrow.
O Lord, I have called on You every day;
I have spread out my hands to You [in prayer].
Will You perform wonders for the dead?
Shall the departed spirits arise and praise You? Selah.
Will Your lovingkindness be declared in the grave
Or Your faithfulness in Abaddon (the underworld)?
Will Your wonders be known in the darkness?
And Your righteousness in the land of forgetfulness [where the dead forget and are forgotten]?
But I have cried out to You, O Lord, for help;
And in the morning my prayer will come to You.
O Lord, why do You reject me?
Why do You hide Your face from me?(C)
I was afflicted and close to death from my youth on;
I suffer Your terrors; I am overcome.
Your fierce wrath has swept over me;
Your terrors have destroyed me.
They have surrounded me like flood waters all day long;
They have completely encompassed me.
Lover and friend You have placed far from me;
My familiar friends are in darkness.
Like one who takes off a garment in cold weather, or like [a reactive, useless mixture of] vinegar on soda,
Is he who [thoughtlessly] sings [joyful] songs to a heavy heart.(A)
If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat;
And if he is thirsty, give him water to drink;(B)
For in doing so, you will [a]heap coals of fire upon his head,
And the Lord will reward you.
- Proverbs 25:22 This expression may refer to an Egyptian custom in which a penitent man carried a pan of coals on his head as a sign of repentance. The message of these verses is the admonition to return good for evil in the hope that your enemy will be moved to repentance.