God’s special people Israel had a struggle with sin, to say the least. After so long God finally sentenced them to 70 years of being enslaved to foreign powers. Did God want to do it? No. Did it have to be done? Yes. To teach Israel the lesson of repentance. But God not only sentenced them to be severely punished, He also promised them greater salvation. Deliverance from their captivity. He was showing them the severity of His wrath but also the magnitude of His unending love and mercy. God’s promise of such is found in Jeremiah 29:10-14…
“For thus says the LORD: When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will visit you, and I will fulfill to you My promise and bring you back to this place.
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.
Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will hear you.
You will seek Me and find Me, when you seek Me with all your heart.
I will be found by you, declares the LORD, and I will restore your fortunes and gather you from all the nations and all the places where I have driven you, declares the LORD, and I will bring you back to the place from which I sent you into exile.”
God gave them the promise of salvation. He promised them that His plan for them was one of hope and love. God would allow them to come to Him and call on Him. He would hear. He would listen. He would act. God would be near. But in order to find Him and His grace they would have to seek Him with all their heart. Then they would get to enjoy being at “home” with God again in the land of His promise.
God’s promise and action in delivering Israel from their bondage reminds us of what we need to know about God saving us:
- GOD’S PROMISE and PLAN. God made a promise to us from the very beginning that He would save us from our sin. Before coming to Christ we are in sin. Lost. In bondage to Satan. Without hope. Without God. But God’s plan for us was to send Jesus, the Messiah, to redeem us from our sin. To deliver us from captivity. His plan was to bring us back to Him. That’s what He’s provided mankind through the sacrifice and resurrection of His only Son, Jesus.
- GOD CAN BE FOUND. God is not far from us. The plan of God is no longer hidden in mystery. The Word of God is near to us. God’s love is clearly seen. He is accessible to all who seek Him. But we have to seek Him with all our heart. We have to love Him with all our heart, soul, body, mind, strength. God is waiting. Waiting for everyone to come to Him. His promise is to hear us. And to grant us salvation.
- BE AT HOME WITH GOD. God’s promise of salvation for us means finally being at home with Him in Heaven. We will be brought to Him in eternity. We will enjoy the blessings of eternal life. Getting to live in God’s presence forever. What a day that will be! That’s what we have to look forward to. That is God’s promise.
God’s promise still stands. God’s love is never ending. God is so very near. Are we seeking Him with all our hearts? Have we found Him? Are we living by His plan and will for us? Every day we need to be seeking God and staying close to Him. Living by His Word. Rejoicing in His grace. Comforted by the hope He has given us. What an awesome God we serve! He has not dealt with us according to our sin. He had a plan. He completed His plan. And we are enjoying the blessings of that plan. God is good. Praise His holy Name!