The Story guides teenagers and young adults through God’s grand story of redemption with a year of daily Bible readings and reflections that illuminate the unity and purpose of God’s Word.
Act 4: Exile to Jesus
I love duct tape. When I was younger, it seemed like duct tape fixed everything! But toys, sports equipment, and tools that are broken don’t need duct tape to be fixed; they need a lasting solution. As wonderful as duct tape is, it will never get to the heart of the issue!
In Jeremiah 31, the prophet looks far ahead to a new day for God’s people. There will come a day, he says, when—after judgment—God will bring a lasting solution to the problems, sin, and rebellion of his people. Someday, Jeremiah says, God will finally deal with his people’s sin and enable them to live with and for him in a lasting way. No more duct tape; this will be final.
The way Jeremiah describes this future day is in terms of a new covenant. This new covenant will be similar to the old covenant with Abraham, but will have a finality and a permanence to it. God will write his law on the hearts of the people. No longer will God’s people need to tell and teach one another about God and his ways, because everyone will know him in the community of God’s people. There will be final forgiveness for sin; God says he will remember their iniquities no more. We find too that this will be a final situation—rebellion, idolatry, or exile will never again turn God’s people away from him. Jeremiah turns our eyes forward to a wonderful day—a day when God will deal with his people’s sins forever, when people will have God’s Word on their hearts, not just in their ears!
You don’t hear the words “new covenant” again for a while in the Bible. Then, years later, they jump off the page at us. In an upper room with his disciples, Jesus speaks those same words as he prepares to go to the cross to die. As he pours out wine for his disciples at the Last Supper, Jesus tells them that the cup is the “new covenant in [his] blood” (Luke 22:20). What will be the lasting solution for God’s people? What will be the sacrifice that covers their sins forever and pays the penalty of death for them? The blood of Jesus.
We need to be daily returning to the basis and foundation of God’s new covenant with us—sealed by the blood of his own Son, Jesus. In him we find forgiveness, salvation, eternal life, and lasting righteousness before a holy God. Today, thank God for the great promise we have in him—written in the blood of the very Son of God.