Man is Responsible For His Own Sins

In a Peanut’s cartoon Lucy and Linus were sitting in front of the television set when Lucy said to Linus, “Go get me a glass of water.” Linus looked surprised, “Why should I do anything for you? You never do anything for me.” “On your 75th birthday … More

Hope

The nation’s future hope will contrast sharply with her present misery (vv. 15-20). Rachel, the mother of Benjamin, continues to live through the descendants of that tribe (v. 15). In N.T. fulfillment her weeping is prompted by the cruel and barbarous act of Herod, who had all the babies killed because of his insane jealousy over the Christ Child. These babies are not lost forever, though, and will be honored as members of the covenant nation (v. 16). In all likelihood these women were crying because they would never see their children again. The Lord gave them hope (v. 17). Jeremiah ended this section by recording Israel’s cry of contrition that she will recite when she returns to the land (v. 18). Though she had strayed she will repent (vv. 19-20).

“Signposts” are stone markers, and “landmarks” are poles or beacons pointing the way to Zion (v. 21). Every believer should keep a road map home to God, setting for himself spiritual goals to lead him in seeking God’s plan for his life and maintaining divinely assigned priorities (v. 22). When God will restore the nation of Israel, He will also reverse the fortunes of Judah (vv. 23-26). He promised to provide a new beginning for His covenant people. He would populate the nations of Israel and Judah with the offspring of men and animals (vv. 27-28). The Hebrews had accused God of injustice and cruelty in the punishment of children for the sins of their fathers (vv. 29-30). Actually, the children had surpassed their fathers in their wickedness. Under the New Covenant, there would be no misunderstanding because every individual must bear the responsibility for his own sins (Deut. 24:16; Ezek. 18:2, 20).

Application

The people tried to blame God’s judgment on the sins of their fathers but each person is held accountable for their own sins. God holds me accountable for what I do and my only hope is in Him.

Jeremiah 31:15-30 (English Standard Version)


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