Short prayers provide a comforting confidence when God's commands seem ridiculous to everybody else.
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Read Jeremiah 32
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Heidelberg Catechism Q&A 122
Q. What does the first
A. “Hallowed be your name” means,
Help us to really know you,
to bless, worship, and praise you
for all your works
and for all that shines forth
your almighty power, wisdom,
kindness, justice, mercy, and truth.
And it means,
Help us to direct all our living—
what we think, say, and do—
so that your name will never
be blasphemed because of us
but always honored and praised.
You can imagine the tension present in Jerusalem. It was only a matter of time before the Babylonians would completely decimate the city. The market for real estate would have been zilch, since it's not very likely that the new Babylonian administration would have recognized the property deeds and titles issued by the kingdom they'd just defeated.
Because of this, Jeremiah was able to buy the land for cheap (17 shekels of silver would be worth $160 in today's money), but even still, most of the guys who witnessed this transaction probably thought Jeremiah was nuts and was wasting $160.
But this passage demonstrates Jeremiah's tremendous faith. Although he didn't know how or when, he had faith that someday God would restore His people, and that this land he'd just purchased would have value again.
God answers Jeremiah's prayer with the assurance that He would do just that: He would "assuredly plant them in this land with all my heart and soul (v41)."
It's Jeremiah's prayer in v17-25 that brings us to this passage today. Several things stand out about it.
First, notice that Jeremiah's prayer comes after he finalizes the land deal. I'm sure Jeremiah had lots of questions and doubt about why it was that God had given him such a strange command, but knowing it was the word of the Lord, he immediately obeyed and carried out God's orders.
Second, most of the prayer is taken up with acknowledging who God is. Jeremiah didn't pray these words because God needed to be reminded who He was, Jeremiah prayed these words because he needed to be reminded who God is and that he could trust God, even when God's command seemed ridiculous. In a sense, Jeremiah's prayer was answered by the very words he was praying.
Third, Jeremiah doesn't ask for anything in this prayer! Yet because Jeremiah is praying from the heart, God recognizes Jeremiah's unspoken confusion and provides him (and us) with a tremendously comforting reminder that as our covenant God, He will always restore His disobedient people.
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Our faithful covenant Father and sovereign Lord, nothing is too hard for you;
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Pray for faith like Jeremiah's, that you would be able to fully obey God even when you don't fully understand why;
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED:
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