Today we start reading Jeremiah, “one of the priests of Anathoth” (Jeremiah 1:1) and therefore a Levite: but God decreed he was to be more than a priest. He starts his testimony from verse 4. “Now the word of the LORD came to me, saying, ‘Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations”. We realize how parallel this is to the Lord Jesus Christ of whom Peter wrote that “He was foreknown before the foundation of the world” (1 Peter 1:20), even so was Jeremiah’s work “foreknown” in the mind of God.
Jeremiah is shocked at being called to be a prophet, but the LORD tells him, “Do not say, ‘I am only a youth’; for to all whom I shall send you, you shall go, and whatever I command you, you shall speak” (verse 7).
Although appointed “a prophet to the nations”, he did not travel to the nations (apart from a forced visit to Egypt), but God used him as his mouthpiece to write down predictions about the future of many nations, and some of these prophecies relate to our times. The LORD declares, “See, I have set you this day over nations and over kingdoms, to pluck up and to break down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant” (verse 10).
Once God pronounces His plans for the future that word is certain. It may in some cases have a far distant application. Recall God’s words through Isaiah, “For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and water the earth making it bring forth … so shall my word be that goes out of my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed …” (55:10,11).
To Jeremiah, the LORD declares, “I am watching over my word to perform it” (verse 12). God’s prophetic word is a light for us in the deepening spiritual darkness of our world today, how soon will He complete “perform(ing) it”?
Centuries later the Apostle Peter spoke of “the prophetic word, to which we do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts, knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation, for no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit” (2 Peter 1:19-21). Jeremiah’s latter day prophecies are of very great interest. May “the morning star” rise in our hearts.