This is part of the 66 in 52 Bible Journaling Challenge. Over the course of the 52 weeks in 2018, I am focusing in on one verse from each book of the Bible with many others who have signed up to join me. Each week I will post a summary page with some thoughts about that week’s book(s) of the Bible along with some links that may help our reflection. Click here to sign up if you want to join us at any point along the journey! Click here to see where we’ve been so far!
The Big Picture of Jeremiah:
Jeremiah is another prophet who was called by God to be “a prophet to the nations” (1:5). Like many of us, he wasn’t so sure had the right guy, yet ended up following God not only in warning His people about potential exile but also sharing direction on how to live well in exile. In short, the people of Israel had broken God’s covenant and God was calling them back to obedience. The first 24 chapters outline the areas where the people and leaders are outside of the life God has for them. In chapter 25 we transition and Jeremiah prophesies that Babylon is coming to take the people captive for 70 years which happens later on in the book. In the middle though we see a few chapters filled with prophesies of hope reminding the people it won’t always be this way.
Outline of Jeremiah:
- 1 – Jeremiah called to be prophet
- 2-24 – Warnings to Judah
- 25-29 – Foretelling the Babylonian Exile
- 30-33 – Promises of Restoration
- 34-35 – Historical Information
- 36-38 – Jeremiah Suffers
- 39-45 – The Fall of Jerusalem and the aftermath
- 46-49 – Prophesies against other nations
- 50-51 – Prophesies against Babylon
- 51 – Historical Information
A Few Key Verses and Possible Reflection Questions/Prayers:
Some of us are planning to read through the whole book each week, while others are just focusing in on one verse. This section of the weekly intro post might help you narrow down a verse to reflect on for the week, but you do not have to choose one of these verse, pick any section of the book you want! These are just some ideas.
- “The Lord gave me this message: “I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as my prophet to the nations.“ (Jeremiah 1:4-5)
REFLECTION: God also knew YOU before you were born and set you apart for work in His Kingdom. Ask God what He made you for and spend some time listening to His response.
- “‘For I know the plans I have you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not ot harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)
REFLECTION: While many know this verse, few know the context. Spend some time reading all of chapter 29. What new insight does this bring this verse put in the context of a people in exile for seventy years? How might that exile bring about the true hope and future God desires for His people?
- “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” (Jeremiah 33:3)
REFLECTION: What might it look like for you to call out to God this week? What answers do you hope He provides? What “great and unsearchable things has He been showing you recently?
God’s Grace in Jeremiah:
Exile as a response to the people’s disobedience doesn’t seem very graceful, but, as I’ve mentioned before, God’s heart is for his people. He will do whatever it takes to get His people back even if that involves some hard and painful things. He tries first to win them back with His love, but when that doesn’t happen as in this situation, sometimes He allows bad things to happen to draw them back. He is patiently pursuing his children who have wandered again and again and again. He still dreams big dreams for them even in their most rebellious places. He brings justice against those who hurt them and restores them to their place as His children. Through it all He never disowns them, even when the turn away from Him. Again and again He says, “I will be their God and they will be my people. (31:33)”
Some Other Resources:
- The Bible Project summary video of Jeremiah
- A Pinterest board with resources and pictures for Jeremiah
- The 66 in 52 Schedule and Tracking Sheet
So now it’s your turn! Pick a verse and settle in this week, or read through the whole book. If you post any picture or blogs on social media, tag them with #66in52challenge so we can all share in this journey together!