The nineteenth king of Judah was Jehoiachin, son of Jehoiakim. He reigned on David’s throne for barely three and a half months. In 598 b.c. Nebuchadnezzar brought his forces to Jerusalem and seized the 18-year-old king with his mother, his wives, and many other royal captives. In 561 b.c., in the thirty-seventh year of his captivity, Jehoiachin was given mercy by Evil-Merodach, Nebuchadnezzar’s successor. He was granted the right to dine with the king of Babylon, and he could wear his kingly robes. (See 2 Kings 25:27–30, Jer. 52:31–34.) His sons were also in Babylon with him, yet Jeremiah’s prophecy said they would have to give up the throne of David.
ReadJeremiah 29:1–14, the words of the Lord through Jeremiah after King Jehoiachin and his family and the court were taken captive from Jerusalem. Even amid this tragedy, how were God’s love and grace revealed?
One of the most famous verses in the Bible is this: “ ‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future’ ” (Jer. 29:11, NIV). Here, of course, we have the immediate context: that of the Lord speaking through Jeremiah to the captives of Judah who had seen their lives completely uprooted by their Babylonian conquerors. Yet, even then, no matter how bad their situation seemed, the Lord wanted them to know that He still loved them and had only their good in mind. No doubt, considering the horrific circumstances, they must have welcomed such promising and hopeful words. Thus, even amid all dire warnings and threats, the people were still given the promise of “a future and hope.” How crucial it must have been for them, especially at that time, to have such assurance!
A future and a hope? What promises can you claim from the Lord for “a future and a hope” even right now, regardless of your circumstances?
Adventist Sabbath School Lesson for Adults Q4 2015 «Jeremiah» Lesson 3 – The Last Five Kings of Israel