“Now therefore thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, concerning this city of which you say, ‘It is given into the hand of the king of Babylon by sword, by famine, and by pestilence’: Behold, I will gather them from all the countries to which I drove them in my anger and my wrath and in great indignation. I will bring them back to this place, and I will make them dwell in safety. And they shall be my people, and I will be their God. I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear me forever, for their own good and the good of their children after them. I will make with them an everlasting covenant, that I will not turn away from doing good to them. And I will put the fear of me in their hearts, that they may not turn from me. I will rejoice in doing them good, and I will plant them in this land in faithfulness, with all my heart and all my soul.” Jeremiah 32:36-41 ESV
Oh come, let us worship and bow down;
let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!
For he is our God,
and we are the people of his pasture,
and the sheep of his hand. Psalm 95:6-7a ESV
King Christian X of Denmark was a good king who worked to improve the lives of his people, and they respected and loved him. Every day he would ride a horse through the streets of the capital city of Copenhagen without having any bodyguards to protect him. He wanted to be close to his people, so he went out among them to meet them and talk to them. There’s a story that once a visitor asked someone why the king didn’t have a bodyguard, and the person replied, “All Denmark is his bodyguard.” King Christian was their king, and they were his people, and there was nothing to come between them.
Jeremiah spoke words of God that promised that the same kind of thing would one day be true of God and his people. They were experiencing war and famine and exile, and the future looked grim. But the Lord promised that he would someday bring them back to their own land and give them safety. The people and their children after them would have new hearts, and would obey his covenant. He would be their God, and they would be his people. This is the most wonderful promise the Lord could give. Nothing would come between him and his people, but instead they would live in God’s love and protection every day.
This promise was most beautifully fulfilled when God came to us in Jesus. Jesus lived among his people and taught them God’s ways, and showed his love and compassion to people who were sick and hurting. He died on the cross to pay the penalty for our sins and to make us God’s people and bring us back to our heavenly Father. Because of Jesus, God is with us always, every day, and we can always go to him in prayer and know that he hears us and will help us in the way that is best. There is nothing in the world that can separate us from God’s love, now or ever.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for sending our Savior, Jesus, to make us your people. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.