Jeremiah 23:5 provides an Old Testament foreshadowing of Christ, beautifully tucked away in a message that predicted great sadness and despair for Judah. The whole of Jeremiah’s prophetic writings point to an age when Judah would be overwhelmed, overrun, and overcome by Babylon. Shortly thereafter, many survivors would be exiled by order of King Nebuchadnezzar. Immersed within all of the unsettling news about Judah’s momentary demise we find Jeremiah 23:5, a beacon of light in the darkness. In this verse God points to a righteous branch that would someday establish itself on the earth. The Hebrew word for righteous originally meant stiff, or straight. This intimates an incorruptible nature, one that cannot be moved from its noble, or pure, perspective. This is true of God. This was made visible, and true, of Christ. This is true of the Holy Spirit as well.
The lesson being, God’s incredible plan of redemption was long in motion. It was not thwarted because of personal, or corporate, rebellion. If anything, Judah’s refusal to honor God for several generations only affirmed the need for Jesus to be the ruler over, and Savior for, mankind. The reality is, Jesus’ wisdom is unmatched. His love is undeniable. And His peace is unstoppable. Jesus is the righteous branch upon which humanity can happily find wisdom, love, and peace. Believers can everlastingly rejoice in this truth.
Jeremiah 23:5 “‘The days are coming,’ declares the Lord, ‘when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, a King who will reign wisely and do what is just and right in the land.’” (NIV)
Kevin Orr (8/11/2019)