But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the LORD: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. No longer shall they teach one another, or say to each other, “Know the LORD,” for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, says the LORD; for I will forgive their iniquity, and remember their sin no more. (Jer. 31:33-34)
In the Gospel for today, Jesus tells still another parable which seems at first glance – maybe second too – a little strange, because we often misread it as a direct comparison between the judge and God. But it isn’t; it’s another of those Jesus sayings which contrasts rather than compares. If a sinful judge will grant justice because of the woman’s persistence, how much more will a gracious God do so? Will God delay long in helping them?
But what if God is revealed also in the persistent woman seeking justice? What if God will not give up on God’s passion for the whole creation, right relationship of all creatures within a healed creation?
When I read the Older Testament by itself, and then, for me as a Christian, read the New Testament after it, and I read the whole through the lens of cross and resurrection, I can only conclude – only conclude – that the love of God is persistent beyond our imagination.
The words of the prophet Jeremiah, speaking for the LORD, are a clear reminder of this; these words are, in fact, a powerful proclamation of God’s Gospel, revealed most clearly in and through the crucified and risen one Jesus the Christ.
I am often surprised that there is more to the Bible than the Book of Genesis, because, if I were the Holy One, I would have given up at the Flood, and not bothered to start over again, at least not with human beings. But, praise be, God’s thoughts are not my thoughts, and God’s ways are not my ways. Over and over again the people in the story of the Prime Testament blow it royally. Yes, they do suffer consequences for their breaking of relationship, but God never, ever gives up on them… or me. Or you. Or us. Or the world.
They shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, says the LORD; for I will forgive their iniquity, and remember their sin no more.
Thanks be to God!