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Devotion - August 1, 2012
“The days are coming,” declares the LORD, “when I will raise up to David a righteous Branch, a King who will reign wisely and do what is just and right in the land. In his days Judah will be saved and Israel will live in safety. This is the name by which he will be called: The LORD Our Righteousness.”
In the days of Jeremiah the prophet, about 600 years before the birth of Christ, many people of God’s chosen nation had turned away from God into unbelief. They followed false teachers and bad leaders that led them into idolatry. However, there were some people who remained faithful to the true God. Through Jeremiah, God promised that he would gather all his faithful ones and bless them.
The Lord announced that glorious time: "The days are coming when I will raise up to David a righteous Branch, a King who will reign wisely and do what is just and right in the land." With the word "branch," God wants us to think of a shoot or sprout which grows out of a dying stump or from the ground where a tree stump is decaying. With this imagery, God pointed to the coming of the Messiah, Jesus Christ. His roots or ancestry were from the line of David. But by the time of his arrival, the grandeur of the Davidic kingdom had died and decayed under David’s godless successors. The Messiah, however, came to reestablish the glory of David's throne, although not in the same way as before. Jesus Christ is a King, but his kingdom is new and different. His is a spiritual kingdom where he graciously rules in the hearts of people by faith.
God cares for his people and he saves them. He sent Jesus to do what is "just and right in the land." In contrast to the people who rejected God and lived in disobedience to his will, Jesus lived in perfect obedience to the will of God and was guiltless of any sin. He lived this way for our benefit. God charged the perfect righteousness of his Son to us. He is: THE LORD, OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS.
Covered with the purity of Jesus Christ, we are beautiful people in God's eyes and blessed by faith in Jesus to be members of his glorious, eternal kingdom.
(Christian Worship: A Lutheran Hymnal – 376):
Jesus, your blood and righteousness
My beauty are, my glorious dress;
Mid flaming worlds, in these arrayed,
With joy shall I lift up my head. Amen.
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