|@August 7, 2023||ESV (2016)||ESV Prophets Plan 2023|
- Message to Baruch
The chapter (the shortest of Jeremiah with only five verses) opens with word that Jeremiah gave to Baruch “in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah.” Baruch (”Blessed”) came from a notable family. He was the grandson of Mahseiah (Jer. 32:12), governor of Jerusalem under king Josiah (2 Chron. 34:8 as Maaseiah). This gives context to Baruch’s dismay in the face of the threatened judgments on Judah and that his aspirations for a high position had been thwarted.
In Jer. 45:2-5, God speaks directly to Baruch’s woe and sorrow, giving him perspective that He now had to break down what He had built (Jer. 45:4). God rebukes Baruch for seeking great things for himself (Jer. 45:5) which may have been his own self-serving ambition or that he wanted to see the mighty deeds of God that He had promised. God tells him not to seek such things because He is “bringing disaster upon all flesh”. Much like the Ethiopian eunuch of Jer. 39:8, God tells Baruch that He will bring him through the disaster and give him his life “as a prize for war”.
Short as it is, this chapter provides great insights into what our posture should be as believers. Baruch was complaining that the LORD had “added sorrow to my pain”, assigning blame to God for his current state. Baruch had failed to see the big picture, seeking self-initiated achievement while God was destroying the land that He had built.
So often, we cast a vision and put forth great effort toward a goal that ultimately falls short of expectation. We get frustrated and despondent, even blaming God for withholding blessing from endeavors we deem worthy. We fail in the same way as Baruch when we focus on accomplishment rather than God’s glorification. Selfishly, we define success on our own terms instead of His.
As His followers, we are to be thankful when plans fail, acknowledging God’s providence and purpose. He wants us to come to Him when things fall apart but our approach should be of humility, surrendering our next steps to His perfect plan and what He wants to do through us in its fulfillment.
Scripture Journal Notes
Commentaries & Resources Used
- ESV Study Bible. (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2008)
- Faithlife Study Bible (Lexham Press, 2016)
- Believer’s Bible Commentary (Thomas Nelson, 2016)
- CSB Study Bible Notes (Holman Bible Publishers, 2017)
- Matthew Henry’s Commentary on the Whole Bible (Guardian Press, 1976)
- The Bible: A Reader’s Guide (Sterling Publishing, 2011)
- The Infographic Bible (Zondervan, 2018)
- ESV Digital Scripture Journal (Crossway, 2019)