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1 Moreover the word [Devar] of Yahweh came unto Jeremiah [Yirmeyah] the second time, while he was yet shut up in the court of the prison [imprisoned in the Khatzer of the Guard], saying,
At the opening of this chapter, as the last, we are reminded of the trials with which the worthies of old had to contend. The Word of Yahweh came to Jeremiah whilst he was in the court of the prison (v. 1). Considering this and the many other examples of absolute faith recorded for our learning, how dare we complain of our lot?
2 Thus saith Yahweh the maker [Oseh] thereof, Yahweh that formed [Yotzer] it, to establish it; Yahweh is his name [Shmo];
... "the Maker thereof" better read "the Accomplisher" whilst the word 'formed' is the Hebrew 'yatsar' and is the word used for the potter 'to squeeze or mould into shape. - GEM
15 In those days, and at that time, will I cause the Branch of righteousness [Tzemach Tzedakah (Righteous Branch, i.e., Moshiach Ben Dovid Yehoshua, see 30:9; 23:5; Zech 3:8 Ezra 3:8; 6:11-12; Mt 2:23; Isa 4:2; 9:2-7; 11:1-12; 53:2; Moshiach the new "Joshua" Isa 49:8)] to grow up unto David [to sprout up unto Dovid]; and He shall execute judgment and righteousness in the land [mishpat and tzedakah in ha'aretz].
In the everlasting covenant made with David, it is declared of his immortal son by the Lord, saying, "He shall build a house for my name." David wished to execute this great national work, but was forbidden. It was afterwards accomplished by Solomon, and in this he eminently typified the "greater than Solomon," who is to construct a similar edifice, only on a vastly more magnificent scale. This will appear from the following testimony. After Solomon's temple was laid in ruins, and while the Jews after their return from Babylon were erecting a new one upon the site of the old, the word of the Lord came to the prophet, saying,
"Behold the man whose name is THE BRANCH: and he shall grow up out of his place, and he shall build the temple of the Lord; even he shall build the temple of the Lord; and he shall bear the glory, and shall sit and rule upon his throne; and shall be a priest upon his throne. And they that are far off shall come and build in the temple of the Lord" (Zech. 6:12,13,15).
Let the reader turn to the texts below, and he will have no doubt as to the person styled the Branch (Zech. 3:8; Isaiah 11:1; Jer. 23:5; 33:15; Rev.22:16). The Melchizedec Son of David, then, is to build the third temple in Jerusalem to the name of Yahweh; and as the Tyrian Gentiles aided Solomon to rear his edifice, so those who are far off from Jerusalem, where the prophecy was delivered, are to co-operate in the erection of Shiloh's, which is to be "a house of prayer for all people" (Isaiah 56:7), when the Lord shall "plant the heavens, and lay the foundations of the earth, and say unto Zion, Thou art my people" (Isaiah 51:16).
Elpis Israel 2.5.
16 In those days shall Judah [Yehudah] be saved, and Jerusalem [Yerushalayim] shall dwell safely [securely]: and this is the name wherewith she shall be called, Yahweh our righteousness [Tzidkeinu].
The kingdom of God, then, has existed once, but, for the present, exists "no more." It existed from the fourth to the twenty-eighth generation, a period of rather more than a thousand years; but it has been extinct upwards of two thousand four hundred years -- a time so long, that the promise of its restoration has become a mere fable, or speculation, in the estimation of the world!
But the believer in the gospel of this kingdom rejoices in the sure and certain hope of its restitution, and glorious and triumphant existence for a thousand years, at the expiration of which kingdoms on earth will be no more, but Elohim will be all and in all.
The reader, then, will perceive from this exposition, that the kingdom of God must be studied in the two periods of its existence -- in the thousand years of the past, and in the thousand years of the Age to come. As God's kingdom of the past, it is the grandest theme of ancient, or modern, history; but as His kingdom of the future, it is the sublime topic of "the truth as it is in Jesus."
In the past, it existed under the law of Moses, which made nothing perfect. Its kings and priests were frail, and mortal men, who held the kingdom for a brief space, and then "left it to other people." Its subjects were rebellious; and its realm invaded and wasted by the hands of ruthless and barbarous foes. But how changed will be its fortunes in Messiah's age! The same land and nation will then be under the law of the New Covenant which goes forth from Zion.
All things will be perfected. Its king and pontiff will be the king immortal from the right hand of God. The rulers of the tribes will be the fishermen of Galilee, "shining as the stars for ever and ever." The chiefs of its cities; and the possessors of its glory, its honours, and its dominion, will be the holy ones of God, "equal to the angels," and subject unto death no more. In short, "the saints of the Most High will take the kingdom, and possess the kingdom for ever, even for ever and ever" (Dan. 7:18; 2:44), never receding from their position, nor leaving it to be possessed by others.
Elpis Israel 2.4.
The Sh'ma does not say "Yahweh our Eloahh is one Yahweh, or one Eloahh"; but "Yahweh our Elohim is one Yahweh." Moses and Jesus are agreed in this also; for if either of them had taught that there was but one eloahh, they would have been in opposition, or of both of them had so taught, they would have left no room for a Messiah who should be called Yahweh-Tsidkainu, as in Jer. 23:6; 33:16, He shall be our righteousness; and Elohai kol-haretz, "Elohim (plural) of the whole earth," as in Isaiah 54:5.
To have taught the doctrine of only one Eloahh, as well as only one Yahweh, would have been to set aside the doctrine of a Messiah altogether, so that there would be neither a personal Christ, nor a multitudinous Christ, the latter being constituted of all in him, the personal.
Well, then, Moses and Jesus both taught a plurality of Eloahhs. Jesus said: I am Eloahh, and my Father is Eloahh, and the children of God by resurrection, each one is Eloahh; and all together we are thy Elohim, O Israel, and yet but one Yahweh. But the Jews repudiate such a God-Name as this. It is incomprehensible to them; and in their opinion, nothing short of blasphemy. It was so repugnant to their notions of things that when Jesus taught it "they took up stones to stone him"; and declared that they did so because that he, being a man, made himself Eloahh in saying: I am the Son of All (John 10:33-36).
Phanerosis - Yahweh Manifested in a Son
17 For thus saith Yahweh; David [Dovid] shall never want a man [never lack an ish] to sit upon the throne of the house of Israel [Kisse Bais Yisroel];
The Sure Word of Prophecy
In the face of facts, what are we to say to the testimony, that "David shall never want a man to sit upon the throne of the House of Israel?" Thus saith the Lord, "If ye can break My covenant of the day, that there should not be day in its season; then may also My covenant be broken with David, My servant, that he should not have a son to reign upon his throne" (Jer. 33:17, 20,21). What shall we say to this?
There has been no son of David reigning upon his throne since the dethronement of Zedekiah by Nebuchadnezzar five hundred and ninety-five years before the birth of Christ. But it is not a question of uninterrupled succession; but of the everlasting occupation of the throne according to the covenant. When the time comes for this to be fulfilled, noted by David's resurrection, from thenceforth shall his son fill the throne of Israel's kingdom for ever. But what saith the scripture?
Just before the fall of Jerusalem by the Chaldeans, the sins of Judah and its king had attained the full. Zedekiah was then on the throne wearing the crown of David. Ezekiel was commanded to say to him, "Thou profane wicked prince of Israel, whose day is come, when iniquity shall have an end, thus saith the Lord God, 'Remove the diadem, and take off the crown: this (Zedekiah) shall not be the same (son of David spoken of in the covenant): exalt him that is low (even Jesus), and abase him that is high,' " -- that is, dethrone Zedekiah. But, then, what is to become of the kingdom of David?
Hear the Lord by his prophet -- "I will overturn, overturn, overturn it: and it shall be no more UNTIL he (Shiloh) shall come whose right it is: and I will give it him" (Ezek. 21:25-27). According to this word so it has been to the letter. The king's eyes were put out; Zion was ploughed as a field; and not a tribe remained in the land. After seventy years captivity, there was a restoration under Ezra, Zerubbabel, Joshua, and Nehemiah.
But until B.C. 165, the Israelites in Canaan were not even a kingdom; but a subject province of the Persian monarchy, and afterwards of the Macedonian. About the year named they became a kingdom again; but not David's. The throne was that of the Asmoneans, who were of the tribe of Levi. Their dynasty was superseded by the Roman senate, which set up Herod's family instead. He was an Idumean, and reigned till after the birth of Jesus, whom he sought to put to death.
He was succeeded by Archelaus, who was deposed by the Romans, and Judea reduced into the form of a province under a procurator; thus verifying, as is supposed, that the sceptre should depart from Judah when Shiloh came: and so it came to be when God called his son Jesus. out of Egypt. From that time to this, there has been no kingdom, or throne of Israel, in Canaan. The Hebrew commonwealth was broken up by the Romans about thirty years, or so, after the crucifixion; and it has been, and will be, no more, until the Lord Jesus come, who is the King of the Jews, and whose sole right it is to reign.
Elpis Israel 2.4.
18 Neither shall the priests the Levites want a man [kohanim the Levi'im lack an ish] before Me to offer burnt offerings, and to kindle meat offerings, and to do sacrifice [olah, and to burn minchah, and to do zevakh] continually.
The second generation of Levi in the wilderness had observed the divine word, but the covenant referred to they have not yet kept. Levi after the flesh has been in apostasy for ages, and will continue to be so until "Yahweh, the Messenger of the Covenant," shall come. When the time appointed arrives, he will suddenly come in, and proceed to the work of purifying the sons of Levi, that they may offer unto Yahweh an offering in righteousness (Mal. iii. 1-4). From this future time, "they will keep the covenant," even the New Covenant, of which Jesus, not Moses, is the Mediator...
When Levi, then, is in this purified condition contemporary with the reign of the Lamb and the 144,000, Levi's Urim and Thummim will be, as Moses testifies, "of the Holy Man," who will then be their High Priest after the order of Melchisedec. He will not need to wear on his breast such Urim and Thummim as Aaron wore. The Lights and Fulnesses will be of himself, He being Deity Incarnately Manifested; for "it pleased the Father that in him all fulness dwell" (Col. i. 19).
20 Thus saith Yahweh; If ye can break My covenant of the day [Brit HaYom], and my covenant of the night [My Brit HaLailah], and that there should not be day and night [ yomam v'lailah] in their season [appointed times];
21 Then may also My covenant [My Brit] be broken with David my servant [Dovid Avdi], that he should not have a son [Ben] to reign upon his throne [kisse]; and with the Levites the priests [Levi'im the kohanim], My ministers [mesharetim].
This is the eternal challenge of nature for if any can change day following night following day -- in other words if any can make it night following night etc. -- they might be able to challenge the Almighty. But it is impossible to change the course of nature and the great laws of the heavens, and this is our guarantee of His Glorious Word of Promise, repeated in v. 25. -GEM.