"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.
6 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. Jeremiah23:5-6
We do not generally associate Jeremiah with Messianic prophecies, but there are a few Jeremiah passages that foreshadow the coming of Jesus the Messiah. This is one of the most significant.
Jeremiah lived in a time of puppet kings, fallen kings, defeated kings and evil kings. The history that he recounted to Israel as their "fall from grace" was littered with the stories of corrupt, greedy and godless kings.
This makes the longing and beauty of this prophetic passage even more poignant.
The king Jeremiah forsees will be righteous, wise, just and a saviour who provides security. He will be called "The LORD our Righteousness."
Jesus fulfilled these hopes but not quite as the average person expected:
- His Kingdom is not an earthly Kingdom but transcends earthly regimes which come and go.
- His life was an awesome example of closeness to God (wisdom) and love for people (doing what is just and right in the land)
- He paid an incredible price to save us and offer righteousness to us.
Righteousness is a tough Old Testament word. It was a high call and, as history proved, people were not up to the call. Evil kings didn't attain it and even the good kings fell short. Not only did Jesus live righteously but He died for our unrighteousness and then shared His righteousness with us - therefore saving us.
So here we have it - some 600 years before Jesus would go to the cross as our King of Righteousness - God has already whispered this hope into the heart of His prophet. What a God and what a Saviour!