126: Does Jeremiah 29:11 Apply to Christians Today?
Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 13:29 — 12.4MB)
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” ~Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)
Several centuries before Jesus showed up on the scence, the propher Jeremiah was preaching to the Jewish people as they faced the judgment and discipline of God, meted out at the hands of the Babylonians.
Jeremiah said many things, but there is one verse from his writings that is most commonly quoted within certain modern Christian circles. That verse that is famously quoted is Jeremiah 29:11, often used as a proof-text to demonstrate that God always wants us to prosper.
In this episode, Kenny tackles the question head on: Does Jeremiah 29:11 apply to Christian believers today? If so, how does it apply?
Kenny makes the point that the verse does indeed point to the fact that, overall, God wants good things for
His people… He loves His people… He favors his people… just like any good daddy, God loves showering His children with goodness. He’s the greatest daddy there is.
However, most people quoting this verse ignore the context of Jeremiah’s writing; the fact that the Jewish people were facing a fate that did not seem “good” by their standards.
God declares to have good plans for us, but sometimes His plans do not seem good; but that is mostly because our definition of “good” is often skewed.
God’s greatest desire for His own people is to mold us to be more Godly and to shine His own glory through us. God’s good plans for you may include some short-term forms of suffering because that may very well be the thing that enables you to receive the ultimate good plans that God has for you in the long-term and in eternity.
Kenneth E. Ortiz (M.Div.) is a professor and recruiter at Bethlehem College and a pastor at Cities Church in St. Paul, MN. He has 15+ years of vocational ministry experience. He’s also a podcaster, author, and Ph.D. student. Kenneth lives in Bloomington, MN with his wife Malaina, they have one daughter.