The past few chapters of Jeremiah have chronicled the judgment that the enemies of God will receive for their rebellion against Him. Many of these nations are the ones mentioned in Jeremiah 25:15-26. The last nation to drink the cup of wrath is Babylon, the nation that brought Judah into exile.
For much of Jeremiah, God has used Babylon to bring judgment upon Judah for their rebellion to the point that it almost seemed as though God were choosing Babylon as a new people for Himself. But any notion of that is dispelled in Jeremiah chapter 50, where God unleashes His judgment on Babylon, saving His own people in the process.
God has not forgotten about Israel and Judah. He lives and He is about to save them. Just listen to the words of Jeremiah 50:33-34:
Thus says the Lord of hosts: The people of Israel are oppressed, and the people of Judah with them. All who took them captive have held them fast; they refuse to let them go. Their Redeemer is strong; the Lord of hosts is his name. He will surely plead their cause, that he may give rest to the earth, but unrest to the inhabitants of Babylon.
God’s people have been held captive, but He has not forgotten them. In fact, He is strong and He is ready to declare the greatness of His name against Babylon. Now, there are much more violent images of what will happen to Babylon, but what verse 34 says really struck me. It simply says that the world will be at rest, but Babylon will find none. They will be in unrest.
All who are saved by God are brought into His “rest”, and God’s redemptive plan involves the whole world. But Babylon will never find rest. They will remain in permanent unrest under the judgment of God.
What a chilling reminder of what happens to those who live with unchecked rebellion against God. Eternal unrest awaits those who put no hope in Christ. For He is our rest. We come to Him and rests us from our labors and strengthens us to do the good works that God has set before us. This is what Jesus’ call to come to Him is all about. It is about living at rest. It is about an eternal Sabbath. It is about ceasing to strive for our own superiority and our own salvation and resting in the sovereignty and salvation of God.
For He is our strong Redeemer and His sustains us with His great power. Rest in Him.