The remade covenant

Jeremiah. My beloved Jeremiah. Naturally melancholy, and able to hear the worst of my messages. One of the most honest of all my children – and how he suffered for it.

But there was a kind of a reward for him. He saw so far into my heart. He grew so much. Only one or two from those ages saw into my sorrows – he did.

It was right that he should have his own supports and comforts. The love of Baruch, and the assurance of Baruch’s safety of course. Humans so badly need these sources of love and comfort and strength, made as they are in my image.

Jeremiah needed to know that I would restore Israel to her old home, and that the Temple, so bitterly loved and painfully criticised, would be rebuilt.

More than that, though, he needed to begin the understanding of how I would renew, remake, the covenant. That the nature of it would change.

No longer would my children rely on others to teach, no longer would they refuse to take new thoughts and weave them into their understanding of what I was like, what I asked, and what was demanded of them. Rather, they would come to know me, and in their love of me, they would come to understand that I longed to forgive them freely, to bear their suffering with them, and to pour myself into their hearts, while they poured love and understanding into the hearts of their fellows.

I could not tell him that while his cousins childrens’ children would grow wine and sow corn in their own lands again, the new covenant would grow more slowly. I could not tell him of the pivotal moment when broken human flesh became the way that the new covenant cut into human history.

I could no tell him, either, of how slowly my new Israel of that covenant would learn, and how they would persecute and hurt where they should forgive and understand. How they would cling to old understandings while I stood, once again shouting through blankets, calling them to the new laws they needed to follow.

No, that heartbreak I hid from him in mercy.

Instead I let him see for a moment the fullness of bliss which comes when all my people hear me and contribute their understandings to one great whole, loving and forgiven.

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