Devotional: ‘Rachel Weeping for Her Children’ pt 2 of 5

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Jeremiah 31:15 Thus saith the LORD; A voice was heard in Ramah, lamentation, and bitter weeping; Rachel weeping for her children refused to be comforted for her children, because they were not.

Rachel was the wife of Jacob and the mother of Joseph and Benjamin. Scripture teaches us that Rachel died during Benjamin’s birth. (Gen 35:16-18) With her last breath she named her son ‘Benoni’ which means – son of my sorrow. Jacob did not want his son to live with the guilt of knowing that he was the cause of his mother’s death and so he renamed his son ‘Benjamin’ which means – son of my right hand. Jacob turned a moment of sadness into gladness.

Perhaps there was never a time when Jacob was more like God than this. Scripture teaches us that God is able to bring joy where there is sorrow. The Psalmist said: “…weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.” (Psalm 30:5)

Note how the LORD comforted weeping mothers of Jerusalem.

Jeremiah 31:16 Thus saith the LORD; Refrain thy voice from weeping, and thine eyes from tears: for thy work shall be rewarded, saith the LORD; and they shall come again from the land of the enemy. 17 And there is hope in thine end, saith the LORD, that thy children shall come again to their own border.

The LORD comforted His people by telling them that there would come a day when their sons and daughters would return home again. This is the promise of God, based upon His eternal goodness.

Scripture teaches us that God is the God of all comfort (2 Corinthians 1:3-4) and precious in His sight is the death of His saints. (Ps 116:15) Even the death of the wicked brings sorrow to our Lord. (Ek 33:11) God is not mean, cruel and heartless. God is loving, kind and gracious. Perhaps you will remember that Jesus stood at the tomb of Lazarus and wept. It is uncertain as to why our Lord wept, but perhaps part of it had to do with His sympathizing heart. God desires to care for His creation. Therefore it must have pained Him very deeply when He was forced to chasten Israel and cause them to weep.

Note God’s words of comfort found in the book of Jeremiah.

Jeremiah 31:3 The LORD hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee. 4 Again I will build thee, and thou shalt be built, O virgin of Israel: thou shalt again be adorned with thy tabrets, and shalt go forth in the dances of them that make merry.

Though Israel had been wayward and rebellious, God would not abandon them. His love is an everlasting love, and therefore, with loving-kindness, He promised that He would one day bring His people back to Himself. Weeping would have to be endured during this night season, but joy would return to them in the morning.

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