It is perhaps instructive at this point in our journey through the book of Jeremiah to summarize what Jeremiah is doing in chapters 46-51. One of the main points that Jeremiah is trying to make in his book is that Yahweh is the only God and He is sovereign over not just Israel, but all nations (see 27:1-15). Because of His singularity and His sovereignty He has the authority to judge all nations and He most certainly will do so. Chapters 46-51 is a smattering of this global judgment being prophesied.
Here in Jeremiah 48 the particular nation in question is Moab. The relationship of Moab with Israel dates back quite a ways. Moab began with the lewd episode of Lot and his daughters (Gen.19:30-38). In Moses’ day Moab opposed Israel when they attempted to pass through their territory (Numbers 22-25). In the days of David Moab served Israel (2 Sam.8:2), and in Zedekiah’s day Moab plotted with Judah in an attempt to resist Babylon (Jer. 27:3). Here in this chapter Jeremiah proclaims that God will judge Moab for its arrogance and idolatry (v.1-10), make Moab ashamed of its god (v.11-20), silence her boasting (v.21-44) and ….someday RESTORE her (v.45-47)!
Let us, then, remind ourselves of a few glorious truths.
First, our God is the only God. There is none besides Him. Second, He will hold the nations accountable to how they respond to the offer of His gospel. Third, His heartbeat towards this world is mercy. He longs to restore and bring the nations to Himself.
If these things are so how then are we reflecting His mercy? Are we extending it to those nations that need to hear of it?