Explaining the Book

Bible Study Guide

Jeremiah

Jeremiah 29 11 Meaning

Jeremiah 29 11 Meaning: Well, now we come to maybe the most beloved verse in the entire book of Jeremiah.

Jeremiah 29 11 Meaning Popularity

Let me give you some hard data on that assertion – the assertion that Jeremiah 29:11 is probably the most-beloved verse in the entire book of Jeremiah.

Jeremiah 29 11 Meaning on Google

According to the search giant, Google, the search for “Jeremiah 29” receives 22,200 searches on average every month. “Jeremiah 1” comes in a distant second at 6,600 average searches per month. So, when it comes to chapters in the book of Jeremiah that people are looking for on Google at least, the 29th chapter is by far the most popular single chapter in the book of Jeremiah.

And when you’re looking at search terms related to “Jeremiah 29” it becomes obvious very quickly that the 11th verse is the most popular one – again as far as searches on the wildly popular Google indicates. The search “Jeremiah 29 11” followed by any number of other terms averages over 12,000 searches every month. So, let’s just get that into perspective. Searches on Google for some permutation of “Jeremiah 29 11” account for double the searches for the second most popular chapter in Jeremiah – Jeremiah 1.

Jeremiah 29 11 Meaning Anecdotally

So, that’s the data side of things. But then there’s the anecdotal side. How many of us know of someone who has Jeremiah 29:11 displayed prominently on their wall? How many spiritual calendars have that verse as one of their verses? I checked Pinterest today and searched for “Jeremiah.” One of the top images delivered in response to my search featured the text of Jeremiah 29:11. Another featured Jeremiah 29:13.

So, Jeremiah 29:11 is a beloved verse for many. So, let’s read it and get to its meaning.

11 For I know the [thoughts/plans] that I [think toward/have for] you, saith the LORD,
[thoughts of peace/plans for welfare/plans to prosper you], and not [of evil/for calamity/to harm you], to give you [an expected end/a future filled with hope].

Jeremiah 29 11 Meaning – The Answer to a Question

So, Jeremiah 29:11 is really an answer to a question that Jeremiah 29:10 might make someone ask. The question would be something like “Why will God bring back the exiles after 70 years in Babylon? What would make him do that?”

Jeremiah 29 11 Meaning – God Wants to Bless

And Jeremiah 29:11 is the answer. God has it in his mind to bless his people. Hey, he promises future blessings. He wants to bless his people. In Jeremiah’s day, the people’s sin had caused God to turn blessings into curses, punishment, and ultimately exile for them. But now that he’s punished their sin and exiled them, he wants to make it clear that his heart is still and always has been fixed on doing good for them.

Jeremiah 29 11 Meaning – Not Directly for Christians

Now, I’ll set the record straight and say what is quite obvious. Jeremiah 29:11 is not directly addressed to Christians. Christ hadn’t even come by this point and so there were no Christians in Jeremiah’s day. There were Jews. Very few of them loved and believed the Lord. Most hated God.

Jeremiah 29 11 Meaning – Applies to Christians

And yet, while Jeremiah 29:11 wasn’t written directly to Christians, it applies to us. And in it God gives us another way to think correctly of future blessings. Why will God see to it that blessings that he’s promised you – eternal life for trusting Jesus alone and all the awesome things that go along with that – why will God see to it that those blessings do finally come to pass?

It’s because he wants to bless his people. He has good thoughts for us. His plan for us are good and right. He knows just what we need and will give it in the right time. And for the Jews of Jeremiah’s day and for us who are waiting for a Savior from heaven to return, the right time is yet future.

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