instruere...inlustrare...delectare Disputations

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Speaking of little words

Jeremiah 31:33 is certainly a heart-warming verse:
But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the LORD. I will place my law within them, and write it upon their hearts; I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
It's a well known and comforting prophecy. But the oracle continues in a less familiar vein:
No longer will they have need to teach their friends and kinsmen how to know the LORD. All, from least to greatest, shall know me, says the LORD, for I will forgive their evildoing and remember their sin no more.
That little word "for" is something of a surprise. That all shall know the LORD, yes, that makes sense. That He will forgive all their evildoing and remember their sin no more, yes, that's the Gospel promise. But that "for" joining them suggests that, in some way, all shall know the LORD because He will forgive their evildoing.

Maybe the old saying that to forgive is divine has something to it.