The whole valley of the dead bodies and the ashes, and all the fields as far as the brook Kidron, to the corner of the Horse Gate toward the east, shall be sacred to the LORD. It shall not be plucked up or overthrown anymore forever.” – Jeremiah 31:40 ESV
In the Jewish culture there were many things that were unclean, dead bodies being on the list. In Jeremiah 31, we see the promise of the Lord to renew the nation, even the most unclean parts of it. This promise is a part of the new covenant promise that the Lord is promising Israel. We can lean on this promise to remind us that there is no part of us that cannot be renewed and restored by the Lord.
In Jeremiah 31, Jeremiah is prophesying about what the Lord will do for His people. In verse 31, the Lord begins telling about the new covenant (the one New Testament believers accept through the blood of Jesus). He says, “I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people.” Jeremiah 31:33 (ESV). The Lord also promises later in the chapter that the land of Israel will be restored including “The whole valley of the dead bodies and the ashes” (v.40).
What part of your heart feels like it’s been unclean, full of dead bodies? Is there a part of your heart that feels like a battlefield and the rotting remnants of the war is left behind? Did the enemy try to burn you out, leaving ashes covering the ground? Or did you try to burn out the enemy leaving nothing but empty land in your heart?
The good news? No matter how messy, how damaged or how unholy those pieces of your heart feel, God can rebuild them into fertile ground that produces a rich spiritual harvest for Him. He delights in blessing His children (Psalm 149:4) and wants to be near you. No battle, no matter who started, you or the other guy, can keep Him out. He want to bring peace to you and return you to Him (Colossians 1:20).
Don’t let an unclean place in your heart keep you from coming to the Lord. No matter how long it’s been there or how many times you’ve tried to clean it up, don’t let fear or shame keep you in the dirt. He will make you white as snow, though you are dyed in the deepest of dyes.
“Come now, let us reason together, says the LORD: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool. – Isaiah 1:18 ESV