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Healing for Sin-sick Souls

Sin causes pain and death, but, Jesus Christ, the only sinless One, suffered pain and death which resulted in a full and final cure for sin for His people.

Today’s reading: Jeremiah 7-8; 1 Timothy 2

21 For the wound of the daughter of my people is my heart wounded; I mourn, and dismay has taken hold on me.

22 Is there no balm in Gilead? Is there no physician there? Why then has the health of the daughter of my people not been restored?                                                                        Jeremiah 8:21-22

5 For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time.                                                                                               1 Timothy 2:5-6

Jeremiah was in grief over the sin of Judah. He had a message. It was from God. It was true, but it gave him no joy. He had to proclaim to the people their sin and failure. No wonder he is called “the weeping prophet.” Sin has painful consequences for unrepentant sinners, but also for those who love them and can only watch them spiraling down into judgment. Jeremiah loved his fellow countrymen. He could call them to God, but he could not heal them when they refused to listen. In those days, Gilead was an area east of the Jordan known for its medicinal products.[1]  The prophet longed for some balm or ointment to cure the sinful populace.

I remember an old spiritual we sang in my childhood. The refrain is:

There is a balm in Gilead to make the wounded whole, there is a balm in Gilead to heal the sin-sick soul.

Amen! Paul had the happy work of proclaiming that there is healing balm in Jesus Christ. He is the One who gave Himself as a ransom. He is the mediator between God and men. He took our sin upon Himself, dying on the cross, rising again, sending forth the Apostles to spread the news, and ascending to the right hand of God. This cure that Jesus gives is not merely for the physical body but for the “sin-sick soul.”

Jeremiah longed to find sin-sick souls. He found hard hearts, unreceptive to his diagnosis of their need. If you are sin-sick, find the healing in Jesus who gave Himself for such as you. [See Mark 10:45; Titus 2:14; 1 Peter 1:18, 19].

[1] Reformation Study Bible, note on Jeremiah 8:22, page 1276

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