Living in Babylon, looking for the promised land

JP: Kathee and I recently finished Jeremiah and we had “that” discussion.

Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, to all who were carried away captive, whom I have caused to be carried away from Jerusalem to Babylon: Build houses and dwell in them; plant gardens and eat their fruit. Take wives and beget sons and daughters; and take wives for your sons and give your daughters to husbands, so that they may bear sons and daughters—that you may be increased there, and not diminished. And seek the peace of the city where I have caused you to be carried away captive, and pray to the LORD for it; for in its peace you will have peace. For thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: Do not let your prophets and your diviners who are in your midst deceive you, nor listen to your dreams which you cause to be dreamed. For they prophesy falsely to you in My name; I have not sent them, says the LORD (Jeremiah 29:4-9)

Biblical Theology and the Culture War

A good essay here from a few years back by David VanDrunen of Westminster Seminary California. He argues (correctly I think) that there’s no better place to look in Scripture for a biblical understanding of culture than Jeremiah 29. Money quote:

“Two extremes they were to avoid. First, they were not to shun involvement in pagan Babylonian culture. Second, they were not to become so involved that they lost sight of their true destiny or the true destiny of Babylon. Instead, they were to do their various cultural tasks, building homes, planting farms, raising families, while all along recognizing the temporary and limited nature of the work they did.”

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