Jeremiah 32 - Outline of Jeremiah (MENU page)
The Sign of the Field of Hanameel, ch. 32
I. Jeremiah's imprisonment, v.1-5
  1. Its time, v.1,2
    During the siege of Jerusalem, a few months before its fall (cp. Jer 39:1,2; 2Kin 25:1-4), while "the king of Babylon's army besieged {lit., was besieging} the city."
  2. Its cause, v.3-5 -- Jeremiah's faithfulness to the Lord's message of judgment.
    Jerusalem would fall. King Zedekiah would be taken captive. He would look the king of Babylon in the eye (v.4), and then would be carried captive to Babylon, but would not see it (Eze 12:13; 2Kin 25:5-7). He would remain there "until I visit him" (ie., until his death; cp. Jer 34:4,5).
II. Jeremiah's purchase, v.6-15
  1. As forewarned by the Lord, v.6,7
    • Hanameel was a second cousin.
    • The land was in Anathoth, Jeremiah's home town (Jer 1:1).
  2. As requested by Hanameel, v.8,9
    Hanameel, like everyone in the besieged city, was struggling to survive. Although he owned a field in a neighboring village, his crops were inaccessible, due to the siege. The fall of Jerusalem looked certain. It seemed unlikely that he would ever be able to return to his land. By selling it, perhaps he could purchase a few days worth of bread. He turned to Jeremiah because he had the 'right of redemption.' As a kinsman to his impoverished relative, Jeremiah had the right and responsibility to redeem the land, to the extent that he was able and willing. He purchased the land, in his role as "goel," a kinsman redeemer (cp. Lev 25:24,25; Ruth 4:4).
  3. As recorded by Baruch, v.10-14
    • The evidence of the purchase: That which is sealed and that which is open.
      The Title Deed was sealed by the purchaser (v.10). Only he could open it. The public record of the purchase was open for all to read (v.11,12).
    • ...that it may continue many days... (v.14) - The paperwork was put in long term safe keeping, since it would not be needed during the captivity in Babylon.
  4. As a Sign, v.15
    • Jeremiah's purchase was a sign pointing to Israel's future restoration (v.15).
    • It is also an illustration of a greater purchase by which the Lord Jesus Christ, our kinsman Redeemer, has secured redemption and restoration for His people, when we were on the point of ruin. The sealed Title Deed to the earth can be opened only by the One who purchased it (Mat 13:44; Rev 5:1-5,9), whereas the details of the purchase are recorded for all to read, "in the volume of the book" (ie., in all of scripture, Psa 40:6-8; Heb 10:5-12; John 5:39). The day will come, when He will return to claim that which He has purchased for Himself (Dan 7:13,14).
III. Jeremiah's prayer, v.16-25
  1. His acknowledgement of the Lord's greatness, as shown in:
    1. His Creation, v.17
    2. His Character, v.18; cp. Ex 34:6,7
    3. His Dealings with mankind in general, v.19
    4. His Dealings with Israel in particular, v.20-24
      • their Deliverance from Egypt, v.21
      • their Establishment in the Land of promise, v.22
      • their Judgment for sin, v.23-24
  2. His confusion regarding the Lord's instructions, v.25
    Although Jeremiah had declared that his purchase illustrated the future restoration, he had difficulty seeing the wisdom of owning land, under the circumstances. The land was of no more use to him than it was to Hanameel. Perhaps he should have kept the cash. Was it really possible that Israel would again occupy the land from which they would soon be carried away? His consternation is readily seen in these excerpts from the passage:
    "Ah, Lord God, behold (v.17)... Behold the mounts {mounds, earthen ramps being constructed by the enemy to surmount the city wall} (v.24)... and Thou hast said... Buy the field for money... for {ie., whereas, or, even though} the city is given into the hand of the Chaldeans (v.25)."
IV. The Lord's answer, v.26-44

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