There’s a stark contrast between a covenant kept and a covenant broken in Jeremiah chapters 33 and 34.
First, a covenant is broken in Jeremiah 34. Knowing Jerusalem itself would soon be under siege, King Zedekiah and all Jerusalem with him “repent.” They remember that they had been breaking God’s law all along by keeping their fellow Hebrews as slaves past the seven year limit. So King Zedekiah declares all the male and female Hebrew slaves free.
And they cut a covenant. They took a calf, cut it in half, and walked between the pieces. Verse 19 mentions those who passed between the parts to seal their solemn promise: the officials of Judah, the officials of Jerusalem, the eunuchs, the priests and all the people of the land. This walk was symbolic, and each knew what it meant. It said, “If I fail to keep my promise to free my fellow Hebrews from slavery, may I become like this cloven, fly-attracting carcass.”
Verse 10 records their obedience to the law and the covenant. Verse 11 records the breaking of the covenant. They took back all their slaves and subjugated them again. God was not pleased. In verse 18 God said He will make those men who broke their covenant to be like the broken calf.
Contrast this with the covenant kept in Jeremiah 33. In verse 14-18 the Lord declares that a Righteous Branch from David’s line will save His people and execute justice and righteousness. God says David’s throne will never lack an occupant and the priesthood will never lack for a continual offering and sacrifice in God’s presence.
Twice God punctuates His promise with this exclamation: only if you could break the covenant of the day and the night happening in their appointment times, could my covenant be broken! Never has the sun failed to rise. So never will God’s words fail!
Zechariah (filled with the Holy Spirit) says it much better than I ever could in Luke 1:68-75.
“Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for He has visited and redeemed His people and has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of His servant David, as He spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets of old, that we should be saved from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us, to show the mercy promised to our fathers and to remember His holy covenant, the oath that He swore to our father Abraham, to grant us that we, being delivered from the hand of our enemies, might serve Him without fear in holiness and righteousness before Him all our days.”
It is through Jesus Christ, God’s Son, that all God’s promises are “Yes and Amen!” ( 2 Corinthians 1: 19-20)
Hebrews chapters 6 and 7 explain how Jesus became our eternal high priest, offering Himself as the once-for-all-time perfect sacrifice and standing in God’s presence continually making intercession for us.
As the angel Gabriel told Mary in Luke 1, “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to Him the throne of His father David and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.”
A covenant kept! Our God is a Covenant Keeper!