Both of these prophecies came in the same year, which is why these two chapters are together.
“Thus you shall say to him, ‘Thus says the LORD: “Behold, what I have built I will break down, and what I have planted I will pluck up, that is, this whole land.” Jer 45:4
The ownership of private or personal property is a matter of spiritual and natural law. It is encoded in Torah by the command, Do not steal. There can only be theft, where there is ownership. In spiritual and natural law, the owner of a thing may do with his property as he deems best. He may improve it, or change it from one use to another use, or he may destroy it, as it best serves his needs.
Here, the LORD reminds us, that the one who creates a thing, owns it. Therefore the LORD, because He created the universe and all it contains, owns the universe and all it contains — including nations, including people. Because righteousness blesses nations and people with good, benefits, increase, and prosperity, He has revealed to the earth what righteousness is in the form of commandments in Torah, and asked us to listen to His voice and obey His commandments. As Creator and Owner, He is seeking the good, benefit, increase, and prosperity of His creation. As Father, because He loves us, He is seeking our good, benefit, increase, and prosperity.
“Yet you have not listened to Me,” says the LORD, “that you might provoke Me to anger with the works of your hands to your own hurt.” Jer 25:7
But when nations and people choose to ignore the LORD’s voice and discard His commandments, it hurts them. It does not hurt the LORD, other than the grief it brings to His heart (Gen 6:5-6). But what can we do or do not to diminish Him? He is on His throne, and He reigns, regardless of what nations and people do or do not. Our disobedience or wickedness — for wickedness and sin, by definition, is behavior that transgresses the LORD’s commandments, just as righteousness is behavior that observes the LORD’s commandments; thus disobedience is the definition of wickedness — hurts only ourselves. When we disobey Him, we are seeking evil, curses, decrease, unhappiness, and poverty for ourselves and our neighbors.
As Creator and Owner, the LORD remedies this situation by seeking to restore righteousness to nations and people. Where righteousness increases, wickedness decreases, until the whole lump is leavened and wickedness and death is swallowed up in righteousness and life. He first seeks to restore righteousness by instruction and repentance. That is the easiest way. But if nations and people will not heed instruction or repent of wickedness, then He will destroy wickedness and sin wherever it is found.
A noise will come to the ends of the earth—
For the LORD has a controversy with the nations;
He will plead His case with all flesh.
He will give those who are wicked to the sword,’ says the LORD.” Jer 25:31
It is His right as Creator and Owner to dispense with His creation as seems best to Him. And it is best for His creation that wickedness is destroyed, because wickedness, we saw, hurts. Evil victimizes. Everyone who has ears to hear: if you do not desire destruction or the sword to come upon you, the LORD is able to preserve one life even in the midst of the destruction of a nation. That is the promise He made to Baruch.
But if we desire that preservation, we must receive correction and instruction, and repent of wickedness, which is disobedience to His commandments. The first thing we need to repent of, is refusing to let His Word and His commandments define righteousness and good, wickedness and sin for mankind. Do we not murder our neighbor because He has commanded us not to murder but to love? Then we have done righteously. The same God also commanded us to rest from labor on His set apart day of Sabbath. If we refuse to comply, then we have done wickedly.
Let us let God be Creator and Owner, and acknowledge His right to command, as Creator and Owner. That is the controversy He has with the nations, who rebelled against His command at Babel and declared Him Not Creator. He will plead His case with all flesh — He is good, who is giving everyone reading this an opportunity TODAY to escape the sword and enjoy preservation of life and blessing instead!