My passage for Sunday sets forth a proclamation of woe from Jeremiah 23. The Old Testament prophetic woe is a specific subset of negative oracles delivered by OT prophets; they are not pleasant in the least, and woe be indeed to the one who falls under it.
Now, contrast woe with those upon whom the Lord’s favor rests:
The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace. Num 6:24-26
Wonderful words. Encouraging words…for if the Lord’s face shines upon us, then who can be against us? But, it only shines upon us because at a moment in time roughly 2000 years ago, it turned away from another.
About the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?”–which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
The Lord’s face shines upon me, for it was dark to another. The Lord’s face turns toward me, for it turned away from another. I have peace, for another bore God’s wrath, his woe. Blessed be the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.