LAMENTATIONS

The following comments are from Navigator's and Quiet Time Diary journals. One verse will be entered, then the comment, then the date.

1:8    Jerusalem sinned greatly, Therefore she has become an unclean thing. All who honored her despise her Because they have seen her nakedness; Even she herself groans and turns away.

    This was written at a time in history when Jerusalem had been destroyed and was vacant. As this verse states, the city had sinned against the Lord, which accounted for her destruction. All could see her sin and apparently the few that remained afterwards even left - as in the 5th line here. (DRM 6/17/07)

1:14    "My sins have been bound into a yoke; by his hands they were woven together. They have come upon my neck and the Lord has sapped my strength. He has handed me over to those I can not withstand."

    This verse from before Christ shows how people knew of sin and felt totally tied to it. Thank God that Jesus Christ came to save us from our sins when we accept Him totally! (DRM 4/15/89)

1:17    Zion stretches out her hands; There is no one to comfort her; The LORD has commanded concerning Jacob That the ones round about him should be his adversaries; Jerusalem has become an unclean thing among them.

    Even in Jeremiah's time the nations surrounding Jerusalem (now Israel) were their enemies. Things haven't changed in thousands of years. With few people to comfort her, God probably intended that the nation depend solely on Him - just like He wants all believers to do individually. (DRM 6/18/07)

2:5    The Lord is like an enemy; he has swallowed up Israel. He has swallowed up all her palaces and destroyed her strongholds. He has multiplied mourning and lamentation for the Daughter of Judah. 

    This verse is just a sample from the whole chapter. This chapter seems to me to be one of the most critical of God so far, in the Bible! Certainly Lamentations is a good name, as Israel is lamenting here for things that have happened to her, due to God's vengeance. (DRM 4/16/89)

2:7    The Lord has rejected His altar, He has abandoned His sanctuary; He has delivered into the hand of the enemy The walls of her palaces. They have made a noise in the house of the LORD As in the day of an appointed feast.

    God can do anything He wants. Even if it doesn't make sense today, it will all be clear as to His reasons "tomorrow." This is what happened to Israel as her enemies took over, and, in a similar way, in my (our) lives when He doesn't allow things to happen that seem like they would be good to do. Eventually time will make things clear. (DRM 6/19/07)

2:15    All who pass along the way clap their hands in derision at you; They hiss and shake their heads At the daughter of Jerusalem, "Is this the city of which they said, 'The perfection of beauty, A joy to all the earth'? "

    Jerusalem has been an important city for thousands of years. At the time this was written, her enemies look at the destruction and shook their heads in amazement. Still, I'm sure they thought the destruction would be final. Jerusalem is surrounded by enemies today - who would also like to see her destruction, but I think God will intervene to stop it. (DRM 6/20/07)

3:2    He has driven me and made me walk
         In darkness and not in light.

    I first disagreed with Jeremiah on this statement about the Lord God, then saw the title of this section is called, "Jeremiah shares Israel's Affliction."
    God always wants us to follow His lead. He will correct us when we sin and disobey. There is a purpose for His correction - we have to change from our sinful ways. This He wanted for Israel.
    God wants us to walk in His Light for eternity, so puts us through some trials while on earth . . . but He truly loves us and does these things for our eternal benefit - so long as we trust and follow Him. (DRM 11/14/14)

3:19    Remember my affliction and my wandering, the wormwood and bitterness.

    The author of this book (Jeremiah?) wanted God to remember him and direct his steps. He wanted God's mercy on what he was doing. The affliction could be either physical or spiritual - it could be both after his wandering.
    Cross references to wormwood take me to verses that use bitterness, so the author could have had bitterness about his lack of direction from the Lord God. Thankfully his attitude changed in later verses.
    While sometimes slow, (in our mind) God will always be with us as believers. (DRM 4/24/14)

3:22, 23    The LORD'S lovingkindness indeed never ceases,
                 For His compassions never fail.
              23They are new every morning;
                 Great is Your faithfulness.

    God is watching over our every move. Sometimes that's good when we have concerns or feel lonely/depressed. He is also watching over us when we sin and convicts us to repent. This shows God's lovingkindness, and his compassion to forgive when we repent of our sins.
    Thank the Lord that we can start every morning with a "clean slate" - so long as we repent and try to keep improving in our Christian walk. (DRM 10/23/12)

3:24    "The LORD is my portion," says my soul, "Therefore I have hope in Him."

    A recent song that I know and met the author of - is "My Hope is in the Lord." While I don't totally understand what happened while I was in Chicago, my hope continues to be in Him - and how He works everything out for the best. I (we) must continue to have hope and faith completely on His direction for every day of life. (DRM 6/21/07)

3:25    The LORD is good to those who wait for Him,
           To the person who seeks Him.

    I used to think I had some patience, but now I don't feel that way. That's probably the opposite of other people. I still have patience for a day or two, but it's harder after a year or two.
    God has His own timetable, and He has all the time He needs. Everything will get done in His perfect timing.
    No matter what "our" (my) schedule seems to be, He is still in control and we are to seek and follow Him. (DRM 11/14/11)

3:26, 27    It is good that he waits silently
                 For the salvation of the LORD.
               27It is good for a man that he should bear
                 The yoke in his youth.

    Patience. I always need more patience. When waiting for the Lord, He wants us to be silent - maybe so we can hear Him better.
    Salvation is usually associated with the beginning of the Christian life, thus verse 27 seems to be related. "It is good" for a person to become a follower of Christ "in his youth," then the person can serve the Lord with all their strength - and not be diverted by worldly pursuits.
    How I wish that I'd become a Christian when I was younger - instead of age 35! (DRM 11/11/13)

3:32    For if He causes grief,
           Then He will have compassion
           According to His abundant lovingkindness.

    God is love. Why would He cause grief?
    God wants only the best for each of us. He may not allow us to do something that we want, thus giving us the perception that He is causing grief - even though He is really guiding us to a better direction. This is God's lovingkindness - we just have to see it. . . maybe a week or a year or so later. (DRM 6/19/13)

3:33    For He does not afflict willingly
           Or grieve the sons of men.

    God is love. He doesn't willingly harm us. Think of Job. God didn't harm Job, but allowed the devil to test him. Why? Only God knows - probably to prove Job's faith.
    We will not understand all of God's ways until we live with Him in Heaven. Quite often we can see how He works in retrospect, but that can take years - as it has for me.
    God always has our best interests at heart, even if we don't know what they are at the time. (DRM 9/3/14)

3:56    Thou hast heard my voice, "Do not hide Thine ear from my prayer for relief. From my cry for help."

    Throughout the Bible, we are assured that our prayers - if we are part of the family of God - are received in Heaven and acted upon. Today I wonder how God's transmission lines can determine the difference between our prayers and our thoughts - but it really doesn't matter - as He knows everything about me (us).

3:57    You came near when I called you, and you said, "Do not fear."

    When things go wrong, or we think they will go wrong, then we lose our trust in the Lord. I must learn never to even consider doubting Him. There is no reason to fear because He is in me and I should have no reason to doubt that He knows what is right. (DRM 11/13/86)

3:65, 66    You will give them hardness of heart,
                 Your curse will be on them.
               66You will pursue them in anger and destroy them
                 from under the heavens of the LORD!

    As believers in Jesus, we have non-believing acquaintances like the author (Jeremiah) of Lamentations. He called them "oppression" (v. 59) and "assailants" (v. 62) depending on how these people acted against him.
    When these things happen to us, what are we to do? God wants us to give our concerns/problems to Him. Let Him take care of these people like shown in these verses.
    The author asked God to do these things, but God makes all the decisions. We are to give our fears, enemies and concerns to Him. . . trust in the Lord to work it out. (DRM 10/24/16)

4:22    O Daughter of Zion, your punishment will end; he will not prolong your exile. But, O Daughter of Edom, he will punish your sin and expose your wickedness.

    Israel is God's chosen nation. In this verse, the author gives hope to the people of Zion (Israel?). The people of Edom on the other hand, will have more suffering. Lord, let me also be aware of You at all times and accept your punishment and praise. (DRM 4/17/89)

5:15    The joy of our hearts has ceased;
           Our dancing has been turned into mourning.
         16The crown has fallen from our head,
            Woe to us, for we have sinned!

    Jerusalem had been judged. It was 586 B.C. when it fell and the temple was burned.
    The author knew that all that happened was God's doing. In v.16 the author (Jeremiah?) knew that the residents had sinned. It was over. The city was gone, joy ceased, dancing had turned to mourning. God knew it would happen. At least the author repented, but what about the citizens?
    The same thing could happen to us. Revelation describes it. The whole world needs to repent from their sinful ways and turn to God=Jesus and follow Him as directed by the Bible. (DRM 5/4/16)

    Lord, You have reclaimed us, and You are remaking us. Thank you for Your love and Your care despite our self-centered and destructive ways. Thank You for true forgiveness and unity in You. (from Our Daily Bread 5/4/16)

5:21,22    Restore us to yourself, O Lord, that we may return; renew our days of old. 22unless you have utterly rejected us and are angry with us beyond measure.

    As previously mentioned, the book of Lamentations laments on the fate of the Israelites as they have been scattered. These 2 verses are important in that they are asking for forgiveness, as we all must do to be a true servant of God. (DRM 4/18/89)

    [re: 5:21]    In v.16, Jeremiah points out that the Israelites had sinned. Here he is seeking restoration. The country needed to repent from it's sin of not following the Lord God. When (not if) I sin, I also need to repent and follow His direction. Living alone, I find it difficult sometimes to determine what I did wrong - as there is no human conviction for my sins. Truly the Holy Spirit is my convictor and I also need to repent to be restored to a closer walk with God=Jesus. (DRM 6/23/07)