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Dylan preaches from James for 10 minutes
Remind the church of the Tills leaving for China
Prayer for Troell Family & Temple Baptist Church
Quick Summary: The background to this Hebrew poem is the destruction of the temple and the city of the Jerusalem in 586 BC at the hands of the Babylonian army.
God, through the prophet Jeremiah, had warned the people of Judah that judgment was coming, but they failed to listen.
As a result, they faced the deserved judgment of God.
Lamentations 2:4 “4 He hath bent his bow like an enemy: he stood with his right hand as an adversary, And slew all that were pleasant to the eye In the tabernacle of the daughter of Zion: he poured out his fury like fire.”
Mark Vroegop, author of Dark Clouds, Deep Mercy describes these times of life as the night time of our orbit around God’s will for our lives
We know that we will see the sun rise, if not this side of eternity, but in the darkness it seems like we are forsaken not that we are rotating into place
Psalm 89:46 “46 How long, Lord? wilt thou hide thyself for ever?
Shall thy wrath burn like fire?”
Lamenting helps tune our heart to sing they praise
Come, Thou Fount of every blessing,
Tune my heart to sing Thy grace;
Streams of mercy, never ceasing,
Call for songs of loudest praise.
Jesus sought me when a stranger,
Wand’ring from the face of God;
He, to save my soul from danger,
Interposed His precious blood.
Christian lament is one of the most theologically-rich things that we do, and it ought to be because what you really think about God, yourself, and the world surfaces in those moments.
It reminds us that there is a bigger symphony that is being played in the universe.
We may have an instrument and we may be able to make music, but only God plays the symphony.
How does lament relate to this?
In two ways:
1) It gives us the sheet music to play when we are invited into God’s tune.
In other words, it connects us back to the bigger story of God’s glory when we are hurting, confused, or struggling.
2) In reading lament and reflecting on it, we are able to have God tune our hearts to His glory and to be warned.
In other words, lament reminds us that God is merciful and kind and gracious.
But he is also holy, just, and to be feared.
Grace is only amazing because judgment is real
God will bring restoration to His people, but this chapter is not about that.
It is only about judgment.
Chapter 2 sings a terrifying song about God’s glory in judgment.
We will divide this chapter into 3 sections
The wrath v.1-10
The sorrow v.11-17
The appeal v.18-22
God does not passively pursue holiness in the life of His people.
Underline all the actions taken by God toward Israel; look for He hath
We often try to edit the harsh realities of the wrath of God from the Bible, you will just have to skip this book and chapter
Seems to be without hope, the darkness before the dawn
Lamentations 2:1–10 (KJV 1900)
1 How hath the Lord covered the daughter of Zion with a cloud in his anger, And cast down from heaven unto the earth the beauty of Israel, And remembered not his footstool in the day of his anger!
2 The Lord hath swallowed up all the habitations of Jacob, and hath not pitied: He hath thrown down in his wrath the strong holds of the daughter of Judah; He hath brought them down to the ground: he hath polluted the kingdom and the princes thereof.
3 He hath cut off in his fierce anger all the horn of Israel: He hath drawn back his right hand from before the enemy, And he burned against Jacob like a flaming fire, which devoureth round about.
4 He hath bent his bow like an enemy: he stood with his right hand as an adversary, And slew all that were pleasant to the eye In the tabernacle of the daughter of Zion: he poured out his fury like fire.
5 The Lord was as an enemy: he hath swallowed up Israel, He hath swallowed up all her palaces: he hath destroyed his strong holds, And hath increased in the daughter of Judah mourning and lamentation.
6 And he hath violently taken away his tabernacle, as if it were of a garden: he hath destroyed his places of the assembly: The Lord hath caused the solemn feasts and sabbaths to be forgotten in Zion, And hath despised in the indignation of his anger the king and the priest.
7 The Lord hath cast off his altar, he hath abhorred his sanctuary, He hath given up 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 a solemn feast.
8 The Lord hath purposed to destroy the wall of the daughter of Zion: He hath stretched out a line, he hath not withdrawn his hand from destroying: Therefore he made the rampart and the wall to lament; they languished together.
9 Her gates are sunk into the ground; he hath destroyed and broken her bars: Her king and her princes are among the Gentiles: the law is no more; Her prophets also find no vision from the Lord.
10 The elders of the daughter of Zion sit upon the ground, and keep silence: They have cast up dust upon their heads; they have girded themselves with sackcloth: The virgins of Jerusalem hang down their heads to the ground.
A cry of pain
Lamentations 2:1 “1 How hath the Lord covered the daughter of Zion with a cloud in his anger, And cast down from heaven unto the earth the beauty of Israel, And remembered not his footstool in the day of his anger!”
Same start as chapter 1
More intense rendition of chapter 1, with 22 verses as well
Take note of what we see here because it sets the framework for what is to come:
The Lord is angry.
This is not a comfortable thought or image, but it is real.
The God of the universe can be justifiably and righteously angry.
Even though the people of God are precious to Him (i.e., a daughter), He has set her under a cloud.
What kind of cloud?
It is a cloud of judgment.
The glory of the people of God has fallen.
The blessing of God has been removed.
The light of the nations has been extinguished.
A blessed people are now a disciplined people.
The temple and the city seemed to have been forgotten by God.
Ezekiel 8-10 records how the glory of God left the temple.
The beauty of God’s presence was gone.
Is God not slow to anger?
Psalm 103:8 “8 The Lord is merciful and gracious, Slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy.”
Lamentations 2:2-3 “2 The Lord hath swallowed up all the habitations of Jacob, and hath not pitied: He hath thrown down in his wrath the strong holds of the daughter of Judah; He hath brought them down to the ground: he hath polluted the kingdom and the princes thereof.
3 He hath cut off in his fierce anger all the horn of Israel: He hath drawn back his right hand from before the enemy, And he burned against Jacob like a flaming fire, which devoureth round about.”
We should see the extent of the destruction and how bad it really is.
Jeremiah clearly wants us to know that God is the one who is behind it.
Behind the Babylonian army and the judgment of Judah is a holy God.
God deals with sin on every level
Destroyed their places to worship v.6-7
Destroyed their protection.
Destroyed the culture v.9-10
God leveled His own temple.
He scattered His own people.
He ruined His own city.
Because as important as Israel is to God, there is something more important: God’s own righteousness.
- NOT TOO BIG TO FAIL
Questions we must ask
How big is God’s holiness and righteousness to me?
Do I take my sin seriously?
Have I trusted Christ for the forgiveness of my sins?
Is my heart tuned for God’s glory?
Transitional Statement: Now we turn to the response of the people.
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