Scripture printed text: Lamentations 5:1-22
The prophet, Jeremiah laments over the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple ruins. He was an eye witness of the deplorable conditions as a result of Israel’s sin against God. God is holy and because of His holiness, He will not tolerate sin. Jeremiah recognizes that because of their sin, God is just in what He has done, so the people need to turn and repent and appeal for God’s mercy.
Jeremiah spent over forty years calling out Israel’s displeasing ways and pleading with them to repent and avert pending judgment. But they failed to turn back to God, and repent of their sins. As a result, God’s judgment fell on the nation of Israel.
Chapter 5 of Lamentation, Jeremiah prays to God, a plea for Israel’s consideration of all the sorrow they have endured, for their sins and for mercy. Their loss of inheritance, land turned over to other nations, homes no longer belongs to them, women ravished, lost their joy and they have become like settlers in their own land. Jeremiah complains about the retribution of sin. The punishment of the ancestor’s sin was visited upon the children. Because their offspring also did not turn away from the sinful ways of their fathers. Before they reaped the covenant blessings, and now they are reaping the covenant curses. Israel’s disobedience was rooted in idolatry and apostasy.
Although God provided them with opportunity after opportunity through the voice of His prophets to repent and turn from their wicked ways and return to Him. Israel suffered consequences for no longer depending upon God for their life, provision, protection and safety. Sin always brings consequences!
Despite all the circumstances Israel faced, God remains the same forever. Though Israel had lost their status due to sin, God is faithful to His word. Circumstances may change, but God is unchangeable. When we abide by Him, we can be assured that even in misfortune, God remains our hope. God promise to never leave us nor forsake us, but sin is what separates us from Him.
Restoration comes when we acknowledge our sin, turn to God and repent. God is merciful, and will forgive us and restore us. Jeremiah laments pleas for Israel’s restoration. What is your plea to God?