Lamentations: Great is Your Faithfulness

The book of Lamentations, written some years after the siege of Jerusalem by the Babylonians in 587BC, is a poetic reflection on what God taught his people through their suffering.  It is written in the form of 5 poems of lament which give voice to what God’s people felt and learned.

 

The book deals with the massive issue of suffering in the context of faith in an all-loving God. It will show us today how giving voice to our sufferings, lamenting before God is not a negative expression of our hearts but a positive affirmation of our trust in God, who despite all appearances to the contrary, always has the good of His people in his plans.

 

Lamentations 1 - Tears of Repentance - Scott Hamilton (Video) (Audio Only)
Evening Service, Sunday, May 2, 2021
The walls of Jerusalem have kept God's people safe and secure for so long. What is the soundtrack as they fall? What is the soundtrack to the exile of God's people from their homes, land and loved ones? Is there any hope, and how are we to lament today in an entirely different day and age?
Lamentations 2 - The Lord has Judged - Jim Gladstone (Video)
Evening Service, Sunday, May 9, 2021
Lamentations 2 considers the aftermath of the Babylonian invasion of Jerusalem around 587bc. It addresses the question ‘why has this happened?’ and reflects on the realisation that it is God’s judgment on His people. God had warned in the Law that judgment was the inevitable result of disobedience – a warning reiterated to the people only a few years before these events. This sermon focuses on God’s just actions, noting that He is not only the God who judges, but also the God who saves. With God there is always hope and a future; He brings great good out of great pain; but we must also recognise that a greater judgment is coming and prepare for it.
Lamentations 3 - John Hannah (Video) (Audio Only)
Evening Service, Monday, May 17, 2021
Chapter 3 of Lamentations is the central and longest chapter of the book. This sermon discusses it in five sections. In the first of these, we wonder at the graphical way Jeremiah describes how he feels that The Lord has made him suffer and suggest that modern refugees would identify with his deep pain. The second section examines how the best known verses in the book (22 & 23) bring transformative hope and re-assurance which are relevant to all. Some difficult and currently controversial issues contained in later sections are addressed. The deep distress experienced by Jeremiah, as he feels himself to be under God’s active wrath, is felt to have some similarity to the desolation of Christ on the Cross. The sermon encourages listeners who may be experiencing difficulties to recognise that God’s love is great, that he is always faithful and that we can move beyond past failure.
Lamentations 4 - Alan Paterson (Video) (Audio Only)
Evening Service, Sunday, May 23, 2021
Chapter 4 takes us into lamenting the devastation of society whilst looking at the failure of leaders who took their eye off God and relied on their own self sufficiency. We see how the people searched for hope and how judgement was pronounced on their neighbour Edom. But Judah’s story was one of justice and hope and we end with the glimmer of hope, “the punishment of your iniquity is accomplished”.
Lamentations 5 - David Knowles (Video) (Audio Only)
Evening Service, Sunday, May 30, 2021
Our poet completes his Lamentation with a prayer that asks God to remember his people, cleverly the poet uses words of covenant significance to highlight what they have lost because of their sin. Despite the rubble of their surroundings he is still able to see the throne of God's majesty and is able to end his prayer on a note of hope despite the fact that nothing has changed.