It is a brand new year! When you are my age the years seem to roll by quicker than ever! Did you know that it has taken me almost a life time to sit down and study the book of Lamentations? One read of it, and I am thinking that I should have left it even longer to study! It is not an easy read to say the least. Lamentations comes from the word ‘lament’ and lament means crying, weeping and even howling! So who in their right mind would want to start the year off with an investigation of such a dour and sad book? Well … for some reason this book has been placed in the Bible. As I reflect on it, I am convinced that it is in actual fact a worthy book to study right at the start of a new year. It sets the scene as to where we want to go this year in our preaching and teaching. It takes us back to a time when God dealt with His disobedient people in a very harsh way.
After working our way through the parables of the kingdom in the latter part of 2016, I sensed that we in this modern world need a wakeup call. I think that spiritual lethargy may be setting in to the life of many Christians. I am thinking that we may have become a people that do not live our lives by faith. In other words, we have decided to live our lives in the way we best think. Living by faith means that we are to live in total submission and dependence on God. Lamentations has been written by Jeremiah as he weeps for his once great nation Judah. The great city of Jerusalem has just been overthrown and its citizens have been taken into exile by the Babylonians. It is a scene of utter devastation. If only his people had listened and acted on what he had been teaching them for over four decades!
Lamentations is a warning that God takes sin very seriously. This is why He sent His Son Jesus on a mission to earth. It cost Him big time as we know. It is time for the peoples of the earth to listen to God. He says that He will send Jesus back again to bring this world to an end as we know it. We need to listen to this and be prepared. I trust that our time in Lamentations through January will be a blessing to you! It is not easy … but learning and growing requires some hard work!