August 25 (Daily reading: Lamentations 1-2) Judah’s fate became even more lamentable as Jeremiah spoke of her as a person. It began with a third person testimony: “(Judah) weeps bitterly in the night and her tears are on her cheeks; she has none to comfort her … (she) has gone into exile under affliction and under harsh servitude” (1:2-3). It continued in the first person: “Look and see if there is any pain like my pain which was severely dealt out to me, which the LORD inflicted on the day of His fierce anger” (1:12).
From pain and suffering came Judah’s confession: “The LORD is righteous; for I have rebelled against His command … See, O LORD, for I am in distress; my spirit is greatly troubled; my heart is overturned within me, for I have been very rebellious” (1: 18, 20). And we read Jeremiah’s intercessory response to the condition of God’s people: “My eyes fail because of tears, my spirit is greatly troubled; my heart is poured out on the earth because of the destruction of the daughter of my people” (2:11).
Sin and separation might make us feel like saying, “The Lord has become like an enemy … The Lord has rejected His altar, He has abandoned His sanctuary” (2:5, 7). But someone said, “When there is a distance between you and God, know that God has not gone anywhere!” Our sin will make us move away from Him. It will make us His enemies. But, praise God, “…while we were yet sinners (while we were enemies), Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8, 10). God is the enemy of sin, so much so that He sent Jesus to die to free us from the penalty of our sin. We can never be comfortable living in sin! This fact will lead to our repentance and His forgiveness!
– Al Gary