Lamentations 3:21-26 - Blessed Assurance
Lam 3:21 (NLT) Yet I still dare to hope when I remember this:
Lam 3:22 (NLT) The unfailing love of the LORD never ends! By his mercies we
have been kept from complete destruction.
Lam 3:23 (NLT) Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each
Lam 3:24 (NLT) I say to myself, "The LORD is my inheritance; therefore, I
will hope in him!"
Lam 3:25 (NLT) The LORD is wonderfully good to those who wait for him and
Lam 3:26 (NLT) So it is good to wait quietly for salvation from the LORD.
The theological high point of the book of Lamentations. [NIV SB]
Verses 21-36. Having stated his distress and temptation, the prophet shows
how he was raised above it. Bad as things are, it is owing to the mercy of
God that they are not worse. We should observe what makes for us, as well as
what is against us. God's compassions fail not; of this we have fresh
instances every morning. Portions on earth are perishing things, but God is
a portion for ever. It is our duty, and will be our comfort and
satisfaction, to hope and quietly to wait for the salvation of the Lord.
Afflictions do and will work very much for good: many have found it good to
bear this yoke in their youth; it has made many humble and serious, and has
weaned them from the world, who otherwise would have been proud and unruly.
If tribulation work patience, that patience will work experience, and that
experience a hope that makes not ashamed. Due thoughts of the evil of sin,
and of our own sinfulness, will convince us that it is of the Lord's mercies
we are not consumed. If we cannot say with unwavering voice, The Lord is my
portion; may we not say, I desire to have Him for my portion and salvation,
and in his word do I hope? Happy shall we be, if we learn to receive
affliction as laid upon us by the hand of God. [Matthew Henry Commentary]
Here at the heart of this book we find one of the greatest confessions of
faith found anywhere in the Bible. Jeremiah had been dwelling on his sorrows
and the sorrows of his people, but then he lifted his eyes to the Lord-and
this was the turning point. In the midst of sorrow and ruin he remembered
the mercy of the Lord. "His compassions fail not." We have failed Him, but
He cannot fail us. "Great is Your faithfulness."
The faithfulness of God is a tremendous encouragement in days when people's
hearts are failing them for fear. If you build your life on people or on the
things of this world, you will have no hope or security; but if you build on
Christ, the Faithful One, you will be safe forever. He is faithful to
chasten (Ps. 119:75); Lamentations itself teaches this lesson. He wants to
bring us to the place of repentance and confession (Lam. 3:39-41). He is
faithful to forgive when we do confess our sins (1 John 1:9). He is faithful
to sympathize when we have burdens and problems (Heb. 2:17-18; 4:14-16). We
never need fear that He is too busy to listen or too tired to help. He is
faithful to deliver when we cry out for help in temptation (1 Cor. 10:13).
He is faithful to keep us in this life and unto life eternal (1 Tim. 1:15; 1
Thes. 5:23-24). We can commit our lives and souls into the hands of the
faithful Creator (1 Peter 4:19) and know that He will do all things well.
God in His mercy spared a remnant of Judah, protected and blessed them
during their years of captivity, and then permitted them to return to their
land once again. He enabled them to rebuild their city and temple; He
protected them from heathen nations that hated the Jews. How merciful God
was to His people. How merciful He is to us today.
In times of trouble we need to imitate Jeremiah who looked away from himself
to the Lord, and who waited on the Lord in patience and faith (3:24-26). Too
often we look at ourselves and our problems and become so discouraged that
we quit. Instead, we must "look away unto Jesus" (Heb. 12:1-2) and let Him
see us through. It is difficult to wait on the Lord. Our fallen nature
craves activity, and usually what we do only makes matters worse. Jeremiah
waited on the Lord, trusted in His mercy, and depended on His faithfulness.
He knew the truth of Isa. 40:31 (NKJV), "Those who wait on the Lord shall
renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall
run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint." [Wiersbe Expository