Wednesday, 22nd December 2021
Rev Daniel Xi An Poon
Section One V1-10 God’s Judgement
V1-2 ‘How the Lord has covered the daughter of Zion with a cloud in His anger! He cast down from heaven to the earth the beauty of Israel, and did not remember His footstool in the day of His anger. The Lord has swallowed up and has not pitied all the dwelling places of Jacob. He has thrown down in His wrath the strongholds of the daughter of Judah; He has brought them down to the ground; He has profaned the kingdom and its princes.’ Everything the Israelites had was from God. Do we also see that we can be where we are today is because of the Grace of God? What are the ‘treasures’ that can really protect us?
V3 ‘He has cut off in fierce anger every horn of Israel; He has drawn back His right hand from before the enemy. He has blazed against Jacob like a flaming fire Devouring all around.’ God no longer showed His mercy because only fire can destroy all the sins of people. God wanted to completely demolish the strength of Israelites, so they knew that everything they had they could not rely on, and the idols they worshipped would fade away. God wanted the temple to be the place of worship, not just a place to meet up, to social or to carry out religious rituals. People should no longer live in their fanaticise and lies, but to face the reality, and to turn back to God.
V7 ‘The Lord has spurned His altar, He has abandoned His sanctuary; He has given up the walls of her palaces into the hand of the enemy. They have made a noise in the house of the Lord as on the day of a set feast.’ All the buildings were just empty objects, when people no longer worshipped God, then God’s presence would leave. God made up His mind to demolish and destroy, so the people of Israelites would not rely on these ‘treasures’ anymore. God’s intention was good, it was out of love, even though it seemed that God was cruel, but this was the only way for the Israelites to repent and return. All the lies would be destroyed, and everything would return back to zero.
V10 ‘The elders of the daughter of Zion sit on the ground and keep silence; they throw dust on their heads and gird themselves with sackcloth. The virgins of Jerusalem bow their heads to the ground.’ The leaders of the city did not have their authority and power anymore, they failed because of their sins. God is love but He is also righteous, He gives us opportunity to repent, but when we decide to continue sinning, His judgement will come.
Section Two V11-17 The Illusion of the False Prophet
V11 ‘My eyes fail with tears, my heart is troubled; my bile is poured on the ground because of the destruction of the daughter of my people, because the children and the infants faint in the streets of the city.’ It’s easy to give up and leave God when we face troubles in our lives. The people of Israel lost hope and motivation. They only wanted to feed themselves, they focused on the ‘treasures’ and they stopped seeking God.
V14 ‘Your prophets have seen for you false and deceptive visions; they have not uncovered your iniquity, to bring back your captives, but have envisioned for you false prophecies and delusions.’ The prophets were supposed to preach the truth of God, but instead of doing so, the prophets of Israel only spoke the words of praise to please people. They did not speak the truth and therefore the judgement also came upon them. V15 ‘All who pass by clap their hands at you; they hiss and shake their heads at the daughter of Jerusalem: “Is this the city that is called ‘The perfection of beauty, the joy of the whole earth’?”’ The city of Jerusalem was no longer the place people wanted to go, its glorious past has gone. The prophets did not show the people their sins and did not give them the opportunity to repent.
V18 ‘Their heart cried out to the Lord, “O wall of the daughter of Zion, let tears run down like a river day and night; give yourself no relief; give your eyes no rest.’ We must seek God, stop living in this world of illusion, but to call out to God, and He will take over. When we are willing to be convicted for sins, for judgement and for righteousness, then God’s hand will reach out to us, this is His heart, for us to turn back to Him. When we fully rely on God, then we can find the only way out!
V22 ‘You have invited as to a feast day the terrors that surround me. In the day of the Lord’s anger there was no refugee or survivor. Those whom I have borne and brought up my enemies have destroyed.’ There is nothing we can rely on in this world, especially in the past two years, with the virus, the economy, and everything happens around us, our hearts are worried, and we are full of fear. This is the time we must hold onto God more, but our sins and our pride stop us coming closer to God. We tend to choose to rely on what we can see and what we can hear, instead of our Creator God.
In this lost city, we must pray more, to seek God more, and to stop relying on our own strength. Let there be no gap in our lives for sins to come in, and let God’s presence fill every aspect of our lives.
耶利米哀歌 2 – 在失落的圣城日子如何度过
V21-22 “耶和华发怒的日子，无人逃脱，无人存留。。。仇敌都杀净了”。 在这个疫情肆虐的世代，我们将来要面对更多问题。人心惶惶，我们会害怕事情的发生不如自己所期待，所以我们会去寻找那些假先知来安慰我们。神对我们所怀的是赐平安的意念，但我们的罪和骄傲让我们跌倒。我们选择摸得着看得到的东西，却没有选择那位看不见的神。