Sermon on Lamentations 3:22-33, about patience through suffering, and the confidence that looks to God's faithfulness.
Sermon Talking Points
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- The Hebrew word hesed is a rich Biblical word, that is hard to express simply in English. It is frequently used to describe God’s loving-kindness, His steadfast and unfailing love. It is said that God abounds in hesed, His steadfast love is not in short supply. See how it is used in Exodus 34:6-7; Neh. 9:16-17; Joel 2:13.
- This great passage of hope (Lam. 3:22-33) cannot fully be appreciated outside the context of the great gloom and suffering that Jeremiah laments throughout the book. Read the surrounding chapter at least to gain a greater appreciation of the contrast between his despair and hope. How does hope (more accurately: “Christian confidence”) shine all the brighter in the midst of real suffering and tragedy?
- When are the times in your life where you have lamented, or are? Did you actually voice your sadness, or mourn out loud, or could you not find words? Compare/contrast some examples of laments in the Bible: 2 Sam. 1:19-27; Ps. 79; 83; 89:38-51; Lamentations. How is this Biblical approach different from the way we are told or expected to deal with grief today? What could we learn from the practice of “lamenting?” How do all the laments of the faithful finally find their answer in the cross and resurrection of Jesus Christ?
- In what way is patience both a learned part of the experience of suffering, and also a necessary part of our response to suffering itself? What is our patience “waiting for?” What does it hope to receive? Lam. 3:22-26, 31-32. Psalm 130:5; Isaiah 40:31; Jeremiah 29:11.
- How does God’s “record” of salvation in the past give the believer confidence in the deliverance and future to come? Re-read Lam. 3:28-32 in the light of Jesus’ suffering and unanswered cry “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” How is our cry together answered in Jesus’ resurrection from the dead? How does it again show God’s hesed ?