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Historical Fulfillment Introduction to Lamentations

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Lesson #45

  • Memory verse: Lam 1:18
  • We have come to the end of the book of Jeremiah but not the end of Jeremiah’s writings.
    • This last chapter of Jeremiah is written not as prophecy but as fulfilled history.
      • In other words, this last chapter is the proof that everything Jeremiah spoke in prophecy came to pass.
      • We have discussed all the details in this chapter as Jeremiah prophesied them.
    • It is possible Jeremiah did not write this last chapter as Jeremiah was killed by the remnant of Jews in Egypt.
  • Read Jer 52:1-30 King Zedekiah and the fall of Jerusalem
    • Remember that the Babylonian army took Jews captive to Babylon at three different times. (28-30)
    • This chapter gives us the total persons taken captive in each of the three instances:
      • =1= 3023 people (28) in 606 BC.
      • =2= 832 people (29) in 597 BC.
      • =3= 745 people (30) in 586 BC.
    • The total number of Jews taken captive to Babylon was 4,600. (30)
    • The Bible does not tell us how many Jews were killed in these final battles against Judah.
  • Read Jer 52:31-34 The last days of King Zedekiah
    • The book of Jeremiah ends with the last days of King Zedekiah, the last king of Judah.
    • Why does the book end with this king?
      • Remember that God placed a curse on the lineage of kings from the tribe of Judah that descended from David through King Solomon.
      • Therefore, the book ends to show us that there were no more kings that followed King Zedekiah.
        • The next Jewish king will be Jesus Christ born from the tribe of Judah.
        • However, Jesus did not descend from David through Solomon like all the other kings.
        • David descended from David through Nathan.
  • Discussion and review of the book of Jeremiah:
    • Through the book I have mentioned things that the believer must know and things to do when we see the world deteriorate around us.
    • We must remember the key verse for the book of Jeremiah: Jer 7:23
    • Things to Know:
      • =1= Revival begins first with the people of God then revival works its way outward to society in general. No nation has ever fallen but that first it fell spiritually. This is the message of Jeremiah.
      • =2= The difference between Reformation and Revival.
      • =3= The abundance of sexual sins in society points to the initial step of unbelief.
      • =4= God punishes His rebellious people because He loves them.
      • =5= Repentance comes by means of the Word of God in conjunction with the conviction of the Holy Spirit.
      • =6= The church is the nation’s last bastion of hope. When the church is strengthened spiritually, the nation is strengthened spiritually and physically.
      • =7= There is a difference between a statesman and a politician. We must choose statesmen as your leaders.
      • =8= The believer is supposed to be different from the non-believers in the world. We are called to live differently. We must live a life without sin.
      • =9= God is a just God and no one gets away with anything.
      • =10= The believer must learn how to stand alone for his faith in difficult times and against opposition.
      • =11= Be aware that there is a spiritual line that men and nations can cross that will cut them off from God, from repentance, and from eternal salvation.
      • =12= The greatest joy in life is to serve God.
    • Things to Do:
      • =1= Listen to the guidance of the Holy Spirit by having a circumcised ear.
      • =2= Believers should not abandon areas of society because of evil. Instead we should take back this territory from the devil. Christians should be involved in politics so as to be a light in the darkness.
      • =3= The believer must be the salt and light in the society where God places him.
      • =4= Maintain a close daily personal relationship with Christ.
      • =5= The believer must be available to serve God in the ways He desires for His glory. Faithfulness to wherever God calls you is God’s plan.
      • =6= The believer must walk in holiness.
      • =7= In times of trouble only trust in God and not in man.
    • Discussion: What have you learned personally through this book of Jeremiah that helps you in your personal walk with the Lord?
  • Introduction to the book of Lamentations
    • This book was written by Jeremiah. It is a personal diary of his feelings, his lamentations, as the whirlwind of history and world events swirls around him.
    • Jeremiah was not only a prophet but a poet. The first four chapters of Lamentations are written in the form of poetry.
      • Chapters 1 and 2 and 4 are planned with each verse beginning with a subsequent letter of the Hebrew alphabet.
      • Chapter 3 is a triplet alphabet with every third verse beginning with a subsequent letter of the Hebrew alphabet.
    • It is because of this book that Jeremiah is called the “weeping prophet”.
      • The writings in Lamentation are like a funeral dirge.
        • It is filled with pain and sorrow.
        • It is a poem of pity, a proverb of pathos, a hymn of heartbreak, a psalm of sadness, a symphony of sorrow.
      • The book of Lamentations is the “Wailing Wall” of the Bible. In fact the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem is the only part of the Herod’s Temple complex that survived the destruction of the temple in 70 AD.
    • The book of Lamentations lays open the soul of Jeremiah to tell us what kind of man he was.
      • Jeremiah had a soft, tender heart. His messages broke his own heart.
      • And yet his messages were strong, harsh, and bold filled with God’s judgment.
        • If you were to pick a man to give the messages of an extremely brutal and harsh nature, what kind of man would you choose?
        • God chose the man with a soft, tender heart of love. Why?
        • God wanted the people to know that His heart is soft and tender with love like Jeremiah’s heart.
  • Read Lam 1:1-22 Jeremiah, weeping over Jerusalem
    • Jeremiah sitting in the ashes of Jerusalem identifies himself with Jerusalem and the people.
    • Jeremiah’s weeping over Jerusalem reminds us of Jesus weeping over Jerusalem.
    • Read Mat 23:33-39 Jesus weeping over Jerusalem
      • We have already seen that the destruction of Jerusalem by the Babylonians was a prefigure of the destruction that would come upon Jerusalem in 70 AD. by the Romans.
      • Jeremiah cried as he sat in Jerusalem in the ashes of history. His prophecy had been fulfilled.
      • Jesus cried over the prophecy yet to be fulfilled…the destruction of Jerusalem that occurred in 70 AD.
    • The reason for the fall of Jerusalem in Jeremiah’s day:
      • She has greatly sinned and her nakedness was revealed. (8)
      • Her sin was rampant idolatry which is depicted in the Bible as spiritual adultery.
      • Her lack of true spirituality came to light. The people did not acknowledge God nor worship Him.
    • What was the sin in Jesus’ day?
      • The corrupt priesthood and the corrupt political body called the Sanhedrin. (Mal 2 Mat 23 the eight woes of the Jewish leadership.)
      • Because the Jewish leadership was corrupt, they devised a way to kill the Messiah that God had sent in the same way that they killed the prophets of the Old Testament.
    • The result of sin is bondage.
      • That was true for Israel. The sin of idolatry ended in the Babylonian captivity.
        • The people that God separated from the pagan people around them are now are in bondage to the pagan people of Babylon.
        • The people that God called to be a special people are now a mingled people, dwelling with the enemy. (3, 7)
      • That same truth is true today. Sin causes man to be in bondage to his flesh nature. Only through Jesus Christ can man be set free from man’s sinful nature inherited from Adam.
    • “…the heathen entered into her sanctuary, whom thou didst command that they should not enter into thy congregation.” (10)
      • No one was supposed to enter into the Holy Place in the temple except priests descended from Aaron. No one was supposed to enter into the Holy of Holies in the temple except the high priest once a year.
      • When the Babylonians destroyed the temple, they went into those places prohibited by God.
      • God allowed the transgression of the temple by the Babylonians because the temple was already violated by the existence of idols that the Jews placed inside the temple.
        • The “pleasant things” mentioned in verse 7 refer to the contents of the temple that the Babylonians took to Babylon.
        • (Isa 64:11)
    • Jeremiah deals with some very human questions:
      • Why is God permitting this severe judgment on His people?
        • God answers this question when he says that He is righteous. (18)
        • In other words, God has the power and authority to do what He wants with His creation.
      • Why is sin so important to God?
        • Man does all in his power to deny sin, to excuse sin, or to rationalize it away.
        • God is holy. Sin is a common human experience.
          • God must judge sin if he is to be a righteous God. If God did not judge sin, He would not be righteous or just.
          • The word righteous means = without sin.
          • Therefore, to enter into God’s presence, man must deal with the sin situation. The person that never considers his sins as an affront to God will never pass into eternity in the presence of a holy and righteous God.
        • God sent Jesus Christ into the world to deal with the sin problem for us.
      • Is it nothing to you, all ye that pass by? behold, and see if there be any sorrow like unto my sorrow, which is done unto me, wherewith the Lord hath afflicted me in the day of his fierce anger.” (12)
        • All humans at some time or other in their lives pass by the cross of Jesus Christ. All humans must answer the ultimate question, “What will you do with Jesus Christ?”
          • Man must decide within himself if Jesus died on the cross for his personal sins or not.
          • Man must decide within himself if he will receive God’s free gift of love, Jesus Christ, or not.
        • When man feels sorry for his sins enough to repent and throw himself on God’s mercy, then he will appreciate Christ’s sacrifice for him. This is the perspective of sin God wants in each of us.

Lamentations 2

  • Application of Lam 1
    • Why is it important to the Christian walk to periodically remind ourselves of the importance of sin to God and the importance of Christ’s remedy for sin on the cross?
  • Preparation for Lam 2
    • Read Lam 2:1-22
      • What title would you give this chapter?
  • Memory Verse: Find a verse that reflects the title you chose for this chapter and memorize it.
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About Joyce

I came to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ in 1963 giving my heart to Jesus in a Billy Graham crusade in Los Angeles, CA. I have been teaching the Word of God since 1964, Usually two to three adult classes a week.

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