Jerusalem is now suffering the punishment for rejecting God – and God warned them many times (over 100 in Jeremiah actually) that this would happen if they didn’t repent and turn from their sin and turn back to the God who created them.
Needless to say, they didn’t listen.
Now things are beyond bad in Jerusalem as most have been carried off to exile in Babylon, leaving only the poorest of the poor there…there is no food, they are even considering cannibalism to survive. (2:20)
That’s some really low times.
But in chap 3 we see the author starting to cling to hope, and as my ESV Study Bible introduction states “Hope, not despair is the final word in Lamentations.”
The author says in 3:21 “But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope:”
The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness
The LORD is my portion, says my soul, therefore I will hope in him.
The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him.
It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD
It is good for a man that he bear the yoke in his youth.
I have put a box around these verses in my Bible and wrote the words “covenant mercy” next to them. We see Jerusalem going thru despair like we will probably never know, yet now starting to cling to the hope of God – the God that is above even those circumstances and working them after the counsel of his sovereign will. God’s covenant with us today is thru Jesus Christ – that if our faith is in Jesus and his work on the cross for the forgiveness of our sins and the to satisfy the just anger that God has for us due to our sin – His covenant with us is forgiveness, to remember our sins no more, to give us the Holy Spirit to grow us in His image and likeness, to give us all things in Christ – mercy, joy, peace…and his covenant is LIFE. Life here on earth with meaning and purpose and JOY; and the promise of a life eternal that will be spent in worship of the one who laid down his life for mine.