Lamentations 4* The deplorable state of the nation is contrasted with itsancient prosperity.1-12 What a change is here! Sin tarnishes the beauty of themost exalted powers and the most excellent gifts; but that gold,tried in the fire, which Christ bestows, never will be takenfrom us; its outward appearance may be dimmed, but its realvalue can never be changed. The horrors of the siege anddestruction of Jerusalem are again described. Beholding the sadconsequences of sin in the church of old, let us seriouslyconsider to what the same causes may justly bring down thechurch now. But, Lord, though we have gone from thee inrebellion, yet turn to us, and turn our hearts to thee, that wemay fear thy name. Come to us, bless us with awakening,converting, renewing, confirming grace. 13-20 Nothing ripens a people more for ruin, nor fills themeasure faster, than the sins of priests and prophets. The kinghimself cannot escape, for Divine vengeance pursues him. Ouranointed King alone is the life of our souls; we may safely liveunder his shadow, and rejoice in Him in the midst of ourenemies, for He is the true God and eternal life. 21,22 Here it is foretold that an end should be put to Zion'stroubles. Not the fulness of punishment deserved, but of whatGod has determined to inflict. An end shall be put to Edom'striumphs. All the troubles of the church and of the believerwill soon be accomplished. And the doom of their enemiesapproaches. The Lord will bring their sins to light, and theyshall lie down in eternal sorrow. Edom here represents all theenemies of the church. And the corruption, and sin of Israel,which the prophet has proved to be universal, justifies thejudgments of the Lord. It shows the need of that grace in ChristJesus, which the sin and corruption of all mankind make sonecessary.
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