Study Guide

Lamentations Chapter 5

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Chapter 5

Even More Misery

  • The Poet starts off this chapter by begging God to remember what's happened to the people of Jerusalem. Um, was he likely to forget?
  • Just in case, here's a little recap.
  • The city and the people are in total disgrace. This is the Promised Land that God gave to their ancestors way back in the Book of Joshua.
  • Now, a bunch of random Babylonians are living there.
  • The children of Israel are orphans. They have no fathers. The women are widows. The whole family structure is basically gone.
  • The people don't even have access to basic items they need to survive. They risk their lives to get bread. They have to pay other nations for firewood and water to drink.
  • Even slaves are higher on the social ladder than them. Jewish princes are humiliated. Young women are raped in town. Young men are forced to work as slaves. And no one respects their elders. There goes the social order right out the window.
  • The people had crowns on their heads, but God snatched those right off because of all the bad things they've done. Now everyone realizes what their sins have cost them.

A Little Help Here?

  • The good news is that God will be in charge forever. He'll always be on the cosmic throne.
  • For the first time in the book, the Poet questions God—"Why have you forgotten us completely? Why have you forsaken us these many days?" That's actually a really good question.
  • The Poet begs God to make things good again. He asks God to let the people back into his good graces.
  • He really hopes God will do this. Unless, of course, God has decided that he doesn't want to have anything to do with the people of Judah ever again. Maybe he'll never stop being angry at them and it's too late for reconciliation.
  • Gulp. It ends here. We don't get to see how it all turns out, at least in this book.

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