Summary: This sermon is a good one for times of national or local tragady it teaches that even in times of trouble there is still hope in the Lord.
Hope In Times of Despair
Jeremiah was a prophet just before and during the first part of Israel’s captivity by Babylon. Jeremiah was known as the Weeping Prophet. He was doing and saying all that God told him to do and to say and no one was listening. They turned to the false prophets who would tell them what they wanted to hear. Because Jeremiah was preaching about the coming captivity of Israel, the people on several occasions beat him, stoned him, ridiculed him, put him in pits of mud and various other mean things in order to get him to quit preaching.
In this book, Lamentations, the nation has been taken into captivity. The city of Jerusalem had been destroyed. The walls of the city were destroyed. The temple had been burnt down and destroyed. But not before all the gold, silver and bronze items had been plundered by the Babylonian army. Many people had been killed, others had been taken captive to Babylon, and the rest were in Israel with out anything. Their whole society and way of life had been completely destroyed. It is in this context that Jeremiah writes these words.
This book is a book of poetry. It has five chapters each written in an acrostic utilizing the entire Hebrew alphabet in each chapter. One bible commentator has said Jeremiah was weeping from A to Z. But in the middle of this book of despair and weeping Jeremiah writes these great words “Great is Thy faithfulness.” Jeremiah in the middle of turmoil, destruction, and despair he says I have hope. Today let me ask you the question “Do you have Hope in the Times of Despair?”
Outline of the Text:
I. The Cry of the prophet. 3:1-18
A. He experienced troubles. 3:1-16
1. He experienced the wrath of God.
2. He experienced separation from God.
3. He experienced physical problems.
4. He experienced heavy burdens.
5. He experienced attacks from people.
B. He experienced tragedies. 3:17-18
1. He experienced loss of peace.
2. He experienced loss of goodness (Prosperity)
3. He experienced loss of strength.
4. He experienced loss of hope.
NOTE: Jeremiah lost his hope in verse 18 but by verse 19 he found it again.
II. The Condition of the Prophet. 3:19-21
A. He had physical afflictions.
B. He had spiritual afflictions.
C. He had hope.
III. The Confessions of Hope of the Prophet. 3:22-24
A. God’s mercies we are not destroyed.
NOTE: The people of the world can do all they want to us but they will never destroy God mercy.
B. God’s compassion is ever lasting.
C. God is faithful
D. God will provide.
NOTE: God gives these things each morning anew.
Reasons To Have Daily Hope In Times Of Despair.
A. Because of His great mercy or love. His love and
NOTE: The Word of God tells us that nothing can separate us from the Love of God.
B. Because of His unfailing compassion.
NOTE: This word compassion could be translated his tender love. This is the kind of tenderness which wraps you up in His arms and He just holds and hugs on you a while.
C. The Lord is all we have. (My portion)
NOTE: This word describes something that belongs to someone. We belong to Christ so what ever happens we have hope.
The hymn writer put it this way:
Great is Thy faithfulness, O God, my Father, There is no shadow of turning with Thee; Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not; As Thou hast been, Thou forever will be. Great is Thy faithfulness! Great is Thy faithfulness! Morning by morning new mercies I See; All I have needed, Thy hand hath provided; Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord unto me.
(Great is thy Faithfulness Thomas O. Chisholm)
In whom do you have hope?
1. Do you have hope in your political system?
Politics do not offer the hope we need.
2. Do you have hope in people?
In many cases, people will fail you.
3. Do you have hope in your church?
The church can offer hope but it does not provide hope.
4. Your Hope needs to be in Jesus.
The Great Hymn The Solid Rock Esward Mote
1. My hope is built on nothing less Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness; I dare not trust the sweetest frame, But wholly lean on Jesus’ name.
2. When darkness seems to hide His face, I rest on His un-changing grace; In every high and stormy gale, My anchor holds with-in the veil.
3. His oath, His covenant, His blood Support me in the whelming flood; When all around my soul gives way, He then is all my hope and stay.
4. When He shall come with trumpet sound. Oh, may I then in Him be found; Dressed in His righteousness alone, Faultless to stand before the throne.
On Christ the solid Rock, I stand; All other Ground is sinking sand, All other ground is sinking sand.
Our hope has to be in Christ nothing more and nothing less.