Lamentations 1:20
See, O LORD, how distressed I am! I am churning within; my heart is pounding within me, for I have been most rebellious. Outside, the sword bereaves; inside, there is death.
The Cry of the ContriteJ.R. Thomson Lamentations 1:20
A JeremiadLamentations 1:12-22
Everyone Disposed to Think His Afflictions Peculiarly SevereN. Emmons, D. D.Lamentations 1:12-22
Good FridayE. Blencowe, M. A.Lamentations 1:12-22
Instructive SorrowsJ. Udall.Lamentations 1:12-22
Is it Nothing to You?Newman Hall, D. D.Lamentations 1:12-22
On the Passion of Our SaviourH. Scougal, M. A.Lamentations 1:12-22
Our Sorrows Rightly EstimatedJ. Trapp.Lamentations 1:12-22
Searchings of HeartR. Thomas.Lamentations 1:12-22
Sorrow Seen in its True LightHartley Aspen.Lamentations 1:12-22
The Appeal of the Saviour's SorrowsA. R. Thomas.Lamentations 1:12-22
The Sufferings of Christ Demand the Attention of AllS. Palmer.Lamentations 1:12-22
Zion's AppealW. F. Adeney, M. A.Lamentations 1:12-22
ComfortlessJ. Udall.Lamentations 1:19-22
Deceitful HelpersJ. Udall.Lamentations 1:19-22
Prayer in DistressJ. Udall.Lamentations 1:19-22
The Day that Right All WrongsH. Bonar, D. D.Lamentations 1:19-22

Trouble, when it leads to an inquiry into its cause, when it prompts to submission and to repentance, proves a means of grace. The cry of suffering and distress may have no moral significance; the cry of contrition and of supplication is a sign of spiritual impression, and is a step towards spiritual recovery.

I. THE OCCASION OF AFFLICTION AND CONTRITION. This is here specified, and the reality and severity are manifest. Within, i.e. in the homes and streets of the city, there is dearth; without, i.e. in the field, there is destruction by the sword. Thus in two strokes national calamity and disaster are depicted.

II. THE TOKENS OF AFFLICTION AND CONTRITION. Man's bodily nature is expressive of his spiritual state. Severe suffering and distress display themselves in organic, physical disturbance: The prophet feels in his bodily frame the disturbing effects of the trials he has undergone, the lively sympathy he has experienced.

III. THE CONFESSION TO WHICH AFFLICTION AND CONTRITION LEAD. Identifying the nation with himself, the prophet exclaims, "I have grievously rebelled." There is candour and justice, there is submissiveness, there is spiritual discernment, in this outspoken acknowledgment. No excuse, no extenuation, no complaint, is here, but a plain confession of ill desert. Rebels against a rightful authority, against a just, forbearing Sovereign, what could the Jews expect but such humiliation as they actually experienced? "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive,"


1. It is a cry unto the Lord. Judah had looked for earthly friends and helpers, and had learned by bitter experience the vanity of such expectations. And now Judah sought the Lord whom by sin and rebellion she had offended.

2. It is an entreaty for Divine regard and consideration. What had happened was indeed by permission of Heaven. But the regard implored was one of sympathy, commiseration, and kindness.

3. It is a cry for deliverance. It is dictated by the assurance that he and only he who wounded can heal and comfort and restore. - T.

She weepeth sore in the night.
1. According to the measure of God's correcting hand upon us, must our grief be.(1) Because God is sure to be (at the least) so angry as His rods are heavy.(2) Our sins do cause Him to afflict us, which we must repent of according to the measure of God's anger against them appearing by His smiting of us. This reproves them that remain unrepentant, when the correcting hand of God is upon them. It teaches us to increase in sorrow and lamentation, seeing the trouble of the Church in general, and our own crosses in particular are daily increased.

2. Weeping for sin and its punishment is such a sign of true repentance as we must labour to show forth, especially in time of calamity.(1) Because the heart appeareth then to be truly affected when it breaketh into tears.(2) The godly have always been brought thereunto (Joel 2:12). This reproves our corruption, that can easily be brought to weep for a worldly loss, but hardly for our sins. We must labour against this with all diligence, carefully using all the means of grace.

3. It is a grievous plague to lack comforts in affliction; the contrary whereof is a great blessing.(1) Because the comfortable words and deeds of others will mitigate the sense of the misery.(2) It adds to the grief to be left alone in it.

4. It is an intolerable grief to have friends become foes.(1) Because we put great trust in our friends, and promise ourselves much assistance by them.(2). They having been most inward with us, may do us more harm than those whom we have always esteemed enemies. Let us take heed with what men we make friendship. Let us not be dismayed though our friends become our foes, seeing it hath been often the lot of the godly, but seek to God the more earnestly for His assistance.

5. God often leaveth His people destitute of all outward help and comfort, to teach us to rest upon Him alone at whose disposition all things are, and not upon any outward thing, seem it never so glorious to our outward eyes.

(J. Udall.)

All her friends have dealt treacherously with her
We do not know our friends until we are in some extremity. Fair-weather friends are not to be implicitly trusted. You cannot know a man until you have had occasion to test him by some practical sacrifice; until you have opposed a man you do not know what his temper is; until you have disappointed a man you cannot tell the extent of his good nature; until you have seen a man in trial you know nothing whatever of his grace or his virtue. Many persons shine the more brightly because of the surrounding darkness; they have no genius for conversation, they cannot display themselves in public, they are but poorly feathered and coloured, so that they have nothing to attract and gratify the attention of curiosity: but how full of life they are when their friends are in trouble, how constant in watchfulness, how liberal in contribution, how patient under exasperation! These are the men to trust! As we should never see the stars but for the darkness, so we never should see real friendship but for our affliction and sorrow.

(J. Parker, D. D.)

Jacob, Jeremiah
Jerusalem, Zion
Abroad, Behold, Bereaves, Death, Distress, Distressed, Disturbed, Grievously, Heart, Home, Inside, Outside, Rebelled, Rebellious, Sword, Torment, Troubled, Within
1. The miseries of Jerusalem and of the Jews lamented
12. The attention of beholders demanded to this unprecedented case
18. The justice of God acknowledged, and his mercy supplicated.

Dictionary of Bible Themes
Lamentations 1:20

     5017   heart, renewal
     5559   stress
     6029   sin, forgiveness
     6174   guilt, human aspects
     6222   rebellion, against God

Lamentations 1:20-21

     6024   sin, effects of

No Sorrow Like Messiah's Sorrow
Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by? Behold, and see, if there be any sorrow like unto my sorrow! A lthough the Scriptures of the Old Testament, the law of Moses, the Psalms, and the Prophecies (Luke 24:44) , bear an harmonious testimony to MESSIAH ; it is not necessary to suppose that every single passage has an immediate and direct relation to Him. A method of exposition has frequently obtained [frequently been in vogue], of a fanciful and allegorical cast [contrivance], under the pretext
John Newton—Messiah Vol. 1

Epistle vi. To Narses, Patrician .
To Narses, Patrician [1305] . Gregory to Narses, &c. In describing loftily the sweetness of contemplation, you have renewed the groans of my fallen state, since I hear what I have lost inwardly while mounting outwardly, though undeserving, to the topmost height of rule. Know then that I am stricken with so great sorrow that I can scarcely speak; for the dark shades of grief block up the eyes of my soul. Whatever is beheld is sad, whatever is thought delightful appears to my heart lamentable. For
Saint Gregory the Great—the Epistles of Saint Gregory the Great

"Come unto Me, all Ye that Labour, and are Wearied," &C.
Matth. xi. 28.--"Come unto me, all ye that labour, and are wearied," &c. It is the great misery of Christians in this life, that they have such poor, narrow, and limited spirits, that are not fit to receive the truth of the gospel in its full comprehension; from whence manifold misapprehensions in judgment, and stumbling in practice proceed. The beauty and life of things consist in their entire union with one another, and in the conjunction of all their parts. Therefore it would not be a fit way
Hugh Binning—The Works of the Rev. Hugh Binning

Meditations for one that is Like to Die.
If thy sickness be like to increase unto death, then meditate on three things:--First, How graciously God dealeth with thee. Secondly, From what evils death will free thee. Thirdly, What good death will bring unto thee. The first sort of Meditations are, to consider God's favourable dealing with thee. 1. Meditate that God uses this chastisement of thy body but as a medicine to cure thy soul, by drawing thee, who art sick in sin, to come by repentance unto Christ, thy physician, to have thy soul healed
Lewis Bayly—The Practice of Piety

Concerning the Sacrament of Baptism
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to the riches of His mercy has at least preserved this one sacrament in His Church uninjured and uncontaminated by the devices of men, and has made it free to all nations and to men of every class. He has not suffered it to be overwhelmed with the foul and impious monstrosities of avarice and superstition; doubtless having this purpose, that He would have little children, incapable of avarice and superstition, to be initiated into
Martin Luther—First Principles of the Reformation

The book familiarly known as the Lamentations consists of four elegies[1] (i., ii., iii., iv.) and a prayer (v.). The general theme of the elegies is the sorrow and desolation created by the destruction of Jerusalem[2] in 586 B.C.: the last poem (v.) is a prayer for deliverance from the long continued distress. The elegies are all alphabetic, and like most alphabetic poems (cf. Ps. cxix.) are marked by little continuity of thought. The first poem is a lament over Jerusalem, bereft, by the siege,
John Edgar McFadyen—Introduction to the Old Testament

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