Cause us to return, O Lord, that we may return! (Lamentations 5:21, my translation)
There is no hope for God’s people unless God causes them to return from their sliding and leaping into sin and unbelief.
The book of Lamentations is the bleakest book in the Bible. God himself had decimated the apple of his eye: Jersualem.
- The Lord gave full vent to his wrath; he poured out his hot anger, and he kindled a fire in Zion that consumed its foundations. (Lamentations 4:11)
- He has killed all who were delightful in our eyes. (Lamentations 2:4)
- The Lord has afflicted her for the multitude of her transgressions. (Lamentations 1:5)
So how does the book end?
It ends with the only hope there is:
Cause us to return, O Lord, that we may return! (Lamentations 5:21)
That is my only hope — and your only hope!
Jesus said to Peter, “Simon, Simon, behold, Satan demanded to have you, that he might sift you like wheat, but I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned again, strengthen your brothers” (Luke 22:31–32).
Not if you return. But when you return. I have prayed for you! You will return. And when you do, it will be my sovereign grace that brought you back from the precipice of apostasy.
Christian, this is true for you. This is your only hope of perseverance in faith. Glory in it.
Christ Jesus is the one who . . . is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. (Romans 8:34)
He will cause us to return. Therefore, “to him who is able to keep you from stumbling . . . be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever” (Jude 1:24–25). Amen!