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What does it mean that the steadfast love of the Lord never ceases (Lamentations 3:22)?

steadfast love of the Lord never ceases

Believers can trust in the Lord God Almighty with every fiber of their being at every moment in time and in every circumstance because His faithful love never runs out or fails. Jeremiah remembers and declares this truth in Lamentations 3:22: “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end” (Lamentations 3:22, ESV).

Jeremiah speaks these words at a time when he and the people of Judah feel forsaken by God. Jerusalem is in ruins, and Jeremiah himself is suffering from a physical affliction. He compares his situation to that of a hopeless prisoner (Lamentations 3:7–9). But as he looks back on the experiences of his past, he suddenly remembers the steadfast, unceasing love of the Lord. This renewed revelation of God’s faithfulness changes everything for the prophet. Now he places his hope in the goodness and salvation of His God (Lamentations 3:22–39).

In Lamentations 3:22, the word for “steadfast love” in the original Hebrew (chesed) means “loyal love.” It incorporates God’s unfailing kindness, goodness, and mercy and is directly related to the faithfulness of His covenant. God’s love toward His covenant people can never be extinguished (Deuteronomy 7:9; Ezra 3:11; Daniel 9:4). He calls them “my treasured possession” (Exodus 19:5; Deuteronomy 7:6), and His love for them remains eternal (Psalm 136).

When our hearts struggle with fear, discouragement, loneliness, pain, or grief, reminding ourselves of the constancy of God’s love can be a tremendously encouraging game-changer. If our faith falters, we must remember God’s immovable, undying, steadfast love. “He will never abandon the godly. He will keep them safe forever,” declares the psalmist (Psalm 37:28, NLT). Even “if we are faithless,” explains the apostle Paul, “he remains faithful” (2 Timothy 2:13; see also Romans 3:3–4).

When we fall short of the mark by giving in to sin, the steadfast love of the Lord never ceases. He is faithful at such times to discipline and correct us (Psalm 119:75; Proverbs 3:12; Hebrews 12:6; Revelation 3:19). In His loyal love and compassion, He brings us to repentance and confession (Lamentations 3:39–41; Romans 2:4). When we repent and confess “he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness” (1 John 1:9, NLT).

Sometimes we think our sin drives a permanent wedge between God and us, but that is a lie Satan would tempt us to believe. The truth is found in this answer to Paul’s question: “Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? . . . No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us. And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:35–39, NLT).

The loyal love of the Lord is always with us. He is faithful to identify with us through suffering, testing, burdens, and problems. He is there to help us through them (Hebrews 2:17–18). As our “great High Priest,” He understands “our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same testings we do, yet he did not sin. So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most” (Hebrews 4:14–16, NLT). With every temptation, “God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it” (1 Corinthians 10:13).

Because of His steadfast love, the Lord is never too tired or busy to listen and help us. The God who calls us is faithful to complete the good work He started in us. He “will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns” (Philippians 1:6, NLT). “God will make this happen, for he who calls you is faithful,” states Paul (1 Thessalonians 5:23–24, NLT).

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases means He will fulfill His purpose for our lives (Psalm 138:8). He will safeguard us in this world and keep us into eternity (2 Thessalonians 3:3; Hebrews 10:23; Matthew 28:20; John 6:47; 10:27–28; 1 Thessalonians 5:10; 1 John 2:25).

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What does it mean that the steadfast love of the Lord never ceases (Lamentations 3:22)?
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This page last updated: November 8, 2022