Be aware of this situation (Bar 2:16-2:18)

“O Lord!

Look down

From your holy dwelling!

Consider us!

Incline your ear!

O Lord!

Hear!

Open your eyes!

O Lord!

See!

The dead

Who are in Hades,

Whose spirit

Has been taken

From their bodies,

Will not ascribe glory

To the Lord.

They will not ascribe justice

To the Lord.

But the person

Who is deeply grieved,

Who walks bent over

Who is feeble,

Who has failing eyes,

That person

Will declare

Your glory.

They will declare

Your righteousness.

O Lord!”

This prayer of Baruch continues by asking God to look down from his heavenly holy dwelling. He should consider their situation. God should incline his ear and listen. He should open his eyes and see. The dead in Hades or Sheol have no spirit. They cannot give glory or justice to the Lord. On the other hand, those who are still living, but grieving, bent over, and feeble with poor eye sight can still declare the glory and righteousness of the Lord. Thus it is better to be alive and weak than dead.

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The petition to the Father (Isa 63:15-63:16)

“Look down from heaven!

See!

From your holy habitation!

See!

From your glorious habitation!

Where is your zeal?

Where is your might?

Where is the yearning of your heart?

Where is your compassion?

They are withheld from me.

You are our Father.

Abraham does not know us.

Israel does not acknowledge us.

You!

Yahweh!

Are our Father!

Our Redeemer!

From of old is your name.”

The prophet wants to remind Yahweh, who is in his holy glorious heavenly dwelling, to look down on him. He questions him about his zeal and might as well as his heart and compassion. Why was Yahweh holding back from him? Yahweh was his father, even though Abraham and Jacob/Israel would not know and acknowledge him. Yahweh was his father and redeemer from the good old days.

Look down on your land (Ps 80:14-80:18)

“Turn again!

O God of hosts!

Look down from heaven!

See!

Have regard for this vine!

Your right hand planted this stock.

They have burned it with fire.

They have cut it down.

May they perish

At the rebuke of your countenance!

But let your hand be

Upon the one at your right hand,

The one whom you made strong for yourself.

Then we will never turn back from you.

Give us life!

We will call on your name!”

Ther psalmist wanted God to look down and see what was happening. He wanted God to see that his planted vine was being burned and cut down. He wanted the rebuke of those who were doing this. He wanted the hand of God be upon those who were strong for God. They would never turn back from God. If they had life they would always call on the name of God.