Summary: Was this prophecy of old searching forward to our day. Are we about to see Gods Word brought to bear both in America and in the Middle East.
Turn with me in your Bibles: Habakkuk 1 AND just put your finger there.
The Title for this morning’s message is - Habakkuk, America, and the middle east.
Habakkuk is one of the books of the bible that are referred to as the minor prophets, not because of their importance but rather the length or time period over which the prophecy unfolded as opposed say to Jeremiah which is ___ Chapters long.
Lets begin this morning with a little history: The prophecy comes between 609–598 BC. (11 Yr. window)
The reasoning for this date is that during his reign that the Babylonians were growing in power.
• The Babylonians marched against Jerusalem in 598.
• The subject of this prophecy is the impending destruction of Judea and Jerusalem for the sins of the people, by way of a national calamities. This is 1 major way God deals w/ nations calamity.
It would come about by the hand of the Chaldean or Babylonian people. Todays Iraq and Iran.
• The servant of the Lord was deeply afflicted by seeing ungodliness and violence prevail; especially among those who profess the truth
• That’s should be the norm of a true believer –Noah, Lot, David, Jeremiah, John the Baptist.
Habakkuk’s cry to Judah and Jerusalem was meant so they would notice the calamity among the nations by the Chaldean people, and they were to consider themselves a nation about to be scourged by them.
God uses the wicked to chasten the wayard! Pharoah, Nebuchadnezzer are just 2 examples of that.
But its clear from History that they didn’t heed the prophets warning:
Because most of Judah and Jerusalem presume on continued prosperity, or that calamities would not come in their days. (Sound at all familiar)
Jeremiah points that out in Jeremiah 5:21 Hear this, you foolish and senseless people, who have eyes but do not see, who have ears but do not hear:
The Psalmist repeats that in Psa. 135:16-17 ; They have eyes, but they do not see; They have ears, but they do not hear.
In Mark 8:18 Jesus even shows that this can be among those that follow him, a slowness to hear or understand. - Do you have eyes but fail to see, and ears but fail to hear? And don't you remember?
As in the days when Lot dwelled in Sodom with his family – The stench of the peoples sin had come up before God, as a testimony against them.
Just scant years earlier the prophet Jeremiah began to call out the imminent destruction of Judah and Jerusalem.
Jeremiah 51:9b ( National accumulation of sin, or sinfulness)
for her judgment reaches to the skies, it rises as high as the heavens.'
Rev. 18:5 for her sins are piled up to heaven, and God has remembered her crimes.
It’s not only individuals, but whole nations that will stand in judgment one day before the Lord.
• Before we get into the heart of this mornings text and message let me just share one passage of scripture that shows specific gross sins that God says he will judge a nation for.
20 “‘Do not have sexual relations with your neighbor’s wife and defile yourself with her. ( Adultery)
21 “‘Do not give any of your children to be sacrificed to Moleck, for you must not profane the name of your God. I am the Lord. ( pedofilia, child porn, abortion)
22 “‘Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable. ( homosexuality)
23 “‘Do not have sexual relations with an animal and defile yourself with it. A woman must not present herself to an animal to have sexual relations with it; that is a perversion. ( Beastiality)
HERE IS HOW GOD SAID HE DEALT WITH THE NATIONS)
24 “‘Do not defile yourselves in any of these ways, because this is how the nations that I am going to drive out before you became defiled. 25 Even the land was defiled; so I punished it for its sin, and the land vomited out its inhabitants.
Habakkuk is an interesting book – The first two chapters is a dialogue between the prophet & Yahweh.
• But the 3rd chapter interjects a critical theme, because while we may live in an increasingly corrupt nation we are still individuals and we will stand before God as individuals.
Hence a key theme makes its way into the book in Chapter 3 “ The Just shall live by faith.”
• There, after pronouncing the impending judgment and destruction on the land by God the prophet utters a profound truth, that even though the nation will be judged he will trust and believes God for the end result.
16 I heard and my heart pounded, my lips quivered at the sound; decay crept into my bones, and my legs trembled. Yet I will wait patiently for the day of calamity to come on the nation invading us.17 Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, 18 yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior.