Summary: This is the third sermon in a series on the Book of Habakkuk. In this sermon we look at how God moves us to pray, and how when we do pray, we have to align our will with the Lord's
Habakkuk (Pt. 3)
Text: Habakkuk 1:12 – 2:1
Well if you’ve been with us the last few weeks you know that we’ve been looking at the Book of Habakkuk, and we’ve been talking about how this man – Habakkuk… who was a profit in Judah, was burdened by the sin he was seeing around him. He began praying, and seeking God, and for a time, God seemed silent and distant… and that was a burden to Habakkuk as well… but he continued to pray and seek the Lord, and finally God answered him. But it wasn’t the answer Habakkuk was looking for. Instead of revival, God has told him that His intention is to raise up the Chaldeans and use them as His instrument of judgment upon Judah. And Habakkuk’s initial response to this was shock, and confusion. Because it didn’t fit into his idea of what God was like. He couldn’t understand how God could judge His people – who were sinful… with people who were actually MORE sinful than God’s people. And that brings us to where we are this morning… So let’s take our Bibles, and open them up to Habakkuk chapter 1 and we’re going to begin in verse 12, and read all the way to chapter 2, verse 4.
So this is interesting… and it’s helpful to us as well… because here we have this guy Habakkuk and he’s just been floored with this vision that God has given to him, and like I said, he’s shocked and confused, but look at what he does… in verse 12 he says, “God is everlasting… God is holy… He is our rock.” Basically what Habakkuk is doing here is encouraging himself in the Lord. He’s encouraging himself by reminding himself of God’s character. He’s basically at this point where he’s thinking… “Ok, this sounds crazy. This sounds bad… but I know God. I know that He’s eternal. He’s everlasting. He’s Immutable – that means He’s unchanging. He’s the same yesterday, today, and forever. He’s eternal… no beginning and no end.” And what that means is that God is bigger than my understanding. He declares the end from the beginning. And if God is bringing this about, there’s a bigger purpose here than I understand. There’s more to it than I can see. God’s been here way longer than I have, and He’ll be here way after I’m gone.
And to us who are believers, knowing that God is eternal, and knowing that God is everlasting, should be an encouragement to us. To know that God saw you before you were born. He sees your life, every instant, every event… He sees your struggles and He sees your successes. He sees your death. He’s already seen it. He knows what’s ahead for each and every one of us. So nothing takes Him by surprise. Nothing happens without Him knowing it, and in a sense allowing it. And in this instance with Habakkuk… God is actually the One who is bringing it to pass. God Himself is the One who said, “I will raise up the Chaldeans.” And so Habakkuk is saying, “Ok… if God is doing this, then He’s got a plan and a purpose for it.”
And then notice, Habakkuk moves on from the eternity of God to God’s holiness. He says, “God, you’re not only everlasting, you’re Holy.” And if you go down to verse 13 Habakkuk even says, “God you’re so holy you can’t even look upon evil… you can’t even look upon wrong.” And this is important to understand here, because what Habakkuk is telling us is that God cannot look upon sin in an approving way. He cannot look upon, and legislate, and approve of sin in any shape, or form, or fashion, or in ANY WAY. Make sure you get that! People try to rationalize their sin all the time. They have sex before marriage. They get divorces. They lie. They Steal. They slander and gossip. They engage in all kinds of sinful behavior… or should I say, “WE” engage in all kinds of sinful behavior. And you’ll hear things like: “I know that the Bible says this is wrong, but I know that God wants me to be happy, so He’s got to make an exception for me in this.”
GOD CANNOT, AND WILL NOT APPROVE OF SIN!
So Habakkuk is running this stuff through his head. He’s going over what he knows about God, and about God’s attributes and God’s character. And he says, “Wait a minute… we’re not going to die.” So he gets it… he’s like – “This judgment isn’t to wipe God’s people from the face of the earth.” Now don’t misunderstand. IT IS a judgment, and it’s going to be bad, but it’s not to destroy God’s people from the face of the earth.