The Book of Habakkuk
Some Thoughts On God’s Control And Why Things Happen As They Do.
INTRODUCTION: We live in a world of more questions than answers. In fact, for every answer we find, it seems as if it brings with it two questions. We live in a world today in which information is growing exponentially. We can boot up our computers or push a few buttons on our cell phones, with the result of having at our disposal a universe of cyber technology and search engines that are aptly able to supply us with a hoard of information on any given topic. Yet with all of the information around us, we still have the same problem Habakkuk the prophet had, we don’t know why God does what He does, and why things happens the way they do.
Over the next few weeks, we will be asking the question “Is God in charge, and if so why do things happen the way they do?”
1. A DISTURBING TRAIT
a. We are filled with questions.
i. Just listen to a little child, and soon you will hear them ask, why or how come
ii. From our earliest activities, we are a people of questions.
b. We are filled with complainants
i. It seems that there is always something to complain about
10 TOP COMPLAINTS OF PEOPLE ON A HOLIDAY
1. A woman threatened to call police after claiming that she’d been locked in by staff. When in fact, she had mistaken the “do not disturb” sign on the back of the door as a warning to remain in the room.
2. “The beach was too sandy.”
3. “Topless sunbathing on the beach should be banned. The holiday was ruined as my husband spent all day looking at other women.”
4. “We bought ‘Ray-Ban’ sunglasses for five euros (£3.50) from a street trader, only to find out they were fake.”
5. “No-one told us there would be fish in the sea. The children were startled.”
6. “It took us nine hours to fly home from Jamaica to England it only took the Americans three hours to get home.”
7. “My fiancé and I booked a twin-bedded room but we were placed in a double-bedded room. We now hold you responsible for the fact that I find myself pregnant. This would not have happened if you had put us in the room that we booked.”
8. “We found the sand was not like the sand in the brochure. Your brochure shows the sand as yellow but it was white.”
9. It’s lazy of the local shopkeepers to close in the afternoons. I often needed to buy things during ’siesta’ time - this should be banned.”
10. “We booked an excursion to a water park but no-one told us we had to bring our swimming costumes and towels.”
ii. We complain about:
2. Slow lines in the market
3. Our feet
4. Our neighbors
c. Complaints and God
i. We complain in the wrong direction
ii. We talk ABOUT God
iii. We should talk TO God
iv. We complain ABOUT God
v. We should complain TO God
2. Habakkuk’s complaint to God
a. First, please see the Habakkuk is doing it the right way – he is taking is concern to God.
b. His concern is legit – How long do I have to keep asking for help?
i. He had waited for an answer
ii. The situation had troubled him for a long time.
WHAT WE HAVE HERE IS AN ATTEMPT TO APPLY HUMAN THINKING TO DIVINE ACTIVITY
ü We think that when we say something, we should get a response.
ü We do not like it when people do not respond to us.
ü God is sovereign, so God is not bound by anything that dictates His response to our request.
c. Habakkuk’s concern is for VIOLENCE and INJUSTICE
i. Violence has overcome the nation of Judah
1. The word means to have violated the moral law to the point where it now injures a fellow man
2. The nation of Judah had forsaken their covenant with God.
3. Habakkuk was now living in the midst of a people without moral values and He wants to know If God is going to do something about it.
ii. The law of God has become paralyzed
1. It is numb
2. It is ineffective
3. When the law of God is circumvented there is no justice
a. The word perverted means to be bent out of shape
b. Standards are gone.
c. Mercy is replaced with favoritism.
d. Offenses are judged through the veil of our sin nature rather than the absolute of God’s Word.
3. God’s answer to Habakkuk – His unexpected answer
Habakkuk thought God had not heard, God had just not ANSWERED yet!
a. God commands Habakkuk to look
i. God has to tell the prophet because he did not, or could not see what God was doing under his nose.
ii. He says, “LOOK”
iii. It is imperative
iv. God is not asking, God is telling
Now let me ask you a question, why is it so difficult to see what God is doing?
ü We do not want to see
ü We cannot see
ü We ignore what we are seeing
v. Even God’s prophet could not see what God was doing.
vi. Sometimes it takes effort to see the plan of God in the midst of turmoil, BUT God is still working! AMEN?
b. God tells Habakkuk where to look
i. To the nations
ii. God work can be clearly seen
c. God tells Habakkuk when to look
i. “utterly amazed”
ii. God is going to work soon
iii. God is going to work in the lifetime of Habakkuk
GOD HAS AN INSTRUMENT – THE BABYLONIANS
GOD HAS DETERMINED TO DEAL WITH JUDAH FOR BREAKING THE COVENANT
4. The plight of the believer
a. The morals of America are slipping
b. We have become to self-centered for our own good
c. We have forgotten the lessons of the past.
i. We try to gather more manna than we should
ii. We refuse to give our lives even the hint of a Sabbath, let alone the rest of our activities.
iii. We toil for the wrong things
d. We have a country today that “hems in the righteous” – silences the follower of Christ.
e. We live in a country that has inflated a false sense of security, and the house that it has built is a house of cards.
i. We have foreclosed on our houses.
ii. We will repossess our cars
iii. We are bankrupting our economy
iv. We are taxing our future
v. We have chilled our relationship with God’s special people and embraced those who would do her harm.
July 16, 2009...1:49 am
EUPHRATES RIVER DRYING UP: New York Times notes connection to Book of Revelation and the End Times
YOU and I need to LOOK!
GOD is working in our midst!
What HE brings upon us will be in our lifetime, and it will be far more horrific than what God revealed to Habakkuk.
God is in charge, and He is doing things His way.
Just because He has not answered you, does not mean He has not heard you.
Look around you and see where God is working. Look around you and see what God is doing. Look inside you and respond to what God has placed on your heart. Look outside you and respond to the burden God has placed on your church.
God has heard you and God is and will answer.