Summary: God doesn’t have a call-in radio show but He has given us His Word. This morning we are going to tune into a little book called Habakkuk and listen in on a conversation between God and a very frustrated prophet.
What’s Wrong with This Picture?
Pastor Jefferson M. Williams
First Baptist Chenoa
Caller, You’re on the Air
What if you could talk to God? I know prayer is talking to God. But what if God had a call-in radio show. What would you ask Him if you had the chance?
I put that question out on my FaceBook page and received a lot of questions:
Will we know our families in heaven?
Can they hear us?
Can I talk to my daddy just one more time?
Are we the only ones or is there life on other planets?
Have I done enough to hear “good and faithful servant?”
Here’s one of my favorites:
Do dogs go to heaven or are they just angels in fur suits?
But the majority of questions that people would ask started with two questions:
Why is there so much hate and pain in the world?
Why did my baby die?
Why did my grandpa get cancer?
Why does God allow evil?
Why do bad things happen to good people?
Why do hurricanes, tornados, and earthquakes happen?
How long do I have to live?
How long do I have to wait for a wife?
How long will it be before my son comes back?
How long will you be silent?
How long before you come back and set this mess right?
God doesn’t have a call-in radio show but He has given us His Word. This morning we are going to tune into a little book called Habakkuk and listen in on a conversation between God and a very frustrated prophet.
Turn in your Bibles to Habakkuk 1.
Since I started full time in September of last year, we have studied the Beatitudes, a handful of Old Testament heroes, participated in an Advent Conspiracy and walked verse by verse through the Lord’s Prayer. This morning, we begin our first book study. At FBC Chenoa, we believe that God’s Word is living and active. Paul wrote to one of his young pastors that he was mentoring:
“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16)
This little Old Testament book is full of gems and sounds like it was written yesterday. It is just 56 verses and takes less than 10 minutes to read. I think you are going to find it very helpful in your spiritual journey with Jesus.
Habakkuk is one of the minor prophets. This doesn’t mean he was under the age of eighteen or that he wasn’t very important. There are three major prophetic books, Jeremiah, Isaiah, and Ezekiel. These books are very long. Then there are twelve minor prophets. These books are smaller but no less important.
Habakkuk is found between Nahum and Zephaniah and was a contemporary of these two prophets and Jeremiah. We don’t know much about him. His name can mean to “embrace” or “to wrestle.” This is a great description of a prophet that wrestled with frustrating questions and embraced God’s love for him despite the answers. He was believed to be a temple musician. Chapter three is actually a song that he wrote.
Other than that, we really don’t know anything about him.
The structure of the book is very unique. Usually, God would speak to a prophet and then the prophet would declare to the people what God said. In Habakkuk, there is a series of dialogues between Habakkuk and God. Habakkuk asks a question and God answers. Habakkuk asks more questions and God answers. But the answers that God gives aren’t always what Habakkuk expected.
The theme of Habakkuk is that we can trust God even when we don’t understand what He’s doing.
Before we begin the study, I need to set the context for the book.
In I Samuel, the people ask the prophet Samuel and God for a king “like the other nations.” God calls this treason and rightly so. He was their leader but they wanted a king so He gave them Saul, who ended up being a huge disappointment. Then David ascended the throne. He was a man who experienced incredible moral failures but God still called him a “man after God’s heart.”
He desired to build a Temple but he had too much blood on his hands so it would be Solomon that would be build the Temple. This would be the zenith of Israel’s power. From there it was basically all downhill.
The nation was divided into the Northern kingdom, Israel, and the southern kingdom, Judah. God sent prophet after prophet to call the people back to Himself. But each king was more wicked than the next. The people abandoned God and worshipped idols.