Are you listening?
Scripture reading for September 22nd: Habakkuk 1-3
“How long, O Lord, must I call for help, but you do not listen? Or cry out to you, “Violence!” but you do not save? Why do you make me look at injustice? Why do you tolerate wrong? Destruction and violence are before me; there is strife, and conflict abounds.” Habakkuk 1:2-3
Have you asked God for answers, but wondered if He was listening or ignoring your cry? Habakkuk found himself in such a position. He was called to speak to God’s people on behalf of God but his words went unheeded by the people. He began to question God and He was silent. God always hears His people but sometimes is slower to respond than we would like. Sometimes, His response brings more questions!
In this case, God told Habakkuk how He was going to raise up the Babylonians and use them to sweep over the land and destroy it. (Habakkuk 1:6-11) These people were a law unto themselves and they were bent on violence. They were guilty men whose strength was their god. They were ruthless and impetuous and cruel. Habakkuk was perplexed that a God who was holy could use something as vile and lawless as the Babylonians.
God answered Habakkuk’s complaint. His answer spoke of the time of the end and would prove true. (Habakkuk 2:2-3) Babylon was full of pride and evil desires, but God used them to chastise His people for a season. In the end, Babylon would be punished. God’s people were to deal with these revelations with a simple truth: “the righteous will live by his faith.” Habakkuk 2:4
God’s ways are always righteous and just. His people must learn to trust Him and live by faith in who He is! We please God only when we live by faith! (Hebrews 11:6) God promised Habakkuk that He would judge the wicked and bring woe to those who live for themselves. He also promised to fill the earth with His glory! (Habakkuk 2:14)
Habakkuk ended his book with a prayer and a psalm. It’s a great short prayer for revival, asking God to renew His works. (Habakkuk 3:2) The psalm tells of the splendor of the Lord as He comes to judge the earth and deliver His people. Habakkuk was prepared to wait on God in faith, no matter what would happen! Are you living by faith today?