1 The burden which Habakkuk the prophet saw. 2 O LORD, how long will I cry, and you will not hear! I cry out to you of violence, and you will not save! 3 Why do you show me evil, and cause me to behold toil? For destruction and violence are before me: and those that cause strife and contention. 4 Therefore the law is ignored, and justice is never upheld: for the wicked surround the righteous; so wrong judgment proceeds.
- Habakkuk’s name means ‘loves embrace.’
- Jeremiah 31:3 The LORD has appeared of old to me, saying, Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love: therefore with loving kindness have I drawn you.
God works marvelously in disaster
5 Look among the heathen, and regard, and wonder marvelously: for I will work a work in your days that you would not believe if you were told. 6 For, behold, I am raising up the Chaldeans, that bitter and hasty nation, who will march through the breadth of the land, to possess the dwelling places that are not theirs. 7 They are terrible and dreadful: from them will proceed the judgment of some, and the captivity of others. 8 Their horses are swifter than the leopards, and are more fierce than the evening wolves: and their horsemen will prance, and their horsemen will come from far off; they will fly as the eagle that swoops to devour. 9 They all come for violence: the opposition of their faces is toward the east wind, and they will gather captives as the sand. 10 And they will scoff at the kings, and the princes will be a scorn to them: they will laugh at every fortress; for they will heap dust and capture it. 11 They will sweep through like the wind and change his mind. He will be deeply guilty, crediting his power to his god.
- ‘Heathen’ are the peoples of earth that have turned their backs on their Maker.
- The Chaldeans made ramps of earth to get into the walled cities and fortifications.
- God told Habakkuk before the invasion exactly what would happen.
- God is sovereign over all life, every thing that happens.
- He brought violence on the violent and protected those who humbled themselves before their Maker.
- Galatians 6:7 Do not be deceived; God is not mocked: for whatever a man sows, that he will reap.
- Matthew 7:12 Therefore all things that you would have men do to you, you do that to them: for this is the law and the prophets.
12 Are you not from everlasting, O LORD my God, my Holy One? We will not die. O LORD, you have ordained them for judgment; and, O Rock, you have established them for correction. 13 You are of purer eyes than to behold evil, and cannot look on iniquity: why do you look on those that deal treacherously, and hold your tongue when the wicked devour the man that is more righteous than he?
- This passage would seem to be contradiction that God’s eyes are too pure to behold evil since God sees all things.
- He sees evil but He doesn’t approve or bless it, He judges it.
- Proverbs 15:3 The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.
14 And make men as the fishes of the sea, as the creeping things, that have no ruler over them? 15 They take up all of them with the angle, they catch them in their net, and gather them in their drag: therefore they rejoice and are glad. 16 Therefore they sacrifice to their net, and burn incense to their drag; because by them their portion is fat, and their food plentiful. 17 Will they empty their net, and not spare to slay the nations continually?
The earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord as the waters cover the sea
1 I will stand on my guard post, set myself on the tower, and will watch to see what he will say to me, and what I will answer when I am reproved. 2 And the LORD answered me and said, Write the vision, Carve it on tablets so that he may run that reads it. 3 For the vision is still for an appointed time, but at the end it will speak, and not lie: though it delays, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not delay. 4 Behold, his soul is lifted up that is not upright in him: but the just will live by his faith.
- God made all things.
- He made time and a time for every purpose under heaven.
- Ecclesiastes 3:1 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.
- Hebrews 11:6 without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that comes to God must believe that he is, and that he rewards those that diligently seek him.
- Romans 10:17 faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
5 Yes also, because he transgresses by wine, he is a proud man, neither stays at home, who enlarges his desire as hell, and as death, and cannot be satisfied, but gathers to himself all nations, and heaps to himself all people: 6 Will not all these take up a parable against him, and a taunting proverb against him, and say, Cries of grief to him that increases that which is not his! How long? And to him that loads himself with heavy loans! 7 Will not your creditors rise up suddenly, and those who collect from you awaken and you will be plunder to them? 8 Because you have plundered many nations, all the remnant of the people will plunder you; because of men’s blood, and for the violence of the land, of the city, and all that dwell in it. 9 Cries of grief to him that covets an evil covetousness to his house that he may set his nest on high; that he may be delivered from the power of evil! 10 You have counseled shame to your house by cutting off many people, and have sinned against your soul. 11 For the stone will cry out of the wall, and the beam out of the timber will witness against it.
- Covetousness is idolatry.
- Colossians 3:5 Mortify therefore your members which are on the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry.
12 Cries of grief to him that builds a town with blood, and establishes a city by iniquity! 13 Behold, is it not from the LORD of hosts that the people will labor in the very fire, and the people will weary themselves for every vanity? 14 For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD as the waters cover the sea.
- 3/4 of planet earth is covered by the seas.
- It is a waste of time to pursue anything but God.
- Everything else will come to nothing in the end.
- Ezekiel 1 describes the visible glory of the Almighty God.
- Ezekiel 1:26 And above the firmament that was over their heads was the likeness of a throne, as the appearance of a sapphire stone: and on the throne was the likeness of a man above upon it. 27 And I saw as the color of amber, as the appearance of fire round about within it, from his loins upward, and from his loins downward, I saw the appearance of fire, and it had brightness round about. 28 As the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud in the day of rain was the appearance of the brightness round about. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD.
15 Cries of grief to him that gives his neighbor drinks, that puts your bottle to him, and makes him drunk that you may look on their nakedness! 16 You are filled with shame for glory: you drink also, and let your foreskin be uncovered: the cup of the Lord’s right hand will be turned to you, and shameful spewing will be on your glory. 17 For the violence of Lebanon will cover you, and the destructions of beasts by which you made them afraid, because of men’s blood, and for the violence of the land, of the city, and of all that dwell in it.
- Pornography is not new. Ancient carvings are explicit.
- Violence was a part of the orgies in the heathen cult practices.
- When people put sex above God they become perverse.
- Violence becomes a part of pleasure when the heart becomes hardened and cannot properly feel.
- God made sex. He promises satisfaction in all areas of life.
- Psalm 84:11 For the LORD God is a sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from those that walk uprightly.
18 What does the carved image profit its maker who carved it; the molten image, and a teacher of lies that the maker of his work trusts in it, to make dumb idols? 19 Cries of grief to him that says to the wood, Awake; to the dumb stone, Arise, it will teach! Behold, it is overlaid with gold and silver, and there is no breath at all in the midst of it. 20 But the LORD is in his holy temple: be silent all the earth before him.
- Psalm 96:5 For all the gods of the nations are idols: but the LORD made the heavens.
God’s glory covers the heavens; the earth is filled with His praise
1 A prayer of Habakkuk the prophet on Shigionoth. 2 O LORD, I heard your report and was afraid: O LORD, keep alive your work in the midst of the years, in the midst of the years make known; in wrath remember mercy. 3 God came from Teman, and the Holy One from mount Paran. Selah. His glory covered the heavens, and the earth was full of his praise. 4 And his brightness was as the light; he had bright beams/horns of light out of his side: and there was the hiding of his power.
- ‘LORD’ means the self-existent sustainer and controller of all things.
- His side was pierced for us.
- The glory of His love shows in this.
- 1 John 1:5 tells us that God is light.
His ways are everlasting
5 Before him went the pestilence, and burning diseases went out at his feet. 6 He stood, and measured the earth: he looked and shook the nations; and the everlasting mountains were scattered, the perpetual hills bowed: His ways are everlasting. 7 I saw the tents of Cushan in affliction: the curtains of the land of Midian trembled. 8 Was the LORD displeased against the rivers? Was your anger against the rivers? Was your wrath against the sea that you rode on your horses and your chariots of salvation? 9 Your bow was made quite naked, according to the oaths of the tribes, even your word. Selah/rest on it. You split the earth with rivers. 10 The mountains saw you and they trembled: the overflowing of the water passed by: the deep uttered his voice, and lifted up his hands on high. 11 The sun and moon stood still in their habitation: at the light of your arrows they went, and at the shining of your glittering spear.
- God’s arrows are like lightning.
- 2Samuel 22:15 And he sent out arrows, and scattered them; lightning, and defeated them.
- Zechariah 9:14 And the LORD will be seen over them, and his arrow will go forth as the lightning…
12 You marched through the land in indignation, you threshed the heathen in anger. 13 You went out for the salvation of your people, even for salvation with your anointed; you wounded the head out of the house of the wicked, by laying him open from thigh to the neck. Selah/rest on it. 14 You pierced with his own spear the head of his villages: they were tempestuous as a whirlwind to scatter me: their rejoicing was to devour the poor secretly.
- The heathen are those nations on earth that have turned their back on their Maker.
- The delight of these people was to secretly destroy people and take what belonged to them.
- Remember that God’s answer to Habakkuk’s distress over the injustice and violence in Israel was to bring the Chaldeans against Israel.
- After the discipline was finished God was going to give the Chaldeans to reap what they sowed also.
15 You walked through the sea with your horses, through the heap of great waters. 16 When I heard, my belly trembled; my lips quivered at the voice: rottenness entered into my bones, and I trembled in myself, that I might rest in the day of trouble: when he comes up to the people, he will cut them in pieces with his troops. 17 Although the fig tree will not blossom, neither will fruit be in the vines; the labor of the olive will fail, and the fields will yield no food; the flock will be cut off from the fold, and there will be no herd in the stalls: 18 Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation. 19 The LORD God is my strength, and he will make my feet like hinds’ feet, and he will make me to walk on my high places. To the chief singer on my stringed instruments.
- A hind was a female hart, similar to a deer, possibly extinct.
- God has a place for us that is high.
- He will bring us to walk there if we follow Him by learning His word.
- If we are not learning His word, then evil holds us
- Satan is busier in churches today than in the world.
- He has the world where he wants it.
- He knows the power of God’s word and cannot stand
before that power, so he deceives, twists, and distracts God’s people from His word.
- f all of God’s people listened to and obeyed all that is in God’s Word, we would all be one in Him, walking our high places.
- We, like Habakkuk, can rejoice in the worst circumstances because the Maker of heaven and earth is with us and keeps us safe.
- He is working out His high and holy purposes.
- Nehemiah 8:10 …the joy of the LORD is your strength.
- Psalm 34:7 The angel of the LORD camps around them that fear him, and delivers them.
- John 10:28 And I give to them eternal life; and they will never perish, neither will any man pluck them out of my hand.
- Deuteronomy 32:4 He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he.
SUMMARY: Habakkuk 1-3
- God works marvelously in disaster
- The earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord as the waters cover the sea
- God’s glory covers the heavens; the earth is filled with His praise
- His ways are everlasting