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Habukkuk

 

Memory verse: Hab 2:20 "But Jehovah is in his holy temple: let all the earth keep silence before him."


Wouldn't it be great to know all of the moves that other people are going to make before they make them? What if we could predict what the stock market was going to do in a few days or weeks? God give His faithful--the ones He repeatedly called "the remnant"--a "heads up" on what was coming with their neighbor, Chaldea (also known as Babylon) in the book of Habukkuk.

 

Habukkuk, from the Hebrew "to clasp," asks God in chapter one, "Why does evil go unpunished?" in verses 1-4. God's answer is that He is punishing evil and that Judah's punishment will come from Chaldea. (We think the date was about 607 B. C., just a few years before Judah would be carried off in stages of disintegration between 586 and 561 B. C.) Next Habukkuk asks "Why, God, will you use the more wicked to punish the less wicked?" (verses 1: 12-17). God's answer in chapter two seems twofold: (1) He has his reasons and (2) Chaldea will be punished soon also. Chaldea will be punished because he is greedy (2: 3 - 8), he is covetous (2: 9-11), he is cruel (2: 12 - 17). and Chaldea is idolatrous (2: 18 - 19). In surveying that God is going to discipline all under His mighty hand, Habukkuk begs "in wrath remember mercy" (chapter 3).

 

In reference to Habukkuk's second question--Why God would use the more wicked to punish the less wicked--we can also see an answer in the New Testament. The second chapter of II Peter goes on at great length to describe the great punishment backsliders will receive. Those who have been enlightened have a greater responsibility to hold firm than those who have never heard the good news. See also Luke 12:47, 48 "And that servant, who knew his lord's will, and made not ready, nor did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes; :48 but he that knew not, and did things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. And to whomsoever much is given, of him shall much be required: and to whom they commit much, of him will they ask the more." As we read the book of Habukkuk, we learn more of the personality of God.

 

The Remnant, then--those who were still faithful and were still listening to God's prophets--had an opportunity to knew where the punishment was going to come from, and to get out of its way--if they would only heed.

 


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