by Christina Farris
1 The burden which Habakkuk the prophet did see.
2 O LORD, how long shall I cry, and thou wilt not hear! even cry out unto thee of violence, and thou wilt not save!
3 Why dost thou shew me iniquity, and cause me to behold grievance? for spoiling and violence are before me: and there are that raise up strife and contention.
4 Therefore the law is slacked, and judgment doth never go forth: for the wicked doth compass about the righteous; therefore wrong judgment proceedeth.
5 Behold ye among the heathen, and regard, and wonder marvellously: for I will work a work in your days, which ye will not believe, though it be told you.
6 For, lo, I raise up the Chaldeans, that bitter and hasty nation, which shall march through the breadth of the land, to possess the dwellingplaces that are not theirs.
7 They are terrible and dreadful: their judgment and their dignity shall proceed of themselves.
8 Their horses also are swifter than the leopards, and are more fierce than the evening wolves: and their horsemen shall spread themselves, and their horsemen shall come from far; they shall fly as the eagle that hasteth to eat.
9 They shall come all for violence: their faces shall sup up as the east wind, and they shall gather the captivity as the sand.
10 And they shall scoff at the kings, and the princes shall be a scorn unto them: they shall deride every strong hold; for they shall heap dust, and take it.
11 Then shall his mind change, and he shall pass over, and offend, imputing this his power unto his god.
12 Art thou not from everlasting, O LORD my God, mine Holy One? we shall not die. O LORD, thou hast ordained them for judgment; and, O mighty God, thou hast established them for correction.
13 Thou art of purer eyes than to behold evil, and canst not look on iniquity: wherefore lookest thou upon them that deal treacherously, and holdest thy tongue when the wicked devoureth the man that is more righteous than he?
14 And makest 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 unto their net, and burn incense unto their drag; because by them their portion is fat, and their meat plenteous.
17 Shall they therefore empty their net, and not spare continually to slay the nations?Not enough is known about the Prophet Habakkuk beyond the fact his prophecy is before and during the rise of the Babylonian Empire and when they march through Israel taking them into exile. He is said to have died before the return. Interesting thing about Habakkuk history he is said to be the son of the Shumamnite woman that feed Elijah. Yet that history is unclear. He is also a minor prophet and perhaps even sent forth from Prophet Isaiah. Yet the book of Habakkuk is a book about what Habbakkuk did see in the vision God gave him. Something about vision or foreknowledge is there a reason for the foreknowledge. Foreknowledge can be based on a seeable future based on what is happening around Israel at the time of Caldeans rising up into the Babylonian Empire. We have to be careful and imply the possible of historical news with what God speaks of hope to the prophet Habakkuk. What is hope and what is destruction. What is the hope that is seen during the time of Habakkuk before the fall of Israel. One can classify prophecy into to groups fear of the prophet and what he must speak of what is coming and what might come if change does not happen in the land of Israel, and what is the hope and faith. A vision from God is more then all three things, because it speaks of what God says is going to happen. There are things that are foretell that are not necessarily prophetic in our lives, we need to know the difference. A prophetic dream or vision can be a warning, of what will happen if one does not make changes in one's situation. Meaning if changes made it will not occur or if it occurs it effected more then just you, but God can give you hope in the time of trouble that common to all.
If I prophesied the flu was coming who would believe me, everyone that know winter has come and germs and such are spread to each other more freely. Now if I say I had a vision or a dream that came to pass, some would say what is the dream, the date did it happen and how do you know it was a vision from God. It is seeing a person before event that you never meet prophetic perhaps. Cornelius was such a man to Peter as well as the Macedonian man to Paul. Yet to see the probably of event foretold is seen when men from Joppa came to get Peter. The point being prophecy comes without foreknowledge and even knowledge. Yet it must be define as such.
Habakkuk had a vision but his vision could of been seen as things he seen occurring in the world around him in other countries or things he heard. Even though it would not be a long time off from when it would occur in Israel we have to ask how would one know the vision to be true. Noah preach for 100 years of a flood coming. No one believed him. Was the flood seeable, probably not. Were there signs of rain was coming in quanity, probably not. Habakkuk vision from God was going to people that might of doubted his words or could see events coming but felt God had no authority in the situation or revelancy to the situation. If something seems prophetic one might question is it based on news articles, and some would say yes, but others might say no. What did a person see before something was written and what about after. Was someone reading what happened and what commentary was being written. Which is news which is of God. Total confusion. That why I think God blesses people with both types of prophecy of long distance and short distance prophecy. Long distance prophecy in scripture is over four hundred years old and the time of Abraham and the prophecy of Christ coming. Habakkuk prophecy was in a reasonable amount of time before the event to be prophetic as foreknowledge but not necessarily the full range of Habakkuk life time.
God gave Habakkuk a vision that was burden to him. A vision of doom and destruction to Israel. One that had hope contained within the vision. And yet definite prophecy of doom is probably what would make him unpopular in Israel and to a people not willing to hear what God had laid on Habakkuk heart and soul to preach. It was never easy for any prophet to preach doom and destruction. No minister and no preacher wants to talk about hell fire and brimstone. Some might say why do so. Will if the wrath of God is never spoken the idea of wrath of God is not understood as punishment upon a people. Yet God does not always remove his people from his wrath or judgment on a nation. Sometimes exile comes to godly people who could not escape from what was coming or stayed to help in times of difficulty.
Habakkuk sees because sins of Israel the destruction of Israel. The sin of wickness on the children of Israel. The destruction of Israel was more then sexual immorality, but all kind of evil from the palace to the common people. Trickery, deceit and corruption in the world of Israel because they refuse to obey God and follow him. A form of lawlessness had a risen in Israel. Why not look at our own government and wonder will our laws win or will corruption. Yet we know God will always win against evil, even if the time is not now.
Something else to grasp is Israel had not thought themselves to be defeatable. They only see themselves as a power not to be reckon with. Now the doom of Israel is being prophecied, and the doom because of sin. Doom of Caldeans marching through Israel and taking captives. This would be the Lord's doing. For the Lord would allow destruction for correction, of Israel as well as one day correction for Babylon. It would come to pass with destruction of both people.
Some people would say they never thought the wall of Germany would fall, or the fall of Russia and China. Yet China and Russia are still consider super powers despite their falls. Babylon would send Israel back with wealth to their homeland. We need to understand that with any change does not mean a fall is forever. A rise can come from a fall that no one ever foreseen. Human mind could not fathom. In fact Habakkuk call of repentance was not understood until destruction began and still repentance did not come for some.
Where are you when prophecy of destruction is told, before or after. Are you willing to hear the call of God when it is of his wrath as well as his hope. Can we stand with His wrath as well as his hope. That was called to Israel. To repent on their knees and stand with judgment of punishment came. To hold their heads high and turn from their wickness and trust in God. To announce God's judgment was true because of their sin.
Dear Heavenly Father, help us to know judgment is for a purpose as well as for hope. That what you say will happen will be because you said so. In Jesus precious name, Amen.
Continual Scripture Study for Devotion:
Revelation 15:3-4 KJV