TO CHEW ON: "Behold the proud,
His soul is not upright in him;
But the just shall live by his faith." Habakkuk 2:4
Yesterday we left Habakkuk voicing his frustration with God's apparent inaction. He tries to goad God to act by pointing out things He shouldn't be tolerating: sin, the rise to power of evil leaders. Today we have God's reply. I wonder if Habakkuk wasn't just a little disappointed in it. For God didn't give a direct answer to a single concern Habakkuk raised. Instead He said, in effect, trust. Live by faith (Habakkuk 2:4).
Of course we know it isn't faith that is the real answer. We can have faith in all kinds of things that aren't faith-worthy. The godless Babylonians of Habakkuk's days had faith too — in their methods of warfare and in their idols.
The faith that Habakkuk was to live by was faith in God, which encompassed believing that He was who He said He was, and could and would ultimately align things on earth with His character.
Two additional verses in this chapter help to flesh out what faith in God was and is all about:
"For the earth will be filled
With the knowledge of the glory of the Lord,
As the waters cover the sea" - Habakkuk 2:14
This verse tells us that someday God's presence, invading every crack and cranny of Earth will crowd out injustice, sickness, disaster of every kind. For light and darkness can't coexist. When the earth is filled with the knowledge of God's glory, the source of all Habakkuk's and our why questions will be overcome by God's light.
"But the Lord is in His holy temple.
Let all the earth keep silence before Him" - Habakkuk 2:20
This verse comes after Habakkuk's description of someone worshiping man-made gods; idols. It tells us that God will outlast any and every other thing which we worship and in which we trust.
So, instead of dwelling on the why questions we asked yesterday, let's take the answer Habakkuk got and apply it to our own lives. Let's live by faith, but faith in not just anything, but in the God of the Bible who outlasts all other gods and has promised to someday illuminate every why with the light of His presence.
PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for this deep, rich answer to my dilemmas. It puts the ball back in my court: will I trust You even when I can't see? Help me to do that today. Amen.
Unless otherwise noted all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.