2015-12-27 - Habakkuk
Habakkuk's Question for God
Verse 3: The other problem is one of the oldest. Why isn’t God judging the unrighteous? Why does He let the wicked get away with their sins and their violent behavior? What I find interesting about this is Habakkuk was viewing his world with this same question--in around 600 B.C. Dr. McGee made the following comments, which could be written today, back in the early 80’s:
“Habakkuk’s question fitted into the local situation of his day. People were getting by with sin, and God was seemingly doing nothing about it. His question was, Why doesn’t God judge the wicked? Why does God permit evil men and women to prosper? And isn’t that a good question in our day? I’m sure that many of God’s people have asked, “Why doesn’t God judge the evil in our nation today? Why does He permit the rich to get richer? And why is it that the average person is having to bear the burden of taxation and inflation? Why doesn’t God do something about it?” …
Unfortunately, sometimes the truth that God will eventually judge is not a comfort in the midst of the “violence.” But, I think it can be! How can this be the case? Why is God waiting? Because His goals are different than ours. We tend to be primarily concerned with the way a fallen world impacts us personally. God is more concerned with the fate of humanity at large. Peter put it this way:
“The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance” (2 Peter 3:9 ESV).
The answer to why is: Because God is loving, merciful and patient. But it takes maturity to accept this truth, and maturity comes through process. This is Habakkuk’s struggle. It’s a valid struggle. It is important to realize that asking “why?” isn’t wrong, in and of itself. Obviously this is the case, because God didn’t rebuke Habakkuk for asking. Instead, God answers Him.
To be continued.
All verses are from the English Standard Version (ESV) unless otherwise noted.