Faithfulness in Crisis

KEY VERSE: “Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith.” —Habakkuk 2:4

SELECTED SCRIPTURE: Habakkuk 1:17; 2:14

THE PROPHET HABAKKUK struggled with faith when he saw God’s Law and justice violated by his own people, yet there was no divine intervention by the Lord. Approaching God in prayer, he asked why was such iniquity permitted to go on? (Hab. 1:1-4) Just imagine the prophet’s perplexity upon hearing God’s startling answer! He said, “I will work a work in your days, which ye will not believe, though it be told you.” (vs. 5) The Lord then revealed his intention to raise up the fierce, idolatrous Chaldeans—the Babylonians—as an instrument by which to punish Judah. Habakkuk questioned how a righteous God, one whose eyes are too pure to approve evil, could punish his own people by means of a nation that is even more corrupt.

The prophet then stood upon a watchtower to see what God would say to him, and what he would reply in return. (Hab.2:1) The Lord’s answer was not long in coming. He said, “Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.”—vss. 2,3

This vision given by the Lord describes for us and reveals the consummation of God’s plan of the ages. Further, his prophetic reply points to the end of the Gospel Age, as the time of fulfillment, the very day in which we are now living. And as he truly said, it would speak so plainly that some of God’s people would write it plainly on tables that the others might be enabled to read it clearly.

Surely God’s Holy Spirit has opened our minds to understand the words of the prophets more clearly, which show God’s great plan to bless the world.

The most important feature of the vision relates to Messiah, the ‘Seed’ of promise of the Abrahamic Covenant, who would come to set up his thousand year kingdom. Just as was implied in our Lord’s words, to some the vision has seemed to tarry, trying the faith of his people. But we have the Lord’s encouraging words, that though it seems to tarry, we are to wait for it, because it will surely come, it will not tarry.

“One day Jesus told his disciples a story to illustrate their need for constant prayer and to show them that they must keep praying until the answer comes. The question is: When I, the Messiah, return, how many will I find who have faith and are praying? Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?”—Luke 18:1,8, Living Bible

“Thy kingdom come” has been the prayer of Christians for nearly two thousand years. Because God’s due time to establish his kingdom is yet future this prayer has gone unanswered all these long centuries, resulting in many losing hope of ever seeing God’s kingdom set up upon earth, nor his will being done here as it is in heaven.

As an aid to increase our faith, the Lord gave us these words of encouragement by the mouth of Isaiah the prophet: “As the rain cometh down and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: so shall my Word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.”—Isa. 55:10,11

Dawn Bible Students Association
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