When, Lord, When?

Author: Mike HurleyPosted on: January 10, 2020

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When, Lord, When?

Ever heard of Habakkuk? This book of the Bible is rarely preached on or even discussed, which is a shame because it’s a fantastic gem in Scripture. Like the other eleven minor prophets, the book of Habakkuk provides a snapshot of Israel’s history, one that not only reveals God’s plan but also relates to us today. Habakkuk, the titular prophet of this book, prays a prayer everyone has uttered at some point: “How long, Lord, must I call for help?” (Habakkuk 1:2). Simple. Direct. Clear. Lord, we’re in trouble here. When are You going to step in and help Your people? God answers, but not how Habakkuk wanted. God raises up the Chaldeans, the ultimate fighting machine, to invade Judah and imprison the Israelites living there. Huh? How is that an answer to Habakkuk’s prayer? He wanted an end to the pain, and yet it looked like God was going to make the situation worse. Enslavement by the mighty Chaldeans seemed the unlikeliest solution of all. What Habakkuk didn’t know was that the Chaldeans were merely an object in God’s plan to save His people. Flash forward six hundred years. Israel is awaiting a Messiah, one who would deliver them from their suffering. At that time, the Romans enslaved them. So the Israelites wanted a mighty warrior, the ultimate fighting machine who would propel them to victory. Instead, they received Jesus, a wandering rabbi and his ragtag group of followers. Their hopes apparently ended when He died on the cross at Calvary. What they didn’t know is that the only means of salvation—which is what they had been waiting for—was Christ’s death and resurrection, not His army. His work on the cross and His resurrection from the dead give us hope now and forever. He was and is our answer to “How long?” Mike Hurley • Have you had a situation that made you ask, “How long?” • Read Revelation 21:1-5. How does knowing Jesus promises to return to make all things new—free from sin, suffering, and death—affect the way you view suffering in the world? How long, Lord, must I call for help and you do not listen or cry out to you about violence and you do not save? Habakkuk 1:2 (CSB)

Read Verses:

Habakkuk 1:1-11