“HABAKKUK: Complaining to God”

On Nov. 3, Pastor Jim preaches on Habakkuk 1:2-4.

2 How long, Lord, must I call for help,
but you do not listen?
Or cry out to you, “Violence!”
but you do not save?
3 Why do you make me look at injustice?
Why do you tolerate wrongdoing?
Destruction and violence are before me;
there is strife, and conflict abounds.
4 Therefore the law is paralyzed,
and justice never prevails.
The wicked hem in the righteous,
so that justice is perverted.

The Book of Habakkuk is one of those often neglected books on the backside of the Bible. It’s also somewhat of a treasure. It’s unique in that this prophet does not speak to the Hebrew people. Habakkuk speaks to God, and nothing seems off limits. Much of his words fall into the category of a lament. Check out the Scripture above; he’s fussing at God, complaining and pouring out his frustration to the Lord.

Gulp! Pretty risky stuff, Habakkuk. Keep eyes in the back of your head and prepare to dive out of the path of a well-placed lightning bolt. And yet … God listens to Habakkuk. God allows him to gripe. When’s the last time you complained to God? Habakkuk isn’t alone.

David, “a man after God’s own heart,” did the same in Psalm 13:1-2 using remarkably similar language.

1 How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
2 How long must I take counsel in my soul
and have sorrow in my heart all the day?
How long shall my enemy be exalted over me?

A God we can complain to? Wow! That sounds like a real relationship. We’ll think more about Habakkuk on Sunday. See you in church.