Knowledge of God is a Prerequisite of Faith

“Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” (Psalm 46:10)

If you had the opportunity, would you like to know what’s going to happen to you over the next year or so, whether good or bad?  And if you knew your circumstances would soon be dire, how would you respond to God? This week, we will see how the prophet Habakkuk responded upon hearing God’s answers to his perplexing questions, and in turn we will have a godly model that we can follow when we’re faced with our own uncertain and challenging circumstances.  

As we have already seen, Habakkuk wondered why God tolerated wickedness among His people. Upon hearing from the LORD that He was raising up the Babylonians to impart justice among His people, the prophet is perplexed as to why God would use such a wicked people to bring that justice. So, God revealed to Habakkuk that the Babylonians would ultimately be judged for their sin.

This justice was no “slap on the wrist” for God’s people. The Babylonians would destroy Jerusalem and the temple. Moreover, the people would be killed or be taken into captivity by their enemy for seventy years, as prophesied by Jeremiah.

Having God’s answer, Habakkuk responded through prayer. The prayer was made in the form of a worshipful poem and was apparently accompanied with music. The prophet didn’t understand everything. He didn’t know why God had let Israel go so far astray, or why God would choose the wicked Babylonians to judge them, or why He would wait to judge the Babylonians.

However, he did know the essential character of God. He knew God was righteous, that He hated sin, that sin had to be punished, and that God never makes mistakes. So, Habakkuk was able to stand upon what he knew to be true and ignore what he didn’t know, in order to offer up his prayer to God. Simply speaking, Habakkuk was able to praise God by relying on his assurances of God’s character regardless of what he didn’t understand.

With this faith, Habakkuk refused to ask for anything that might alter God’s plans. Essentially, the prayer was “Thy will be done.” This is the same petition we pray in the Lord’s Prayer, when we say “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done.” Rather than ask that God would deliver His people, or that he would personally escape, or that the Babylonians would lose the battle, he simply prays unselfishly that God would do His work.

When you’re faced with challenging concerns, whose way matters most to you – yours or God’s? Begin to learn to praise the Lord anyhow.

By Jim Connell

Jim and his wife, Becky, moved from Indiana to Lexington to establish the Lexington Rescue Mission. They have two married children, Laura and Brian.

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