Habakkuk 1:1-4The oracle that Habakkuk the prophet received. How long, O LORD, must I call for help, but you do not listen? Or cry out to you, "Violence!" but you do not save? Why do you make me look at injustice? Why do you tolerate wrong? Destruction and violence are before me; there is strife, and conflict abounds. Therefore the law is paralyzed, and justice never prevails. The wicked hem in the righteous, so that justice is perverted.
An oracle is a message from God. Remember, 15 years before God had told the prophet Jeremiah that the wicked people would be punished.
Habakkuk can barely stand to see all the violence and wickedness. Just because we know God is in control doesn’t mean we don’t care or have compassion for what’s going on. Jesus wept over Jerusalem when He foresaw its destruction 40 years in the future. He also wept when Lazarus died out of compassion for Mary and Martha’s grief, even though He knew He was going to bring Lazarus back to life. And that story is the perfect example of God’s perfect timing: if Jesus had gotten there 5 days earlier, it would have been just another healing in a series of His healings, but by waiting and bringing Lazarus back from the dead God was glorified even more so. God’s timing is always on time for His purpose.
We see murders on TV, read about crimes in the papers, hear the numbers of aborted children, hear the huge numbers of people living with Aids, the numbers of people who are homeless or without food – and we get a little callous, don’t we? It’s hard to get upset every time about every thing!
But, Paul says in Roman 12:15 “Weep with those who weep.” A pastor wrote, “All of this evil should cause us to cry out to God, “Your Kingdom come, Your will be done, Here, Now, as it is in Heaven.”
This is what Habakkuk was doing. He cared. He had seen enough. In these verses Habakkuk listed 6 different problems going on in the world, which sound a lot like our times: wickedness, destruction, violence, no justice in the courts and the wicked outnumber the righteous. At the end he says, “the law is ignored.” God’s word was no longer standard.
Today it is illegal to have the 10 commandments hanging in many places. People are fighting over making same sex marriages legal…our world is not so different!