Mysterious Worship

February 16, 2015 at 1:29 pm | Posted in Habakkuk | 3 Comments
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Habakkuk Chapter 3 is a great psalm that the Holy Spirit authored through Habakkuk. It shows so clearly – because it is a prayer and a psalm of worship – what is missing in so much of our contemporary worship.

We are not missing talent – we’ve got plenty of that. We are not missing enthusiasm – enthusiasm can be manufactured fairly consistently. We are not missing “freshness” – you can’t swing a dead cat by the tail without hitting a church congregation which “has broken free of the bonds of dead religion” and has gotten “free” in worship. Anything that was forbidden by the old folks, we’re all about it. No, what’s missing is the theology – the depth of knowledge about God’s works.

Habakkuk traces the history of the Old Testament – deliverance from Egypt, water turning to blood, anointed judges delivering God’s people, the battles in Canaan – as he brings out the mystery of God’s workings.

When I heard, my belly trembled; my lips quivered at the voice: rottenness entered into my bones, and I trembled in myself, that I might rest in the day of trouble: when he cometh up unto the people, he will invade them with his troops.

Habakkuk 3:16

When was the last time you actually shook and trembled for fear at God’s awesome power while you were worshiping? The mystery of trembling with knowledge will lead to rest in the day of trouble.

Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls:

Habakkuk 3:17

What will we do when we’ve run out of everything we’ve been led to believe is our sustenance – our income, our security, even our food?

Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation.

Habakkuk 3:18

My God is a Savior. People who aren’t in trouble don’t need a savior. When I am empty – when I can’t do one thing to help myself – then God shows up.

The LORD God is my strength, and he will make my feet like hinds’ feet, and he will make me to walk upon mine high places. To the chief singer on my stringed instruments.

Habakkuk 3:19

Habakkuk says, “Now, tell the worship leaders to sing about that!”

Don’t listen to the false prophets who say “peace, peace,” when destruction is at the doorstep. When we aren’t really motivated to obey God, it is often because we don’t see His greatness. We love to say, “God is good – all the time, and all the time – God is good,” and He is. But we must not forget, not only is God good, but God is also great. His ways are not our ways. His ways are superior to our ways. Realizing His greatness and our dependence is step one in moving from wrestling with God to worshiping God.

His judgments are unsearchable and His ways are past finding out (Romans 11:33). We won’t truly worship God until we stop trying to figure out what He’s doing or why He’s doing it, and start meditating on Who He is.

Worship in Faith

February 2, 2015 at 5:20 pm | Posted in Habakkuk | 2 Comments
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Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith.

Habakkuk 2:4

For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.

Romans 1:17

The doctrine of faith as the doorway to salvation did not originate in the New Testament.

But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.

Galatians 3:11

However, the New Testament clearly refutes the false belief that keeping God’s law can save.

Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.

Hebrews 10:38

So, what about after salvation? We are saved through faith, but how do we please God after He saves us?

Faith is the means of salvation because God has declared that by faith will man be justified. “The just” are those whom God, by His grace, has declared righteous, and who, therefore, have a perfect standing before Him in Christ Jesus. Does that scare you? It shouldn’t – it put Habakkuk right into a spirit of worship. How I wish that modern Christians didn’t have such a tendency to surrender their brains to their feelings in worship!

O LORD, I have heard thy speech, and was afraid: O LORD, revive thy work in the midst of the years, in the midst of the years make known; in wrath remember mercy.

Habakkuk 3:2

Dear Lord, the basis for our worship is Your Word. We fear You, Lord. Your Word has convicted us where we stand – and we admit it. We want a revival – not of wordly “success” – but Your work. Even if not right now, but in the midst of years – in Your time. We trust You – we even trust Your wrath. We call on You to remember mercy, not because we deserve it, but because of Who You are. Keep Your promises, O God. In the name of Christ Jesus I pray. Amen.


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