Not many of us look to Habakkuk, the obscure minor prophet, for much of anything, never mind insights on the problem of evil, but I am reading and studying there with the help of Habakkuk: Remembering God’s Faithfulness When He Seems Silent by Dannah Gresh–and I’m surprised at what I’m finding!
Set against a backdrop of moral decline and impending exile, Habakkuk opens with a raging question, flung into the silence of God:
O LORD, how long shall I cry,
And you will not hear?
Even cry out to you, ‘Violence!’
And you will not save.”
God speaks into the silence in verse 5 with the kind of verse we love to put on T-shirts and couch pillows:
Look among the nations and watch–
Be utterly astounded!
For I will work a work in your days
Which you would not believe,
though it were told you.”
To Habakkuk’s “Do you see us?” God delivers a decisive, “Yes,” but instead of reassurance, instead of promises of restoration and rescue that echo His words to Moses or Gideon, God promises judgment at the hands of a heathen nation!
Dannah Gresh uses the breadth of scripture to interpret the prophet’s message and his times in a six-week study that incorporates a deep reading of the text with prayer prompts that encourage meditation on the message. Gresh defines meditation as “what happens when studying and praying collide,” and shares six habits of living by faith that emerge naturally from Habakkuk’s prophetic writing. For readers who long to remember the faithfulness of God in the past as a confidence booster for dealing with hard times in the present or fears about the future, the little book of Habakkuk will be a surprising source of inspiration and Dannah Gresh a skilled and sympathetic guide.
Many thinks to Moody Publishing for providing this book to facilitate my review which is, of course, offered freely and with honesty.