Sermon by Anders Nelsson
March 18th, 2012
A Divine Q & A (Questions and Answers)
Background on Habakkuk.
- He lived as a prophet.
- He lived about 600 years before Jesus
- A prophet normally has a message from God that they share with the people. Habakkuk is different. In this book we step into the mind of Habakkuk ad here his inner thoughts. This book is a conversation between Habakkuk and God.
Habakkuk 1:2-4 (NIRV)
“Lord, how long do I have to call out for help? Why don’t you listen to me? How long must I keep telling you that things are terrible? Why don’t you save us? Why do you make me watch while people treat others so unfairly? Why do you put up with the wrong things they are doing? I have to look at death. People are harming others. They are arguing and fighting all the time. The law can’t do what it’s supposed to do. Fairness never comes out on top. Sinful people surround those who do what is right. So people are never treated fairly.”
In this section of the Bible Habakkuk is asking God really difficult questions. Where are you when it hurts? Where are you when evil things happen to God’s people? Are you even there? Do you even care?
When reading through Habakkuk there are 3 questions or doubts that are stated.
- God do you really care?
- God you are not doing very much when you could be.
- God what you are doing doesn’t seem to be fair.
Is it okay to question God like this? Yes, it is okay. Questioning God is seeking the truth. God is truth.
What do we do when our beliefs and faith do not match up with what we experience in life?
We have 3 options.
- We can quit or give up.
- Denial. We can pretend that bad things are not happening in the world.
- We can be honest with God and tell him our thoughts. We can share all of our doubts with him.
Option 3 is the best option.
It is in time so struggle that we grow as believers.
Habakkuk 3: 17-19 (NIRV) (These are the last few verses in the book of Habakkuk. This is Habakkuk final thoughts to God.)
“The fig tree might not bud. The vines might not produce any grapes. The olive crop might fail. The fields might not produce any food. There might not be any sheep in the pens. There might not be any cattle in the barns. But I will still be glad because of what the Lord has done. God my Savior fills me with joy. The Lord and King gives me strength. He makes my feet like the feet of a deer. He helps me walk on the highest places.”
Habakkuk is saying, “God, I do not always understand, but I will trust you anyways.”
This is what real faith looks like. It isn’t based on his feelings or on circumstances. It is based on the character of God.
What God desires of us.
- Better to be real with God. To come before God with all that we are. (All of struggles and doubts. The good and the bad.)
- To trust in God when we do not understand and to hold on to God during the storms of our lives.
Can there be doubts in the faith of a man or woman who believes in God?
Yes. Asking questions is not a bad thing. God is not afraid of our questions. God is loving and patient. He will always listen and never stop loving us.