Habakkuk 3:17-19 - How To Rejoice In The Lord Always.
Habakkuk 3:17-19: How To Rejoice In The Lord Always.
Habakkuk 3:17-19 (NLT) Even though the fig trees have no
blossoms, and there are no grapes on the vines; even though the olive crop
fails, and the fields lie empty and barren; even though the flocks die
in the fields, and the cattle barns are empty, 18 yet I will
rejoice in the LORD! I will be joyful in the God of my salvation! 19 The
Sovereign LORD is my strength! He makes me as surefooted as a deer, able
to tread upon the heights.
Habakkuk started in the deep valley (chap. 1), then went up to
the watchtower (chap. 2), but now finds himself on the mountains!
Faith always lifts us higher and makes us happier. Even when we cannot
rejoice in the economy, we can rejoice in the Lord! [Warren Wiersbe]
Habakkuk saw injustice and violence, misery, and sin all
around him. He had cried to God for help, but no help had come. in
fact, the Lord told Habakkuk things were going to get worse - he was
raising up the cruel Babylonians to oppress the Israelites even more.
How can you let them get away with this evil? Why aren't you doing
anything about this? Habakkuk cried. God did not change the situation as
Habakkuk had asked. He didn't drive out their enemies. But he did reveal
his plan to eventually foil those who trust in themselves and
succeed because of corruption. When God laid out the big picture and
told Habakkuk of the victory to come, the prophet was so humbled and
awed by the Lord's greatness that something even more important did
change: Habakkuk's heart. He didn't stop asking for the Lord's help, but
now he asked with faith and a heart of worship: No matter how bad
things get, "I will rejoice in the Lord; I will be joyful in the God of
my salvation." Ask God to build that kind of heart in you ... no
LORD, I have "heard all about you, and am filled with awe by
the amazing things you have done." In our time of deep need, begin
again to help us as you did in years gone by. Show us your power to
save us! No matter what happens, whether I see prayers unanswered or
victories, may my heart rejoice in you. I will find my joy in you, for you
are my strength! [Praying Through The Bible By Fuller re Hab. 3:2,
Habakkuk's questions were valid; he was saddened by the
violence and injustice that was prevalent in his time. You might feel the
same as this prophet, wondering why the world is plagued with wars
and famine, why governments are riddled with corruption, and why
violence against the weakest members of society continues unobstructed.
You may wonder why God doesn't put an end to the madness and
immediately hold accountable all who deserve judgment.
Take heart: God is in control. Evil will not triumph forever.
God will punish evil and vindicate those who are faithful to him and
have accepted Christ as their Savior. Be thankful that he has delayed
his return, allowing you to have the opportunity to come to know
Christ. In the meantime, don't be afraid to ask God your questions, yet
be willing to continue to - trust him. When nothing makes sense and
the troubles of this world seem unbearable, say, along with
Habakkuk, that no matter what happens, "yet I will rejoice in the LORD! I
will be joyful in the God of my salvation!" (Habakkuk 3:18). You can
trust that God will do what is best in his way, in his time. [The One
Year Bible for New Believers]
At times it seems that everything around you is collapsing.
Endeavors you invested in may fail. People to whom you minister may
disappoint you. The business or career you worked hard to build may
crumble. These times, as difficult as they are, are opportunities to stop
and examine what is truly important to you.
Habakkuk witnessed the collapse of most of what mattered to
him. Yet through the loss, failure, and disappointment, he was able
to distinguish between what was precious to him and what was
transitory and empty. He came to the point where he could sincerely say
that even if everything around him failed, he still would rejoice in
God. If the fig tree bore no fruit; if the vine produced no grapes;
if the flocks and herds stopped reproducing; he would still praise
God. His praise might not come easily, as he watched everything fall
short of his expectations, but he would praise God nonetheless.
Habakkuk could not make fig trees produce figs. He could not control the
productivity of the flocks and herds, but he could control his own response
to God. He chose to praise the Lord.
Do things seem to be falling apart around you? You can still
praise God. Your praise for Him does not depend on the success of your
endeavors but on God's nature and His love and faithfulness to you. Ask
God to help you look past worldly concerns to understand the reasons
you have to praise Him. [Henry and Richard Blackaby]
We trust God to accomplish what He promises us in His Word.
But the real battle of faith comes when He appears not to respond to
What should we do when God appears to have ignored our
request? Will we continue to rely upon Him despite the disappointment? Or
will we blaze our own path and turn away from the Lord in
The prophet Habakkuk demonstrated the essence of true faith:
to continue to trust in the Lord's wisdom and faithfulness, even
when He seems inactive, or worse, uncaring.
In difficult times, faith becomes a matter of devoted
allegiance to the Lord Jesus Christ. Do we have confidence in Him
regardless of the circumstances? Do we cling to God and His Word despite
the silence? Can we say, along with Habakkuk, that although all our
resources and reserves vanish, "yet I will rejoice in the LORD" (Hab.
3:18)? [Life Principles SB By Charles Stanley re Hab. 3:17-19]
If you feel hopeless, helpless, or powerless--unable to deal
with people or problems and on the verge of exhaustion--take heart in
the prophet Habakkuk's stirring conclusion to his short book.
Knowing that a savage army of Babylonians would soon plunder
and pillage his homeland, Habakkuk recited a litany of probable
destruction. Times would be hard. Food would be scarce. An agrarian culture's
source of income would soon dry up and blow away (Hab. 3:17).
Yet despite this disheartening scenario, Habakkuk penned an
amazing response: "Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God
of my salvation. The LORD God is my strength; He will make my feet
like deer's feet, and he will make me walk on my high hills" (Hab.
Where did the prophet find such hope in the face of such
terrible calamity? For one thing, clearly he had been spending time in
God's Word. His expression of faith closely echoes the words of David,
uttered centuries before: "The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my
deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my shield and the
horn of my salvation, my stronghold. I will call upon the LORD, who
is worthy to be praised; so shall I be saved from my enemies" (Ps.
For another thing, Habakkuk had been spending a lot of time
alone with God. His whole book is a record of his extended
conversation with the Creator about the way the Lord does things. Habakkuk
did not always understand (or particularly like) what he heard from
God, but he recognized that the Lord knows what He's doing and so he
chose to place his trust in Him.
When the outlook looks grim, Christ is your strength. When
the circumstances seem volatile, Christ is your stability. When the
future appears foreboding, Christ remains your hope. The strength of
Christ is both inexhaustible and immeasurable--and it is yours to
God delights in upholding the weary and reviving the
fainthearted (Is. 40:29-31). Your reservoir of emotional and physical energy
may feel nearly drained, but God's supply of spiritual stamina never
runs out. Come to Him and His Word for the strength to carry on, and
He will supply the power you need to traverse the rough terrain
ahead. That's His promise, and God always keeps His promises. [Life
Principles SB By Charles Stanley re Hab. 3:17-19]
In 1996 my husband, Ed, left for New York City in his semi to
deliver his load. Our two sons and I took off in the other direction to
visit my mother over spring break. We were busy, and when I finally
called home to check our answering machine, there were eleven messages
from his trucking company. The messages became increasingly frantic
in tone as Ed's employer tried to locate him--and me!
Ed had failed to deliver his load on Monday. Now it was
Wednesday, and I was the only one that could file a missing-person report.
As the day unfolded, more and more people joined the search for Ed
and his rig. They finally found it at an Ohio truck stop. He had
pulled off to sleep for the night--and woke up in the arms of Jesus. He
was forty-four years old.
Not long after, Bill Menke, a pastor at church, taught on
these verses from Habakkuk, a book in which everything possible goes
wrong. He called verse 17 the "banana hit the fan" verse. Well, that
resonated with me, and in the following weeks this verse, which I had
never heard before, kept coming up in my devotional reading, in radio
broadcasts, and even in conversations. Was rejoicing in the Lord a choice I
could make? in this situation?
Times have not been easy trying to put two sons through
college, pay the mortgage, fix the washer, trade vehicles, etc., etc.,
etc. But this passage has continually calmed me and given me hope and
Joy E. Dannelly, mother of Raymond and James, is a registered
nurse at a facility for drug and alcohol addicts who are severe and
persistently mentally ill. [The One Year Bible Live Verse Devotional]
You are feeling weighed down by a plethora of problems, both big
and small. They seem to require more and more of your attention, but
you must not give in to those demands. When the difficulties in your
life feel as if they're closing in on you, break free by spending
quality time with Me. You need to remember who I AM in all My Power and
Glory. Then, humbly bring Me your prayers and petitions. Your problems
will pale when you view them in the Light of My Presence. You can
learn to be joyful in Me, your Savior, even in the midst of adverse
circumstances. Rely on Me, your Strength; I make your feet like the feet of a
deer, enabling you to go on the heights. (Exo. 3:14; Hab. 3:17-19)
[Jesus Calling by Sarah Young]
Disappointments Are Inevitable; Discouragement Is A Choice.
LINK FOR FURTHER STUDY:
EXCELLENT VIDEO SERIES ON EXPERIENCING GOD:
BIBLE PROPHECY SERIES ON REVELATION:
ONLINE BIBLE STUDIES: THUNDER IN THE HOLY LAND
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