Day Twenty-Six: Habakkuk

So obviously this isn’t Deuteronomy. Again I made the decision to move to a smaller book. As we prep for vacation, a trip to Centrifuge with my students and carving out some time to celebrate our 10 years of marriage my days are getting fuller and fuller!

So Habakkuk it is! This book started off a little differently than the other minor prophets I’ve read so far- it started off with Habakkuk’s complaint! Through the book he has 2 complaints for the Lord. When he receives the Lords reply to those complaints he ends up praying and praising God!

Both of his complaints center around the wicked. First, that he is surrounded by those who love evil, love to argue and pervert justice. God responds by telling Habakkuk of the coming conquest by the Babylonians- which prompts the second complaint.

Habakkuk complains about the Babylonian conquest- surely the Lord will not let these evil people wipe out his chosen ones even as sinful as they are! It sounds rather similar to my children- pointing out the flaws of each other to ensure that if they go down, they at least go together. (Golden example: When they colored the cat pink.)

The Lords response to this second complaint is a call to faithfulness. He discouraged the people from trusting in their wealth, friendships or fortifications promising that sorrow will be found in all those places. He assures them that their trust should be in Him alone.

After this Habakkuk begins to pray, and the closing lines of his prayer in Habakkuk 3:17-18;

“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,
yet I will rejoice in the Lord!
    I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!

Tomorrow is our anniversary and we are planning to be gone most of the day, so I am planning on reading the book of Nahum. Thanks for following along! Feel free to subscribe down below!

In Christ,

Karen

Day Twenty-Five: Malachi

Today I used my ability to switch books again and ended up in the book of Malachi. In this brief message God brings 4accusations against his people:

1. They are offering defiled sacrifices.

After spending so much time in the Old Testament lately, this is pretty horrifying to be honest. There was a time where kings and prophets offered hundreds of animals to the Lord, and did so joyfully! David and Solomon are some great examples. To see that the people clearly no longer offer their sacrifices with joy but merely out of duty is devastating.

2. The priests have left God’s path.

God specifically accuses the Levites of no longer serving Him with reverence- and thus passing that lack of reverence to the people. He says that the Levites “…have shown favoritism in the way you carry out my instructions.” (Malachi 1:9b). Their actions are leading the people into sin, and God demands that they stop.

3.They are unfaithful.

This accusation addresses the husbands and wives of Judah. God accuses them of marrying women who serve idols, and divorcing their wives. As a result the Lord declares that he is not going to accept their offerings.

4. They are robbing God of the tithes and offerings due Him.

Again, after reading so much in the Old Testament lately this is really disappointing. According to the Law every feast has a different purpose and required offerings. God uses these offering for many things- to give the people a way to demonstrate their faith and love for him, as an atonement for sin and as a way to provide for his priests. God promises to bring them into abundance if they just start obeying his commands again!

It all sounds pretty grim- except for promise God included in chapters 3 and 4. He says:

“Look! I am sending my messenger, and he will prepare the way before me. Then the Lord you are seeking will suddenly come to his Temple. The messenger of the covenant, whom you look for so eagerly, is surely coming,” says the Lord of Heavens Armies.- Malachi 3:1

They don’t know it, but Jesus is coming! And as I look at this list of accusations I am fully aware that God could lay these same things and more at the churches feet- but the promise of Malachi still applies to us!

Jesus is coming.

Tomorrow, I’ll be headed back to Deuteronomy. See you then!

In Christ,

Karen

Day Twenty: Ezekiel

In this challenge so far I’ve found that the major and minor prophets in the Old Testament are some of the hardest to read. Ezekiel was no different but it did have one powerfully overriding theme that jumped out at me.

God is Sovereign.

God calls himself Sovereign, nations and people address him as Sovereign and Ezekiel declares it multiple times. And I would bet that most of us have heard that God is Sovereign or even said it to others. But do we really register what we are saying?

Sovereign means the ultimate authority. No questioning or no bargaining- just complete obedience to The Sovereign. Do we treat God this way? For example, if he prompts you to go pray with someone, or to speak out in a situation, is your first response obedience?

The people of Israel didn’t- and as a result ended up in captivity. In Ezekiel, God tells them that he will remove them from the land, and then restore them so that they and all the other nations will know that he his the Sovereign Lord.

It’s pretty intense- and a topic I’ve marked down to revisit after these 66 days are up. Tomorrow, I’ll be moving on to 1 Chronicles!

In Christ,

Karen