This passage has a lot to do with the fear of the Lord. Those who have studied the Word for awhile will know that phrase is all about respect, reverence, and awe before God. The prophet Habakkuk had a lot of it. He says, “I have heard the report of you, and your works I fear.”
Have you heard the Word of the Lord that is fearsome? Read your Bible: you will hear the report of God’s wondrous and awe-inspiring works. I often think of the story of the Exodus. I think about the plagues of Egypt, the parting of the Red Sea, the crushing of the Egyptians, the burning bush. I think of God leading
his people with might and with wisdom.
He cries out for God to revive his works, the wonders of old, in his time. It’s like saying, “Lord, we have heard the report of how things used to be in times of old, and we long to see them today! Revive your ways in the midst of our years!” But with that comes the cry, “In your wrath, remember mercy.” Because to long to see God move in our time is to admit that with the revival of God’s work will be a revival of the conviction of sin. To see a move of God requires God’s people to get real before him and to fall on their faces. And when that comes, we need the mercy of the Lord to come with it!
We have the advantage in our time of knowing something that Habakkuk did not live to see: we know God’s mercy. We have seen the living mercy of God, his mercy made flesh. We have seen the man of mercy, the prince of peace. We have Jesus, and Habakkuk did not.
For the complete column, please see this week’s edition of the Centralia Fireside Guard.