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Thursday, May 2, 2013

A Vision of Hope

Has God given you a vision? Have you held on to that vision as you have gone through life? God told Habakkuk to write on tablets so that everyone who walked among the Jews could see. He reminded them the “vision is yet for an appointed hour” (Habakkuk 2:3). Do we walk through our lives trying just to get by or do we walk knowing what the outcome will be? These are good questions to ask ourselves. If we ask the first, then we struggle and often lose hope. We strive for greatness and amass a vault of things in our lives as if that is the real purpose in life. God told Habakkuk to remind the people and keep on reminding them that He has a plan for each of their lives. He told them, “though it tarries, wait earnestly for it, because it will surely come: it will not be late on its appointed day” (vs.3, NASB). 

What does this mean for us? Well consider it in a couple of ways. First, you can consider it as a positive message of hope that God has a plan for your life. It is true, He does. He has a plan to help us and not to harm us, to give us a hope and a future. (Jeremiah 29:11). To whom is He speaking to here? He is speaking to the children of God, the God-followers.
Another consideration is that whatever may be happening in our life that is difficult, our hope is secure; God is in control. He said He would return and do to the people who are harming His children greater harm. Look at verses 5-12 in Habakkuk 3. God told the King of Babylon and each person who oppresses His children they need to beware. He will give back to them more than has been taken from His children. Habakkuk said, “The time is coming when the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord as the water covers the sea.” (Habakkuk 2:14, AMP). The king and oppressor will be filled with shame and contempt; the Lord’s wrath will come upon them. The violence done to His children will cover and overwhelm the oppressors. This warning from God is another positive facet to consider from Hosea. God will avenge His children – hope is given for a better future.
Finally, another feature of this from verse 3 is that only those He calls as His own will acquire this hope. There will be people who read the tablets or listen to this word from God who will not experience this hope because they did not experience the Lord God’s work in their lives. These people are like the people of Jericho who had been informed of the people of Yahweh, but who chose not to become one of those people, unlike Rahab. People will know about Jesus Christ before He returns, but not everyone will accept Him as their Lord and Savior. These who reject Jesus gain no hope of God avenging them against their oppressors. There is no hope for a better future. They are captives in their time on earth and in eternity. 
These last people are to whom God is calling us to go tell about Jesus, His love, and Lordship. These are the ones to whom God sends us to not only tell, but show His love. Habakkuk is not just a story of a vision to remind us and give us hope for when we face difficult times. It should remind us to tell others of this hope so they, too, may become children of God. They may possess eternal life because of this and the strength to endure trials. God is in control and will avenge them against their oppressors.  

These are just two aspects of God’s nature - judge and avenger. He does not want to be avenger so He has provided a way to wash away our sins. Jesus is that way. Jesus’ death and resurrection removes our sins from us so we can be in the presence of God. That is from where our hope comes, Yahweh. He can be our Provider, Sustainer, Savior, and Protector, if we will accept Him. It is our choice. Do you want to have hope of eternal life and a better life? Then, accept God’s gift, Jesus the Savior, and He will be the author of your hope. For those who already believe, do not give up hope; God is true to His promises. Remember He told Habakkuk, "though it tarries, wait for it; for it certainly will come, it will not delay.” (Habakkuk 2:3, NASB). God will reign supreme at the second coming of Christ. The victory is already His.