Bible Pathways 09/26/2003
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- 2003 Sep 26
Read Nahum 1 -- Habakkuk 3
In Today's Reading:
Prophecy and fulfillment of Nineveh's destruction; vision of coming woes; Habakkuk's prayer
About 150 years had passed since the revival of Jonah's day when all of Nineveh repented and fasted (Jonah 3:5-10). However, as the years passed, several generations of Ninevites failed to teach their children about the One True God Who had spared their lives, so they returned to their sinful behavior. The time had now come for God to judge them. Judah was oppressed by Assyria, but the prophet Nahum foretold its freedom if the Israelites remained faithful to God. He appealed to them: O Judah . . . perform your vows: for the wicked shall no more pass through you; he is utterly cut off (Nahum 1:15).
Assyria was probably the most brutal of all the ancient heathen nations, and its capital Nineveh had greatly enriched itself by wars. Through Nahum, God forewarned: Woe to the bloody city! it is all full of lies and robbery. . . . Nineveh is laid waste. . . . the sword shall cut you off (3:1,7,15). Nineveh was destroyed exactly as foretold. That once-mighty city still lies in ruins as a witness to the Word of God.
Habakkuk foretold the coming judgment that God would bring on His idol-worshiping people in Judah by using Babylon to punish them. He also foretold the judgment of God upon Babylon for its destruction of Judah: O LORD, You have ordained them (Judah) for judgment; and O mighty God, You have established (ordained) them for correction (Habakkuk 1:12; compare Romans 5:3; II Corinthians 4:17; Hebrews 2:10; 12:10-11).
Since we do not know all the facts, in the midst of our numerous, perplexing injustices, where too often evil seems to triumph, we should not express doubt in the Holy One (Habakkuk 1:12) by asking: Why me, or Why did He allow this to happen? God is just as uncompromising toward sin today as He was then. Yet the Lord always forgives even the most sinful person who truly repents and turns to Him. All mankind will one day realize that the justice and mercy of the LORD is good, a strong hold (refuge) in the day of trouble; and He knows (loves) them that trust in Him (Nahum 1:7). We expectantly look forward to that day when the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD (Habakkuk 2:14; compare Romans 1:17; Galatians 3:11; Hebrews 10:38; 11:1-6).
As the One Whom even the sea obeys (Nahum 1:4). Jesus rebuked the winds and the sea (Matthew 8:26-27).
Nahum 1:12 quiet = safe; 1:14 no more of your name be sown = nothing of your name be born; 2:7 tabering = beating; 3:19 bruit = report. Habakkuk 1:4 slacked = powerless.
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Memory Verse for the Week: Romans 14:13