Behold Ye Among The Heathen

Behold ye among the heathen, and regard, and wonder marvellously: for I will work a work in your days, which ye will not believe, though it be told you.

— Habakkuk 1:5

Behold! Regard! Wonder!

These are commands not addressed to Habakkuk alone. These are commands addressed to the whole nation of Judah (“ye” is plural and can’t refer to just Habakkuk). Habakkuk spent the last three verses complaining of Judah’s state of sin and God’s apparent silence, indifference, allowance of sin, and tolerance of injustice. God breaks His silence and answers Habakkuk’s cry with a chilling revelation of judgment.

Paul makes use of this verse in Acts 13. Paul preaches a message in the synagogue on the Sabbath day. In the message, Paul preaches the Gospel, focusing on the resurrection and forgiveness of sins provided by the Lord Jesus Christ. He then warns the congregation against rejecting the salvation provided by Jesus Christ. Those who reject Jesus will miss out on this blessed resurrection. They will suffer in hell for eternity. Paul then says, “Beware therefore, lest that come upon you, which is spoken of in the prophets; Behold ye despisers, and wonder, and perish: for I work a work in your days, a work which ye shall in no wise believe, though a man declare it unto you” (Acts 13:40-41).

Over the next few days, we will look at the judgment pronounced upon Judah. As we read about the horrible judgment that would take place not long after Habakkuk’s prophecy, we will be reminded that God will not remain silent, and He is not indifferent toward sin and violence. He will not allow injustice to continue. The wages of sin continues to be death. Just as God brought the Chaldeans upon Judah to judge their sin, sin today WILL BE judged.

The heathen were told to behold – to open their eyes and look. They were also commanded to regard – to understand or acknowledge. They were lastly expected to wonder – to be amazed in fear and reverence.

Many have rejected this command, and many will continue. This work which the Lord will work is one they won’t believe though it be told them. As the world is going through this coronavirus pandemic, I’m reminded that just three short months ago, none of us could have even imagined the world would be changed so much. We all assumed life would just continue to go on as usual. What will befall our nation next year? We can’t know! But there are things we DO KNOW. The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. We DO KNOW sin WILL BE JUDGED. We DO KNOW that Jesus STILL SAVES!

Behold! Regard! Wonder!

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