Bible Commentaries

Bell's Commentary on the BibleBell's Commentary

Habakkuk 3

Verses 1-19

  1. A Prayer Hymn! (ch.3:1-19)
    1. A Prayer Hymn! (1-2)
      1. A prayer(1a); a hymn for 3 reasons!
        1. [1] Shigionoth – (?) a musical term or notation.
        2. [2] Selah – 3 times, pause.
        3. [3] Subscription – (see 3:19b)
    2. When your mind is wandering; the situations is crumbling; your head is spinning;…keep your heart trusting!
      1. (1) Though this is not a manual on prayer we can learn a lot from Habakkuk on how to pray!
        1. [1] Like having a healthy perspective on who God is.
        2. [2] Remembering back on how God has worked in history(i.e. know the Word)
        3. [3] This takes self-centeredness out of prayer.
        4. [4] The better we know Him the better we’ll want what He wants.
        5. [5] “When God is our focus, our struggles become, not isolated islands of pain, but paths toward Him!” (Swindoll)
      2. Wiersbe defined prayer as, “reminding God of His promises & claiming them for ourselves.”
      3. (2) Habakkuk asked “why aren’t you working God”? – God responded “I am”. – Now Habakkuk responds “ok your working…please be merciful to your sinful people”!
    3. The Greatness of God! (3-15)
      1. Oh we need a return to this kind of worship…that focuses on His Glory & Greatness!
      2. In this he seems to be tracing the foot steps from Sinai to the promise land.
    4. Hymn! (16-19)
    5. Here is one of the greatest confessions of faith.
      1. Though Babylon comes to destroy; though You send away your people; though the bottom drops out of everything…yet I will trust in you!!!
      2. Had he looked ahead he would only see the invading Babylonian army; Had he looked within he would only see fear & trembling; If he looked around he would only see everything falling apart; But by looking up by faith he saw God…& all his fears vanished.
      3. To walk by faith means to focus on the greatness & glory of God!
      4. "I'm only in the kindergarten of suffering," W.E.Sangster
      5. That I might rest… - (NIV) “Yet I will wait patiently for…”
        1. 3 verses to help you wait patiently on Him to work!
        2. [1] Stand Still (Ex.14:13)
        3. [2] Sit Still (Ruth 3:18)
        4. [3] Be Still (Ps.46:10)
        5. When things are stirred up within you…stop, pray, wait...before we do something stupid!
      6. (17) By the time Babylon was done w/Judah there wouldn’t be much of value left.
        1. Even when we cannot rejoice in the economy, we can rejoice in the Lord!
        2. Seems like little to sing about yet…!
      7. (18) But God was still on the throne!
        1. This is no “whistle in the dark” to build up our courage. do that when you’re scared?
        2. No this is singing about the Eternal God who Never Fails!
        3. Faith always lifts us higher & makes us happier! (see 18 &19)
        4. Habakkuk couldn’t rejoice in the circumstances, but he could rejoice in his God!
          1. How else could we really “Glory in our tribulations?”
        5. 1 Thes. 5:16-18(NIV) “Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.”
        6. Q: Can you worship Him no matter how you feel or what you see?
      8. (19) We started in the valley(of despair,ch.1). - We moved to the watchtower in ch.2. – And here we end up on the mountain top.
      9. God became Habakkuk’s Strength, Song, & his Salvation!
      10. If my legs were shaking, I probably would be looking for a place to sit down…not bounding up the side of a mountain, like a deer!
        1. The Lord gives us “bounding feet” so we can overcome the obstacles of life.
        2. God doesn’t always change the circumstances, but He can change us to meet the circumstances!
        3. Faith gives you the ability to stand sure-footed like a deer, & to be able to run-swiftly & go higher then ever before!
      11. Like the eagle & like the deer, God made us for the heights!
        1. They both will go down into the valley but that’s not where they live! (us too!)
  2. Communion:
    1. ​​​​​​​A thought to ponder: “God doesn’t reveal Himself to superficial saints who are only looking for a new experience they can brag about, or to curious Christians who want to sample deeper fellowship w/God but not at too great a price.” (www)
      1. Is.66:2 “But on this one will I look: On him who is poor and of a contrite spirit, And who trembles at My word.”
Bibliographical Information
Bell, Brian. "Commentary on Habakkuk 3". "Bell's Commentary". 2017.