Habakkuk Part 5 – Because of Violence in the Land

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“Because of Violence in the Land”

Key Verses: Hab 2:12 – 2:17

We continue in Habakkuk with the Lord answering the prophet’s complaints about the experience of evil all God’s people are experiencing to be humbled (Ecc 1:13) and have the pride of life burned out of us by fiery trials and judgment.  There should be no surprise to any of us about what the time of the end, the appointed time for each of us to die with Christ is all about.

1Pe 4:12  Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:

Rev 3:18  I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.

We pick up with the third pronouncement of woe against the man of sin that continues to make merchandise in the Lord’s Holy Temple with the lies of the great harlot Spiritual Babylon.

Hab 2:12  Woe to him that buildeth a town with blood, and stablisheth a city by iniquity! 

Hab 2:13  Behold, is it not of the LORD of hosts that the people shall labour in the very fire, and the people shall weary themselves for very vanity? 

Hab 2:14  For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea. 

Hab 2:15  Woe unto him that giveth his neighbour drink, that puttest thy bottle to him, and makest him drunken also, that thou mayest look on their nakedness! 

Hab 2:16  Thou art filled with shame for glory: drink thou also, and let thy foreskin be uncovered: the cup of the LORD’S right hand shall be turned unto thee, and shameful spewing shall be on thy glory. 

Hab 2:17  For the violence of Lebanon shall cover thee, and the spoil of beasts, which made them afraid, because of men’s blood, and for the violence of the land, of the city, and of all that dwell therein. 

The time of the end of our carnal way of life is defined by these five woes of judgment.  We are saved by the chastening, scourging, fiery grace of God that is only given to the precious few the Lord is dragging to Himself in this age (1Pe 4:17).  This is all the profit of the new man.

Heb 12:10  For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness. 

Heb 12:11  Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby

The Lord wastes nothing in our life.  All things are for our sakes that the glory of God (our obedience) might be made manifest as a result of His grace being poured out (2Co 4;15).  All of it, the good, the bad, the wickedness are being used to shape and molds us.  The Lord causes us to err from His ways (Isa 63:17, Joh 15:5) so He can prune and mold and shape us as He alone is the Potter working His lumps of clay.

Jer 2:19  Thine own wickedness shall correct thee, and thy backslidings shall reprove thee: know therefore and see that it is an evil thing and bitter, that thou hast forsaken the LORD thy God, and that my fear is not in thee, saith the Lord GOD of hosts.

Rom 9:21  Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?

Rom 9:22  What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction:

Rom 9:23  And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory,

Trials and great afflictions are necessary to burn out the SELF and the I, Me and My out of us.  We come to see the vanity of our own works and the strength of flesh only by first trying to save ourselves and build a city for the Lord.

Gal 2:16  Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

We are the unfaithful city before we become the faithful city.  That process is called “being saved” and it comes by the true grace of God which include these five woes but is the process spoken about in all the prophets.  The Lord is faithful to His people even when we are not and fall away into lusts and fornication with the world and its gods.

Isa 1:21  How is the faithful city become an harlot! it was full of judgment; righteousness lodged in it; but now murderers.

Isa 1:23  Thy princes are rebellious, and companions of thieves: every one loveth gifts, and followeth after rewards: they judge not the fatherless, neither doth the cause of the widow come unto them.

Isa 1:27  Zion shall be redeemed with judgment, and her converts with righteousness.

The coming of Christ is the coming of woe unto the old man’s way of life.  As Christ appears inwardly in our personal day of the Lord, we begin to rest from our own labors and enter into the promised rest that remains for the people of God.  The earth, which earth we are, is being silenced as Christ takes His rightful place on the throne of our hearts.

Jer 22:29  O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of the LORD.

Jer 22:30  Thus saith the LORD, Write ye this man childless, a man that shall not prosper in his days: for no man of his seed shall prosper, sitting upon the throne of David, and ruling any more in Judah.

 1Co 3:17  If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.

Our labor in the Lord is standing on faith.  This is the work of God that enables us to enter into the Lord’s rest being dead to our self-righteous nature.

Joh 6:29  Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.

Our rest seems like an oxymoron but we need to remember the dichotomy of the old man versus the new man.  It requires much labour and suffering for us to stand on faith and not partake of the world’s meat and way of thinking.

1Ti 4:10  For therefore we both labour and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, specially of those that believe.

This judgment that comes only to the sons of Christ in this age is exposing our vanity and our fleshly efforts (LABOR) in the fire.  Until we are being humbled, we will not be able to walk by faith, hence all five woes are needed to align us with the Lord’s instructions.

Hab 2:4 Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith. 

The occasion for the third woe is for building with bloodshed and inequity.  Our flesh cannot let go of its pride and zeal to make a name for ourselves in helping GOD out.

Oba 1:4  Though thou exalt thyself as the eagle, and though thou set thy nest among the stars, thence will I bring thee down, saith the LORD.

Mat 23:12  And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.

We see this, building the city with blood and inequity, many places in the prophets.  Micah shows how we wrest judgment away and think above what is written in how we think and act in the House of God both within and without ourselves.  Thank God, the Lord sends us trials to cut down the tall prideful trees as we are puffed up with our knowledge.

Mic 3:9 Hear this, I pray you, ye heads of the house of Jacob, and princes of the house of Israel, that abhor judgment, and pervert all equity.

Mic 3:10 They build up Zion with blood, and Jerusalem with iniquity.

Mic 3:11 The heads thereof judge for reward, and the priests thereof teach for hire, and the prophets thereof divine for money: yet will they lean upon the LORD, and say, Is not the LORD among us? none evil can come upon us.

Mic 3:12 Therefore shall Zion for your sake be plowed as a field, and Jerusalem shall become heaps, and the mountain of the house as the high places of the forest.

It is only the emerging and mature mindset that is being used to build the House of the Lord.  We have to be prepared and matured in the fire of judgment before we are being used of the Lord to build His House.

1Ch 22:7 And David said to Solomon, My son, as for me, it was in my mind to build an house unto the name of the LORD my God:

1Ch 22:8 But the word of the LORD came to me, saying, Thou hast shed blood abundantly, and hast made great wars: thou shalt not build an house unto my name, because thou hast shed much blood upon the earth in my sight. 

1Ch 22:9 Behold, a son shall be born to thee, who shall be a man of rest; and I will give him rest from all his enemies round about: for his name shall be Solomon, and I will give peace and quietness unto Israel in his days.

1Ch 22:10 He shall build an house for my name; and he shall be my son, and I will be his father; and I will establish the throne of his kingdom over Israel forever.

What is building with blood?  It is killing our brothers and sisters and fellow man all of whom are to be considered Jesus Christ (Mat 25:40, 25:45).  We do that by speaking and trusting in lies and false doctrines that lead us to go above what is written and judge according to the flesh, respecting persons and not standing on faith.  When we serve the old man, and are feeding our beast (Ecc 3:18), we are hating the Lord and His Christ and thus we kill and shed blood.

Eze 13:19  And will ye pollute me among my people for handfuls of barley and for pieces of bread, to slay the souls that should not die, and to save the souls alive that should not live, by your lying to my people that hear your lies?

Mat 6:24 No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.

1Jn 3:15  Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him.

This erring from His ways is all the Lord’s doing to have the occasion to bring trials and teach us to labour in His Word which is the fire.

Hab 2:13  Behold, is it not of the LORD of hosts that the people shall labour in the very fire, and the people shall weary themselves for very vanity? 

Hab 2:14  For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea. 

The Lord’s people are the fire as we are the representations of Christ in this world (1Jo 4:2, Eph 5:30).

Joh 14:12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.

Mat 19:28 And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

Jer 5:14 Wherefore thus saith the LORD God of hosts, Because ye speak this word, behold, I will make my words in thy mouth fire, and this people wood, and it shall devour them.

The filling of the earth with knowledge of the glory of God is our being causes to obey the Lord by these fires (Eze 36:27) which is the same as our learning righteousness.

Isa 26:9 With my soul have I desired thee in the night; yea, with my spirit within me will I seek thee early: for when thy judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness. 

The living waters that represent the Word of God are spoken out of the bellies of God’s sons now and in the lake of fire to come (Joh 7:38).  These waters completely engulf the sea which represents our flesh and the flesh of all mankind.  This is the salvation process in a nut shell as we are being made into the image of God little by little and overcoming all things in the earth and the sea.

Gen 1:26  And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

But before we get there and stand on the sea of glass mingled with fire (Rev 15), we will have to learn the vanity of doing it by our own strength.  The fourth woe is given for us pushing our leavened bread and false doctrines to gather a following and look upon others instead of the mirror with a critical and fault-finding eye.

Hab 2:15  Woe unto him that giveth his neighbour drink, that puttest thy bottle to him, and makest him drunken also, that thou mayest look on their nakedness! 

Hab 2:16  Thou art filled with shame for glory: drink thou also, and let thy foreskin be uncovered: the cup of the LORD’S right hand shall be turned unto thee, and shameful spewing shall be on thy glory. 

Hab 2:17  For the violence of Lebanon shall cover thee, and the spoil of beasts, which made them afraid, because of men’s blood, and for the violence of the land, of the city, and of all that dwell therein. 

The accuser of the brethren is being cast down (Rev 12:10) and is overcome by the new man through the trials and suffering that are destroying the beast and false prophet within us.  Now this judgment is upon the House of God which is the Body of Christ.  This is now the second time the Lord in answering Habakkuk, that our judgment is linked to the blood and violence in the land.  This is a double witness to US, we reap what we sow (Gal 6:7).

Hab 2:8  Because thou hast spoiled many nations, all the remnant of the people shall spoil thee; because of men’s blood, and for the violence of the land, of the city, and of all that dwell therein.

Hab 2:17  For the violence of Lebanon shall cover thee, and the spoil of beasts, which made them afraid, because of men’s blood, and for the violence of the land, of the city, and of all that dwell therein.

We sow violence in the kingdom of God within us (Luk 17:20-21) and in our brothers and sisters.  As we saw above, this is serving the flesh and hating our true Master, the Lord Jesus Christ.  It is not those wicked homosexuals in the world Paul was writing about in Romans 1.  He was speaking about God’s elect as are all the Scriptures.  We are those who know the judgment of God yet continue to find pleasure in fleshly pursuits and gainsaying.

Rom 1:29  Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,

Rom 1:30  Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, ……

Rom 1:32  Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

We need to be examining ourselves (2Co 13:5), looking at our own walk (Joh 21:23) and first pulling planks out our own eye before we can help others.

Mat 7:3  NKJV And why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye?

Mat 7:5  Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.

Our maturity comes by our immaturity and disobeying these commands and then learning by the subsequent woes.  Wallowing in the sins and flaws of our brothers and sisters as we feast and drink at the Lord’s table is how we first uncover the nakedness of brothers including the new man within us.  We learn the Lord does the work via His Word but in the appointed times.  By reaping what we have sown, we are learning righteousness in the day the woes are being poured out against the man of sin.

Rom 2:1  Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things.

Rom 2:2  But we are sure that the judgment of God is according to truth against them which commit such things.

Rom 2:3  And thinkest thou this, O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God?

We speak blasphemy against the Lord and His Christ in our first witness for Christ (Rev 13:5-6) until we ourselves are overcome by the beast within us which are being used to humble us and raise us up in due time (Rev 11:15).  The vials are wrath, the cup of the Lord’s indignation are being poured out by the angels of God as we abide in the Body of Christ and experience our inward Armageddon (Rev 16:13-17) at the seventh vial.

The cup in the right hand of the Lord is symbolism for the Body of Christ being the fire that is saving the Lord’s people now and in the lake of fire to come.  Those who abide in this “everlasting” fire are the ones standing upright and learn who despise the gainsaying of Core and reward seeking ways of Balaam and the merchandising of the great harlot.

Isa 33:14  The sinners in Zion are afraid; Fearfulness has seized the hypocrites: “Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? Who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings?”

Isa 33:15  He who walks righteously and speaks uprightly, He who despises the gain of oppressions, Who gestures with his hands, refusing bribes, Who stops his ears from hearing of bloodshed, And shuts his eyes from seeing evil:

Bringing judgment is the commission of all the Lord’s prophets who are the saviours who save God’s people from their enemies (Neh 9:27, Oba 1:21).  It is the elect who are the Lord’s instruments causing all the nations to drink of the cup.

Jer 25:15  For thus saith the LORD God of Israel unto me; Take the wine cup of this fury at my hand, and cause all the nations, to whom I send thee, to drink it….

Jer 25:17  Then took I the cup at the LORD’S hand, and made all the nations to drink, unto whom the LORD had sent me:

Our circumcision will become uncircumcision in the day our cover is blown and these hidden deeds of darkness are being exposed to us.  As painful as these experiences to be shown just how vile and wicked our flesh can be, it is very necessary to burn out confidence in our own works to save us.  We are being shown the abomination of desolation and the man of sin by the Lord recompensing our wicked deeds upon us.  It is the inward doers of the Word that are being justified not those that have only cleaned the outside of the cup.  There is a deeper meaning to outward than just being a physical Jew.

Rom 2:28  For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh:

Rom 2:29  But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.

Lebanon means White Mountain and in these verses, symbolizes our outward righteousness as hypocritical Pharisees.  Christ pronounces woe upon these white washed tombs.

Mat 23:27  Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.

That is the negative side of the word white, which is likened to spiritual leprosy which is walking by the flesh and not by faith.  The priests of the Lord examine themselves and the brethren for this disease which is identified by white lesions (Lev 13:3-6).  Our adversary, the devil, is clever in transforming himself into this white appearing being.

2Co 11:14  And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.

2Co 11:15  Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.

Lebanon was the source of wood/ for the Temple of the Lord that Solomon built (1Ki 5:6-14).  But that house built by the hands of men is not the true house built by the Lord’s hands (Col 2:11, Act 7:49) and the chastening of the Word.  The first Temple is the one we build in the conceit of our knowledge and pride by our own works.  And as an old Solomon found out, we too will come to see the vanity of the works of our flesh.

Psa 127:1  A Song of degrees for Solomon. Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the LORD keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain.

Ecc 1:2  Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity.

Ecc 1:3  What profit hath a man of all his labour which he taketh under the sun?

But thankfully the Lord is faithful to bring these woes (judgments) upon those few He loves and Has chosen to be out of this world in this age (Heb 12:6).  The pride of man, the strength of the flesh, symbolized also by the cedar trees of Lebanon are being devoured and chopped down by the sword of the Lord which includes the wicked nations within us (Psa 17:13, Isa 10:5).

Zec 11:1  Open thy doors, O Lebanon, that the fire may devour thy cedars.

Zec 11:2  Howl, fir tree; for the cedar is fallen; because the mighty are spoiled: howl, O ye oaks of Bashan; for the forest of the vintage is come down.

Zec 11:3  There is a voice of the howling of the shepherds; for their glory is spoiled: a voice of the roaring of young lions; for the pride of Jordan is spoiled.

Earlier in the Isaiah 10 Study, we saw the Lord send the King of Assyria to humble Israel.  This is the violence upon Lebanon that will cover us and bring us to repentance.

Isa 10:33  Behold, the Lord, the LORD of hosts, shall lop the bough with terror: and the high ones of stature shall be hewn down, and the haughty shall be humbled.

Isa 10:34  And he shall cut down the thickets of the forest with iron, and Lebanon shall fall by a mighty one. 

Looking good outwardly means little to the Lord.  He is looking to our hearts and that is where our focus should be as fruit that remains comes only from the good and pure seed of Christ.  Our hearts are being changed little by little and our outward self-righteousness is being burned up as we are reaping what we are sowing living through these five woes of judgment.

Next week Lord willing, we will finish the last of the five woes and move into Habakkuk’s humble prayer of response where he shows the learning that comes by living through the chastening grace of God.

Suggested Further Reading:

The Color White Part 1

The Color White Part 2