Hab. 2:1 ¶ I will take my stand at my watchpost
and station myself on the tower,
and look out to see what he will say to me,
and what I will answer concerning my complaint.
Hab. 2:2 ¶ And the LORD answered me:
“Write the vision;
make it plain on tablets,
so he may run who reads it.
Hab. 2:3 For still the vision awaits its appointed time;
it hastens to the end—it will not lie.
If it seems slow, wait for it;
it will surely come; it will not delay.
Hab. 2:4 ¶ “Behold, his soul is puffed up; it is not upright within him,
but the righteous shall live by his faith.
This passage is so good. Habakkuk has positioned himself to hear from the Lord. Praying as you drive to work is great. Praying while you brush your teeth is holy. Setting yourself in a specific spot, in a specific way, not doing anything else, and praying and listening to the Lord is how Habakkuk does it here. He’s basically saying “I set apart a time and put myself in a place where I could be still and listen for what the Lord’s reply to my prayer would be.”
That’s the other half of praying that we forget about, isn’t it? It’s like asking Alexa what the weather is and running out the door before she tells you it’s raining and you’ll need a coat.
Even better than his stance to listen is what the Lord actually said.
The Lord Wanted His Message to Be Clear
Write this out so a herald can take it and announce it all over the place. Make this message easy to hear. If you have to put it on pamphlets, Facebook posts, TV waves, stickers, whatever. Get the word out plainly.
God’s Word is True, Even if We Have to Wait for It
This is a prophecy. This isn’t from a for-hire fortune teller to make you happy about your fortune. This is a message from God that expresses His faithfulness, compassion, justice, and mercy. That also means that the message might take a few centuries to be fully fulfilled. Bummer, I know, but if you’re in Christ, who is eternal, you’ll be there to see it take place.
Righteousness is a Real Way of Life
He then contrasts the wicked and the righteous. The wicked person has a puffed-up soul. That means presumptuous or arrogant. It can also mean — I’m not making this up — swollen like a hemorrhoid. (Yep. Hebrew idioms at their best.) The wicked person’s soul is swollen and terrible. It’s not right. They might look right on the inside, but within them it is not upright.
The righteous will live by their faith. That means that their faith drives them from the inside to be right on the outside. Jesus said that all of our words and actions are an overflow of what is inside of us.
Since Jesus died for our sins, all who believe in Him are righteous on the inside and therefore we live out of that righteousness. That’s what Paul would write about in Romans 1:17 – the righteousness from God is the righteousness by which we now live in Christ.
Put yourself in a a prayer position and get ready to listen. God wants to remind you about the righteous person He made you to be when you were re-created in Him. He wants to tell you about the righteousness with which He has already clothed you!