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Be Patient Wait for Jesus – Part 2

Living in the Light / Anne Graham Lotz
The Truth Network Radio
July 31, 2022 3:00 pm

Be Patient Wait for Jesus – Part 2

Living in the Light / Anne Graham Lotz

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Here's Anne Graham Lotz. Habakkuk focused on God's Word. And then he focused on God's way. And sometimes we just judge God's ways too soon, you know.

But as judgment falls, as things get worse, he gives us a little comfort. In verse 4 he says, And I think he's saying and talking about the people around us, not upright and wicked and all that, but God knows who the righteous are. And it goes back to what we were talking about with Noah and living in that wicked world. And God, remember it said, this is the account of Noah and God keeps accounts. And he knows exactly who's righteous and who's living for him. In the midst of a wicked corrupt society, so the whole world in Noah's day was wicked. Everybody doing the wrong thing, but that didn't blind God to the one man who was living for him.

Who's doing the right thing. And God knows who you are. And God knows who I am. And he knows the righteous who are seeking to live by faith in the midst of this wicked corrupt society. So don't think that he's not paying attention.

He's keeping accounts. And so as we go through the final hour, God knows who you are. And I believe he's going to protect us. And if he lifts his hand of protection, then he has a greater purpose and we praise him.

Okay? When we want it, how we want it, where we want it, you know? It's not all about me. It's about bringing him glory. Living for his purpose. And he will work out his purpose.

He will finish what he starts in us. So then he pronounces five woes on the wicked. So Habakkuk is all upset about Babylonians being so wicked and used to judge Judah who's not as wicked. But God then says, Habakkuk, I'm against all wickedness. I'm against all sin.

This is something we need to know. God is against sin whether it's in America or Russia or Asia or China or the Middle East, Syria, Iran, South America. God is against all sin. He doesn't tolerate any sin. So now he's pronouncing five woes on sinners, period. It doesn't matter where you come from or who you are. In verse six, he's against the greedy.

So he says, and these all start with a woe. I don't think about extortion. I don't think of Wall Street. I think of these big corporations. I think of, you know, people get rich quick and the Proverbs says that borrowing weakens the nation and enslaves us to the lender. And I see so many of our enemies. We owe so much to our enemies. And one day they're going to call us to account.

And then verse nine is the next row. Woe to him who builds his realm by unjust gain to set his nest on high to escape the clutches of ruin. Woe to those who build up their business at somebody else's expense. And you think of foundations, government administrations, organizations. Third woe is in verse 12. Woe to him who builds a city with bloodshed, establishes a town by crime, the ruthless.

Nothing stands in their way. Crime pays. And I think of Planned Parenthood. I think of the abortion industry. I think of Vladimir Putin.

I think of Kim Jong Un. Woe to him through bloodshed. Woe to you. Verse 15. Woe to him who gives drink to his neighbors, pouring it from the wineskin until they're drunk so they can gaze on their naked bodies. And with everything coming out of Hollywood. Woe to you.

The pornographer, the date rapist, drug dealer, abortionist, the pimp, the sex trafficker. Woe to you. God sees it.

And he's against it. And the idolatress in verse 19. Woe to him who says to would come to life or to lifeless don't wake up. All the other gods. And in our nation we think we're not idolatrous because we don't have little Buddhas sitting around. But our idols are our entertainment and sports and coveting more. In fact, Black Friday comes in a week and people go through the malls.

They'll be online. They'll be shopping and gathering things that they can't afford and they don't really need. But they're just a covetousness in the way that people market things. They make us want what we don't have and what we can't afford. It's just idols. And the entertainment industry, sex is an idol.

Who's on the red carpet and who's sleeping with who and it's just a mess. So God's against it. Woe to you. And then he has a very solemn word in verse 20. At the end of the earth after he rules here for a thousand years, at the end of a thousand years, there's a scene that to me is the most chilling, the most frightening in all of scripture.

And I'm going to try to describe it briefly to you. But at the end of the millennium, God raises the dead. All those who went into eternity and they did not claim Jesus as savior. They did not confess their sin. They rebelled against God. They kept that rebellion as they stepped into eternity. They were outside of God's family. They were outside of his redemption.

They refused him. And so at the end of the money, he raises them. And one by one, they stand before the great white throne. And heaven and earth flee away. And there's no one there except the judge. And you can't even know his name. And the sinner stands before him.

And the books are opened. And in the books is an account of everything that sinner has done. And so he's judged according to his works. And, you know, people who say, well, God's going to judge my good works against my bad works.

If I've done more good works, then, you know, then he's going to let me know. God judges you against the perfection of his Holy Spirit. And he takes your works and not one of them is good enough to measure up to a holy God. And so he judges you for your works. And to be judged according to your works is to be self-condemned. And then he sends the person to hell. Or the person sends himself, actually, because he was depending on him. He was depending on his works.

I just want to read. Revelation 20, verse 11. Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. Earth and sky fled from his presence. So there's no lawyers. There's no lamb. There's no redeemer. There's no savior.

No name that you can call him. And there was no place for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne. And the books were opened.

And another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. And the sea gave up the dead that were in it. And death in Hades gave up the dead that were in them. And each person was judged according to what he had done. Then death in Hades were thrown into the lake of fire.

The lake of fire is the second death. And if anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire. And I can tell you, not one person who stood before that great white throne, not one person's name was found in the book of life.

Because if your name is written in the book of life, you're not going to stand before the great white throne. So I want to insert, praise God for the cross. So when we come to the cross and confess our sin and tell God we're sorry and we embrace Jesus as our Savior and we put our faith in Him alone and we surrender our lives to Him, He cleanses of our sin and He forgives us and places His Holy Spirit in us and He saves us from judgment. And we'll never be held accountable for the guilt of our sin because He took that at the cross. So one day we're going to be held accountable for the way we live our lives, not in a negative way, we're going to be rewarded for the things we've done according to His will, in obedience to His word, done His way, and there's going to be a reward ceremony, you know. But nobody's going to be held accountable for their sin because Jesus was held accountable in our place. But if you've never been to Jesus, if you've never been to the cross, if you've never claimed His forgiveness, if you said you didn't need it because your good works would get you in or you're religious enough or you're raised in the church and don't think it's necessary or there are other ways to God besides Jesus, then I'm warning you, you're going to stand before the great white throne. If that's your attitude when you step into eternity, and the solemn thing is we never know when we're going to step into eternity. It can come at a moment you're not expecting and just like that, you find yourself in eternity and one day standing before the judge and the great white throne and the books opened, and He's going to go through all those works and your works will condemn you to hell because you can't do enough of them, you can't do them perfectly enough to please a holy God. So just applying that to our prayers and I think of America and the people who I know right now are plotting and planning to take us down.

And they market things and they spin things and they deceive us and they're evil and they're wicked and they're trying to get people to do things that they shouldn't do. And, you know, so one day God sees it all and they're going to be held accountable. Kim Jong Un, you know, and I pray that somebody would share the gospel, we would pray he would repent, but if he doesn't repent, can I just tell you I'm thankful that there's a great white throne and he's going to stand before it and he can have his uncle killed and other people killed and people butchered and people in those gulags and treat people like animals. And one day the books will be opened and the judge is going to read out everything he's done and he will go to hell.

So there will be an accounting for the bad guys, do you know that? They can't get by with their badness and their evil and their wickedness. So focus on God's word and focus on God's way. He is righteous and He keeps accounts and He will hold them accountable. It's a very solemn thought and that's one reason I feel that in this final hour we would be sharing the gospel because the people step into eternity and they haven't found Christ.

Maybe because somebody like me hasn't shared the gospel, they're going to stand before that great white throne and so when we share the gospel and we pray with them and we lead them to faith in Jesus, we're snatching them from such an awful experience. So Habakkuk, while he's waiting, he's wrestled, he's watched and now he worships while he's waiting. And he's just coming, you know, God is telling him he's going to use the Babylonians but let me just finish that thought because God held the Babylonians accountable. The Babylonians came in and they took Judah into captivity and God used them for 70 years, they were in captivity but when they came out of captivity never again did they go into idolatry. And they have yet to recognize Jesus as their Messiah but one day they will.

But God brought them back. And so God then, because Babylon treated Judah so cruelly, he raised up the Persians and he used the Persians to judge Babylon. And then he raised up the Greeks to judge Persia and then he raised up the Romans to judge the Greeks and who will he raise up to judge America? Will it be North Korea? Russia? Iran?

Maybe ISIS popping up everywhere? You know, and it just doesn't seem right to us and we wrestle with it and we struggle against it but God does everything right and he accomplishes his purposes. He knows what he's doing. So at this point Habakkuk just sort of falls back and he's wrestled and he's watched and now he's going to worship. And he looks upward and he worships the God of history. And in verse 2 of chapter 3, O Lord, I have heard of your fame. I stand in awe of your deeds. O Lord, renew them in our day.

In our time make them known. In wrath remember mercy. And in this final hour facing judgment, I don't know what it's going to be, I don't know how it's going to be, I don't know if it's going to be before the rapture simultaneous but as we're facing something awful.

Maybe it's just a disaster in your own home or your family. In wrath remember mercy. When you hold us accountable, Lord, in wrath remember mercy. And he could remember the God of history, the God in the past renew your deeds, O Lord, and he could look back to Adam and Eve. And you remember when they were caught in their sin and they were hiding in the bushes and God found them and he rebuked them. He judged them, he pronounced judgment on them and then he slew the animals and he clothed them with the skins of animals and shed blood so that they could be clothed. And you wonder if the creator had tears coming down his cheeks because he knew that one day he would be the lamb who would be slain to cover them and their sin and their shame and their guilt. And in wrath God remembers mercy. And then Noah, when God said I'm going to destroy the whole world, so make yourself an ark because in wrath I remember mercy and whosoever will may come into that ark. And then Abraham praying for Sodom and God if there are ten righteous would you spare Sodom?

Yes, I'll spare it for ten. And Abraham goes the next morning where he had prayed and he looks out over the plain and sees smoke coming up from Sodom and he knows not even ten righteous were there. And he knows that Sodom has come under God's judgment but what he doesn't know is that God remembered Abraham's prayer and God dragged Abraham's nephew and his family out of Sodom because in wrath God remembers mercy. Remember when they were delivered from Egypt and they had ten plagues and the tenth one was the worst of all when the firstborn of every living thing would die. Unless somebody put blood over the lintel of the doorpost and everyone under that blood would be saved when the angel of death passed over because God was going to bring judgment on Egypt but in wrath he remembered mercy and saved those under the blood of the lamb. And Jericho and Joshua went to take that enemy stronghold, the Canaanite fortress that was blocking their way into the promised land and they went around it every day for seven days. The seventh day seven times, the seventh time they shouted and they blew their trumpets and the walls came down and the Israelites rushed in and they killed every man, woman, child, animal.

Except for the one little section of walls standing there with the scarlet cord dangling from the window and it was the home of a Canaanite prostitute, Rahab, who desperately wanted to belong to the people of God and should save the spies and in wrath God remembered Rahab. In wrath God remembers mercy. As America comes under his judgment I know there are going to be glimpses of God's mercy because just as God is just and righteous and holy he is also merciful and filled with loving kindness and faithfulness. So Habakkuk is saying God do it again and then I just skip through these verses but I'll point out in verse three he says you're the holy one, he's the God of purity. Verse three also it's a glimpse of the second coming actually when he says God has come from Teman, the holy one from Mount Paran, glory covers the heavens, his praise fills the earth and he's got a glimpse into the future and the real answer to his prayer when God's people are made right with God and they're brought back to the land and everything is alright is at the return of Jesus and so he sees down the future and the return of the glory of God filling the earth. And then the God of fury in verse five when God comes in the line of Judah to put down his enemies and he gets the world's attention. And then in verse six the God of eternity, his ways are eternal and in verse eight he's the Lord, oh Lord you are in charge of everything.

He can use natural elements when he says were you angry with the rivers, was your wrath against the streams, did you rage against the sea and he uses natural elements like we saw last night the environmental disasters for his own purpose to get our attention. Then I want you to look, he looks at the God of victory in verse 11 when he says sun and moon stood still in the heavens at the glen of your flying arrows, lightning of your flashing sphere and wrath you strode through the earth and in anger you thresh the nations. You came out to deliver your people to save your anointed one, you crushed the leader of the land of wickedness, you stripped him from head to foot. God moves heaven and earth to save his people and listen salvation is coming and I know Jesus is coming and one day the sky will unfold and he'll come back followed by the armies of heaven and he'll set everything right. And the world will be ruled in justice and righteousness and peace and goodness and love and it's going to be heaven on earth. But not until Jesus reigns but God is just saying Habakkuk, hold on, you know, worship, keep your focus on who I am.

God of victory and Habakkuk looks up and then he looks forward and he sees the future coming and he knows the judgment, they're right at the door of judgment so he looks forward with fear. And to be honest and I look ahead to see what's coming, what I know is coming if America doesn't turn around. I know it's coming if there's not revival in the church. I know it's going to go from bad to worse and I've been saying that for several years now.

It's going to get worse and it's going to get ugly. When God moves and we see him moving, by the way, the confusion, the turmoil in our world today, that's God moving. And sometimes when he moves it's not pleasant, it's ugly and you see him in Washington exposing the corruption and the deceit and the immorality and that's God moving, uncovering stuff that's been there and we thought everything was okay because it was all covered up. And God is saying I've had enough and I'm going to rip off the covers and show you what's going on to give us a chance to turn away from it and to repent of our sin. But if we don't, judgment's coming. Severe judgment. So Habakkuk looks ahead at the severe judgment. He was in the final hour looking at judgment on Judah and it came.

But he says in verse 16, I heard and my heart pounded, my lips quivered at the sound, decay crept into my bones and my legs trembled. And if you have grandchildren, I know you could identify with that kind of fear. What's coming on our nation? You know the rubber's going to hit the road. God's just not going to tolerate it. And so we know it's coming so we can be afraid but at the same time it's okay. You know, just tell God you're afraid. And then he faced the future with faith.

These are maybe some of the most beautiful verses in scripture. He says the fig tree doesn't bud. I look at the circumstances and I see no hope. No hope for the church.

It doesn't seem to be coming to revival. No hope for the nation. We're just getting worse and the fig trees are not budding. There are no grapes on the vine.

There's no extra. There's no fun. There's no sparkle to life.

We're losing our joy. The olive crop fails. There's no income. I lose my job. The fields produce no food. Plans for the future just come up empty. Though there are no sheep in the pen, no cattle in the stalls, my investments, retirement, social security, pensions, IRA, whatever they are, 401Ks, they just evaporate.

How do I respond? Yet I will rejoice in the Lord. I will be joyful in God my Savior. That's worship, isn't it? Where his focus is just on God and God alone. God, if you never answer my prayer, if you never resolve the conflict with my loved one, if you never heal the disease, if you never bring revival, if America just spirals right on down into judgment, yet I will rejoice in the Lord.

Sometimes joy is a choice, isn't it? I can hear the apostle Paul saying, yes, Anne, rejoice. And again I say, rejoice. And he said that from a prism. And then Habakkuk says in verse 19, and you just see that he's been set free from wrestling at this point, I think. He's wrestled and he's watched and now he's just worshiping.

And he says in verse 19, the sovereign Lord is my strength. He's sovereign. He's in control. God knows what he's doing. He's seated on the throne. He sees everything that's going on and he's in charge. He knows what he's doing. It looks like things are falling apart to you and me, but they're just falling into place. He's getting everything in order for the return of Jesus. And I know that.

It's just hard to watch it when it doesn't seem according to what we would think. The Lord is sovereign and he's my strength. He will give me power to go through this final hour.

He makes my feet like the feet of a deer. So he'll equip us to walk one day at a time through the things that are coming. And he enables me to go on the heights, to rise above whatever our circumstances are. So stay focused on the Word and stay focused on God's ways and then you just worship. And you can look up and concentrate on who God is, focus in on who he is and look forward with fear, yes, but with faith. Knowing that in the end God has it all under control and he knows the righteous, he knows who you are, he keeps the accounts and in wrath he remembers mercy. So Psalm 27 says, wait for the Lord, be strong, take heart, wait for the Lord.

The fourth verse of Isaiah 64. Since ancient times no one has heard, no ear has perceived, no eye has seen any God besides you who acts on behalf of those who wait for him. Wait for the Lord. We're standing at the train station, we're looking down the tracks, we see all the signs and signals and we get so excited and we're waiting and waiting and waiting for Jesus.

Be patient. God has his purpose that he's working out and we may live to see judgment coming on our nation, we may live to see things that we wish that we hadn't, but you just remember that God is in charge and he knows what he's doing. And he may answer our deep down prayer, maybe when judgment falls on America, if it comes before the rapture, and I'm talking about severe judgment, maybe that's the trigger that will bring revival to the church. And I can't help but think, my mother I'd asked her, you know mother with all of daddy's meetings and all of what I'm doing and what we're trying to, why haven't we experienced revival?

And she said, Ann we're just not desperate enough. So God may make us desperate and he may allow us to go through the first stages of severe judgment to make us desperate enough so the church will cry out and turn to God and will experience a revival and people will begin to see Jesus reflected in us and then they're going to want to come to know him and evangelism is going to take place and then the society will change. Maybe we'll have a last great awakening before Jesus comes back and maybe that'll be triggered by some really tough things. And if that's the case, we're going to trust him. We're going to trust him. And while we're trusting him we're going to rejoice because our God is sovereign and he's going to give us the strength and all that we need to do to go through these final hour one day at a time for his glory. So wait, patiently wait for Jesus.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-18 06:08:20 / 2023-03-18 06:18:18 / 10

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