Abiding, Belief, Bible, Devil, God's Will, Judgment, Relationships, Scripture

GOD’S FEET

HABAKKUK 3:12

In indignation You marched through the earth; in anger You trampled the nations.”

I don’t know if you have ever heard the sound of an army marching. Depending on the size, it can be quite loud. You can hear the sound before you see the bodies, in most cases. In ancient times, armies would stomp their feet and even shout in an attempt to put fear into their enemies.

Habakkuk describes God as marching and trampling. His approach to the nations who do not know Him and who reject Him is no secret. They will stand in judgment. God’s anger, His wrath against sin must be satisfied. That is why He tramples the pagan. That is why He will judge all unbelievers.

APPLICATION

God isn’t making some kind of surprise attack. He is not sneaking in covertly to try to ambush people. He has made known very publicly His requirements. God is not trying to trick people or mislead them so He can zap them. No! God wants all men to come to Him. He sent His own Son to die to make that possible.

So, why do so many people reject Him? Why are so many still left in the world who do not know Him? Because the enemy is working overtime to prevent any others from coming to a saving knowledge of Jesus. It is our job to tell them. How will they know unless we go?

This Christmas, tell someone about Jesus. Maybe while you are out shopping, share Jesus with the cashier at the store. Perhaps you could give a tract to some people at the mall. Maybe you could give gift bags to someone who is homeless and include a message about Jesus. Find some way this Christmas to bring someone to Christ.

Father, I do not fear Your footsteps because I know I belong to You.

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Bible, Darkness, Death, Destruction, Devil, Enemies, Fighting, Satan, Scripture

DEATH AND DESTRUCTION

HABAKKUK 3:5

“Before Him goes plague, and plague comes forth after Him.”

We all have seen scenes of death and destruction in pictures from wars or disease or famine. Those images burn into our minds. They are hard to forget. We feel helpless to do anything to cause any change. Our hearts break for the families of their loved ones caught in such scenarios.

Habakkuk describes the scene here where death and destruction go before God as He conquers all His enemies. He has sent plagues and pestilence. He used hornets and wild animals. Regardless of His instrument, the result was and is the same. His enemies are destroyed. Nothing can stand before Him. We would do well to remember that.

APPLICATION

People today think they can thumb their nose at God and keep on living as they wish. I don’t have to list the abhorrent lifestyles that are being exhibited everywhere, even in churches. Anything goes. There seems to be no moral compass left in the world. The enemy appears to have totally brainwashed society into believing that God has no say in the affairs of men.

But oh how wrong he is! Just like in Habakkuk’s day, God will rise up and defeat all enemies of the cross. We must remain faithful and true. We must continue to share the good news. We have to let our lights shine brightly. Even the smallest light can pierce the darkness. Let it shine.

I refuse to be afraid of those who speak against our Savior. I refuse to allow their disregard for God dampen my passion for Him. I am called to be a soldier of the cross, so I will wield my sword and give my life to advance His kingdom here on earth. I know my God has my back and will be victorious.

Your enemies will scatter, Lord. All You have to do it show up!

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Bible, Captivity, Despair, Devil, Enemies, Evil, Faithfulness, Satan, Scripture, Submission, Surrender, Trust

WILL IT EVER STOP?

HABAKKUK 1:17

“Will they therefore empty their net, and continually slay nations without sparing?”

(This is blog #2500. I cannot believe it. I began these post on January 1, 2016. I am about to finish my 7th year of writing these daily blogs. Please pray for me as I seek the Lord as I write these each day.)

The rise of evil and its spread throughout the world seems to never cease. It just gets worse and worse. Just the moment you think it can’t get any worse, it does. The depth of evil a person will plunge is beyond our imaginations. Will there ever be an end to this? When will God step in and stop it?

That’s the question Habakkuk is asking at the end of Chapter One. God has shown him this vision of the Chaldeans coming in and defeating them. He knows of their ruthlessness. He does not want his people to suffer. He is crying out to God, “When will they stop? Will they ever stop? Haven’t they done enough?”

APPLICATION

You may have been under spiritual attack from the evil one and have cried out the same as Habakkuk. “Lord, when will it end? I can’t take much more of this.” Trials come in all shapes and sizes. Some last a long time and others are over quickly. It is those that linger that truly test us.

We must remember, though, that God will not put on us more than we can handle with His help. We surely cannot handle it on our own, but as we submit and surrender to Him, we can get through whatever it is we face. There may still be dark days as you trust Him, but we are assured of His faithfulness.

I have faced these challenges. I have shared about some of them in my blog posts of the past. Suffice it to say, I have learned these lessons the hard way. There have been times when I entered a trial fully trusting. Then there are other times I went in kicking and screaming. But through them all I have found my Lord to be right there with me, sustaining and nurturing me. Will you rest in Him in the midst of your struggles?

Father, in Your strong hands I place myself. Do with me as You see fit.

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Bible, Devil, Holiness, Humility, Pride, Satan, Scripture

STUCK ON THEMSELVES

HABAKKUK 1:7

“They are terrifying and feared; their justice and authority originate with themselves.”

I have known a few people in my lifetime that you could describe as “stuck on themselves.” As the saying goes, “Their nose is so stuck up in the air, if they got caught outside during a rainstorm, they would drown.” I don’t want to be that way. I had rather be seen as a humble man, not seeking attention for myself.

The Chaldeans, however, were a proud, ferocious people. They believed the sun and moon rose and set in them. They were powerful and demanding. They were ruthless to those they conquered. God would use them, but just like the devil, He would only give them so much chain to run on.

APPLICATION

Two of the new verses I have been memorizing have to do with humility (1 Peter 5:5-6). 1 Peter 5:5b says, “For God is opposed to the proud, but will give grace to the humble.” I prefer God’s grace over His opposition, don’t you? I do not want to face an irate God over my arrogance and pride. That will not end well.

If you are struggling with pride, just look at the middle letter – I. It’s the same middle letter you will find in the word sin. Hmmm. I don’t think that is a coincidence. Pride is what caused Lucifer to lose his heavenly position. Pride is what sent Nebuchadnezzar into the fields eating grass for seven years. Pride is what led Samson to reveal the source of his strength to Delilah.

Would you join me today in denouncing any pride in your life? “Therefore humble yourself under the mighty hand of God so that He may exalt you at the proper time.” Oh, to fall into God’s hands in this manner. He is comforting. He is consoling. He is loving. Come to Him.

Oh, Lord, I desire to humble myself under Your hand so that You may exalt me when You are ready.

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Abiding, Accountability, Battles, Bible, Commands, Courage, Defense, Devil, Enemies, Fighting, Scripture

MAN YOUR BATTLE STATIONS

NAHUM 3:14

“Draw for yourself water for a siege! Strengthen your fortifications! Go into the clay and tread the mortar! Take hold of the brick mold!

I love to watch old war movies. I especially love the battle scenes. I can just hear the ship captain commanding his sailors to man their battle stations. They would all scurry off to whatever position they had been assigned and trained to operate. They were responsible for their area and to back up others around them.

Nahum is sarcastically telling the Ninevites to “man their battle stations.” They were to: 1) get water and supplies to last during the siege 2) strengthen the city walls 3) prepare mortar 4) apply that mortar. You see, Nineveh was used to being the one who did the siege on others. Their walls were not built to withstand a siege. They, in fact, were under siege by their enemies for two years.

APPLICATION

Let me remind you that we are under siege. Yes, every day the enemy is banging on our “walls” and “gates” trying to defeat us. Rest assured; the captain is aware. He tells us to be ready. Put on our armor. Prepare for battle. Strengthen your fortifications through His Word and prayer. Suit up and fight.

That may all sound ominous. Don’t let it scare you. You see, we have a secret weapon – Jesus Christ, our Advocate. He is the one who fights for us. We just must surrender to His lordship over our lives. Just as sailors must obey the orders of their captain, we must obey our Lord. His Word directs us in every order He has for us.

I have made the decision to follow Jesus, no matter what. How about you? Are you a fair-weather follower or will you follow Jesus to very gates of hell, if necessary? He is looking for those kinds of followers. Let’s man our battle stations, friends.

I have decided to follow Jesus; I have decided to follow Jesus; I have decided to follow Jesus; no turning back, no turning back.

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Battles, Bible, Destruction, Devil, Enemies, Fighting, Fire, Protection, Satan, Scripture

BOLT THE DOOR

NAHUM 3:13

“Behold, your people are women in your midst! The gates of your land are opened wide to your enemies; fire consumes your gate bars.”

I grew up in an era when we did not worry too much about locked doors. The 60s and early 70’s did not warrant it. I cannot even recall if my grandma’s house had a bolt on it. I am sure the doors were locked at times, but it was not a huge concern. I lived in a small town with little crime.

Nahum tells Nineveh that their gate bars will be burned. This was a common practice in those days. The enemy would build a fire on the outside of the gate which would ignite the sun-dried wooden gate. This would burn the wooden bar on the inside or after burning for a while the iron or brass bar would simply fall off. The city was now wide open for invasion.

APPLICATION

Let me ask you something. What is barring your gate against the enemy? We cannot depend on any man-made protection against the enemy. He will set fire to your self-constructed methods. They will burst into flames. You will then be vulnerable to his attacks.

The Word of God is the only “bar” that can keep those gates shut. So many men have opened the gate to pornography, which will burn your house down. But with the Word of God as your  “bar” of protection, you can defend yourself. Better yet – the Word defends you. You have the ability to quench those flames that are set against you.

I try to keep my gates shut tight with His Word. My daily Quiet Times are key to that. Spending time with the Lord is my fortification. The water of the Word is my fire brigade. All I have to do is recall those Scriptures that pertain to the fire. That means you have to spend time in the Word. Are you? Is the Word your “bar”?

I know my gates are barred with Your Word, Lord. Help me show others how to bar their own gates, too.

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Accused, Affection, Anxiety, Bible, Blessing, Compassion, Devil, Encouragement, Enemies, Love, Relationships, Satan, Scripture, Security

YOU’RE WORTHLESS

NAHUM 3:6

“‘I will throw filth on you and declare you worthless, and set you up as a spectacle.’”

I have known so many people who were told time and time again that they are worthless. Demeaning words spoken by mean people. Words meant to belittle and beat down others. It is the saddest when these words are directed at children. Their little faces are stricken. Their spirits scarred by harsh and undeserving words.

Nahum is sharing the words of the Lord towards Nineveh in today’s verse. These are harsh words from the Lord but remember who they are directed towards. Nineveh was an evil city which was part of an evil nation. They were godless and unrepentant. In the economy of God, they were worthless. God was indeed using them as an example to others.

APPLICATION

In contrast, God tells us we are highly valued. We are His treasure, the apple of His eye. He loves us with an uncompromising love. We can do nothing to cause Him to stop loving us. We may disappoint Him, but we can never do anything where He would declare us worthless.

If you are hearing those words, they are not from the Lord. They are from the evil one who wants to tear you down. He doesn’t want you to feel loved. He wants you to feel worthless and of no value. Do not believe those words. They are lies straight from the pit of hell.

As a child of the Father, you are loved. Walk in that love. Believe that love. Share that love. And as you do that, you will truly know the love of Jesus. It will envelope you. It will lift you on those days when the devil is whispering those lies to you. Remember that Jesus loves you with an everlasting love. Hallelujah!

I celebrate You, Lord. I am so thankful for Your love that will never fade.

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Adultery, Bible, Cleansing, Devil, Flesh, Guilt, Judgment, Scripture, Sin

THE LUST OF THE FLESH

NAHUM 3:4

All because of the many sexual acts of the prostitute, the charming one, the mistress of sorceries, who sells nations by her sexual acts, and families by her sorceries.”

When I traveled the roads of Florida, I was very aware of a string of billboards that littered the landscape. They were advertisements for truck stops that featured nude dancing girls. The pictures of the young ladies were plastered all over those billboards. I always had this thought – they are someone’s little girls. What happened?

It was the same thing that happened in Nineveh. The lust of the flesh is as strong now as it was then. Nineveh was knee deep in sorcery and temple prostitutes. The flesh reigned as king (and queen). Hedonistic behavior was what ruled the day. But now their judgment was upon them. Nahum says it was “because of the many sexual acts of the prostitute.” Moses’ words to Reuben and Gad in Numbers 32:23 ring in my ears – you may be sure your sins will find you out.

APPLICATION

Another passage is appropriate here – this time from the New Testament. 1 John 2:15-17 says “15 Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world. 17 The world is passing away and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God continues to live forever.”

The world is still enticing us with its lusts. The pornography industry is making billions of dollars a year off of the depraved minds of its customers. Satan is having a heyday. He loves keeping us in the sewer.

But let me tell you something. There is hope. God’s Word can transform your mind. It can cleanse all those evil, wicked thoughts from your mind and give you a fresh start. If you are struggling with pornography and/or a lifestyle of the flesh, come to Jesus. Let Him wash you completely.

O Father, thank You for setting me free from the lust of the flesh. Thank You for cleansing my mind with Your Word.

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Battles, Bible, Devil, Enemies, Faith, Protection, Satan, Scripture, Victors

THE APPROACHING ENEMY

NAHUM 3:2

“The sound of the whip, the sound of the roar of the wheel, galloping horses and bounding chariots!”

I have never seen a chariot race. Chariots are not used very much anymore. But one of my favorite, all-time movies is Ben Hur. There is this classic chariot race near the end of the movie which is intense. Ben Hur, played by the late Charlton Heston, defeats his enemy in the arena. I just love that movie.

Nahum foresees the approaching enemy of Nineveh. He can envision their chariots racing down upon the city. He uses some words intentionally that, when read or said out loud, have rough “r” sounds: רעשׁ ra‛ash (roar), דהר dâhar (galloping), מרקדה meraqēdâh (bounding). You could almost hear the noises as Nahum said this.

APPLICATION

Who is our enemy? How can we know when he is approaching? 1 Peter 5:8-9 tell us. “8 Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 9 So resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brothers and sisters who are in the world.”

We are at war, beloved. The enemy has his sights set on us. He knows he has lost the war, but he will settle for some victories in some battles in our lives. When I hear of families being torn apart, I see the enemy at work. He wants to destroy the church (the bride of Christ) and attempts to do that by destroying Christian families from within.

I pray you are praying for your family daily. I pray you are praying God’s hedge of protection over them. Without His protection, we are vulnerable. Be alert. Stay focused. Pray without ceasing. With Jesus all things are possible. We walk in victory. Don’t forget that.

Thank You, Lord, for watching over me. Help me stay under the umbrella of Your protection.

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Accused, Affliction, Battles, Bible, Defeat, Devil, Evil, Power, Scripture, Victors

LED AWAY

NAHUM 2:7

It is set: She is stripped, she is led away, And her slave women are sobbing like the sound of doves, beating their breasts.”

I had a friend, who is now with the Lord, who was captured and was a prisoner of war during World War II. He survived the Bataan Death March in the Philippines that was led by the Japanese. He told me once how hopeless and helpless he felt. I cannot imagine what he went through.

Nahum is describing Nineveh as a woman being led away in captivity – stripped, sobbing, beating their breasts. Hopeless, helpless! When Nineveh was defeated, the surviving inhabitants were led away. Nineveh would never be the same. Rebellion against God never ends well.

APPLICATION

We often feel defeated. We feel hopeless and helpless when the enemy is upon us. When we give in to the attacks, he can rob us of our joy. But we must remember what Paul said to Timothy in 2 Timothy 1:7. “For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline.”

We are not defeated. We are victorious because of Christ. We are the victors. The war has already been decided, and we are on the winning side. Never forget that. We will face battles in the future, and we may fail at times. But we are not captives.

Aren’t you glad that you are not on a death march? When you  get discouraged, look up. You need allies in your life who can come alongside you during those trying times. Most of all, turn to Jesus, who can take all your pain away. You are NOT DEFEATED!

Victory in Jesus, my Savior forever. He sought me and bought me with His redeeming love.

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