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Week Two (4/9-4/16) Discussion Questions - Habakkuk 1:1-4

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Author Topic: Week Two (4/9-4/16) Discussion Questions - Habakkuk 1:1-4  (Read 1758 times)
sarahmae
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« on: April 12, 2009, 07:09:51 pm »

What stands out to you or speaks to when you read these verses?

How does this prophecy begin in verse one?  Compare a couple of translations.
What was the main question Habakkuk had?
Read Psalm 74:10 and 79:5.  How does the Psalmist appeal to God in 74:22-23 and 79:14?  What does this teach us about the right way to handle our questions and struggles?
What did Jesus teach his disciples about this in Luke 18:1-8?  What should we do in times when it seems like God will not hear and act?
What is one of the reasons for this situation according to verse 4?
What can give us the confidence we need when we face such difficulties?

Pray for someone today who is struggling to trust God in a very difficult situation. 
*Don't forget to add your prayer requests/praises to the prayer section of the forum!


This week's discussion questions come from: http://www.sermonplayer.com/c/cabotbible/pdf/19989549.pdf  (You can also find some great "history" questions here as well.)
« Last Edit: April 12, 2009, 09:02:21 pm by sarahmae » Report Spam   Logged

"I don't claim to have found the truth but I know it has found me."  Sara Groves

Christin
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« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2009, 09:37:42 pm »

Upon reading these verses, the first thing that comes to mind is, "Can he talk to God like that?" LOL I know that sounds weird, but I'm not so bold, I guess! God is God and I am not. His ways are not our ways and I don't know the first thing about what He's thinking when He does (or allows) bad things to happen.

In verse 1 it shows that Habakkuk was commissioned to give an ominous announcement. Habakkuk couldn't understand why the Jewish people had strife and conflict, not with their enemies, but amongst themselves.

Grr, that's all I have time for tonight. I'll be back as soon as I can! Smiley
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~Christin
sarahmae
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« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2009, 07:37:49 pm »

Before we begin the discussion, please don't feel like you have to systematically answer every question on here.  Just write your thoughts, what stood out to you, or answer the question or questions that spoke to you

Habakkuk's message from God, the oracle, was a burden - a thing to be lifted up (amplified version).  I thought that was interesting...

I love how Habakkuk is just downright honest with God - with how he's feeling and seeing.  "Why do you tolerate wrong?"  I have asked this question myself many times, and here is a prophet asking it of God.  I am assured somehow by this...by the fact that God ordained an entire book of the bible pretty much dedicated to Habakkuk's pleas of injustice.  God knows what He's doing, so much so that He allows Habakkuk the freedom to ask such bold questions.

Here is also what I wrote in my notebook this week: we can be honest and authentic with our feelings, hurts, fears, even anger before God.  Whatever we bring to Him though should have a wrapping of praise and faith...or perhaps the praise and faith should be the gift, and the wrapping the emotions...

Loved the parable of the persistent widow!
-widow keeps asking unjust judge to help her
-he finally relents so she'll stop "bothering" her
-God is just and will bring about justice for His chosen ones

"And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night?  Will he keep putting them off?  I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly.  However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?"


Are we crying out to Him day and night or are we complacent and flippant in our prayers?


*God will eventually bring about justice and when it comes it will be swift.


For further study:
Mark Driscoll's sermon series on Habakkuk:  http://www.marshillchurch.org/media/habakkuk
Alistair Begg sermon: http://www.parksidechurch.com/site/c.iqLRIUOCKtF/b.1467791/k.96A1/Services_Online.htm  (Scroll down to Sunday Evening Service)
« Last Edit: April 15, 2009, 07:42:16 pm by sarahmae » Report Spam   Logged

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Becky
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« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2009, 11:20:55 pm »

Such great thoughts so far! I have to admit I have really slacked this week. I went to bed reallllly late Sunday night and it's totally messed with my schedule. By the time I'm home from work I'm exhausted and reading is the last thing on my mind.

Hopefully by next week I will be back on track.
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sarahmae
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« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2009, 07:01:30 am »

Don't give up girl!  And don't feel like you have to answer the discussion questions.  Maybe with your schedule, reading a couple verses a day and just taking them in is what works for you.  Remember, we are here to support and encourage you!   Smiley
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"I don't claim to have found the truth but I know it has found me."  Sara Groves
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« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2009, 12:22:15 pm »

I feel like the frustration of Habakkuk comes out in his words.  He talks as though he's at the end of his rope and feels like God doesn't even hear him and wonders if He will ever show up.  Oh how I've felt that before.  Many times.  I love that God gives us this example in Habakkuk that we can come to him and be totally real.  He desires for us to have an authentic relationship with him.  He wants us to be honest.  There is such freedom in that.  I guess that's one of the differences in serving a "god" somewhere out there and serving the one real and true God.  Our relationship allows us to come to him and tell him what we are really thinking and how we really feel.

The parable of the widow and unjust judge really impacted me this week.  This is what I wrote as I read it:
Be persistent.  Never give up.  Keep pounding on the door of heaven until He answers you.
Jesus commanded us to "cry out day and night".  He WANTS us to drive him crazy with our requests.  He wants us to build within us that kind of persistent faith that he longs to see when he returns. 
Jesus views our persistence and boldness as FAITH.  Wow. 
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HeathersHodgepodge
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« Reply #6 on: April 16, 2009, 01:07:29 pm »

How does this prophecy begin in verse one?  Compare a couple of translations.
The prophecy begins as the burden, the oracle, or the problem.
What was the main question Habakkuk had?
Habakkuk's question was essentially "When are You going to do something about this?"
Read Psalm 74:10 and 79:5.  How does the Psalmist appeal to God in 74:22-23 and 79:14?  What does this teach us about the right way to handle our questions and struggles?
The Psalmist appears to be trying to spur God into action (can't we all relate to that feeling?). While I don't know if it's really okay to take this tone with God, God is, after all, God, and it's not like He wouldn't know what's really in your heart. So, be honest. Admit what you feel, call it what it is. But take it to God. Don't run around asking everyone else what you should do. There's certainly good in seeking advice from others, but our main source of answers and advice should come from God. Any advice from a person, no matter how Godly that person may be, is subject to distortion. When you do seek others for advice, filter what they say through the Bible and the Holy Spirit and see it is syncs up.
What did Jesus teach his disciples about this in Luke 18:1-8?  What should we do in times when it seems like God will not hear and act?
Keep asking; don't give up. Show faith.
What is one of the reasons for this situation according to verse 4?
People have lost respect for God and consideration for other people.
What can give us the confidence we need when we face such difficulties?
Ultimately God can, through the Holy Spirit, His Word, and even other people. In the passage from Luke, it references how the justice will come swiftly. The swiftly is swiftly according to God's point of view, not ours. Waiting for God is incredibly difficult, but worthwhile, because it can build your faith like nothing else can.
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Jacquie
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« Reply #7 on: April 17, 2009, 08:16:49 am »

I know I am a day late here, but better late than never.  I first want to say to all of you that I love doing this Bible study with you.  Everyone has great feedback and hearts to share. 

I was reminded in the first verse that this oracle or burden that Habakkuk received was a vision.  I am always amazed when reading the Old Testament how often God spoke to His people in visions.  How I wish He would do that for me when I am struggling! 

Habakkuk is asking why does evil seem to go unpunished and why does God not respond to prayer, especially for the sake of justice.  Though through the noted Psalms, we see that we must handle our struggles with continuous prayer, trust in God, and have faith that His truths will set us free from our burdens.  We must praise Him IN ALL THINGS.  Jesus told us to pray and not lose heart - Have faith.  God is a God of justice.

Habakkuk's prophecy began with his attack on Judah's violence and strife and perverted justice in 1:3, 4.  You might expect that when he comes to tell the people how to be saved in the judgment he would say: "Cease being violent!  Do justice!  Put away strife!"  (That's what Amos said.)  But he doesn't.  When the judgment is certain and the question is, "How can I gain my life before the wrath of a holy God?" Habakkuk's answer is trust him. "The just shall live by his faith" (2:4).
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Jacquie
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« Reply #8 on: April 17, 2009, 09:33:41 am »

I forgot to say this in my last post but really wanted to say it.  As far as Habakkuk being so bold in speaking with God, I agree that God wants to hear our hearts just the way we really are - not holding anything back.  God already knows everything about us and who we really are - so we may as well be real with Him.  My prayer is that as we form the habit of being real with Him, that perhaps in that process we can be forgiving and accepting of ourselves in order to be healed and made whole through Him.  And then we can be real with everyone else around us.
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« Reply #9 on: April 23, 2009, 06:57:44 am »

What stands out to you or speaks to when you read these verses?  The boldness of this man to demand from God an answer for what he (Habakkuk) must be enduring.

How does this prophecy begin in verse one?  Compare a couple of translations.
In the Quest Study Bible it states:  "The oracle that Habakkuk the prophet received.
In King James:  The burden which Habakkuk the prophet did see.

I found it interesting the word difference.  The definition of oracle is "A divine utterance delivered to man, usually in answer to a request for guidance." (International Standard Bible Encyclopedia)

Burden is "In both the King James Version and the Revised Version (British and American) massa’ is translated "burden," as applied to certain prophetic utterances; but both the American Revised Version, margin and the Revised Version, margin have "oracle." Examples are Isa 13:1; 14:28, and often; Jer 23:33,36,38, no marginal reading; Eze 12:10; Na 1:1; Hab 1:1; Zec 9:1; 12:1; Mal 1:1. As was natural under the circumstances, such oracles usually denounced judgment upon place or people. Hence, probably the translation "burden." But some of these prophetic utterances do not contain denunciation or threat (Zec 12). The passage in Jer, moreover, implies that the prophet used the term in the sense of "oraele," for scoffers are reproved for perverting the word and giving it the meaning "burden." Massa’, therefore, means something taken up with solemnity upon the lips, whether threatening or not, and the rendering, "burden," ought most likely to be given up."  But when I think of the word burden its to be laden upon, so this was a great way to see an alternative in word useage.




What was the main question Habakkuk had?  Why had God not rescued him from a life surrounded by sin.

Read Psalm 74:10 and 79:5.  How does the Psalmist appeal to God in 74:22-23 and 79:14?  In 74:22-23 The psalmist is asking God how long He will allow them to dishonor Him.  Bold statement.  And there isn't a 79:14....

Stopping here because my little girl woke up:)  I'll finish when I come back at naptime!!

What does this teach us about the right way to handle our questions and struggles?
What did Jesus teach his disciples about this in Luke 18:1-8?  What should we do in times when it seems like God will not hear and act?
What is one of the reasons for this situation according to verse 4?
What can give us the confidence we need when we face such difficulties?
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