Listen to the message
(To download: Right Click, choose “Save Target As…”)
Series: Visiting Speakers
Sun am 8 December 2013 – Dr Robert Munien
Hab. 3:16; Hab. 1:1-5; (Hagg. 2:6-8); Rom. 12:2; John 6:63; Heb. 4:4-10
I want to talk about the day of trouble as Habbakuk the prophet sees from a kingdom perspective. He sees a day of trouble, but in the day of trouble he sees a day of rest. When I heard, my body trembled; My lips quivered at the voice; Rottenness entered my bones; And I trembled in myself, That I might rest in the day of trouble. When he comes up to the people, He will invade them with his troops (Hab. 3:16). He is going to invade the nations with His troops. Habbakuk receives a prophetic vision from God that Judah will be taken captive by the Chaldeans. The burden which the prophet Habakkuk saw, The Prophet’s Question, O Lord, how long shall I cry, And You will not hear? Even cry out to You, “Violence!” And You will not save. Why do You show me iniquity, And cause me to see trouble? For plundering and violence are before me; There is strife, and contention arises (Hab. 1:1-3). God is shaking the nations and political systems of this world. Babylon is a political system and ideology that is opposed to the kingdom of God and rule of God. Babylon, like Egypt, represents when God’s people have been taken captive by the world and its economic and political systems, its religious systems. This world is not our home; the kingdom is where we are to rest. In the day of trouble there is rest only in the kingdom. Outside of the kingdom Habbakuk sees, not only in his day, but also in our day and for all of God’s people, he sees a day of trouble. The nations of the world are shaking. The intelligence of this world is unable to calculate the economic disaster around the world. Violence invades almost every nation of the world. There needs to arise a people that are not governed by the system of this world. What we see and what we hear must cause something in our spirit and in our minds and we must no longer live on the same plane and on the same level.
We are seated in heavenly places with Christ, to rule and have dominion over this world. There is a lot of talk of dominion but if there is no evidence of the power and authority of the kingdom to change society, families and individuals, we are just talking the talk; we are playing church. My heart is in perfect rest in this day of trouble. Those who have put their hearts into the economic system of this world, their world is going to shake with the world of the unbeliever. It is being shaken by a sovereign mighty God who claims He is the King of the kingdom. If He cannot take this world by peace that He wrought through the cross where Jesus said, “it is finished” and He made grace available to all mankind, then He is going to have to shake the world to bring the world to Him. Every system; philosophical, social, political, economic, health systems – every system is in disarray; it is out of order. But there are people in the world while the shaking and trouble are taking place who have perfect rest in God. Is your soul at rest?
We have become too accustomed to making this world our home. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God (Rom. 12:2). Do not be systematically patterned by the systems that are in this world. “He said, I will shake the nations, but the gold is mine, the silver is mine, and I am going to give it to a people in rest” (Hagg. 2:6-8).
What is the difference between you and your neighbour who is not a Christian? If he is being shaken are you being shaken? Or has the kingdom of God imposed itself upon you until the value of the kingdom rule is upon you and your family? God’s government is the perfect government where there is no violence, where there is only peace. God governs by peace and justice. The only place where you are going to find justice and equalization is the kingdom of God. Capitalistic systems are not fair. Democratic systems are not fair. The only system that is fair is Theocratic. The only system where there is no poor and no rich is the kingdom of God, where God is totally King. The King provides for His citizens and the King we serve gave His life for us.
What is the reality of praying kingdom prayers? What are we as His kingdom agents here to do? The wicked surround the righteous. The Psalmist ask why the wicked prosper in the midst of the righteous. Evil triumphs because the righteous do not stand in the place of their righteousness, and they do not shine as they are called to shine in the darkness. Seven days a week we are to stand in the face of injustice, contention and violence and be the salt and light of the kingdom. Let Your kingdom come, Your absolute rule come upon this earth first, so that the world is not ruling over me, and the world’s economic system is not ruling over me. God has an economic policy in the Bible and if we would follow His word, we will come out of poverty. You will see the kingdom of God explode; you will see the goodness of God, the righteousness of God and the prosperity of the Lord. You will begin to see God! Only the poor can say “I am rich”. For every good deed I need to do, God supplies every need. When the kingdom of God imposes itself and we allow God’s kingdom to come and to rule in our body, soul and spirit, there is absolutely nothing in this world that will shake us. There is a rest unto the people of God. God is doing a work: Look among the nations and watch— Be utterly astounded! For I will work a work in your days which you would not believe, though it were told you (Hab. 1:5). You will be astonished if you only know what God is doing! That is how grand and majestic and glorious it is.
There is going to be a generation that is not going to die (=sleep), that is going to step over death. We can be that generation! In the New Testament they did not believe they would die. In the kingdom it is always today. Faith is never in past tense; faith is always in the present tense. “Now faith is!” (Heb. 11:1). Faith is for today; hope is for tomorrow; love is for eternity. Faith seizes a thing in the kingdom today!
He again fixes a certain day, “Today,” saying through David after so long a time just as has been said before, “Today if you hear His voice, Do not harden your hearts.” For if Joshua had given them rest, He would not have spoken of another day after that. So there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God. For the one who has entered His rest has himself also rested from his works, as God did from His (Heb. 4:4-10). He was finished His works; when we received grace, works ended. From that day on we are in rest. When Jesus said “it is finished” we entered into the seventh day, we entered into peace with God. We are seated in Him in heavenly places. Our rest is not altered by what happens around us. We are unmoveable, unshakeable. The fruit of the kingdom is not eating and drinking, but righteousness, joy and peace in the Holy Ghost. Righteousness is rightness with God; peace is a product of righteousness, and joy comes from being peaceful. The joy of the Lord is our strength!