Weekly Clarifying Wisdom: Do You Ever Ask God "Why?"

bible book studies Feb 21, 2024

1 Kings 4:29-30, "God gave Solomon wisdom and great insight, and a breadth of understanding as measureless as the sand on the seashore."

 "In biblical thought, wisdom has a wide range of meaning. Wisdom can mean simply the practical skills and qualities which humans can acquire in order to live successfully, or wisdom can refer to God's knowledge and creative power which transcend human scrutiny." [1]

Planet Earth may look fantastic from a satellite, but things can look grim for those living in this dusty sphere. Rising terrorism, global tensions, economic trauma, climate changes, flagrant immorality, and injustice cast a dark shadow over us earthlings. The world looks like some ominous time bomb with a short fuse.

It is little wonder that people begin to ask questions. Why is there so much hatred and hostility? Why all the injustice? Why do good people suffer? Why doesn't God do something? Why? Why? Why? It makes you want to text God and ask him some direct questions about his plans for this world because, from a human perspective, the current one does not make sense.

These penetrating questions are hardly new. Centuries before Christ came to this planet; an ancient prophet looked around at the violence and evil and cried out to God, "Why do you make me look at injustice? Why do you tolerate wrongdoing?. . Why are you silent while the wicked swallow up those more righteous than themselves?" (Habakkuk 1:3a, 13b, NIV). Habakkuk was saying, "According to what I know of you, God, this doesn't make sense!"

Unlike other prophets who declared God's message to the people, this prophet dialogued with God about the people. Most Old Testament prophets proclaimed divine judgment, but Habakkuk pleaded for divine judgment. This little book records a fascinating interchange between a perplexed prophet and his Maker. He not only asked the mysterious "whys" that plague humankind, he received an answer!

As we journey with Habakkuk this month, we, too, can move from confusion to confidence, from frustrated questions to faith-filled declarations. He teaches us to live by faith in a world of trouble. When life shakes us like a leaf in the storm, we learn to hold on to the unshakeable God who controls the storm. Prepare to encounter the God who exceeds our highest thoughts.

[1] Burnett, F. W. "Wisdom." Ed. Joel B. Green and Scot McKnight. Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospels 1992: 873. Print.

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