In Habakkuk 3:4-7, Habakkuk sees the Lord marching from the south coming from Teman and Mount Paran. Chisholm notes that Teman was an Edomite city located to the southeast of Judah and Mount Paran was a mountain range located to the south of Judah, near the Gulf of Aqaba. Habakkuk’s description of God in verses 3b-6 are terrible and frightening.
Habakkuk 3:3-7 (ESV)
God came from Teman,
and the Holy One from Mount Paran. Selah
His splendor covered the heavens,
and the earth was full of his praise.
4 His brightness was like the light;
rays flashed from his hand;
and there he veiled his power.
5 Before him went pestilence,
and plague followed at his heels.[a]
6 He stood and measured the earth;
he looked and shook the nations;
then the eternal mountains were scattered;
the everlasting hills sank low.
His were the everlasting ways.
7 I saw the tents of Cushan in affliction;
the curtains of the land of Midian did tremble.
Habakkuk Praises God (vs. 3-4)
The prayer of Habakkuk here in chapter three is a wonderful model of how prayer draws us close to God and enhances our view of Him. In chapters, one and two Habakkuk has many doubts and many questions. Now all of those have been turned to praise. Praise is his conclusion. Praise is where his journey of discovery led. Habakkuk sees a God whose splendor covers the skies so that His glory fills the earth. He is bright as lightning with a two-pronged lightning bolt flashing in his hand as an outward display of his power.
God created each of us to praise and worship Him
Jesus is the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last. We come from Him and we are going to Him. At the ends of our lives, every knee will bow to Him. For some people, this will be forced. They will do so with hate in their heart just before entering an eternity of judgment. But if we bow our knees now, then we will enter into heaven with an eternity before us to praise Him. We are created to be God worshipers. This is where the journey of all believers will take us. God’s people will stand before His throne praising Him forever. It is good to praise God like this, and God’s people need to do more of it. It is good to praise God because it:
- gives appropriate honor and glory to God.
- declares God’s specific works.
- teaches and reminds us of who God is and what He has done.
- places man in his proper position under God.
- builds confidence in the power and works of God.
In verse four we see Habakkuk attempt to describe God’s glory. It is no easy task! Four different words related to light are used including radiance, sunlight, rays, and flashing. In the Bible light is a symbol of holiness and truth. It also is often used to describe the glory of God. 
Plaques and Pestilence (vs 5)
When God takes his battle stance, the whole earth shakes. With just a mere look the nations are frightened, the mountains disintegrated, and the hills are flattened. God is just. When people rebel against Him, judgment will come, sooner or later. Plague struck (1 Chronicles 21) when David sinfully took a census. When the Assyrians tried to conquer Judah 185,000 were killed by pestilence. When the Israelites sinned by fornicating with Moabites, a plague came from God killing 24,000 people.
These events show us God’s clear power over life and death. In His justice, He could rightfully choose to kill us immediately. But He doesn’t. Every breath we have is from Him. Knowing that He has this power and that He normally doesn’t choose to exercise it, is a cause for thanks.
God surveys the earth (vs. 6)
In verse 6 we see that God is watching. He is involved with His creation. He is observing His people, at all times both aware of and involved with what is going on. Providentially He looks out for His people. Making use of even His enemies, He fulfills His plans. He is the Beginning and the End. Everyone is from Him and everyone is responsible to Him. Our first breath is from Him. And after our last breath, we will see Him. In all the interim He is working in our lives.
2 Chronicles 16:9 – For the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him.
1 Peter 3:12 – For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are open to their prayer.
Cushan and Median are Punished (vs. 7)
Cushan (part of the territory of Midian) and the land of Midian cannot stand up under God’s gaze. Their tents shook. Their tents were their dwellings, their homes. God’s judgment would collapse their homes and their very lives. Because they did not build their lives according to God’s principles they were susceptible to God’s judgment.
 Chisholm, Handbook on the Prophets, 440.
One Year Bible Reading Plan: September 18
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Praying, Meditating, and Journaling the Psalms:
Choose one of the following Psalms: One of the following Psalms: 18, 48, 78, 108, 138.
1: Read the psalm through in its entirety.
2: Take one verse at a time and pray the verse back to God as it applies to your life.
3: Meditate on the verse and ask the Holy Spirit what He is trying to teach you about God, your Christian walk, or about yourself.
4: Journal what you prayed about and the results of your meditation.
5: Move to the next verse. Continue through the entire psalm this way.
6: Write down one verse that stood out the most to you today on a 3X5 card and carry it with you throughout the day. Memorize the verse and hide it in your heart.
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Week 38: September 18-24
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New in the Shop: Daring of the Soul
“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen”(Hebrews 11:1, ESV). How daring is your soul to see what is not in sight?
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