Habakkuk 2:14; 3:17–18 “For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea … Though the fig tree should not blossom and there be no fruit on the vines, though the yield of the olive should fail and the fields produce no food, though the flocks should be cut off from the fold and there be no cattle in the stalls, yet I will exult in the Lord; I will rejoice in the God of my salvation.
Observation: It is clear that Habakkuk passionately loved God. He prophesied judgment on sinful Judah, yet he also broke out in praise the likes of which is hardly found in the Old Testament outside the psalms. His simile in 2:14 stretches language as though seeking to convey never-before-imagined meaning: that the knowledge of the glory of the Lord would so fill the earth that it would be like water covering the sea.
Application: Is there anywhere on the sea that is not water? Can there be found any nook or cranny of the sea without the wetness of water covering it? Of course not! And just as this perfect physical example of complete coverage soaks my mind and heart, so am I to understand that nowhere on earth will be found even the tiniest hiding place unsaturated with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord. Habakkuk uses other similes to declare his heart commitment to praise and trust God. Imagine no fruit from fig or olive trees. Picture no flocks or herds anywhere in the world. Yet even in the direst circumstances, Habakkuk will exult in God.
Talk about challenging me to rise above my circumstances! These verses are a wonderful reminder to reexamine all that I hope in, all that I put my trust in. What a sweet, awful responsibility.
Prayer: I pray, Father, that You would deliver me from any focus on outward circumstances as the basis for evaluating my life and the times in which I live. I have had trials, yet You have met every need. There have been reasons to be fainthearted, yet You have delivered me in the midst of every trial. The times are evil, yet Your goodness fills my heart to overflowing, and I rejoice in Your salvation. Cause great rejoicing to burst forth in my heart as Your spirit fills me with the knowledge of the glory of the Holy One! Bless the name of Jesus!