The LORD answered me: Write the vision; make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it. – Habakkuk 2:2
14 And the Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all nations will hear it; and then the end will come.
15 The day is coming when you will see what Daniel the prophet spoke about– the sacrilegious object that causes desecration standing in the Holy Place.
16 Then those in Judea must flee to the hills.
21 For there will be greater anguish than at any time since the world began. And it will never be so great again.
22 In fact, unless that time of calamity is shortened, not a single person will survive. But it will be shortened for the sake of God’s chosen ones.
36 However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows.
On August 2, 1939, Albert Einstein wrote The Letter to President Roosevelt. In it, he issued a dire warning that Nazi Germany intended to develop an incredible new weapon of mass destruction – the atomic bomb.
Einstein wrote, “The element uranium may be turned into a new and important source of energy in the immediate future. Certain aspects of the situation which has arisen seem to call for watchfulness and if necessary, quick action on the part of the Administration. I believe therefore that it is my duty to bring to your attention the following facts and recommendations.”
“It may be possible to set up a nuclear chain reaction in a large mass of uranium, by which vast amounts of power and large quantities of new radium-like elements would be generated. Now it appears almost certain that this could be achieved in the immediate future.”
“This new phenomenon would also lead to the construction of bombs, and it is conceivable – though much less certain – that extremely powerful bombs of this type may thus be constructed. A single bomb of this type, carried by boat and exploded in a port, might very well destroy the whole port together with some of the surrounding territory.”
Einstein recommended a task force be initiated. They should give priority to securing a supply of uranium ore for the United States, and speed up the experimental work.
For all practical purposes, The Letter began the atomic age.
Throughout history, many timely warnings have been given. The Father often warns and prepares children of the King regarding things to come. The Lord Jesus Christ warned the Jewish people in Jerusalem of the dark days of unparalleled anguish and told them to be ready and flee (Matthew 24:14-36).
REFLECT & PRAY
“When you behold the glory of God and believe the Word of God, it gives you faith to accept the will of God” (Wiersbe).
Father grant us wisdom to understand our times and perceive Your warning message. Embolden and strengthen us not shrink back in fear, but rather do Your will. May we faithfully and clearly warn others of the wrath to come.
Habakkuk was the worried, watchman on the walls of Jerusalem. He fretted and feared the worst.
Habakkuk was grieved by the rebellion and defiance of the people of Judah. He fixated on it and complained to the Father. What would the Father do? Habakkuk waited for an answer. The Father soon gave him a vision and instructions on how to inform the people.
“In ancient days, the watchmen were responsible to warn the city of approaching danger, and if they weren’t faithful, their hands would be stained with the blood of the people who died Ezekiel 3:17-21; 33:1-3). It was a serious responsibility” (Wiersbe).
The Father warned the people of Judah of the coming Babylonian invasion. The Father’s message to Habakkuk can be summarized in one phrase: read and run.
Habakkuk 2:2 The LORD answered me: Write the vision; make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it.
There are two aspects to the Father’s instruction to Habakkuk. He was told to write it plainly and legibly on tablets. The meaning of the message was to be clear, obvious, and easily understood. It was to be posted and accessible for all.
What did the tablets say? No one knows for sure. But whatever threat it contained was intended to initiate a flight response. It was as though, the Father had posted an ad on an immense billboard along a highway, warning people: The Babylonians are coming, The Babylonians are coming!
What should the people do? They should run! They should flee and take their families and whatever possessions they could carry and quickly depart.
The Hebrew word translated run is ruts. Ruts may be translated run, dash to and fro, move quickly, dart about, hurry, or runaway. The warning spoke of the judgment to fall, the Babylonians were coming, it was time to hurriedly flee for their lives.
The Father’s specific answer to Habakkuk’s prayer of complaint turned Habakkuk’s worry into worship. The prophetic vision encompassed not only the invasion by the Babylonians, but also the coming of the Father to the earth to mete out justice and make all things right (Habakkuk 2, 3:3–15).
For Habakkuk, this changed everything. His worries were gone. He readily surrendered to the Father’s plan.
When Einstein spoke, FDR listened and Einstein’s warning was taken to heart. The Manhattan Project was launched.
When Habakkuk spoke, the wise move was to heed his warning and flee.
All children of the King are watchmen. The word of God tells us that danger is coming and we are responsible to warn people to “flee from the wrath to come” (Matthew 3:7).