How Long Must I Cry?

The prophet Habakkuk was distressed and frustrated about the sinful condition of his homeland. The question, “how long,” indicates that he had been faithfully crying out to the Lord for an extended period of time regarding the spiritual condition of Judah.

Habakkuk cried out and petitioned the Lord concerning the nation of Judah.

Job petitioned the Lord concerning himself: “I cry unto thee, and thou doest not hear me” (Job 30:20).

Jonah was frustrated concerning the spiritual condition of the world, which was represented by the pagan city of Nineveh. However, Jonah was not lamenting over their sin, he was upset that God was sending him to Nineveh in order to save them and call them to repentance: “But Jonah rose up to flee” [from God’s call]; “it displeased Jonah exceedingly” (Jonah 1:3 & Jonah 4:1).

Throughout the Old Testament, we witness that God was concerned about sin and moved in the lives of people to bring them to repentance. In the New Covenant of Grace, God is the same. working through his people to bring the world to him and his salvation:

Our part as followers of Jesus Christ is to (as Habakkuk did), “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17); and (unlike Jonah), willingly obey His command to spread the good news of the gospel to everyone at every opportunity.