Habakkuk 2:2-20 – A Prayer of Confession for Idolatry

Psalm 33:18-22 says, 

“Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear him,
    on those who hope in his steadfast love,
that he may deliver their soul from death
    and keep them alive in famine.
Our soul waits for the Lord;
    he is our help and our shield.
For our heart is glad in him,
    because we trust in his holy name.
Let your steadfast love, O Lord, be upon us,
    even as we hope in you.”

It is good to know that God is “our help and our shield.” We can come to him, no matter the circumstance, knowing that he is trustworthy. 

This week, we will offer a prayer of confession before God in response to the idolatry that we see confronted in verses 18-20 from Habakkuk 2:2-20. Through Scripture, you will notice that any list detailing that which God hates has idolatry at or near the top. Over and over again, God speaks to the worthlessness of idols and the condemnation coming against those who set them up. As fast as we are to recognize physical, carved, gold-overlaid images that are worshiped in the Bible (and indeed in many parts of the world today), we are often slower to recognize that which we worship which is outside of God (self, career, pleasure, success, etc.) and that are idols themselves.

Our prayer of confession this week comes from the book Prone to Wonder. If you haven’t picked up this resource, be encouraged to do so. When putting words to our experiences in a biblical way is hard to come by, this book is a treasure and immense help to the soul.

“Our Hope”

Loving Heavenly Father, 

Yours is surpassing greatness, unspeakable goodness, and superabundant grace. Your steadfast love greets us each morning, and your faithfulness is our constant companion. Your mercies are fresh each day, flowing toward us in your patient perseverance and loving guidance. We thank you for personal mercies; for a measure of health, the comforts of home, food, and clothing; for those moments of domestic peace and harmony; and for your ongoing protection of ourselves and those whom we love.

Yet we mourn our sin and profound ingratitude to you. We have not put our hope in you, and we have not waited patiently for you to act on our behalf. We have trusted and delighted in your creation rather than in you, and we have looked to our idols to make us glad, complaining bitterly when they have failed us. We have pressured people with the heavy weight of our needs and expectations, and sinned against them when they disappointed us. Father, forgive us for our many sins. We do not deny them or excuse them, but confess that we have broken your holy law and fallen short of keeping your commands.

Thank you that when we fly repenting to your outstretched arms, you will not cast us off, for Jesus brings us near. You will not condemn us, for he died in our place. You will not point out our mountains of sin, for Jesus has leveled them, and his beauty covers all our deformities. Thank you for your wonderful Son, whose unshakable hope in you in the midst of life’s worst circumstances has now become our own.

Holy Spirit, help us to turn away from our sin and cling to the cross. May we hide in the wounds of Jesus and find shelter in his side. Cause us to place all our hopes in the powerful blood of our Savior and his perfect righteousness in our place. When life is painful and difficult, and our souls give way to fear and temptation, root us safely once again on our firm foundation, our only hope in life and in death. Let us know afresh the joy of our salvation: Christ has been faithful for us, and so you will always be faithful to us, for you cannot abandon the Son of God, to whom we are inseparably joined. Amen.

A portion of this prayer will be used on Sunday to help each of us bring our sins to God. The good news is that he hears those who belong to Jesus and forgives them. We can celebrate that reality, and we will on Sunday.

By Faith by Keith & Kristyn Getty

Posted on: August 1, 2020 - 10:19AM

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