by D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (selected by Frank Cumbers)
Approach Him with reverence
‘O Lord, I have heard thy speech, and was afraid’ [Habakkuk 3:2]. ‘Was afraid’ does not mean that Habakkuk was afraid of the things that were going to happen as revealed to him by God.... The expression suggests awe in the presence of such a great God, worshipful adoration and wonder at God, and His ways. God had told him something about His historical plan, and the prophet, meditating upon the fact that God is in His holy temple and the world beneath His feet, stood in amazement and reverential awe.... What is described in the Epistle to the Hebrews as an attitude of ‘reverence and godly fear’ is an attitude strangely lacking among us.... There is far too much easy familiarity with the Most High. Thank God, we can come into His presence with holy boldness through the blood of Christ. But that should never lessen our reverence and godly fear. God’s ancient people... were so conscious of the holiness and the greatness of God that they trembled even to use His name. The sanctity and the holiness and the almightiness of God was something which made them almost speechless—’I was afraid’. We should approach Him ‘with reverence and godly fear, for our God is a consuming fire’.
This is essential for an understanding of the times in which we live. We must learn to see God in His holy temple above the flux of history, and above the changing scenes of time. In God’s presence the one thing that stands out is the holy nature of God and our own sin. We humble ourselves and with reverence adore Him.
From Fear to Faith, pp. 62–3