1The burden which the prophet Habakkuk saw.
The Prophet’s Question
2O Lord, how long shall I cry,
#Lam. 3:8And You will not hear?
Even cry out to You, #Mic. 2:1, 2; 3:1–3“Violence!”
And You will #(Job 21:5–16)not save.
3Why do You show me iniquity,
And cause me to see trouble?
For plundering and violence are before me;
There is strife, and contention arises.
4Therefore the law is powerless,
And justice never goes forth.
For the #Jer. 12:1wicked surround the righteous;
Therefore perverse judgment proceeds.
The Lord’s Reply
5“Look#Is. 29:14; Ezek. 12:22–28 among the nations and watch—
Be utterly astounded!
For I will work a work in your days
Which you would not believe, though it were told you.
6For indeed I am #Deut. 28:49, 50; 2 Kin. 24:2; 2 Chr. 36:17; Jer. 4:11–13; Mic. 4:10raising up the Chaldeans,
A bitter and hasty #Ezek. 7:24; 21:31nation
Which marches through the breadth of the earth,
To possess dwelling places that are not theirs.
7They are terrible and dreadful;
Their judgment and their dignity proceed from themselves.
8Their horses also are #Jer. 4:13swifter than leopards,
And more fierce than evening wolves.
Their chargers charge ahead;
Their cavalry comes from afar;
They fly as the #Job 9:26; 39:29, 30; Lam. 4:19; Ezek. 17:3; Hos. 8:1; Matt. 24:28; Luke 17:37eagle that hastens to eat.
9“They all come for violence;
Their faces are set like the east wind.
They gather captives like sand.
10They scoff at kings,
And princes are scorned by them.
They deride every stronghold,
For they heap up earthen mounds and seize it.
11Then his mind changes, and he transgresses;
He commits offense,
#Dan. 5:4Ascribing this power to his god.”
The Prophet’s Second Question
12Are You not #Deut. 33:27; Ps. 90:2; 93:2; Mal. 3:6from everlasting,
O Lord my God, my Holy One?
We shall not die.
O Lord, #Is. 10:5–7; Mal. 3:5You have appointed them for judgment;
O Rock, You have marked them for #Jer. 25:9correction.
13You are of purer eyes than to behold evil,
And cannot look on wickedness.
Why do You look on those who deal treacherously,
And hold Your tongue when the wicked devours
A person more righteous than he?
14Why do You make men like fish of the sea,
Like creeping things that have no ruler over them?
15They take up all of them with a hook,
They catch them in their net,
And gather them in their dragnet.
Therefore they rejoice and are glad.
16Therefore #Deut. 8:17they sacrifice to their net,
And burn incense to their dragnet;
Because by them their share is sumptuous
And their food plentiful.
17Shall they therefore empty their net,
And continue to slay nations without pity?