1 I am Habakkuk the prophet. And this is the message[a] that the Lord gave me.
Habakkuk Complains to the Lord
2 Our Lord, how long must I beg for your help before you listen? How long before you save us from all this violence? 3 Why do you make me watch such terrible injustice? Why do you allow violence, lawlessness, crime, and cruelty to spread everywhere? 4 Laws cannot be enforced; justice is always the loser; criminals crowd out honest people and twist the laws around.
The Lord Answers Habakkuk
5 Look and be amazed at what’s happening among the nations! Even if you were told, you would never believe what’s taking place now. 6 I am sending the Babylonians. They are fierce and cruel— marching across the land, conquering cities and towns.
7 How fearsome and frightening. Their only laws and rules are the ones they make up.
2 While standing guard on the watchtower, I waited for the Lord’s answer, before explaining the reason for my complaint.[a] 2 Then the Lord told me: “I will give you my message in the form of a vision. Write it clearly enough to be read at a glance. 3 At the time I have decided, my words will come true. You can trust what I say about the future. It may take a long time, but keep on waiting— it will happen!
4 “I, the Lord, refuse to accept anyone who is proud. Only those who live by faith are acceptable to me.”[b]
2.1I. . . complaint: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
2.4Only. . . me: Or “But those who are acceptable to me will live because of their faithfulness.”
3 You are the same Holy God who came from Teman and Paran[a] to help us. The brightness of your glory covered the heavens, and your praises were heard everywhere on earth. 4 Your glory shone like the sun, and light flashed from your hands, hiding your mighty power. 5 Dreadful diseases and plagues marched in front and followed behind. 6 When you stopped, the earth shook; when you stared, nations trembled; when you walked along your ancient paths, eternal mountains and hills crumbled and collapsed.
3.3Teman. . . Paran: Teman is a district in Edom, but the name is sometimes used of the whole country of Edom; Paran is the hill country along the western border of the Gulf of Aqaba. In Judges 5.4, the Lord is said to have marched from Edom to help his people; in Deuteronomy 33.2, Paran is mentioned in connection with the Lord’s appearance at Sinai.
Habakkuk 3:17-19Contemporary English Version (CEV)
Trust in a Time of Trouble
17 Fig trees may no longer bloom, or vineyards produce grapes; olive trees may be fruitless, and harvest time a failure; sheep pens may be empty, and cattle stalls vacant— 18 but I will still celebrate because the Lord God saves me. 19 The Lord gives me strength. He makes my feet as sure as those of a deer, and he helps me stand on the mountains.[a]
To the music director: Use stringed instruments.
3.19stand on the mountains: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
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