Habakkuk’s Second Complaint

12 Lord, are you not from everlasting?(A)
    My God, my Holy One,(B) you[a] will never die.(C)
You, Lord, have appointed(D) them to execute judgment;
    you, my Rock,(E) have ordained them to punish.
13 Your eyes are too pure(F) to look on evil;
    you cannot tolerate wrongdoing.(G)
Why then do you tolerate(H) the treacherous?(I)
    Why are you silent while the wicked
    swallow up those more righteous than themselves?(J)
14 You have made people like the fish in the sea,
    like the sea creatures that have no ruler.
15 The wicked(K) foe pulls all of them up with hooks,(L)
    he catches them in his net,(M)
he gathers them up in his dragnet;
    and so he rejoices and is glad.
16 Therefore he sacrifices to his net
    and burns incense(N) to his dragnet,
for by his net he lives in luxury
    and enjoys the choicest food.
17 Is he to keep on emptying his net,
    destroying nations without mercy?(O)

I will stand at my watch(P)
    and station myself on the ramparts;(Q)
I will look to see what he will say(R) to me,
    and what answer I am to give to this complaint.[b](S)

The Lord’s Answer

Then the Lord replied:

“Write(T) down the revelation
    and make it plain on tablets
    so that a herald[c] may run with it.
For the revelation awaits an appointed time;(U)
    it speaks of the end(V)
    and will not prove false.
Though it linger, wait(W) for it;
    it[d] will certainly come
    and will not delay.(X)

“See, the enemy is puffed up;
    his desires are not upright—
    but the righteous person(Y) will live by his faithfulness[e](Z)


  1. Habakkuk 1:12 An ancient Hebrew scribal tradition; Masoretic Text we
  2. Habakkuk 2:1 Or and what to answer when I am rebuked
  3. Habakkuk 2:2 Or so that whoever reads it
  4. Habakkuk 2:3 Or Though he linger, wait for him; / he
  5. Habakkuk 2:4 Or faith