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I will take my stand and keep watch. I will take my place on the tower. And I will keep watch to see what the Lord will say, and how I should answer when He speaks strong words to me.

The Lord’s Answer to Habakkuk

Then the Lord answered me and said, “Write down the special dream on stone so that one may read it in a hurry. For it is not yet time for it to come true. The time is coming in a hurry, and it will come true. If you think it is slow in coming, wait for it. For it will happen for sure, and it will not wait. As for the proud one, his soul is not right in him. But the one who is right and good will live by his faith.

It Is Bad for the Wrong-Doers

“Also, wine fools the proud man, so he does not stay at home. He is like the grave who always wants more. Like death, he never has enough. He gathers all nations for himself, and gathers all people for his own. “Will not all these people make fun of him and say, ‘It is bad for him who gathers what is not his and makes himself rich with other people’s money. How long will this go on?’ Will not those to whom you owe money rise up all at once? Will they not wake up and make you afraid? Then they will take what belongs to you. Because you have robbed many nations, the rest of them will rob you. For you have killed men. You have destroyed lands and cities and everyone in them.

“It is bad for him who builds his house by sinful ways, to put his nest in a high place to be safe from trouble! 10 You have brought shame upon your house by destroying many nations. You are sinning against yourself. 11 The stone will cry out from the wall, and the roof will answer it from the wood.

12 “It is bad for him who builds a city with blood, and builds a town with wrong-doing! 13 Is it not the will of the All-powerful Lord that people work for what will burn up and nations make themselves tired for nothing? 14 For the earth will be filled with knowing of the Lord’s shining-greatness, as the waters cover the sea.

15 “It is bad for him who makes his neighbors drink, mixing in his poison to make them drunk, so he can look on their shame! 16 You will be filled with shame instead of honor. Now you yourself drink and let your own shame be seen. The cup in the Lord’s right hand will come around to you, and your greatness will turn to shame. 17 The bad things you have done to Lebanon will come back to you. Because you have killed its animals, now they will make you afraid. This will happen because of all the killing you have done. You have destroyed lands and cities and everyone in them.

18 “Of what worth is a false god when a workman has made it? Of what worth is an object of worship, a teacher of lies? For the workman trusts in his own work when he makes these false gods that cannot speak. 19 It is bad for him who says to a piece of wood, ‘Wake up!’ or to a stone that cannot speak, ‘Get up!’ Can this teach you? See, it is covered with gold and silver. There is no breath in it. 20 But the Lord is in His holy house. Let all the earth be quiet before Him.”