The prophecy(A) that Habakkuk the prophet received.

Habakkuk’s Complaint

How long,(B) Lord, must I call for help,
    but you do not listen?(C)
Or cry out to you, “Violence!”
    but you do not save?(D)
Why do you make me look at injustice?
    Why do you tolerate(E) wrongdoing?(F)
Destruction and violence(G) are before me;
    there is strife,(H) and conflict abounds.
Therefore the law(I) is paralyzed,
    and justice never prevails.
The wicked hem in the righteous,
    so that justice(J) is perverted.(K)

The Lord’s Answer

“Look at the nations and watch—
    and be utterly amazed.(L)
For I am going to do something in your days
    that you would not believe,
    even if you were told.(M)
I am raising up the Babylonians,[a](N)
    that ruthless and impetuous people,
who sweep across the whole earth(O)
    to seize dwellings not their own.(P)
They are a feared and dreaded people;(Q)
    they are a law to themselves
    and promote their own honor.
Their horses are swifter(R) than leopards,
    fiercer than wolves(S) at dusk.
Their cavalry gallops headlong;
    their horsemen come from afar.
They fly like an eagle swooping to devour;
    they all come intent on violence.
Their hordes[b] advance like a desert wind
    and gather prisoners(T) like sand.
10 They mock kings
    and scoff at rulers.(U)
They laugh at all fortified cities;
    by building earthen ramps(V) they capture them.
11 Then they sweep past like the wind(W) and go on—
    guilty people, whose own strength is their god.”(X)

Habakkuk’s Second Complaint

12 Lord, are you not from everlasting?(Y)
    My God, my Holy One,(Z) you[c] will never die.(AA)
You, Lord, have appointed(AB) them to execute judgment;
    you, my Rock,(AC) have ordained them to punish.
13 Your eyes are too pure(AD) to look on evil;
    you cannot tolerate wrongdoing.(AE)
Why then do you tolerate(AF) the treacherous?(AG)
    Why are you silent while the wicked
    swallow up those more righteous than themselves?(AH)
14 You have made people like the fish in the sea,
    like the sea creatures that have no ruler.
15 The wicked(AI) foe pulls all of them up with hooks,(AJ)
    he catches them in his net,(AK)
he gathers them up in his dragnet;
    and so he rejoices and is glad.
16 Therefore he sacrifices to his net
    and burns incense(AL) 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?(AM)

I will stand at my watch(AN)
    and station myself on the ramparts;(AO)
I will look to see what he will say(AP) to me,
    and what answer I am to give to this complaint.[d](AQ)

The Lord’s Answer

Then the Lord replied:

“Write(AR) down the revelation
    and make it plain on tablets
    so that a herald[e] may run with it.
For the revelation awaits an appointed time;(AS)
    it speaks of the end(AT)
    and will not prove false.
Though it linger, wait(AU) for it;
    it[f] will certainly come
    and will not delay.(AV)

“See, the enemy is puffed up;
    his desires are not upright—
    but the righteous person(AW) will live by his faithfulness[g](AX)
indeed, wine(AY) betrays him;
    he is arrogant(AZ) and never at rest.
Because he is as greedy as the grave
    and like death is never satisfied,(BA)
he gathers to himself all the nations
    and takes captive(BB) all the peoples.

“Will not all of them taunt(BC) him with ridicule and scorn, saying,

“‘Woe to him who piles up stolen goods
    and makes himself wealthy by extortion!(BD)
    How long must this go on?’
Will not your creditors suddenly arise?
    Will they not wake up and make you tremble?
    Then you will become their prey.(BE)
Because you have plundered many nations,
    the peoples who are left will plunder you.(BF)
For you have shed human blood;(BG)
    you have destroyed lands and cities and everyone in them.(BH)

“Woe to him who builds(BI) his house by unjust gain,(BJ)
    setting his nest(BK) on high
    to escape the clutches of ruin!
10 You have plotted the ruin(BL) of many peoples,
    shaming(BM) your own house and forfeiting your life.
11 The stones(BN) of the wall will cry out,
    and the beams of the woodwork will echo it.

12 “Woe to him who builds a city with bloodshed(BO)
    and establishes a town by injustice!
13 Has not the Lord Almighty determined
    that the people’s labor is only fuel for the fire,(BP)
    that the nations exhaust themselves for nothing?(BQ)
14 For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory(BR) of the Lord
    as the waters cover the sea.(BS)

15 “Woe to him who gives drink(BT) to his neighbors,
    pouring it from the wineskin till they are drunk,
    so that he can gaze on their naked bodies!
16 You will be filled with shame(BU) instead of glory.(BV)
    Now it is your turn! Drink(BW) and let your nakedness be exposed[h]!(BX)
The cup(BY) from the Lord’s right hand is coming around to you,
    and disgrace will cover your glory.
17 The violence(BZ) you have done to Lebanon will overwhelm you,
    and your destruction of animals will terrify you.(CA)
For you have shed human blood;(CB)
    you have destroyed lands and cities and everyone in them.

18 “Of what value(CC) is an idol(CD) carved by a craftsman?
    Or an image(CE) that teaches lies?
For the one who makes it trusts in his own creation;
    he makes idols that cannot speak.(CF)
19 Woe to him who says to wood, ‘Come to life!’
    Or to lifeless stone, ‘Wake up!’(CG)
Can it give guidance?
    It is covered with gold and silver;(CH)
    there is no breath in it.”(CI)

20 The Lord is in his holy temple;(CJ)
    let all the earth be silent(CK) before him.

Habakkuk’s Prayer

A prayer of Habakkuk the prophet. On shigionoth.[i](CL)

Lord, I have heard(CM) of your fame;
    I stand in awe(CN) of your deeds, Lord.(CO)
Repeat(CP) them in our day,
    in our time make them known;
    in wrath remember mercy.(CQ)

God came from Teman,(CR)
    the Holy One(CS) from Mount Paran.[j](CT)
His glory covered the heavens(CU)
    and his praise filled the earth.(CV)
His splendor was like the sunrise;(CW)
    rays flashed from his hand,
    where his power(CX) was hidden.
Plague(CY) went before him;
    pestilence followed his steps.
He stood, and shook the earth;
    he looked, and made the nations tremble.
The ancient mountains crumbled(CZ)
    and the age-old hills(DA) collapsed(DB)
    but he marches on forever.(DC)
I saw the tents of Cushan in distress,
    the dwellings of Midian(DD) in anguish.(DE)

Were you angry with the rivers,(DF) Lord?
    Was your wrath against the streams?
Did you rage against the sea(DG)
    when you rode your horses
    and your chariots to victory?(DH)
You uncovered your bow,
    you called for many arrows.(DI)
You split the earth with rivers;
10     the mountains saw you and writhed.(DJ)
Torrents of water swept by;
    the deep roared(DK)
    and lifted its waves(DL) on high.

11 Sun and moon stood still(DM) in the heavens
    at the glint of your flying arrows,(DN)
    at the lightning(DO) of your flashing spear.
12 In wrath you strode through the earth
    and in anger you threshed(DP) the nations.
13 You came out(DQ) to deliver(DR) your people,
    to save your anointed(DS) one.
You crushed(DT) the leader of the land of wickedness,
    you stripped him from head to foot.
14 With his own spear you pierced his head
    when his warriors stormed out to scatter us,(DU)
gloating as though about to devour
    the wretched(DV) who were in hiding.
15 You trampled the sea(DW) with your horses,
    churning the great waters.(DX)

16 I heard and my heart pounded,
    my lips quivered at the sound;
decay crept into my bones,
    and my legs trembled.(DY)
Yet I will wait patiently(DZ) for the day of calamity
    to come on the nation invading us.
17 Though the fig tree does not bud
    and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
    and the fields produce no food,(EA)
though there are no sheep in the pen
    and no cattle in the stalls,(EB)
18 yet I will rejoice in the Lord,(EC)
    I will be joyful in God my Savior.(ED)

19 The Sovereign Lord is my strength;(EE)
    he makes my feet like the feet of a deer,
    he enables me to tread on the heights.(EF)

For the director of music. On my stringed instruments.

Footnotes

  1. Habakkuk 1:6 Or Chaldeans
  2. Habakkuk 1:9 The meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain.
  3. Habakkuk 1:12 An ancient Hebrew scribal tradition; Masoretic Text we
  4. Habakkuk 2:1 Or and what to answer when I am rebuked
  5. Habakkuk 2:2 Or so that whoever reads it
  6. Habakkuk 2:3 Or Though he linger, wait for him; / he
  7. Habakkuk 2:4 Or faith
  8. Habakkuk 2:16 Masoretic Text; Dead Sea Scrolls, Aquila, Vulgate and Syriac (see also Septuagint) and stagger
  9. Habakkuk 3:1 Probably a literary or musical term
  10. Habakkuk 3:3 The Hebrew has Selah (a word of uncertain meaning) here and at the middle of verse 9 and at the end of verse 13.

The word of the Lord that came to Zephaniah son of Cushi, the son of Gedaliah, the son of Amariah, the son of Hezekiah, during the reign of Josiah(A) son of Amon(B) king of Judah:

Judgment on the Whole Earth in the Day of the Lord

“I will sweep away everything
    from the face of the earth,”(C)
declares the Lord.
“I will sweep away both man and beast;(D)
    I will sweep away the birds in the sky(E)
    and the fish in the sea—
    and the idols that cause the wicked to stumble.”[a]

“When I destroy all mankind
    on the face of the earth,”(F)
declares the Lord,(G)
“I will stretch out my hand(H) against Judah
    and against all who live in Jerusalem.
I will destroy every remnant of Baal worship in this place,(I)
    the very names of the idolatrous priests(J)
those who bow down on the roofs
    to worship the starry host,(K)
those who bow down and swear by the Lord
    and who also swear by Molek,[b](L)
those who turn back from following(M) the Lord
    and neither seek(N) the Lord nor inquire(O) of him.”

Be silent(P) before the Sovereign Lord,
    for the day of the Lord(Q) is near.
The Lord has prepared a sacrifice;(R)
    he has consecrated those he has invited.

“On the day of the Lord’s sacrifice
    I will punish(S) the officials
    and the king’s sons(T)
and all those clad
    in foreign clothes.
On that day I will punish
    all who avoid stepping on the threshold,[c](U)
who fill the temple of their gods
    with violence and deceit.(V)

10 “On that day,(W)
    declares the Lord,
“a cry will go up from the Fish Gate,(X)
    wailing(Y) from the New Quarter,
    and a loud crash from the hills.
11 Wail,(Z) you who live in the market district[d];
    all your merchants will be wiped out,
    all who trade with[e] silver will be destroyed.(AA)
12 At that time I will search Jerusalem with lamps
    and punish those who are complacent,(AB)
    who are like wine left on its dregs,(AC)
who think, ‘The Lord will do nothing,(AD)
    either good or bad.’(AE)
13 Their wealth will be plundered,(AF)
    their houses demolished.
Though they build houses,
    they will not live in them;
though they plant vineyards,
    they will not drink the wine.”(AG)

14 The great day of the Lord(AH) is near(AI)
    near and coming quickly.
The cry on the day of the Lord is bitter;
    the Mighty Warrior shouts his battle cry.
15 That day will be a day of wrath—
    a day of distress and anguish,
        a day of trouble and ruin,
    a day of darkness(AJ) and gloom,
        a day of clouds and blackness(AK)
16     a day of trumpet and battle cry(AL)
against the fortified cities
    and against the corner towers.(AM)

17 “I will bring such distress(AN) on all people
    that they will grope about like those who are blind,(AO)
    because they have sinned against the Lord.
Their blood will be poured out(AP) like dust
    and their entrails like dung.(AQ)
18 Neither their silver nor their gold
    will be able to save them
    on the day of the Lord’s wrath.”(AR)

In the fire of his jealousy(AS)
    the whole earth will be consumed,(AT)
for he will make a sudden end
    of all who live on the earth.(AU)

Judah and Jerusalem Judged Along With the Nations

Judah Summoned to Repent

Gather together,(AV) gather yourselves together,
    you shameful(AW) nation,
before the decree takes effect
    and that day passes like windblown chaff,(AX)
before the Lord’s fierce anger(AY)
    comes upon you,
before the day of the Lord’s wrath(AZ)
    comes upon you.
Seek(BA) the Lord, all you humble of the land,
    you who do what he commands.
Seek righteousness,(BB) seek humility;(BC)
    perhaps you will be sheltered(BD)
    on the day of the Lord’s anger.

Philistia

Gaza(BE) will be abandoned
    and Ashkelon(BF) left in ruins.
At midday Ashdod will be emptied
    and Ekron uprooted.
Woe to you who live by the sea,
    you Kerethite(BG) people;
the word of the Lord is against you,(BH)
    Canaan, land of the Philistines.
He says, “I will destroy you,
    and none will be left.”(BI)
The land by the sea will become pastures
    having wells for shepherds
    and pens for flocks.(BJ)
That land will belong
    to the remnant(BK) of the people of Judah;
    there they will find pasture.
In the evening they will lie down
    in the houses of Ashkelon.
The Lord their God will care for them;
    he will restore their fortunes.[f](BL)

Footnotes

  1. Zephaniah 1:3 The meaning of the Hebrew for this line is uncertain.
  2. Zephaniah 1:5 Hebrew Malkam
  3. Zephaniah 1:9 See 1 Samuel 5:5.
  4. Zephaniah 1:11 Or the Mortar
  5. Zephaniah 1:11 Or in
  6. Zephaniah 2:7 Or will bring back their captives

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