The Book of Habakkuk
Introduction to the Book of Habakkuk in the Bible
Habakkuk 1:13 - [Thou art] of purer eyes than to behold evil, and canst not look on iniquity: wherefore lookest thou upon them that deal treacherously, [and] holdest thy tongue when the wicked devoureth [the man that is] more righteous than he?
Habakkuk 2:4 - Behold, his soul [which] is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith.
Habakkuk 3:16-19 - When I heard, my belly trembled; my lips quivered at the voice: rottenness entered into my bones, and I trembled in myself, that I might rest in the day of trouble: when he cometh up unto the people, he will invade them with his troops. Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither [shall] fruit [be] in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and [there shall be] no herd in the stalls: Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation. The LORD God [is] my strength, and he will make my feet like hinds' [feet], and he will make me to walk upon mine high places. To the chief singer on my stringed instruments.
The Old Testament - A Brief Overview
Bible Survey - Habakkuk
Quick Overview of Habakkuk. – – 1:1-4 – – Habakkuk complains about violence and oppression in Judah – – 1:5-11 – – the Chaldeans (Babylonians) will be God's instruments – – 1:12-17 – – Habakkuk protests about using the Babylonians as the oppressors – – 2:1-5 – – the righteous shall live by faith and the wicked shall perish – – 2:6-20 – – five woes against the oppressors – – 3:1-19 – – God will come to save his people.
The prophet Habakkuk asked God two questions: (1) Why would you allow so much corruption to continue in the land of Judah for so long without being punished? God told Habakkuk that he was going to do something spectacular, He was raising up the cruel and violent Babylonians to come and crush the land of Judah. (2) Why would a holy God allow such a wicked people as the Babylonians to come and ravage the land of Judah whom He loves? God told Habakkuk that the Babylonians are fearless and determined and they scoff at Kings, and they would become his instrument of judgment because of the land of Judah's wickedness for they had forsaken God. But the mighty Babylonians would have a day of judgment coming upon themselves as well. Habakkuk also gave hope to God's people of a future glory where the "earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea" (Habakkuk 2:14).
There is little known about the man Habakkuk, he began to prophesy around the same time as Jeremiah in the latter part of the seventh century BC. This was a time after the northern kingdom of Israel have fallen, and only the southern kingdom of Judah remained. They had their moments of glory yet their disobedience was uncurable, and the Babylonians were on the rise.
Outline of the Book of Habakkuk
Habakkuk makes complaints against God and God's answers to these complaints. Habakkuk exemplifies a great faith and a high conception of God, but he is perplexed because events have not taken the course which he had desired.
The first complaint which he brings is in Habakkuk 1:2-4 and he says that his preaching to the people has not resulted in repentance on their part: God's answer to this is that he is raising up the Chaldeans to punish the Jews for their disobedience (Habakkuk 1:5-11). This leads Habakkuk to his second complaint - Why would God punish His own people at the hand of a nation which is even more wicked and unholy than that which is being punished? (Habakkuk 1:12-2:1). God then assures Habakkuk that the Chaldeans are not to go without punishment and that unwavering faith on the part of the Jews will ultimately be rewarded (Habakkuk 2:2-4). Habakkuk 2:5-20 contains a condemnation and threat of punishment for aggression, violence, and idolatry. The final chapter of the book is a song of praise of God and His judgment, exemplifying belief in the principle set out in Habakkuk 2:4, "the just shall live by his faith."
The Story of the Bible
The Old Testament
Summary of the Old Testament Books
Read the Old Testament Stories