Habakkuk’s Complaint

1 The oracle that Habakkuk the prophet saw.
2 O Yahweh, how long shall I cry for help and you will not listen? [How long] will I cry out to you, "Violence!" and you will not save?
3 Why do you cause me to see evil [while] you look at trouble? Destruction and violence happen before me; contention and strife arise.
4 Therefore the law is paralyzed, and justice does not go forth perpetually.a For the wicked surround the righteous; therefore justice goes forth perverted.

God’s Answer to Habakkuk

5 "Look among the nations and see; be astonished and astounded. For a work [is about to] be done in your days that you will not believe if it is told.
6 For look! I am raising up the Chaldeans, the bitter and impetuous nation, the one who walks through the spacious places of earth to take possession of dwellings not belonging to it.b
7 Theyc [are] dreadful and awesome; theird justice and theire dignity proceed from themselves.f
8 Theirg horses [are] more swift than leopards; they are more menacing than wolves [at] dusk. Theirh horsemen gallop; theiri horsemen come from afar; they fly like an eagle [that is] swift to devour.
9 All of themj come for violence, their faces pressing forward. They gather captives like the sand.
10 And they themselves scoff at kings and rulers [are] a joke to them. They laugh at every fortification, and they heap up earth and take it.
11 Then they sweep [like the] wind and pass on; they become guilty, whose might [is] theirk god!"

Habakkuk’s Second Complaint

12 Are you not from of old, O Yahweh my God, my Holy One? Youl shall not die. O Yahweh, you have marked themm for judgment; O Rock, you have established themn for reproof.
13 Your eyes [are] too pure to see evil, and you are not able to look at wrongdoing.o Why do you look at the treacherous? [Why] are you silent when the wicked swallows up [someone] more righteous than him?
14 You make humankind like fish of the sea, like crawling creatures that have no ruler among them.
15 He brings up all of them with a fishhook; he drags them up with a fishnet; he gathers them in his dragnet. Therefore, he rejoices and exults.
16 Therefore he sacrifices to his fishnet and makes offerings to his dragnet, for by them {he makes a good living}p and his food [is] rich.
17 Will he therefore empty his fishnet and continually kill nations without showing mercy?