Date Written: 612-597 BC
Habakkuk prophesied in
The book of Habakkuk is a short dialogue between the prophet and the Lord about the judgment of
The major tension in the book centers around the fulfillment of God's plan for his people and the execution of his judgment in the world. Habakkuk's questioning comes from a standpoint of faith and trust, not from doubt. The prophet believes in God's ultimate justice, so he can openly ask for vindication. As the Lord and Habakkuk hammer out how justice will be accomplished, the prophet deals with the deep questions of suffering, sin and violence.
Hab. 2:4 is very important in New Testament theology. It is quoted in Rom 1:17, Gal 3:11 and Heb 10:37-38. The best way to translate the verse is disputed.
Habakkuk gives us an opportunity to grapple with the unanswerable questions of life. We too must seek to understand suffering and the seeming triumph of wickedness in the face of God's justice. Yet with Habakkuk we can place our hope in God's promise and await an appointed time (cf. 2:3, 3:16) when the Lord will finally and fully establish his justice in our midst. Until then, we can rejoice in the knowledge that God is our Savior (3:18).
By Mark Giszczak