The LORD's Avenging Wrath
1 1 The burden of Nineveh. The book of the vision of Nahum the Elkoshite.
2 Jehovah is a jealous God and avengeth; Jehovah avengeth and is full of wrath; Jehovah taketh vengeance on his adversaries, and he reserveth [wrath] for his enemies. 3 Jehovah is slow to anger, and great in power, and will by no means clear [the guilty]: Jehovah hath his way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet. 4 He rebuketh the sea, and maketh it dry, and drieth up all the rivers: Bashan languisheth, and Carmel; and the flower of Lebanon languisheth. 5 The mountains quake at him, and the hills melt; and the earth is upheaved at his presence, yea, the world, and all that dwell therein. 6 Who can stand before his indignation? and who can abide in the fierceness of his anger? his wrath is poured out like fire, and the rocks are broken asunder by him. 7 Jehovah is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; and he knoweth them that take refuge in him. 8 But with an over-running flood he will make a full end of her place, and will pursue his enemies into darkness.
9 What do ye devise against Jehovah? he will make a full end; affliction shall not rise up the second time. 10 For entangled like thorns, and drunken as with their drink, they are consumed utterly as dry stubble. 11 There is one gone forth out of thee, that deviseth evil against Jehovah, that counselleth wickedness. 12 Thus saith Jehovah: Though they be in full strength, and likewise many, even so shall they be cut down, and he shall pass away. Though I have afflicted thee, I will afflict thee no more. 13 And now will I break his yoke from off thee, and will burst thy bonds in sunder. 14 And Jehovah hath given commandment concerning thee, that no more of thy name be sown: out of the house of thy gods will I cut off the graven image and the molten image; I will make thy grave; for thou art vile.
The Tidings of Nineveh's Fall
15 Behold, upon the mountains the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace! Keep thy feasts, O Judah, perform thy vows; for the wicked one shall no more pass through thee; he is utterly cut off.
2 1 He that dasheth in pieces is come up against thee: keep the fortress, watch the way, make thy loins strong, fortify thy power mightily. 2 For Jehovah restoreth the excellency of Jacob, as the excellency of Israel; for the emptiers have emptied them out, and destroyed their vine-branches. 3 The shield of his mighty men is made red, the valiant men are in scarlet: the chariots flash with steel in the day of his preparation, and the cypress [spears] are brandished. 4 The chariots rage in the streets; they rush to and fro in the broad ways: the appearance of them is like torches; they run like the lightnings. 5 He remembereth his nobles: they stumble in their march; they make haste to the wall thereof, and the mantelet is prepared. 6 The gates of the rivers are opened, and the palace is dissolved. 7 And it is decreed: she is uncovered, she is carried away; and her handmaids moan as with the voice of doves, beating upon their breasts. 8 But Nineveh hath been from of old like a pool of water: yet they flee away. Stand, stand, [they cry]; but none looketh back. 9 Take ye the spoil of silver, take the spoil of gold; for there is no end of the store, the glory of all goodly furniture. 10 She is empty, and void, and waste; and the heart melteth, and the knees smite together, and anguish is in all loins, and the faces of them all are waxed pale.
11 Where is the den of the lions, and the feeding-place of the young lions, where the lion [and] the lioness walked, the lion's whelp, and none made them afraid? 12 The lion did tear in pieces enough for his whelps, and strangled for his lionesses, and filled his caves with prey, and his dens with ravin.
The Utter Ruin of Nineveh
13 Behold, I am against thee, saith Jehovah of hosts, and I will burn her chariots in the smoke, and the sword shall devour thy young lions; and I will cut off thy prey from the earth, and the voice of thy messengers shall no more be heard.
3 1 Woe to the bloody city! it is all full of lies and rapine; the prey departeth not. 2 The noise of the whip, and the noise of the rattling of wheels, and prancing horses, and bounding chariots, 3 the horseman mounting, and the flashing sword, and the glittering spear, and a multitude of slain, and a great heap of corpses, and there is no end of the bodies; they stumble upon their bodies;— 4 because of the multitude of the whoredoms of the well-favored harlot, the mistress of witchcrafts, that selleth nations through her whoredoms, and families through her witchcrafts. 5 Behold, I am against thee, saith Jehovah of hosts, and I will uncover thy skirts upon thy face; and I will show the nations thy nakedness, and the kingdoms thy shame. 6 And I will cast abominable filth upon thee, and make thee vile, and will set thee as a gazing-stock. 7 And it shall come to pass, that all they that look upon thee shall flee from thee, and say, Nineveh is laid waste: who will bemoan her? whence shall I seek comforters for thee?
8 Art thou better than No-amon, that was situate among the rivers, that had the waters round about her; whose rampart was the sea, [and] her wall was of the sea? 9 Ethiopia and Egypt were her strength, and it was infinite; Put and Lubim were thy helpers. 10 Yet was she carried away, she went into captivity; her young children also were dashed in pieces at the head of all the streets; and they cast lots for her honorable men, and all her great men were bound in chains. 11 Thou also shalt be drunken; thou shalt be hid; thou also shalt seek a stronghold because of the enemy. 12 All thy fortresses shall be [like] fig-trees with the first-ripe figs: if they be shaken, they fall into the mouth of the eater. 13 Behold, thy people in the midst of thee are women; the gates of thy land are set wide open unto thine enemies: the fire hath devoured thy bars. 14 Draw thee water for the siege; strengthen thy fortresses; go into the clay, and tread the mortar; make strong the brickkiln. 15 There shall the fire devour thee; the sword shall cut thee off; it shall devour thee like the canker-worm: make thyself many as the canker-worm; make thyself many as the locust. 16 Thou hast multiplied thy merchants above the stars of heaven: the canker-worm ravageth, and fleeth away. 17 Thy princes are as the locusts, and thy marshals as the swarms of grasshoppers, which encamp in the hedges in the cold day, but when the sun ariseth they flee away, and their place is not known where they are. 18 Thy shepherds slumber, O king of Assyria; thy nobles are at rest; thy people are scattered upon the mountains, and there is none to gather them. 19 There is no assuaging of thy hurt: thy wound is grievous: all that hear the report of thee clap their hands over thee; for upon whom hath not thy wickedness passed continually?
Habakkuk Complains of Injustice
1 1 The burden which Habakkuk the prophet did see. 2 O Jehovah, how long shall I cry, and thou wilt not hear? I cry out unto thee of violence, and thou wilt not save. 3 Why dost thou show me iniquity, and look upon perverseness? for destruction and violence are before me; and there is strife, and contention riseth up. 4 Therefore the law is slacked, and justice doth never go forth; for the wicked doth compass about the righteous; therefore justice goeth forth perverted.
The Chaldeans Will Punish Judah
5 Behold ye among the nations, and look, and wonder marvellously; for I am working a work in your days, which ye will not believe though it be told you. 6 For, lo, I raise up the Chaldeans, that bitter and hasty nation, that march through the breadth of the earth, to possess dwelling-places that are not theirs. 7 They are terrible and dreadful; their judgment and their dignity proceed from themselves. 8 Their horses also are swifter than leopards, and are more fierce than the evening wolves; and their horsemen press proudly on: yea, their horsemen come from far; they fly as an eagle that hasteth to devour. 9 They come all of them for violence; the set of their faces is forwards; and they gather captives as the sand. 10 Yea, he scoffeth at kings, and princes are a derision unto him; he derideth every stronghold; for he heapeth up dust, and taketh it. 11 Then shall he sweep by [as] a wind, and shall pass over, and be guilty, [even] he whose might is his god.
Habakkuk Remonstrates with the LORD
12 Art not thou from everlasting, O Jehovah my God, my Holy One? we shall not die. O Jehovah, thou hast ordained him for judgment; and thou, O Rock, hast established him for correction. 13 Thou that art of purer eyes than to behold evil, and that canst not look on perverseness, wherefore lookest thou upon them that deal treacherously, and holdest thy peace when the wicked swalloweth up the man that is more righteous than he; 14 and makest men as the fishes of the sea, as the creeping things, that have no ruler over them? 15 He taketh up all of them with the angle, he catcheth them in his net, and gathereth them in his drag: therefore he rejoiceth and is glad. 16 Therefore he sacrificeth unto his net, and burneth incense unto his drag; because by them his portion is fat, and his food plenteous. 17 Shall he therefore empty his net, and spare not to slay the nations continually?
The LORD's Answer to Habakkuk
2 1 I will stand upon my watch, and set me upon the tower, and will look forth to see what he will speak with me, and what I shall answer concerning my complaint. 2 And Jehovah answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tablets, that he may run that readeth it. 3 For the vision is yet for the appointed time, and it hasteth toward the end, and shall not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not delay. 4 Behold, his soul is puffed up, it is not upright in him; but the righteous shall live by his faith.
5 Yea, moreover, wine is treacherous, a haughty man, that keepeth not at home; who enlargeth his desire as Sheol, and he is as death, and cannot be satisfied, but gathereth unto him all nations, and heapeth unto him all peoples.
Woes on the Unrighteous
6 Shall not all these take up a parable against him, and a taunting proverb against him, and say, Woe to him that increaseth that which is not his! how long? and that ladeth himself with pledges! 7 Shall they not rise up suddenly that shall bite thee, and awake that shall vex thee, and thou shalt be for booty unto them? 8 Because thou hast plundered many nations, all the remnant of the peoples shall plunder thee, because of men's blood, and for the violence done to the land, to the city and to all that dwell therein. 9 Woe to him that getteth an evil gain for his house, that he may set his nest on high, that he may be delivered from the hand of evil! 10 Thou hast devised shame to thy house, by cutting off many peoples, and hast sinned against thy soul. 11 For the stone shall cry out of the wall, and the beam out of the timber shall answer it. 12 Woe to him that buildeth a town with blood, and establisheth a city by iniquity! 13 Behold, is it not of Jehovah of hosts that the peoples labor for the fire, and the nations weary themselves for vanity? 14 For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of Jehovah, as the waters cover the sea.
15 Woe unto him that giveth his neighbor drink, [to thee] that addest thy venom, and makest him drunken also, that thou mayest look on their nakedness! 16 Thou art filled with shame, and not glory: drink thou also, and be as one uncircumcised; the cup of Jehovah's right hand shall come round unto thee, and foul shame shall be upon thy glory. 17 For the violence done to Lebanon shall cover thee, and the destruction of the beasts, which made them afraid; because of men's blood, and for the violence done to the land, to the city and to all that dwell therein. 18 What profiteth the graven image, that the maker thereof hath graven it; the molten image, even the teacher of lies, that he that fashioneth its form trusteth therein, to make dumb idols? 19 Woe unto him that saith to the wood, Awake; to the dumb stone, Arise! Shall this teach? Behold, it is overlaid with gold and silver, and there is no breath at all in the midst of it. 20 But Jehovah is in his holy temple: let all the earth keep silence before him.
3 1 A prayer of Habakkuk the prophet, set to Shigionoth. 2 O Jehovah, I have heard the report of thee, and am afraid: O Jehovah, revive thy work in the midst of the years; In the midst of the years make it known; In wrath remember mercy.
3 God came from Teman, And the Holy One from mount Paran. Selah. His glory covered the heavens, And the earth was full of his praise. 4 And [his] brightness was as the light; He had rays [coming forth] from his hand; And there was the hiding of his power. 5 Before him went the pestilence, And fiery bolts went forth at his feet. 6 He stood, and measured the earth; He beheld, and drove asunder the nations; And the eternal mountains were scattered; The everlasting hills did bow; His goings were [as] of old. 7 I saw the tents of Cushan in affliction; The curtains of the land of Midian did tremble. 8 Was Jehovah displeased with the rivers? Was thine anger against the rivers, Or thy wrath against the sea, That thou didst ride upon thy horses, Upon thy chariots of salvation? 9 Thy bow was made quite bare; The oaths to the tribes were a [sure] word. Selah. Thou didst cleave the earth with rivers. 10 The mountains saw thee, and were afraid; The tempest of waters passed by; The deep uttered its voice, And lifted up its hands on high. 11 The sun and moon stood still in their habitation, At the light of thine arrows as they went, At the shining of thy glittering spear. 12 Thou didst march though the land in indignation; Thou didst thresh the nations in anger. 13 Thou wentest forth for the salvation of thy people, For the salvation of thine anointed; Thou woundest the head out of the house of the wicked man, Laying bare the foundation even unto the neck. Selah. 14 Thou didst pierce with his own staves the head of his warriors: They came as a whirlwind to scatter me; Their rejoicing was as to devour the poor secretly. 15 Thou didst tread the sea with thy horses, The heap of mighty waters.
16 I heard, and my body trembled, My lips quivered at the voice; Rottenness entereth into my bones, and I tremble in my place; Because I must wait quietly for the day of trouble, For the coming up of the people that invadeth us. 17 For though the fig-tree shall not flourish, Neither shall fruit be in the vines; The labor of the olive shall fail, And the fields shall yield no food; The flock shall be cut off from the fold, And there shall be no herd in the stalls: 18 Yet I will rejoice in Jehovah, I will joy in the God of my salvation. 19 Jehovah, the Lord, is my strength; And he maketh my feet like hinds' [feet], And will make me to walk upon my high places.