View Habakkuk 1 in the note window.
The prophet complains of the violence practised by the Jews, ver. 1 - 4.
God foretells the punishment of it, ver. 5 - 11.
The prophet complains of the mischief done by the Chaldeans,
ver. 12 - 17.
1: The burden - The prophet seems to speak of these grievous things,
as a burden which he himself groaned under.
4: Therefore - Because the wicked go on with impunity.
The law - The whole law, moral, ceremonial, and judicial.
Is slacked - Is slighted, and not observed. Go forth - From
magistrates, judges, and public officers. Doth compass about - As
it were besieges, with design to oppress and ruin.
5: Behold ye - Here God begins to answer the prophet.
Among the heathen - See what judgments have been executed upon
the heathen for like sins.
6: Bitter - Cruel, and without mercy. Hasty - Speedy in executing
their merciless purposes.
7: Their judgment - The law they observe, is their own will.
Their dignity - Their authority is all from themselves, without
respect to any other law or rule whatever.
8: The evening wolves - Which with fasting in the day, came out in
the evening, fierce and ravenous. Shall spread - All over the land.
9: For violence - To enrich themselves by making a prey of all.
Their faces - Their very countenances shall be as blasting as the
east - wind.
10: At the kings - Which opposed their designs.
And take it - By mighty mounts cast up.
12: Shall not die - Be utterly destroyed. Ordained - Set up, and
designed. Them - The Chaldean kingdom. For judgment - To execute
this judgment, which is tempered with mercy. For correction - To
chastise, not to destroy.
14: And makest - Not infusing cruel appetites, but permitting
them to act according to such appetite which was already in them.
As the fishes - Of which the greater greedily devour the smaller.
Creeping things - Which in the waters are food for the lesser fry;
so the world, like the sea, is wholly oppression.
No ruler - None to defend the weak, or restrain the mighty.
15: They - The Chaldeans draw out all alike, good or bad.
In their net - Destroying many together. And gather - As if they
could never have enough, they drive men into their nets.
16: They sacrifice - Ascribe the praise of their victories.
Their net - To their own contrivances, diligence, and power.
17: Empty their net - As fisher - men empty the full net to fill it