The opening stanzas where Habakkuk states that he would stand on his watch and watch to see what the LORD would say to him (verse 1). Further, Habakkuk was "watching" to learn from God what to answer people if he was reproved. His situation feel so much like what I feel that I am undergoing now in a world that is becoming increasingly anti-Bible (and anti-Biblical Judeo-Christianity). I wonder what I will say if people ask me about my beliefs which might be labelled as "Biblical fundamentalism". And I am beginning to seek how to live in the new world that I find myself in.
However, in verses 2 and 3, the LORD answers Habakkuk saying he must:
“Write the vision
And make it plain on tablets,
That he may run who reads it.
For the vision is yet for an appointed time;
But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie.
Though it tarries, wait for it;
Because it will surely come,
It will not tarry."
New King James Version (NKJV)
What way to better write the vision so that it can be read on tablets than on a blog (mark you, my King James version uses tables instead of tablets). And such, I write to you my inspired interpretation of Habakkuk 2, based on what the LORD has impressed upon me.
I know that there are Biblical scholars that argue that the Old Testament was never written to us in the future. There are those voices that suggest that the Bible was written about the past, but not for our present or our future. However, to those views. I disagree. I believe God gave the prophets including Daniel and Habakkuk visions of the future, which they try to express in their own language and symbolism (which does not communicate the full force of what they saw). Further, the myriad of translations into languages that the common man can understand have further made the visions seem alien to the modern man. So I am of the view that the Bible is never wrong, but it is only man's interpretation and translation that is way off.
As such, going back to Habakkuk, I believe his message is speaking directly to a future reality that is currently being designed and created. In essence, all of chapter 2 speaks of this man or being that:
- transgresses by wine
- is a proud, but not upright
- is not content to stay in his home, but wanders out to make trouble
- has this thirst for power
- gathers nations and peoples unto himself
- increases what is not his
Habakkuk however warns that people will eventually revolt and rebel against the being/man. Habakkuk speaks specifically that a remnant or remainder of the people that survive some calamity will turn against the being, because of the violence, blood shed and death of many.
Habakkuk mentions also that this being desires to secure his life from destruction (man-made or natural). Habakkuk states in verses 9-10:
“Woe to him who covets evil gain for his house,
That he may set his nest on high,
That he may be delivered from the power of disaster!
You give shameful counsel to your house,
Cutting off many peoples,
And sin against your soul.
I am not sure if this being seeks to create a secret hideout on a mountain or a skyscraper (considering 9-11, the being may not want to build a skyscraper for protection against disaster). But what is clear, is that whatever the being/man creates for his own and his family's security involves the destruction of the lives of many others. The being is further accused of building a city and town through depopulating the earth.
Habakkuk also mentions two more faults of this being/man:
- that the being gives neighbours wine to drink to make them drunk that he can get sexual satisfaction by watching them naked (and perhaps performing gross sexual misdeeds or voyeurism)
- that the being makes a grave image and appoints it as a spiritual teacher or rabbi. As King James Version puts it: