Daily Devotional: Monday 9th March

by William Moody

Habakkuk 2:5–20

  “Moreover, wine1 is a traitor,
    an arrogant man who is never at rest.2
  His greed is as wide as Sheol;
    like death he has never enough.
  He gathers for himself all nations
    and collects as his own all peoples.”

Woe to the Chaldeans

Shall not all these take up their taunt against him, with scoffing and riddles for him, and say,

  “Woe to him who heaps up what is not his own—
    for how long?—
    and loads himself with pledges!”
  Will not your debtors suddenly arise,
    and those awake who will make you tremble?
    Then you will be spoil for them.
  Because you have plundered many nations,
    all the remnant of the peoples shall plunder you,
  for the blood of man and violence to the earth,
    to cities and all who dwell in them.
  “Woe to him who gets evil gain for his house,
    to set his nest on high,
    to be safe from the reach of harm!
10   You have devised shame for your house
    by cutting off many peoples;
    you have forfeited your life.
11   For the stone will cry out from the wall,
    and the beam from the woodwork respond.
12   “Woe to him who builds a town with blood
    and founds a city on iniquity!
13   Behold, is it not from the LORD of hosts
    that peoples labor merely for fire,
    and nations weary themselves for nothing?
14   For the earth will be filled
    with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD
    as the waters cover the sea.
15   “Woe to him who makes his neighbors drink—
    you pour out your wrath and make them drunk,
    in order to gaze at their nakedness!
16   You will have your fill of shame instead of glory.
    Drink, yourself, and show your uncircumcision!
  The cup in the LORD's right hand
    will come around to you,
    and utter shame will come upon your glory!
17   The violence done to Lebanon will overwhelm you,
    as will the destruction of the beasts that terrified them,
  for the blood of man and violence to the earth,
    to cities and all who dwell in them.
18   “What profit is an idol
    when its maker has shaped it,
    a metal image, a teacher of lies?
  For its maker trusts in his own creation
    when he makes speechless idols!
19   Woe to him who says to a wooden thing, Awake;
    to a silent stone, Arise!
  Can this teach?
  Behold, it is overlaid with gold and silver,
    and there is no breath at all in it.
20   But the LORD is in his holy temple;
    let all the earth keep silence before him.”

Footnotes

[1] 2:5 Masoretic Text; Dead Sea Scroll wealth
[2] 2:5 The meaning of the Hebrew of these two lines is uncertain

(ESV)

As the Lord continues His response to Habakkuk’s complaint, He shows that He is never soft on sin and that it will bring serious consequences for the Babylonians. They are described as arrogant and as greedy as death (v5).

The Lord then speaks of five woes for the Babylonians (v6-19)

  1. Woe to the thief (v6-8)
  2. Woe to the unjust builder (v9-11)
  3. Woe to the builder with bloodshed (v12-14)
  4. Woe to the wine server (v15-17)
  5. Woe to the idolater (v18-19)

We each need to consider these sins in turn to see where they may lurk in our lives. We must never forget, sin brings consequences.

This section ends with the need of stillness before God (v20). We need to examine our lives and actions in the presence of almighty God.

Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®),
copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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