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Habakkuk, chapter 2, New English Translation

Chapter 2

   1 I will stand at my watch post; I will remain stationed on the city wall. I will keep watching, so I can see what he says to me and can know how I should answer when he counters my argument.
   The LORD Assures Habakkuk
   2 The LORD responded: "Write down this message! Record it legibly on tablets, so the one who announces it may read it easily.
   3 For the message is a witness to what is decreed; it gives reliable testimony about how matters will turn out. Even if the message is not fulfilled right away, wait patiently; for it will certainly come to pass - it will not arrive late.
   4 Look, the one whose desires are not upright will faint from exhaustion, but the person of integrity will live because of his faithfulness.
   5 Indeed, wine will betray the proud, restless man! His appetite is as big as Sheol's; like death, he is never satisfied. He gathers all the nations; he seizes all peoples.
   The Proud Babylonians are as Good as Dead
   6 "But all these nations will someday taunt him and ridicule him with proverbial sayings: 'The one who accumulates what does not belong to him is as good as dead (How long will this go on? ) - he who gets rich by extortion!'
   7 Your creditors will suddenly attack; those who terrify you will spring into action, and they will rob you.
   8 Because you robbed many countries, all who are left among the nations will rob you. You have shed human blood and committed violent acts against lands, cities, and those who live in them.
   9 The one who builds his house by unjust gain is as good as dead. He does this so he can build his nest way up high and escape the clutches of disaster.
   10 Your schemes will bring shame to your house. Because you destroyed many nations, you will self-destruct.
   11 For the stones in the walls will cry out, and the wooden rafters will answer back.
   12 The one who builds a city by bloodshed is as good as dead - he who starts a town by unjust deeds.
   13 Be sure of this! The LORD who commands armies has decreed: The nations' efforts will go up in smoke; their exhausting work will be for nothing.
   14 For recognition of the LORD's sovereign majesty will fill the earth just as the waters fill up the sea.
   15 "You who force your neighbor to drink wine are as good as dead - you who make others intoxicated by forcing them to drink from the bowl of your furious anger, so you can look at their genitals.
   16 But you will become drunk with shame, not majesty. Now it is your turn to drink and expose your uncircumcised foreskin! The cup of wine in the LORD's right hand is coming to you, and disgrace will replace your majestic glory!
   17 For you will pay in full for your violent acts against Lebanon; terrifying judgment will come upon you because of the way you destroyed the wild animals living there. You have shed human blood and committed violent acts against lands, cities, and those who live in them.
   18 What good is an idol? Why would a craftsman make it? What good is a metal image that gives misleading oracles? Why would its creator place his trust in it and make such mute, worthless things?
   19 The one who says to wood, 'Wake up!' is as good as dead - he who says to speechless stone, 'Awake!' Can it give reliable guidance? It is overlaid with gold and silver; it has no life's breath inside it.
   20 But the LORD is in his majestic palace. The whole earth is speechless in his presence!"

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