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Bible Commentaries

F.B. Meyer's 'Through the Bible' Commentary

Chapter 1 Chapter 2 Chapter 3

Book Overview - Habakkuk

by Frederick Brotherton Meyer


“The Just Shall Live by Faith”

I. The Prophet’s Expostulation, Habakkuk 1:1-17; Habakkuk 2:1-20

1. Why Are Iniquity and Injustice Permitted to Prevail? Habakkuk 1:1-4

Reply: The Chaldeans Will Execute Judgment, Habakkuk 1:5-11

2. How Can Power Be Given to So Wicked a People? Habakkuk 1:12-17

Reply: Their Exaltation Is but Temporary, Habakkuk 2:1-4

3. Five Woes against the Chaldeans, Habakkuk 2:5-20

II. The Prophet’s Prayer, Habakkuk 3:1-19

1. God’s Mighty Works a Ground of Hope, Habakkuk 3:1-15

2. A Declaration of Unwavering Faith, Habakkuk 3:16-19


The prophecy of Habakkuk is concerned with the rise of the Chaldeans to power. Habakkuk had seen this mighty people used in inflicting judgment upon Nineveh, and they appeared to be the very instrument of God. But a problem arose when they were seen to be as the Assyrians whom they had destroyed. How could God use for any purpose a heartless, cruel nation, bent wholly upon evil? The prophet’s answer is that God will make all His dealings clear if we but wait for Him. “The just shall live by faith.” When the issues appear confused, the righteous can still remain steadfast and loyal to God-that is their life. “Be true; light will dawn.”

Habakkuk 3:1-19 is a poem of great beauty, remarkable for its expression of unwavering faith. Though all gifts fail, the Giver Himself abides, and in Him the prophet will rejoice.

{e-Sword Note: The following material was presented at the end of Habbakkuk in the printed edition}



(a) What are the two main divisions of the book?

(b) How does the spirit of the first part differ from that of the second part?


(c) What nation’s rise to power occasioned the prophecy of Habakkuk?

(d) What question concerning this nation’s power vexed the prophet?

(e) What answer does the prophet find?

Habakkuk 1-3

Each question applies to the paragraph of corresponding number in the Comments.

1. What complaint does the prophet make to the Lord?

2. What answer is given him?

3. In what words does the prophet express the strength of his faith in God?

Lectionary Calendar
Wednesday, October 16th, 2019
the Week of Proper 23 / Ordinary 28
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