Habakkuk 3

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Editor's Note

We’re also going to take a brief pause from our summer books (1 & 2 Chronicles) to read from some of the minor prophets that are either directly mentioned in 1 & 2 Chronicles or that lived and prophesied within the time frames of those books. 

These short prophetical books help us understand what God’s people would have been hearing (and feeling) as they lived through some tumultuous times and help add color to the historical books we’re reading over the next couple of months! 

Read Habakkuk 3

Habakkuk’s Prayer

A prayer of Habakkuk the prophet. On shigionoth.

Lord, I have heard of your fame;
    I stand in awe of your deeds, Lord.
Repeat them in our day,
    in our time make them known;
    in wrath remember mercy.

God came from Teman,
    the Holy One from Mount Paran.
His glory covered the heavens
    and his praise filled the earth.
His splendor was like the sunrise;
    rays flashed from his hand,
    where his power was hidden.
Plague went before him;
    pestilence followed his steps.
He stood, and shook the earth;
    he looked, and made the nations tremble.
The ancient mountains crumbled
    and the age-old hills collapsed—
    but he marches on forever.
I saw the tents of Cushan in distress,
    the dwellings of Midian in anguish.

Were you angry with the rivers, Lord?
    Was your wrath against the streams?
Did you rage against the sea
    when you rode your horses
    and your chariots to victory?
You uncovered your bow,
    you called for many arrows.
You split the earth with rivers;
10     the mountains saw you and writhed.
Torrents of water swept by;
    the deep roared
    and lifted its waves on high.

11 Sun and moon stood still in the heavens
    at the glint of your flying arrows,
    at the lightning of your flashing spear.
12 In wrath you strode through the earth
    and in anger you threshed the nations.
13 You came out to deliver your people,
    to save your anointed one.
You crushed the leader of the land of wickedness,
    you stripped him from head to foot.
14 With his own spear you pierced his head
    when his warriors stormed out to scatter us,
gloating as though about to devour
    the wretched who were in hiding.
15 You trampled the sea with your horses,
    churning the great waters.

16 I heard and my heart pounded,
    my lips quivered at the sound;
decay crept into my bones,
    and my legs trembled.
Yet I will wait patiently for the day of calamity
    to come on the nation invading us.
17 Though the fig tree does not bud
    and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
    and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen
    and no cattle in the stalls,
18 yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
    I will be joyful in God my Savior.

19 The Sovereign Lord is my strength;
    he makes my feet like the feet of a deer,
    he enables me to tread on the heights.

For the director of music. On my stringed instruments.

Go Deeper

“Why God?” is the question we see Habakkuk asking the Lord in this book. Why is there injustice? Why is there violence? Why is there oppression? Why is God judging wicked Judah by raising up wicked Babylon? Why isn’t God setting things right? Habakkuk is grappling with some tough questions. He is crying out to God about the oppression and violence in front of him. Why is God tolerating this wrongdoing? Many of us have asked these same questions. How can God be good and there still be evil in the world? How can the Lord love us, but allow us to experience suffering? 

Habakkuk recognized how dark and chaotic this world can be. He saw the violence and injustice around him and concluded that this world is not how it should be. Despite these questions Habakkuk was asking, he concluded with a joyful praise. He reminded himself of who God was despite his current circumstances. Habakkuk says, “Though the fig tree does not bud and there is no fruit on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though the flocks disappear from the pen and there are no herds in the stalls, yet I will celebrate in the Lord; I will rejoice in the God of my salvation!” (v. 17-18). There is no fruit on the trees, no grapes on the vines, no produce, and no livestock. Regardless of this, he will rejoice. 

Paul makes a similar statement in the book of Philippians expressing that he has found joy despite his situation. Paul says, “I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength” (Philippians 4:12-13). We can endure all things through Christ. God alone is the source of our joy. However, this is sometimes hard to believe. It is tempting to seek security and satisfaction from the things of this world. But Jesus is so much better than this world has to offer. Our contentment is not found in physical blessing or circumstances, but in a relationship with God. Only He will truly satisfy.

We can come to the Lord with our honest questions and the ways we feel He has let us down, but it is important to remind ourselves of His consistent character. There is evil in this world, and God is still good and in control. There are troubles in this life, and we can take heart because He has overcome. We can have confidence in God knowing that we don’t see the full picture, He does. The Lord is still on His throne, no matter our circumstances. He is worthy of our trust. He is a just God and will punish the wicked. He will make all things right.


  1. What trials or struggles are you currently walking through? 
  2. Is there a time where you have wrestled with believing God is good when your circumstances are not? 
  3. Like Habakkuk, how can you praise God in the midst of trials?

Listen Here

Listen to this episode of the Pray the Word podcast with pastor and author David Platt on Habakkuk 3:17-18 and be encouraged today!

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4 thoughts on “Habakkuk 3”

  1. Ella Snodgrass

    Our circumstances or the conditions of this world do not negate the power, wonder, authority, glory, splendor or awe of our great God! It’s where we choose to cast our gaze—this broken world or on our Redeemer. Something beautifully poignant happens inside our hearts when we choose to praise him in and through the storms that come. We can testify with Habakkuk that “The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to tread on the heights.”

    1. Robert Denniston

      Ella thank you for your faithfulness in providing your commentary each day. It is a gift to see how God is using you to share your insights about God through your life.

  2. Our world is dark and chaotic. For me it was difficult not to get caught up in it due to not being involved in a church for a season. I let the world in. For some time I have been chasing the world out. Sometimes in order to have that contrite heart free from junk of this world, I have to lament over my mess and humble myself before God. James 4:9-10. God’ grace through Jesus redemption for me is a praise and shigionoth (The shigionoth is the praise that resists the trial! It resists the darkness and spirit of heaviness.) I believe all of the steps are bring about a maturity of my walk with God. I have learned so much in the last 2 years of this journey. Habakkuk 3 is wonderful and I know God is just so good especially when you are doing several different reading plans and God ties them all tie together, it is such a WOOHOO time.

    Thank You God for such a day as this. Thank You that Your grace is new. Thank You that You love beyond my wildest imagination. Thank You for forgiveness. God I praise You with all that I am in Jesus name amen.

  3. God is still in control of the world despite the apparent of evil.

    I could not grasp how it seemed the wicked seem to keep on winning. My understanding now as I walk closely with God is that judgment may not come quickly, but it will come. My focus will be on who God is and in what He will do. I will strive for obedience in Sovereign God’s word and rejoice that He is at work in the world and in my life. Thank you Lord!

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