This month our Bible reading plan takes us to the Minor Prophets. To help us assemble these books and understand their message, here are a number of resources to Habakkuk, the first book of The Twelve. You can find more information about the Minor Prophets here.
Habakkuk does not have an historical superscription in its opening verse, but the content of book identifies the Babylonians and their impending actions against Jerusalem. Therefore, we can place this book around 620 B.C., as the ESV Study Bible suggests.
Though the exact date of the prophecies of Habakkuk are difficult to determine, it is likely that he prophesied a short time before the Babylonian invasions of Judah, which began in 605 B.C. During this time the Assyrian Empire was in decline, and the Babylonians were rising to replace them as the dominant power in the Near East.
An Outline of Habakkuk
- Habakkuk’s Lamentation and God’s Response (1:1–2:5)
- Complaint #1 (1:2–4): Israel is Bad (e.g., Torah neglected; injustice prevails; leaders corrupt)
- Response #1 (1:5–11): Babylon is coming to judge
- Complaint #2 (1:12–2:1): Babylon is Worse!
- Response #2 (2:2–5): Babylon will be destroyed; the just shall live by faith
- Five Woes (2:6–20)
- Unjust economics (vv. 6–8)
- Unjust economics (vv. 9–11)
- Slave labor (vv. 12–14)
- Drunkenness (vv. 15–17)
- Idolatry (vv. 18–20)
- Habakkuk’s Prayer (3:1–)
- God Appears in Power (vv. 1–7)
- Israel’s New Exodus (vv. 8–15)
- Habakkuk’s Hopeful Praise (vv. 16–19)
- Superscription (1:1)
- First Cycle (1:2–11)
- Second Cycle (1:12–2:20)
- Habakkuk’s Prayer (3:1–19)
- Introduction (1:1)
- First Cycle of Complaint and Response (1:2–11)
- Habakkuk’s First Complaint: “Why do you tolerate wrongdoing?” (1:2–4)
- Yahweh’s Response: “Look . . . observe—be utterly astounded!” (1:5–11)
- Second Cycle of Complaint and Response (1:12–2:5)
- Habakkuk’s Second Complaint: “So why do you tolerate those who are treacherous?” (1:12–17)
- Pause in the Dialogue: “I will watch to see what [God] will say to me . . .” (2:1)
- Yahweh’s Second Response: “But the righteous one will live by faith” (2:2–5)
- A Taunting Song of Woe Oracles: “Woe to him . . .” (2:6–20)
- A Psalm of Praise: “Yet I will triumph in Yahweh . . .” (3:1–19)
Overview Sermons on Habakkuk
- Major Points from Habakkuk by John Blanchard
- How Can I Be Happy? The Message of Habakkuk by Mark Dever
Sermon Series on Habakkuk
- How Long and Why? (Habakkuk 1:1–4)
- Look and Be Amazed! (Habakkuk 1:5–2:20)
- Let All the Earth Be Silent (Habakkuk 2:2–20)
- I Will Rejoice! (Habakkuk 3)
Articles on Habakkuk
- Going to the Movies with Habakkuk and Haggai: What the Prophets Have to Say to Modern Moviegoers
- How a Historian Reads History (Habakkuk 2:14) by Mark Noll (Audio)
Via Emmaus Articles on The Twelve
- Reading the Minor Prophets Together: Ten Observations from Paul House’s ‘The Unity of the Twelve’
- Finding Theological Unity in The Twelve: Reading the Minor Prophets with Richard Fuhr and Gary Yates
- The Theological Message of the Twelve
- Putting the Prophets in Their Place: An Introduction to the Historical Background of the Minor Prophets
Books on the Minor Prophets
- Richard Alan Fuhr, Jr. and Gary E. Yates, The Message of the Twelve: Hearing the Voice of the Minor Prophets (Nashville: B & H Academic, 2016).
- Paul House, The Unity of the Twelve (New York: T & T Clark).
Books on the Prophets in General
- Peter J. Gentry, How to Read and Understand the Prophets (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2017).
- O. Palmer Robertson, The Christ of the Prophets (Phillipsburg, NJ: P & R, 2004).
- Aaron Chalmers, Interpreting the Prophets: Reading, Understanding and Preaching from the Worlds of the Prophets (Downers Grove, IL: IVP, 2015)
Soli Deo Gloria, ds