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Habakkuk 1:1–4

This is the message that the prophet Habakkuk received in a vision.

Habakkuk’s Complaint

How long, O Lord, must I call for help?

But you do not listen!

“Violence is everywhere!” I cry,

but you do not come to save.

Must I forever see these evil deeds?

Why must I watch all this misery?

Wherever I look,

I see destruction and violence.

I am surrounded by people

who love to argue and fight.

The law has become paralyzed,

and there is no justice in the courts.

The wicked far outnumber the righteous,

so that justice has become perverted.

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Habakkuk 1:1–4 — The New International Version (NIV)

The prophecy that Habakkuk the prophet received.

How long, Lord, must I call for help,

but you do not listen?

Or cry out to you, “Violence!”

but you do not save?

Why do you make me look at injustice?

Why do you tolerate wrongdoing?

Destruction and violence are before me;

there is strife, and conflict abounds.

Therefore the law is paralyzed,

and justice never prevails.

The wicked hem in the righteous,

so that justice is perverted.

Habakkuk 1:1–4 — English Standard Version (ESV)

The oracle that Habakkuk the prophet saw.

O Lord, how long shall I cry for help,

and you will not hear?

Or cry to you “Violence!”

and you will not save?

Why do you make me see iniquity,

and why do you idly look at wrong?

Destruction and violence are before me;

strife and contention arise.

So the law is paralyzed,

and justice never goes forth.

For the wicked surround the righteous;

so justice goes forth perverted.

Habakkuk 1:1–4 — King James Version (KJV 1900)

The burden which Habakkuk the prophet did see.

O Lord, how long shall I cry, and thou wilt not hear!

Even cry out unto thee of violence, and thou wilt not save!

Why dost thou shew me iniquity, and cause me to behold grievance?

For spoiling and violence are before me:

And there are that raise up strife and contention.

Therefore the law is slacked, and judgment doth never go forth:

For the wicked doth compass about the righteous;

Therefore wrong judgment proceedeth.

Habakkuk 1:1–4 — The New King James Version (NKJV)

The burden which the prophet Habakkuk saw.

O Lord, how long shall I cry,

And You will not hear?

Even cry out to You, “Violence!”

And You will not save.

Why do You show me iniquity,

And cause me to see trouble?

For plundering and violence are before me;

There is strife, and contention arises.

Therefore the law is powerless,

And justice never goes forth.

For the wicked surround the righteous;

Therefore perverse judgment proceeds.

Habakkuk 1:1–4 — New Century Version (NCV)

This is the message Habakkuk the prophet received.

Lord, how long must I ask for help

and you ignore me?

I cry out to you about violence,

but you do not save us!

Why do you make me see wrong things

and make me look at trouble?

People are destroying things and hurting others in front of me;

they are arguing and fighting.

So the teachings are weak,

and justice never comes.

Evil people gain while good people lose;

the judges no longer make fair decisions.

Habakkuk 1:1–4 — American Standard Version (ASV 1901)

The burden which Habakkuk the prophet did see.

O Jehovah, how long shall I cry, and thou wilt not hear? I cry out unto thee of violence, and thou wilt not save. Why dost thou show me iniquity, and look upon perverseness? for destruction and violence are before me; and there is strife, and contention riseth up. Therefore the law is slacked, and justice doth never go forth; for the wicked doth compass about the righteous; therefore justice goeth forth perverted.

Habakkuk 1:1–4 — 1890 Darby Bible (DARBY)

The burden which Habakkuk the prophet did see. Jehovah, how long shall I cry and thou wilt not hear? I cry out unto thee, Violence! and thou dost not save. Why dost thou cause me to see iniquity, and lookest thou upon grievance? For spoiling and violence are before me; and there is strife, and contention riseth up. Therefore the law is powerless, and justice doth never go forth; for the wicked encompasseth the righteous; therefore judgment goeth forth perverted.

Habakkuk 1:1–4 — GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

The divine revelation that the prophet Habakkuk saw.

How long, O Lord, am I to cry for help,

but you will not listen?

I cry out to you, “There’s violence!”

yet you will not come to the rescue.

Why do you make me see wrongdoing?

And why do you watch wickedness?

Destruction and violence are in front of me.

Quarrels and disputes arise.

That is why your teaching is numbed,

and justice is never carried out.

Wicked people surround righteous people

so that when justice is carried out, it’s perverted.

Habakkuk 1:1–4 — The Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

The oracle that Habakkuk the prophet saw.

How long, Lord, must I call for help

and You do not listen

or cry out to You about violence

and You do not save?

Why do You force me to look at injustice?

Why do You tolerate wrongdoing?

Oppression and violence are right in front of me.

Strife is ongoing, and conflict escalates.

This is why the law is ineffective

and justice never emerges.

For the wicked restrict the righteous;

therefore, justice comes out perverted.

Habakkuk 1:1–4 — The New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

The oracle that the prophet Habakkuk saw.

O Lord, how long shall I cry for help,

and you will not listen?

Or cry to you “Violence!”

and you will not save?

Why do you make me see wrongdoing

and look at trouble?

Destruction and violence are before me;

strife and contention arise.

So the law becomes slack

and justice never prevails.

The wicked surround the righteous—

therefore judgment comes forth perverted.

Habakkuk 1:1–4 — The Lexham English Bible (LEB)

The oracle that Habakkuk the prophet saw.

O Yahweh, how long shall I cry for help

and you will not listen?

How long will I cry out to you, “Violence!”

and you will not save?

Why do you cause me to see evil

while you look at trouble?

Destruction and violence happen before me;

contention and strife arise.

Therefore the law is paralyzed,

and justice does not go forth perpetually.

For the wicked surround the righteous;

therefore justice goes forth perverted.

Habakkuk 1:1–4 — New International Reader’s Version (NIrV)

This is a vision the prophet Habakkuk received from the Lord. Here is what Habakkuk said.

Lord, how long do I have to call out for help?

Why don’t you listen to me?

How long must I keep telling you

that things are terrible?

Why don’t you save us?

Why do you make me watch while

people treat others so unfairly?

Why do you put up with the wrong things

they are doing?

I have to look at death.

People are harming others.

They are arguing and fighting all the time.

The law can’t do what it’s supposed to do.

Fairness never comes out on top.

Sinful people surround those

who do what is right.

So people are never treated fairly.

Habakkuk 1:1–4 — New American Standard Bible: 1995 Update (NASB95)

The oracle which Habakkuk the prophet saw.

How long, O Lord, will I call for help,

And You will not hear?

I cry out to You, “Violence!”

Yet You do not save.

Why do You make me see iniquity,

And cause me to look on wickedness?

Yes, destruction and violence are before me;

Strife exists and contention arises.

Therefore the law is ignored

And justice is never upheld.

For the wicked surround the righteous;

Therefore justice comes out perverted.