Title (Hab 1:1-1:1)

“The oracle

That the prophet Habakkuk

Saw.”

We know very little about Habakkuk, since there is no indication of his father or the place that he was from.  His name appears in the Daniel story about Bell and the Dragon, chapter 14.  Probably he was a prophet during the time of the Babylonian captivity in the 6th century BCE.

Advertisements

Daniel is safe (Dan 14:40-14:42)

“On the seventh day,

The king came

To mourn

For Daniel.

When he came

To the den,

He looked in.

There sat Daniel.

The king shouted

With a loud voice.

‘You are great!

O Lord!

God of Daniel!

There is no other

Besides you!’

Then he pulled

Daniel out.

He threw into the den

Those who had attempted

His destruction.

They were instantly eaten

Before his eyes.”

Thus, ends the great story of Daniel. On the 7th day, the king came to mourn the death of Daniel. Instead, he was surprised to see Daniel sitting in the den of lions. Then the king shouted out his praise for the God of Daniel, the Lord. There were no other gods like him. Next, he pulled Daniel out of the den. Finally, he threw those who had attempted the destruction of Daniel into the lion’s den. The lions immediately ate these men right before the eyes of the king.

The prophet Habakkuk visits Daniel (Dan 14:37-14:39)

“Then Habakkuk shouted.

‘Daniel!

Daniel!

Take the food

That God has sent you.’

Daniel said.

‘You have remembered me!

O God!

You have not forsaken

Those who love you!’

So,

Daniel got up.

He ate.

The angel of God

Immediately returned Habakkuk

To his own place.”

When Habakkuk landed on top of the den, he cried out to Daniel. He told Daniel that God had sent him with a dinner. Daniel praised God for not forgetting him. Then he got up and ate the dinner. Finally, the angel of God returned Habakkuk to his own home. At least, Daniel had a good dinner for one of his 6 days in the den. Habakkuk was also back home again.

The angel takes Habakkuk to Babylon (Dan 14:35-14:36)

“Habakkuk said.

‘Sir!

I have never seen Babylon.

I know nothing

About the den.’

Then the angel

Of the Lord

Took him

By the crown

Of his head.

He carried him

By his hair,

With the speed

Of the wind.

He set him down

In Babylon,

Right over the den.”

This prophet Habakkuk rightly said that he knew nothing about Babylon or any lion’s den. He had no idea of where he was to go. The angel of the Lord had a quick answer. He took Habakkuk by the hair on the crown of his head. He carried him away with the speed of the wind to Babylon, right over the lion’s den where Daniel was. That was a simple solution to a big transportation problem.

The prophet Habakkuk (Dan 14:33-14:34)

“Now the prophet Habakkuk

Was in Judea.

He had made a stew.

He had broken bread

Into a bowl.

He was going

Into the field

To take it

To the reapers.

But the angel

Of the Lord

Said to Habakkuk.

‘Take the dinner

That you have

To Babylon,

To Daniel,

In the lions’ den.’”

Who is this prophet Habakkuk? It is not clear whether he was one of the minor prophets with the same name. Here, he is a prophet in Judea. Since the minor prophets were already known, this may be an attempt to connect the two prophets, Habakkuk and Daniel together. Anyway, he had some stew and bread that he was bringing to the workers reaping in the field, when an angel of the Lord appeared to him. This unnamed angel told Habakkuk to bring his dinner to Daniel in the lion’s den in Babylon. That would be quite a task since foot travel was the normal form of transportation between Judea and Babylon. Once again, there is an emphasis on eating. I would; think that the last thing that Daniel was worried about in the lion’s den would be food.

Daniel in the lion’s den (Dan 14:31-14:32)

“They threw Daniel

Into the lions’ den.

He was there

For six days.

There were seven lions

In the den.

Every day,

They had been given

Two human bodies,

With two sheep.

But now

They were given nothing.

Thus,

They would devour Daniel.”

Once again, Daniel is in the lion’s den as in chapter 6 of this book. This time, the duration is 6 days, instead of one night. There was an explicit mention of 7 lions in the den, instead of the earlier vague den of lions. Normally, these lions feasted on 2 human bodies and 2 sheep each day. During the time that Daniel was there, they were not given their normal diet, so that they might want to eat Daniel.

The Babylonians want Daniel killed (Dan 14:29-14:30)

“Going to the king,

They said.

‘Hand Daniel

Over to us!

Otherwise,

We will kill you!

We will kill

Your household!’

The king saw

That they were

Pressing him hard.

Under compulsion,

He handed Daniel

Over to them.”

These conspirators against the king wanted Daniel put to death. His influence was seen as the main reason for the king’s actions. In fact, they told the king, either hand over Daniel or they would kill him and his household. Given that simple choice of his death or that of Daniel, the king handed Daniel over to them.