Habakkuk 2:18
Parallel Verses
New International Version
"Of what value is an idol carved by a craftsman? Or an image that teaches lies? For the one who makes it trusts in his own creation; he makes idols that cannot speak.

New Living Translation
"What good is an idol carved by man, or a cast image that deceives you? How foolish to trust in your own creation--a god that can't even talk!

English Standard Version
“What profit is an idol when its maker has shaped it, a metal image, a teacher of lies? For its maker trusts in his own creation when he makes speechless idols!

New American Standard Bible
"What profit is the idol when its maker has carved it, Or an image, a teacher of falsehood? For its maker trusts in his own handiwork When he fashions speechless idols.

King James Bible
What profiteth the graven image that the maker thereof hath graven it; the molten image, and a teacher of lies, that the maker of his work trusteth therein, to make dumb idols?

Holman Christian Standard Bible
What use is a carved idol after its craftsman carves it? It is only a cast image, a teacher of lies. For the one who crafts its shape trusts in it and makes idols that cannot speak.

International Standard Version
"Where is the benefit in owning a carved image, that motivates its maker to carve it? It is only a cast image— a teacher that lies— because the engraver entrusts himself to his carving, crafting speechless idols.

NET Bible
What good is an idol? Why would a craftsman make it? What good is a metal image that gives misleading oracles? Why would its creator place his trust in it and make such mute, worthless things?

GOD'S WORD® Translation
"What benefit is there in a carved idol when its maker has carved it? What benefit is there in a molded statue, a teacher of lies, when its maker has molded it? The one who formed it trusts himself to make worthless idols that cannot speak.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Of what profit is the graven image that its maker has sculpted; the molten image, that teaches lies, so that in making dumb images the maker trusts in his work?

King James 2000 Bible
What profits the graven image that its maker has shaped it; the molten image, and a teacher of lies, that the maker of his work trusts in it, to make dumb idols?

American King James Version
What profits the graven image that the maker thereof has graven it; the molten image, and a teacher of lies, that the maker of his work trusts therein, to make dumb idols?

American Standard Version
What profiteth the graven image, that the maker thereof hath graven it; the molten image, even the teacher of lies, that he that fashioneth its form trusteth therein, to make dumb idols?

Douay-Rheims Bible
What doth the graven thing avail, because the maker thereof hath graven it, a molten, and a false image? because the forger thereof hath trusted in a thing of his own forging, to make dumb idols.

Darby Bible Translation
What profiteth the graven image that the maker thereof hath graven it? the molten image, and the teacher of falsehood, that the maker of his work dependeth thereon, to make dumb idols?

English Revised Version
What profiteth the graven image, that the maker thereof hath graven it; the molten image, and the teacher of lies, that the maker of his work trusteth therein, to make dumb idols?

Webster's Bible Translation
What profiteth the graven image that its maker hath graven it; the molten image, and a teacher of lies, that the maker of his work trusteth therein, to make dumb idols?

World English Bible
"What value does the engraved image have, that its maker has engraved it; the molten image, even the teacher of lies, that he who fashions its form trusts in it, to make mute idols?

Young's Literal Translation
What profit hath a graven image given That its former hath graven it? A molten image and teacher of falsehood, That trusted hath the former on his own formation -- to make dumb idols?
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

2:15-20 A severe woe is pronounced against drunkenness; it is very fearful against all who are guilty of drunkenness at any time, and in any place, from the stately palace to the paltry ale-house. To give one drink who is in want, who is thirsty and poor, or a weary traveller, or ready to perish, is charity; but to give a neighbour drink, that he may expose himself, may disclose secret concerns, or be drawn into a bad bargain, or for any such purpose, this is wickedness. To be guilty of this sin, to take pleasure in it, is to do what we can towards the murder both of soul and body. There is woe to him, and punishment answering to the sin. The folly of worshipping idols is exposed. The Lord is in his holy temple in heaven, where we have access to him in the way he has appointed. May we welcome his salvation, and worship him in his earthly temples, through Christ Jesus, and by the influence of the Holy Spirit.

Pulpit Commentary

Verses 18-20. - 12. The fifth woe: for their idolatry. Verse 18. - The final woe is introduced by an ironical question. The Chaldeans trusted in their gods, and attributed all their success to the divine protection; the prophet asks - What good is this trust? What profiteth the graven image? (comp. Isaiah 44:9, 10; Jeremiah 2:11). What is the good of all the skill and care that the artist has lavished on the idol? (For "graven" or "molten," see note on Nahum 1:14.) And a (even the) teacher of lies. The idol is so termed because it calls itself God and encourages its worshippers in lying delusions, in entire contrast to Jehovah who is Truth. From some variation in reading the LXX. gives, φαντασίαν ψευδῆ, and Jerome, "imaginem falsam" (comp. Jeremiah 10:14). Trusteth therein. The prophet derides the folly which supposes that the idol has powers denied to the man who made it (Isaiah 29:16). Dumb idols; literally, dumb nothings. So 1 Corinthians 12:2, εἴδωλα τὰ ἄφωνα (comp. 1 Corinthians 10:19; Psalm 115:5, etc.). There is a paronomasia in the Hebrew, elilim illemim.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

What profiteth the graven image that the maker thereof hath graven it,.... The graven images the church of Rome enjoins the worship of; the images of the Trinity, of Christ, of the Virgin Mary, of angels and saints departed, and which are still continued since the Reformation; but of what profit and advantage are they? they may be profitable to the graver, who is paid for graving them; and the metal or matters of which they are made, if sold, and converted to another use, may turn to account; but as deities, and worshipped as such, they are of no profit to them that worship them; they can not hear their prayers, nor answer them; can not bestow any favours on them, and deliver them out of any distress; and particularly can not save them from the judgments before denounced:

the molten image, and a teacher of lies: nor is a molten image any ways profitable, which is made of liquid matter, gold or silver melted and poured into a mould, from whence it receives its form: it may be profitable to the founder, and the metal to the owner, if put to another use; but, as a god, is of no service; and both the graven and molten image, the one and the other, each of then is "a teacher of lies", and so unprofitable; if they are laymen's books, as they are said to be, they do not teach them truth; they do not teach them what God is in his nature and perfections; what Christ is in his person and offices; what angels are, who are incorporeal; nor the saints, they neither describe the shape and features of their body, nor express their characters, minds, or manners; they teach men to believe lies, and to worship false deities, as they are. So the Targum renders it, a false deity; which imposes on men, and therefore cannot profit them: or this may be understood of an idolatrous priest, as Aben Ezra; as the idol itself cannot profit, so neither can the priest that teaches men such lies as to worship the idol, and put trust in it:

that the maker of his work trusteth therein, to make dumb idols? or, "whilst making dumb idols" (m); which is great stupidity indeed! that while a man is graving an image, or casting an idol, which are lifeless senseless things, that can neither move nor speak, yea, are his workmanship, yet puts his trust and confidence in them, that they can do him service he needs, help him in distress, and save him out of his troubles; what profit can be expected from these, though ever so nicely framed, when he considers they are of his own framing, and that they are idols, which are nothing in the world, as the word (n) here used signifies; and dumb ones, which can give no answer to the requests of their votaries? The Targum is,

"idols in whom there is no profit.''

(m) "faciendo idola muta", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, Vatablus. (n) "dii nihili", Drusius.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

18. The powerlessness of the idols to save Babylon from its doom is a fitting introduction to the last stanza (Hab 2:19), which, as the former four, begins with "Woe."

teacher of lies—its priests and prophets uttering lying oracles, as if from it.

make dumb idols—Though men can "make" idols, they cannot make them speak.

Habakkuk 2:18 Additional Commentaries
Context
Woe to the Chaldeans
17"For the violence done to Lebanon will overwhelm you, And the devastation of its beasts by which you terrified them, Because of human bloodshed and violence done to the land, To the town and all its inhabitants. 18"What profit is the idol when its maker has carved it, Or an image, a teacher of falsehood? For its maker trusts in his own handiwork When he fashions speechless idols. 19"Woe to him who says to a piece of wood, 'Awake!' To a mute stone, 'Arise!' And that is your teacher? Behold, it is overlaid with gold and silver, And there is no breath at all inside it.…
Cross References
1 Corinthians 12:2
You know that when you were pagans, somehow or other you were influenced and led astray to mute idols.

1 Samuel 12:21
Do not turn away after useless idols. They can do you no good, nor can they rescue you, because they are useless.

Psalm 97:7
All who worship images are put to shame, those who boast in idols-- worship him, all you gods!

Psalm 115:4
But their idols are silver and gold, made by human hands.

Psalm 115:8
Those who make them will be like them, and so will all who trust in them.

Isaiah 40:19
As for an idol, a metalworker casts it, and a goldsmith overlays it with gold and fashions silver chains for it.

Isaiah 41:26
Who told of this from the beginning, so we could know, or beforehand, so we could say, 'He was right'? No one told of this, no one foretold it, no one heard any words from you.

Isaiah 42:17
But those who trust in idols, who say to images, 'You are our gods,' will be turned back in utter shame.

Isaiah 44:9
All who make idols are nothing, and the things they treasure are worthless. Those who would speak up for them are blind; they are ignorant, to their own shame.

Isaiah 44:10
Who shapes a god and casts an idol, which can profit nothing?

Isaiah 44:12
The blacksmith takes a tool and works with it in the coals; he shapes an idol with hammers, he forges it with the might of his arm. He gets hungry and loses his strength; he drinks no water and grows faint.

Jeremiah 2:8
The priests did not ask, 'Where is the LORD?' Those who deal with the law did not know me; the leaders rebelled against me. The prophets prophesied by Baal, following worthless idols.

Jeremiah 2:27
They say to wood, 'You are my father,' and to stone, 'You gave me birth.' They have turned their backs to me and not their faces; yet when they are in trouble, they say, 'Come and save us!'

Jeremiah 2:28
Where then are the gods you made for yourselves? Let them come if they can save you when you are in trouble! For you, Judah, have as many gods as you have towns.

Jeremiah 10:8
They are all senseless and foolish; they are taught by worthless wooden idols.

Jeremiah 10:14
Everyone is senseless and without knowledge; every goldsmith is shamed by his idols. The images he makes are a fraud; they have no breath in them.

Jeremiah 16:19
LORD, my strength and my fortress, my refuge in time of distress, to you the nations will come from the ends of the earth and say, "Our ancestors possessed nothing but false gods, worthless idols that did them no good.

Jeremiah 51:17
"Everyone is senseless and without knowledge; every goldsmith is shamed by his idols. The images he makes are a fraud; they have no breath in them.

Daniel 5:23
Instead, you have set yourself up against the Lord of heaven. You had the goblets from his temple brought to you, and you and your nobles, your wives and your concubines drank wine from them. You praised the gods of silver and gold, of bronze, iron, wood and stone, which cannot see or hear or understand. But you did not honor the God who holds in his hand your life and all your ways.

Amos 2:4
This is what the LORD says: "For three sins of Judah, even for four, I will not relent. Because they have rejected the law of the LORD and have not kept his decrees, because they have been led astray by false gods, the gods their ancestors followed,
Treasury of Scripture

What profits the graven image that the maker thereof has graven it; the molten image, and a teacher of lies, that the maker of his work trusts therein, to make dumb idols?

profiteth.

Isaiah 37:38 And it came to pass, as he was worshipping in the house of Nisroch his god…

Isaiah 42:17 They shall be turned back, they shall be greatly ashamed, that trust …

Isaiah 44:9,10 They that make a graven image are all of them vanity; and their delectable …

Isaiah 45:16,20 They shall be ashamed, and also confounded, all of them: they shall …

Isaiah 46:1,2,6-8 Bel bows down, Nebo stoops, their idols were on the beasts, and on …

Jeremiah 2:27,28 Saying to a stock, You are my father; and to a stone, You have brought …

Jeremiah 10:3-5 For the customs of the people are vain: for one cuts a tree out of …

Jeremiah 50:2 Declare you among the nations, and publish, and set up a standard; …

Romans 6:21 What fruit had you then in those things whereof you are now ashamed? …

a teacher.

Jeremiah 10:8,14,15 But they are altogether brutish and foolish: the stock is a doctrine …

Jonah 2:8 They that observe lying vanities forsake their own mercy.

Zechariah 10:2 For the idols have spoken vanity, and the diviners have seen a lie, …

Romans 1:23-25 And changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made …

2 Thessalonians 2:9-11 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power …

1 Timothy 4:1,2 Now the Spirit speaks expressly, that in the latter times some shall …

Revelation 13:11-15 And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had …

Revelation 19:20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that worked …

that the.

Psalm 115:4-8 Their idols are silver and gold, the work of men's hands…

Psalm 135:15-18 The idols of the heathen are silver and gold, the work of men's hands…

Isaiah 1:31 And the strong shall be as wick, and the maker of it as a spark, …

Isaiah 44:14-20 He hews him down cedars, and takes the cypress and the oak, which …

maker of his work. Heb. fashioner of his fashion. dumb.

1 Corinthians 12:2 You know that you were Gentiles, carried away to these dumb idols, …

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