Habakkuk 3:13
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
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.

New Living Translation
You went out to rescue your chosen people, to save your anointed ones. You crushed the heads of the wicked and stripped their bones from head to toe.

English Standard Version
You went out for the salvation of your people, for the salvation of your anointed. You crushed the head of the house of the wicked, laying him bare from thigh to neck. Selah

New American Standard Bible
You went forth for the salvation of Your people, For the salvation of Your anointed. You struck the head of the house of the evil To lay him open from thigh to neck. Selah.

King James Bible
Thou wentest forth for the salvation of thy people, even for salvation with thine anointed; thou woundedst the head out of the house of the wicked, by discovering the foundation unto the neck. Selah.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
You come out to save Your people, to save Your anointed. You crush the leader of the house of the wicked and strip him from foot to neck. Selah

International Standard Version
You marched out to deliver your people, to deliver with your anointed. You struck the head of the house of the wicked; you stripped him naked from head to foot. Interlude

NET Bible
You march out to deliver your people, to deliver your special servant. You strike the leader of the wicked nation, laying him open from the lower body to the neck. Selah.

New Heart English Bible
You went forth for the salvation of your people, for the salvation of your anointed. You crushed the head of the land of wickedness. You stripped them head to foot. Selah.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
You go out to save your people, to save your anointed. You crush the leader of the wicked household, stripping him bare from head to toe. [Selah]

JPS Tanakh 1917
Thou art come forth for the deliverance of Thy people, For the deliverance of Thine anointed; Thou woundest the head out of the house of the wicked, Uncovering the foundation even unto the neck. Selah

New American Standard 1977
Thou didst go forth for the salvation of Thy people,
            For the salvation of Thine anointed.
            Thou didst strike the head of the house of the evil
            To lay him open from thigh to neck. Selah.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Thou didst go forth to save thy people, to save with thine anointed; thou didst shatter the head of the house of the wicked by uncovering the foundation unto the neck. Selah.

King James 2000 Bible
You went forth for the salvation of your people, even for salvation with your anointed; you wounded the head out of the house of the wicked, by laying bare from the foundation to the neck. Selah.

American King James Version
You went forth for the salvation of your people, even for salvation with your anointed; you wounded the head out of the house of the wicked, by discovering the foundation to the neck. Selah.

American Standard Version
Thou wentest forth for the salvation of thy people, For the salvation of thine anointed; Thou woundest the head out of the house of the wicked man, Laying bare the foundation even unto the neck. Selah.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Thou wentest forth for the salvation of thy people: for salvation with thy Christ. Thou struckest the head of the house of the wicked: thou hast laid bare his foundation even to the neck.

Darby Bible Translation
Thou wentest forth for the salvation of thy people, For the salvation of thine anointed; Thou didst smite off the head from the house of the wicked, Laying bare the foundation even to the neck. Selah.

English Revised Version
Thou wentest forth for the salvation of thy people, for the salvation of thine anointed; thou woundedst the head out of the house of the wicked, laying bare the foundation even unto the neck. Selah

Webster's Bible Translation
Thou wentest forth for the salvation of thy people, even for salvation with thy anointed; thou woundedst the head out of the house of the wicked, by uncovering the foundation to the neck. Selah.

World English Bible
You went forth for the salvation of your people, for the salvation of your anointed. You crushed the head of the land of wickedness. You stripped them head to foot. Selah.

Young's Literal Translation
Thou hast gone forth for the salvation of Thy people, For salvation with Thine anointed, Thou hast smitten the head of the house of the wicked, Laying bare the foundation unto the neck. Pause!
Study Bible
Habakkuk's Prayer
12In indignation You marched through the earth; In anger You trampled the nations. 13You went forth for the salvation of Your people, For the salvation of Your anointed. You struck the head of the house of the evil To lay him open from thigh to neck. Selah. 14You pierced with his own spears The head of his throngs. They stormed in to scatter us; Their exultation was like those Who devour the oppressed in secret.…
Cross References
Exodus 15:2
"The LORD is my strength and song, And He has become my salvation; This is my God, and I will praise Him; My father's God, and I will extol Him.

2 Samuel 5:20
So David came to Baal-perazim and defeated them there; and he said, "The LORD has broken through my enemies before me like the breakthrough of waters." Therefore he named that place Baal-perazim.

Psalm 20:6
Now I know that the LORD saves His anointed; He will answer him from His holy heaven With the saving strength of His right hand.

Psalm 28:8
The LORD is their strength, And He is a saving defense to His anointed.

Psalm 68:7
O God, when You went forth before Your people, When You marched through the wilderness, Selah.

Psalm 68:19
Blessed be the Lord, who daily bears our burden, The God who is our salvation. Selah.

Psalm 68:20
God is to us a God of deliverances; And to GOD the Lord belong escapes from death.

Psalm 68:21
Surely God will shatter the head of His enemies, The hairy crown of him who goes on in his guilty deeds.

Psalm 110:6
He will judge among the nations, He will fill them with corpses, He will shatter the chief men over a broad country.

Psalm 137:7
Remember, O LORD, against the sons of Edom The day of Jerusalem, Who said, "Raze it, raze it To its very foundation."
Treasury of Scripture

You went forth for the salvation of your people, even for salvation with your anointed; you wounded the head out of the house of the wicked, by discovering the foundation to the neck. Selah.

wentest.

Exodus 14:13,14 And Moses said to the people, Fear you not, stand still, and see …

Exodus 15:1,2 Then sang Moses and the children of Israel this song to the LORD, …

Psalm 68:7,19-23 O God, when you went forth before your people, when you did march …

with.

Psalm 77:20 You led your people like a flock by the hand of Moses and Aaron.

Psalm 89:19-21 Then you spoke in vision to your holy one, and said, I have laid …

Psalm 99:6 Moses and Aaron among his priests, and Samuel among them that call …

Psalm 105:15,26 Saying, Touch not my anointed, and do my prophets no harm…

Isaiah 63:11 Then he remembered the days of old, Moses, and his people, saying…

thou woundedst.

Exodus 12:29,30 And it came to pass, that at midnight the LORD smote all the firstborn …

Joshua 10:11,24,42 And it came to pass, as they fled from before Israel, and were in …

Joshua 11:8,12 And the LORD delivered them into the hand of Israel, who smote them, …

Psalm 18:37-45 I have pursued my enemies, and overtaken them: neither did I turn …

Psalm 68:21 But God shall wound the head of his enemies, and the hairy scalp …

Psalm 74:13,14 You did divide the sea by your strength: you brake the heads of the …

Psalm 110:6 He shall judge among the heathen, he shall fill the places with the …

discovering. Heb. making naked.

(13) Thou wentest.--Here the verbs, though past, are best rendered by the English present.

Even for salvation . . .--Better, even for the salvation of Thine anointed--scil., Thy chosen people, as also, perhaps, in Psalm 105:15. The rendering of the Authorised Version has the support of Aquila and the Quinta. It is a possible rendering, but few impartial Hebraists will deny that the other is preferable. In the last half of the verse two figures are blended--those of a house and a human body. Literally, it runs, Thou crushest the head of the house of the wicked (comp. Psalm 110:6), laying bare the foundation even to the neck. The obvious meaning is that the house or race of the Chaldans is to be destroyed, "root and branch."

Verse 13. - Thou wentest forth. The prophet specifies the end which these manifestations were designed to effect. God is said to "go forth" when he intervenes for the aid of his people, as Judges 5:4; 2 Samuel 5:24; Isaiah 42:13. For salvation with thine anointed; In salutem cum Christo tuo (Vulgate); τοῦ σῶσαι τὸν χριστὸν σου (τοὺς χριστούς σου, Alex., Sin.), "to save thine anointed" (Septuagint). If the signification of the word "with" (eth) be pressed, the passage is taken to mean that, as God manifested himself in old time for the salvation of his people with his chosen "Christ," Moses; so he will hereafter reveal his power for the destruction of the Chaldeans with his chosen "Christ," Cyrus. But this is too definite, and cannot be shown to be intended. The "anointed one," again, is not the nation of Israel, for the term is always applied to a single individual and never to the people collectively; so here it is the theocratic king who is meant - first, the representative of David; and secondly, the Messiah. God reveals himself for the salvation of his people in union with the work especially of his anointed Son, Christ. This is how the passage is taken by Eusebius ('Dem. Evang.,' 4:16), Αἰς σωτηρίαν λαον σου σὺν Ξριστῷ σου. It must be confessed, however, that most modern commentaters translate, "for the salvation of thy anointed," taking the last expression (contrary to all usage) to mean the Israelites, as being a kingdom and nation of priests (Exodus 19:6). In this case the present clause is merely a repetition of the preceding one. Thou woundedst the head out of the house of the wicked; thou dashest in pieces the head. As in the following clause the metaphor of a house is plainly employed, "the head" must be taken for the gable or topmost ridge. "The house of the wicked" is an allegorical description of the Chaldaic dominion and its king; and the prophet declares that God will smite with destruction both the ungodly monarch and the kingdom that opposes itself. Some commentators see here an allusion to the primeval sentence (Genesis 3:15): others to the destruction of the Egyptians' firstborn; others to the incident of Jael and Sisera (Judges 5:26). If the prophet's language was influenced by any of these matters, his view and his oracle are concerned with the mighty future. The LXX. has, "Thou wilt east death upon the heads of the evil." By discovering (literally, making naked) the foundations unto the neck. "By" is better omitted. Keil supposes that "the neck" is the central part of the house, looking from the gable downwards; though why this should be so called is not apparent; and the wording of the original, "the foundations even to the neck," compels us to connect the two words together, and will not allow us to interpret "the neck" of some higher part of the building. The general meaning is plain - the metaphorical house is destroyed from summit to base, the destruction beginning at the gable is carried on to the very foundations According to this view, "the neck" should mean the very lowest basis of the walls. Henderson (after Capellus and others) suggests that we should read "rock," a word derived from the same root. Septuagint, Ἐξήγειρας δεσμοὺς ἕως τραχήλου, "Thou didst raise chains unto the neck." It is possible that the mention of "the head," just above, has led the prophet to use the term "neck" in order to express the utter destruction of the whole body. Selah. Another solemn pause ensues. Thou wentest forth for the salvation of that people, even for salvation with thine anointed,.... Or, "thy Messiah"; which Kimchi and Ben Melech interpret of Messiah the son of David; and read and give the sense of the words thus,

"as thou wentest forth for the salvation of thy people, by bringing them into the land of Canaan, so do thou go forth for salvation with thy Messiah.''

God of old went forth in his power and providence for the salvation of his people, whom he chose above all people to be his special and peculiar people; making use of Moses and Aaron in bringing them out of Egypt, and leading them through the wilderness, and of Joshua to introduce them, and settle them in the land of Canaan; who were all types of Christ in the salvation of the chosen people. Joshua particularly was a type of Jesus; they agree in their name, which signifies a Saviour the salvation of God, or God the salvation; and in their character, office, and usefulness to the people of God, Jesus is the Lord's "anointed"; anointed with the Holy Ghost, the oil of gladness, above his fellows, which he received without measure; anointed to the office of Prophet, Priest, and King; and from whom his people receive the unction, and are denominated Christians, or anointed ones: and the "people" of God, for whose salvation he went forth with him, are not all mankind, who are not all saved; nor the people of the Jews only, or all of them; but a peculiar people, out of Jews and Gentiles, loved with a special love; chosen to salvation, secured in the covenant of grace, and given to Christ as his portion and people, and so saved by him, Matthew 1:21. The "salvation" of them is a spiritual one, a salvation from all their sins; from the power and dominion, pollution and guilt, the damning power of them, and at last from the very being of them; as well as from Satan, the law, death, hell, and wrath to come: it is perfect and complete, and endures for ever. Jehovah the Father "went forth" with Christ his Son for this salvation, in his purposes and decrees concerning it; in his council and covenant relating to it; in the mission of him into this world to effect it; and by helping and assisting him in it, as man and Mediator. The words may be rendered, "thou wentest forth"; or, "thou goest forth"; thou wilt do so; and mayest thou do so, "to save thy people, to save thy anointed" (t); and so respect not the salvation of Israel by Moses or Joshua; nor the spiritual and eternal salvation of God's elect by the Messiah; but the salvation of the Lord's people from mystical Babylon, from the oppression and tyranny of antichrist, and from all his false doctrines, superstition, and idolatry, and ruin by them; and particularly the salvation of the two witnesses, the two olive trees, the two anointed ones that stand before the Lord of the whole earth; the singular being put for the plural, "anointed" for "anointed ones"; and so the Alexandrian copy of the Septuagint version, and the Arabic version, render it, "thy Christs", or "thy anointed ones"; now this will be done when the Lord shall go forth in his power and providence, and quicken and raise their dead bodies, when they have lain three days and a half, and shall cause them to ascend to heaven in the sight of their enemies; see Zechariah 4:14,

thou woundedst the head out of the house of the wicked; not the princes of the families of the land of Canaan, as some; nor the first born of Pharaoh's family in Egypt, or him and his host at the Red sea, as, others; nor Goliath of Gath, smitten by David, as Burkius; nor Satan and his principalities and powers by Christ on the cross; but antichrist the man of sin, that wicked and lawless one, who is at the bead of a wicked house or family, the antichristian party; who received a wound at the Reformation; and ere long the kings of the earth will hate the whore, eat her flesh, and burn her with fire; and Christ, will utterly consume and destroy this wicked one with the breath of his mouth, and the brightness of his coming, Revelation 13:3 see Psalm 110:6. Kimchi and Ben Melech interpret this of the head of the army of wicked Gog, the king of Magog, taking it to belong to future time; and so some render all those phrases, "thou wilt go forth, thou wilt wound" (u), &c.:

by discovering the foundation unto the neck; or "razing the foundation", as in Psalm 137:7. There seems to be a double metaphor in the words, expressing the utter ruin and destruction of antichrist and his party; who, being compared to a building, will be demolished, and razed to the very foundation; that will be dug up, and laid bare, and no trace of an edifice to be seen any more; and, being compared to a human body, will be plunged into such distresses and calamities, as to be as it were up to the neck in them, from whence there is no escape and deliverance. Some understand this of the princes of this head, or of his friends, and those of his family that are nearest to him, as the neck is to the head; or of the whole body of the people under him, of which he will be deprived; and so be as a head without a body, and who cannot long survive them.

Selah is added as a mark of attention, something of moment and importance being observed.

(t) "ad salutem populi tui, ad servandum unctum tuum", De Dieu. (u) "egredieris"; so some in Vatablus. "transfiges"; so some in Drusius. 13. with thine anointed—with Messiah; of whom Moses, Joshua, and David, God's anointed leaders of Israel, were the types (Ps 89:19, 20, 38). God from the beginning delivered His people in person, or by the hand of a Mediator (Isa 63:11). Thus Habakkuk confirms believers in the hope of their deliverance, as well because God is always the same, as also because the same anointed Mediator is ready now to fulfil God's will and interpose for Israel, as of old [Calvin]. Maurer translates to suit the parallelism, "for salvation to Thine anointed," namely, Israel's king in the abstract, answering to the "people" in the former clause (compare Ps 28:8; La 4:20). Or Israel is meant, the anointed, that is, consecrated people of Jehovah (Ps 105:15).

woundedst the head out of the house of the wicked—probably an allusion to Ps 68:21. Each head person sprung from and belonging to the house of Israel's wicked foes; such as Jabin, whose city Hazor was "the head of all the kingdoms" of Canaan (Jos 11:10; compare Jud 4:2, 3, 13).

discovering the foundation—Thou destroyedst high and low. As "the head of the house" means the prince, so the "foundation" means the general host of the enemy.

unto the neck—image from a flood reaching to the neck (Isa 8:8; 30:28). So God, by His wrath overflowing on the foe, caused their princes' necks to be trodden under foot by Israel's leaders (Jos 10:24; 11:8, 12).3:3-15 God's people, when in distress, and ready to despair, seek help by considering the days of old, and the years of ancient times, and by pleading them with God in prayer. The resemblance between the Babylonish and Egyptian captivities, naturally presents itself to the mind, as well as the possibility of a like deliverance through the power of Jehovah. God appeared in his glory. All the powers of nature are shaken, and the course of nature changed, but all is for the salvation of God's own people. Even what seems least likely, shall be made to work for their salvation. Hereby is given a type and figure of the redemption of the world by Jesus Christ. It is for salvation with thine anointed. Joshua who led the armies of Israel, was a figure of Him whose name he bare, even Jesus, our Joshua. In all the salvations wrought for them, God looked upon Christ the Anointed, and brought deliverances to pass by him. All the wonders done for Israel of old, were nothing to that which was done when the Son of God suffered on the cross for the sins of his people. How glorious his resurrection and ascension! And how much more glorious will be his second coming, to put an end to all that opposes him, and all that causes suffering to his people!
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