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I love the Walter Benjamin quote. I posted it I think sometime in December alongside the Klee painting itself.


I love the quote, too, Jared.

Benjamin tapped into what is sometimes called an apocalyptic view of history in an intellectually satisfying way.

I re-translated it from the German in an effort to adhere to Benjamin's thought and diction more closely than is the case in the standard translations.


It is a very nice translation. I am a big Benjamin fan.

Truman Show 2

I think that the way that Habakkuk approached God in questioning was very noteworthy. He was uncertain as to why his surroundings were as bad as they were and why he had to observe such horrible things. All the while waiting to see what God was going to do to the people involved in the evil acts. He is hoping that God would be an intermediary for him. I can’t imagine crying out to God for help and in response being informed that matters were only going to degenerate. The violence talked about in Habakkuk is very graphic and sad to read about. Klee’s painting gives a rational look as to what the angel of history must be experiencing. What faith and love Habakkuk must have had! “And makes me stride upon the heights.”

Nell 1

The book of Habakkuk is one that I am not familiar with. This book is not in the Bible that I read and therefore I have no background of it. This excerpt about the book is informative of the prophet Habakkuk and the faith that he had. Habakkuk must have an extraordinary faith in God if a lot of evil and violence was going on around him and God told him it was only going to get worse. When praying to God, no one likes to hear that things are only going to get worse than how they are now. Nothing good seemed to be promised to Habakkuk but he trusted in God even when he was doubting and challenging him. To me, since I am unfamiliar with the book of Habakkuk, this expresses a lot of faith and trust in God.

shawshank redemption 5

The “I” who speaks in Habakkuk was a daring person whose life was dedicated to serving God and though God told him the future wasn’t great, he was still devoted. The amount of violence that God lets happen is awful, but sin increased, so violence increased as well. Amongst all the violence, there is still a feeling of hope in this book.
Angelus Novus is honestly a little scary. When I think about angels, I picture different things for different people. My general image is a person with a halo, flowing white robes, and wings, but I don’t picture everyone I know who’s passed on that way. My best friend’s nephew Bryce was two or three years younger than us, but he was really cool and we were happy to always have him around. He had been sick for a few days and the doctor said it was probably just a virus and it would go away. Two days later, he felt well enough for school and started getting ready for the day when he suddenly collapsed and became unconscious. They tried to revive him in the ambulance but their attempts failed. After his death, it was discovered that he had had leukemia and the doctors didn’t find it, they never even looked. Bryce would hate it if I pictured him in robes, he’d say, “Dude I don’t wear dresses.” I picture him with a backwards hat with a halo over his head, wearing his usual outfit: a black shirt, jeans, and his worn out skateboarding shoes. His wings would be some cool color, possibly with a design on them. I don’t like to picture angels with eyes peeled open and mouths hanging open. To me, that seems like they’re distraught and that’s not a good thought.

Shawshank Redemption 4

"It is swollen, not restrained,
his appetite within him;
but the upright will live by faith." From Habakkuk 2:4 is a very moving passage to me. The way that I interpret this is that even when down and beaten up, it shouldn't stop you from attempting things and fighting for what you want. And that the appetite is within him is referring to the inner drive the man has to achieve what he wants. And the upright will live by faith is referring to that whoever is living on earth should believe in faith. This ties in with this blog post because based on the story I got that Habakkuk is a very strong and will-driven man. This passage fits him perfect and proves that he was very loyal to God.

The Truman Show 5

I am not very familiar with the book of Habakkuk, since it is not in any of the Bibles that I posses, so therefore I have little background information on most of his writings, however I do have these excerpts. I find stories like these a little hard to believe, mainly because how does one keep that great of faith when the Lord tells you that there is more bad things to come? Yet Habakkuk maintains his faith with the lord and again while I'm not very familiar with the stories of Habakkuk this shows that he is a true man of faith who will not be moved no matter what happens to him.

breaker morant 2

I also am not familiar with the book of Habakkuk. "the just shall live by his faith." This quote just says it all. Live your everyday in faith, doing as God asks. In good times and in bad, no matter what, your faith will bring you through anything.

Shawshank Redemption 1

This blog and the angel it speaks of in the picture are like any class or conversation I am in that brings about conversations of the past. It was not two sessions ago that we sat in class and wondered what the future would say about us and how we messed things up, like we do of people in the past now. I do wonder is it that we get smarter with time that causes our past to look so catastrophic, or is it that we just think we are smarter? The truth of the matter is that I hope we learn from our past and build a brighter future together, and maybe the angel will be able to stop flying towards the future and look at the past and smile.

Shawshank Redemption 3

The beginning of this blog caught my attention. I quote "Habakkuk is possessed of a faith that dares to challenge God, wait on God, and trust in God all at the same time. The God who responds to Habakkuk describes a future that is going to get worse, not better.” This shows that he waited on God trusted him and even challenged him and he got answers. This book shows believers that waiting and trusting on God will get us answers. The second half of that quote shows that they may not be the answers we are looking for, but he does answer. The other part that caught my attention is, “History will remain a theatre of destruction and violence. But the hunter will become the hunted, the wheels of justice will turn, and deliverance will not fail to arrive." This too reminds me of the discussion we had in class about how the future generations will look back on our time and say how foolish we were, like shawshank1 mentioned. But it reminds me of it because we do look back in history and think about how horrible it was back then, but God told Habakkuk that things would get worse, and they are getting worse. Think of how it was back when Habakkuk was written and how it was during the wars, and how it is now. How our country seems to be falling apart at the seams most of the time. Think about the future, how sad it will be. God told Habakkuk that it will only get worse. Can you imagine worse things than our generations, or our parents generations, or our grandparents’ generation have lived through?

True Grit 2

Habakkuk is a book that many people can relate to at some point in their life or another. For example, “My Lord God is my strength. He made my feet like the deer’s and makes me stride upon the heights.” This quote is saying that without the Lord I would be nothing. He alone gives me the motivation to get up and he helps me to become all I can be. There are days when we doubt ourselves and possibly even God. Those are the days we really need to turn to the Bible and read this passage. You might be feeling all alone and when you read the Bible you remember that you are never alone if you stay true to God. God will give you strength if you trust in him.

Dead man walking 4

My view on Habakkuk is that he has just recently truly believed in everything and that is why we don’t overly know a lot of information on this angel, he is new. He has been challenged and is uncomfortable because of hardships faced so far in the life that he has lived. No harvest, no herd, and war has been brought to his community but by the end of the passage shown in 3:19 shows he finally accepts God. “I rejoice in the Lord, I exult in my saving God. My Lord God is my strength!” Habakkuk understands his motivation to continue on is through the power of God, that’s how he becomes strong again and again. Gershom Scholem, “Greetings from Angelus” painting helps this claim because the angel is focused on the past and is focused on the misfortunes at his feet. After the “storm” depicted, he finds a meaning for his needed solution.

True Grit 4

I think the book of Habakkuk is definitely a book that can be used to challenge our faith. As it says earlier in the post,

"Habakkuk is possessed of a faith that dares to challenge God, wait on God, and trust in God all at the same time."

And I think by reading passages like verses 17-18, where it says that even though plants don't produce seeds, flowers don't bloom, etc.

"I rejoice in the Lord
I exult in my saving God."

It's saying that, yeah, there will be tough times, but God should be praised for what he does for you at all times.

Pulp Fiction 5

I agree with Dead Man Walking 4 when they state that Habakkuk has just recently believed in God. When I read the book of Habakkuk I got the feeling that he was just starting to believe in God and was trying to establish a better understanding and belief in God. This is evident if you read the first few verses of Chapter 1 and then compare them to the last few verses of the book. In the beginning, Habakkuk is asking how long shall I cry for help, and you will not listen? He is showing what I believe to be impatience with the Lord. However, by the end of the book Habakkuk states “God, the Lord, is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, and makes me tread upon the heights.” It seems that a transformation in Habakkuk’s faith has taken place over the course of the book.

I find it inspiring that Habakkuk was willing to challenge God. I think this is an interesting and worthwhile thing to do to strengthen your faith in God. The key, as stated in this post, is that you must challenge God, wait on God, and trust in God all at the same time. If you expect him to respond right away or respond in the way you want, then you will be essentially mocking God. It seems to me that sometimes the best way to gain trust in God is to test him, but you must be willing to trust him and wait on him. You can’t just go and test him all the time and then get mad if he doesn’t respond the way you want. He will test you right back just to see if you trust him.

Chariots of Fire 1

Referring to the angel picture—while it is important to look at the past and learn from your mistakes and history, it is also equally important to look ahead at the future. If you never look forward and imagine the future and set goals for yourself, you will never progress forward.


The prophet Habakkuk and the book in the Bible are new to me. After reading I found him similar to myself wondering why God does things the way He does. God has a plan whether we agree with it or not. Most times the plans don’t make sense at that very moment, but time gives us a better understanding. We are all impatient just like Habakkuk and are being unfaithful if we were honest with ourselves. Being patient is a very difficult virtue to obtain, but can be very rewarding.
I’ve had times in my young life where I have wanted to challenge God like Habakkuk did, but I stop and try and understand why God did it. Was this a test? Was I suppose to learn something? Ultimately it will make us patient if we stop and ask these things rather being quick to pull the trigger at our provider and creator.

Breaker Morant 2

I feel as if the book of Habakkuk helps people who read it to understand that they do not have to be devout Christians all their life to believe in God or Jesus. If Habakkuk was truly just learning to accept and love God in his writings, this can help people who are reading the book either renew their faith because of the awesome power of God, or help them on the path or discovering how amazing God can really be. The world is full of different ways to live life that overall affect us and our beliefs in various ways. Just because you have been raised with God's teachings does not stop the questions and the wondering about how God does his work, or why he allows tragedies to happen. How are we supposed to worship someone/something that can cause natural disasters or allow events like 9/11 to happen? How are we supposed to keep the faith when everything in our lives goes wrong at the same time and there seems like no hope for tomorrow? This is where the power of faith and belief comes in. The fact that we can come to God in these times of wondering and allow him to help us, even when we do not know what his plans are shows to me that we need faith and Christianity provides that faith. Habakkuk starts this faith later in his life, as a lot of followers do as well, showing that God's words and wisdom really is all powerful.

Shawshank 4

A quote from the post by Shawshank 1 stuck out to me: “The truth of the matter is that I hope we learn from our past and build a brighter future together, and maybe the angel will be able to stop flying towards the future and look at the past and smile.” I want to focus on the second half of that statement. As I was reading the post, what stuck out to me the most was the description of the angel painting. I find it disturbing that the past is described as wreckage that the angel wishes could be changed. I agree with Shawshank 1 on the idea that it is sad that as every generation passes they look back at the previous generations and see what they think they have done wrong, “the storm”. I too hope that one day we will stop looking back at the past to see only mistakes and destruction, but to see positivity and something worth being proud of4

True Grit 12

I am also struck by the quote earlier in the writing, "The 'I' who speaks in Habakkuk is possessed of a faith that dares to challenge God, wait on God, and trust in God all at the same time." I believe that faith can never be defined as one thing, but rather it surpasses any common understanding and transcends to an individual interpretation. I also find that many religious people are afraid to challenge God because they feel that challenging means a lack of trust. However, I believe that it is healthy to wrestle with God as Jacob did in Genesis. It gives us a way to take our relationship with God to a more personal level and that interaction leads to more of a closeness between the divine and the imperfect.

Praying with Lior 2

It was very interesting to hear about the prophet Habakkuk who I have never heard of. Habakkuk seems like a very complicated prophet who had many different views. I was very interested in the part where, “The God who responds to Habakkuk describes a future that is going to get worse, not better.” It’s the opposite of what we think of God doing. God is suppose bring us good news, not bad. I liked the quote, “Violence calls forth violence.” This is true when you examine it. Violence always leads to more violence.

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    by Justin Anthony Knapp, a fearless Wikipedian (archive)
  • Writing in the Dust
    A collection of quotes by Wesley Hill, a doctoral student in New Testament studies at Durham University (UK), and a Christian who seeks the charism of chastity
  • גֵּר־וְתוֹשָׁב
    by David Miller, Associate Professor of New Testament and Early Judaism, Briercrest College & Seminary, Caronport, Saskatchewan, Canada
  • ואל-תמכר
    Buy truth and do not sell: wisdom, instruction, and understanding - a blog by Mitchell Powell, student of life at the intersection of Christ, Christianity, and Christendom
  • משלי אדם
    exploring wisdom literature, religion, and other academic pursuits, by Adam Couturier, M.A. in Old Testament/Hebrew Bible (graduate of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary)

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  • Ancient Hebrew Poetry is a weblog of John F. Hobbins. Opinions expressed herein do not reflect those of his professional affiliations. Unless otherwise indicated, the contents of Ancient Hebrew Poetry, including all text, images, and other media, are original and licensed under a Creative Commons License.

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