Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Habakkuk 3, a prayer, on strings, for the leader

Habakkuk would rather sing a song than retaliate against violence. No trust in the economy here, but a trust in the invisible. The reality of the invisible God for the prophet is something we, in the age and place that I live, have a hard time with. One day I will try and find this problem and name it.

In the meanwhile, this is a psalm, so I treat it as such and look for recurring words:
שׁמעתי I have heard
2שׁמע
שׁמעך your fame
2שׁמע
בקרב in the approaching
2קרב
שׁנים years
2שׁנה
בקרב in the approaching
2קרב
שׁנים years
2שׁנה
ברגז in shuddering
2רגז
הארץ the earth
3ארץ
ילך walks
5הלך
ארץ earth
6ארץ
ראה he saw
6ראה
עולם evermore
6עלם
הליכות processions
6הלך
עולם evermore
6עלם
ראיתי I have seen
7ראה
ירגזון and shuddering are
7רגז
ארץ the land of
7ארץ
Above - vv 1-7 - below vv 8-15
הבנהרים against the rivers
8נהר
אם as if
8אם
בנהרים against the rivers
8נהר
אפך your anger
8אף
אם as if
8אם
בים against the sea
8ים
עברתך your fury
8עבר
תרכב you rode
8רכב
סוסיך your horses
8סוס
מרכבתיך and your chariots of
8רכב
ישׁועה salvation
8ישׁע
עריה exposed
9ערה
מטות the rods of
9מטה
סלה selah
9סלה
נהרות rivers
9נהר
ארץ earth
9ארץ
מים waters
10מים
עבר passed by
10עבר
ארץ earth
12ארץ
באף in anger
12אף
לישׁע for the salvation of
13ישׁע
לישׁע for the salvation of
13ישׁע
ראשׁ a head
13ראשׁ
ערות by exposing
13ערה
סלה selah
13סלה
במטיו with rods
14מטה
ראשׁ the head of
14ראשׁ
בים in the sea
15ים
סוסיך on your horses
15סוס
מים waters
15מים
Then the last few verses
ותרגז and shuddered
16רגז
ארגז I shuddered
16רגז
לא fail
17לא
ואין and there is no
17אין
מעשׂה the making of
17עשׂה
לא no
17לא
עשׂה make
17עשׂה
ואין and there is no
17אין
Nothing particularly stands out for me in the words - but there is some framing.

The critical aspect is, how does the ancient mind find a stand against violence: With trust in God. For us does this translate into a social solution to violence or with a violent response to violence?

What would a social solution look like: without fear in spite of fear, with equity in business relations, fair wages and opportunities, with a relaxation of our prejudice in the face of the other, with a recognition that violence stimulates more violence, with a flexible rather than rigid bureaucracy, with the rule of love rather than the rule of law, with care for the damaged, whether by birth or by accident. With the recognition of ourselves in the mirror that is sometimes held up to our gaze with an image in it that we hate.

Where, if we could, would we find the power to be such ambassadors?

Here's the prayer of the prophet Habakkuk:

Habakkuk 3 Fn Min Max Syll
תְּפִלָּ֖ה לַחֲבַקּ֣וּק הַנָּבִ֑יא
עַ֖ל שִׁגְיֹנֽוֹת
1 The prayer of Habakkuk the prophet,
over a reel.
3e 4B 10
4
יְהוָ֗ה שָׁמַ֣עְתִּי שִׁמְעֲךָ֮ יָרֵאתִי֒ יְהוָ֗ה פָּֽעָלְךָ֙ בְּקֶ֤רֶב שָׁנִים֙ חַיֵּ֔יהוּ בְּקֶ֥רֶב שָׁנִ֖ים תּוֹדִ֑יעַ
בְּרֹ֖גֶז רַחֵ֥ם תִּזְכּֽוֹר
2 Yahweh I have heard your fame and I feared. Yahweh, your work in the approaching years, revive, in the approaching years, make known.
In shuddering, remember compassion.
3e 4C 32
7
אֱל֙וֹהַ֙ מִתֵּימָ֣ן יָב֔וֹא וְקָד֥וֹשׁ מֵֽהַר פָּארָ֖ן סֶ֑לָה
כִּסָּ֤ה שָׁמַ֙יִם֙ הוֹד֔וֹ וּתְהִלָּת֖וֹ מָלְאָ֥ה הָאָֽרֶץ
3 ~ God from Teman comes and the Holy One from the hill of Paran, selah.
His splendour covered the heavens and the earth was full of his praise.
3e 4C 17
15
וְנֹ֙גַהּ֙ , כָּא֣וֹר תִּֽהְיֶ֔ה קַרְנַ֥יִם מִיָּד֖וֹ ל֑וֹ
וְשָׁ֖ם חֶבְי֥וֹן עֻזֹּֽה
4 And illumination became as the light, intense brightness from his hands to him.
And there, was the shrouding of his strength.
3e 4B 13
6
לְפָנָ֖יו יֵ֣לֶךְ דָּ֑בֶר
וְיֵצֵ֥א רֶ֖שֶׁף לְרַגְלָֽיו
5 Before him walks pestilence,
and fire-brands come forth for his feet.
3e 4B 7
8
עָמַ֣ד וַיְמֹ֣דֶד אֶ֗רֶץ רָאָה֙ וַיַּתֵּ֣ר גּוֹיִ֔ם וַיִּתְפֹּֽצְצוּ֙ הַרְרֵי עַ֔ד שַׁח֖וּ גִּבְע֣וֹת עוֹלָ֑ם
הֲלִיכ֥וֹת עוֹלָ֖ם לֽוֹ
6 He stood and measured earth. He saw and released nations, and hills were dispersed while hillocks were depressed evermore.
Processions evermore are his.
3e 4B 27
6
תַּ֣חַת אָ֔וֶן רָאִ֖יתִי אָהֳלֵ֣י כוּשָׁ֑ן
יִרְגְּז֕וּן יְרִיע֖וֹת אֶ֥רֶץ מִדְיָֽן ס
7 B Under mischief, I have seen the tents of Cush,
and shuddering are the curtains of the land of Midian. S
3e 4B 12
11
הֲבִנְהָרִים֙ חָרָ֣ה יְהוָ֔ה אִ֤ם בַּנְּהָרִים֙ אַפֶּ֔ךָ אִם־בַּיָּ֖ם עֶבְרָתֶ֑ךָ
כִּ֤י תִרְכַּב֙ עַל־סוּסֶ֔יךָ מַרְכְּבֹתֶ֖יךָ יְשׁוּעָֽה
8 Was Yahweh burning with anger against the rivers? As if your anger was against the rivers, as if your fury against the sea,
that you rode on your horses and your chariots of salvation.
3e 4C 22
15
עֶרְיָ֤ה תֵעוֹר֙ קַשְׁתֶּ֔ךָ שְׁבֻע֥וֹת מַטּ֖וֹת אֹ֣מֶר סֶ֑לָה
נְהָר֖וֹת תְּבַקַּע־אָֽרֶץ
9 Your bow exposed is made naked, the oaths of the rods of promise, selah.
Rivers, you split earth.
3e 4C 16
8
רָא֤וּךָ יָחִ֙ילוּ֙ הָרִ֔ים זֶ֥רֶם מַ֖יִם עָבָ֑ר
נָתַ֤ן תְּהוֹם֙ קוֹל֔וֹ ר֖וֹם יָדֵ֥יהוּ נָשָֽׂא
10 C Hills saw you. They danced. Inundation of waters passed by.
Abyss gives its voice. On high its hands, it lifts up.
3e 4C 13
12
שֶׁ֥מֶשׁ יָרֵ֖חַ עָ֣מַד זְבֻ֑לָה
לְא֤וֹר חִצֶּ֙יךָ֙ יְהַלֵּ֔כוּ לְנֹ֖גַהּ בְּרַ֥ק חֲנִיתֶֽךָ
11 f Sun, moon, stood resident.
At the light of your arrows they walk, at the illumination of the lightning of your spear.
3e 4C 10
18
בְּזַ֖עַם תִּצְעַד־אָ֑רֶץ
בְּאַ֖ף תָּד֥וּשׁ גּוֹיִֽם
12 In indignation you march on earth.
In anger your pound nations.
3e 4A 7
6
יָצָ֙אתָ֙ לְיֵ֣שַׁע עַמֶּ֔ךָ לְיֵ֖שַׁע אֶת־מְשִׁיחֶ֑ךָ
מָחַ֤צְתָּ רֹּאשׁ֙ מִבֵּ֣ית רָשָׁ֔ע עָר֛וֹת יְס֥וֹד עַד־צַוָּ֖אר סֶֽלָה פ
13 You come forth for the salvation of your people, for the salvation of your anointed.
You wound a head from the house of wickedness by exposing foundation to a neck, selah. P
3d 4C 17
19
נָקַ֤בְתָּ בְמַטָּיו֙ רֹ֣אשׁ פְּרָזָ֔יו יִסְעֲר֖וּ לַהֲפִיצֵ֑נִי
עֲלִ֣יצֻתָ֔ם כְּמוֹ־לֶאֱכֹ֥ל עָנִ֖י בַּמִּסְתָּֽר
14 You bore through with rods the head of his hamlet. They came out like a tempest to disperse me.
Their elation was as if to devour the impoverished in secret.
3e 4C 18
13
דָּרַ֥כְתָּ בַיָּ֖ם סוּסֶ֑יךָ
חֹ֖מֶר מַ֥יִם רַבִּֽים
15 You made your way in the sea on your horses.
Red mud, many waters.
3e 4A 8
5
שָׁמַ֣עְתִּי ׀ וַתִּרְגַּ֣ז בִּטְנִ֗י לְקוֹל֙ צָלֲל֣וּ שְׂפָתַ֔י יָב֥וֹא רָקָ֛ב בַּעֲצָמַ֖י וְתַחְתַּ֣י אֶרְגָּ֑ז
אֲשֶׁ֤ר אָנ֙וּחַ֙ לְי֣וֹם צָרָ֔ה לַעֲל֖וֹת לְעַ֥ם יְגוּדֶֽנּוּ
16 I heard and my belly shuddered at the voice. My lips quivered. Rottenness entered into my bones and under me I shuddered,
that I might repose in the day of trouble that comes up to a people, should they invade us.
3d 4C 29
18
כִּֽי־תְאֵנָ֣ה לֹֽא־תִפְרָ֗ח וְאֵ֤ין יְבוּל֙ בַּגְּפָנִ֔ים כִּחֵשׁ֙ מַעֲשֵׂה־זַ֔יִת וּשְׁדֵמ֖וֹת לֹא־עָ֣שָׂה אֹ֑כֶל
גָּזַ֤ר מִמִּכְלָה֙ צֹ֔אן וְאֵ֥ין בָּקָ֖ר בָּרְפָתִֽים
17 If fig tree fails to flourish, and there is no produce on the vines, disowned is the making of the olive, and the fields make no food,
parted from holding-pen are the sheep, and there is no herd to be let go,
3e 4C 28
13
וַאֲנִ֖י בַּיהוָ֣ה אֶעְל֑וֹזָה
אָגִ֖ילָה בֵּאלֹהֵ֥י יִשְׁעִֽי
18 yet for me, in Yahweh I will exult,
I will rejoice in the God of my salvation.
3e 4B 8
8
יְהוִ֤הּ‬ אֲדֹנָי֙ חֵילִ֔י וַיָּ֤שֶׂם רַגְלַי֙ כָּֽאַיָּל֔וֹת וְעַ֥ל בָּמוֹתַ֖י יַדְרִכֵ֑נִי
לַמְנַצֵּ֖חַ בִּנְגִינוֹתָֽי
19 Yahweh, my Lord, is my force, and he sets up my feet as the hart, and on my high places he directs me.
For the leader, on my strings.
3e 4C 25
8