Who was the author? God inspired the book of Habakkuk through the prophet named Habakkuk, who was a contemporary of Jeremiah's.
What is the book? The book of Habakkuk contains a dialogue between the prophet and God, in which Habakkuk gives voice to the struggles of all the faithful in Judah as they try to understand God's ways.
Where was it written? Habakkuk lived in Judah and likely wrote the book there.
When was it written? Habakkuk seems to have prophesied around 605 and possibly as late as 597.
Why? God's faithful people always struggle to understand God's mysterious ways and the suffering He permits them to experience, and so the book speaks to us today even as it spoke to those living through Judah and Jerusalem's exile in Babylon.
How? As God answers the questions posed by Habakkuk, the prophet writes clearly and with great feeling. The book apparently was popular in the time between the Old and New Testaments, and we know it is quoted several times in the New Testament, specifically the memorable phrase of 2:4 and its clear statement about salvation by faith.
For further reading on the book of Habakkuk:
- Keil, C.F. and F. Delitzsch. Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament, Volume X: Minor Prophets , translated by James Martin and published as two volumes in one. Grand Rapids, Michigan: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, reprinted March 1986. (There are some 68 pages on Habakkuk.)
- Kretzmann, Paul E. Popular Commentary of the Bible: The Old Testament, Volume II, The Poetical and the Prophetical Books. St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1924. (This volume, one that is in our Grace library, has 5 pages on Habakkuk.)