A warrior hero built this city. How fitting since Babylon one of the oldest cities on the planet-eventually flexed its muscles and conquered most of the Middle East to become the sprawling Babylonian Empire,
Nimrod was that warrior. A descendant of Noah’s second son, Ham, Nimrod “built the foundation for his empire in the land of Babylonia, with the cities of Babel [Hebrew for “Babylon”], Erech, Akkad, and Calneh” (Genesis 10:10).
One of Isaiah’s favorite themes was that the pagan gods of his time were powerless, while Yahweh, the supreme God of the Israelites, was all-powerful. Here the prophet portrayed two gods of the Assyrians and Babylonians as so weak and helpless that they had to be carried around by oxen and horses.
Most of these religions were polytheistic, which means that they acknowledged many gods and demons. Once admitted to the pantheon (a culture’s collection of deities), a god could not be eliminated from it.
The prophet Habakkuk was assured by the Lord that He would deal with the Babylonians after He had used them as an agent of punishment against His own people. He would make His bow “naked,” or take it out of its protective case, in order to use it against the Babylonians.
Baring the bow was a symbol of getting ready for war, just like uncovering the shield (read Isa 22:6)
HABAKKUK 3:9 –Thy [God’s] bow was made quite naked.
The Bible is a historical book as well as a spiritual one. As such, it contains many important historical leaders and describes their impact on the nation of Israel. These people are not often used as symbols in the Bibles, but their influence on the history of God’s people carries symbolic importance because of the particular interactions they had. The Jews look back on these leaders as people who operated under the sovereign will of God either to help them as an instrument of mercy or to test and punish them as an executor of his just wrath.
This verse apparently refers to the practice among the pagan Babylonians of worshiping and offering sacrifices to their weapons of war. The Babylonians were on a mission of world conquest in Habakkuk’s time. Bowing down to these weapons was the Babylonians’ way of strengthening and dedicating themselves for this purpose. Continue reading BIBLE CUSTOMS AND CURIOSITIES (WORSHIP OF WEAPONS)→