The Commentary on Habakkuk
In the midst of the turmoil and suffering Israel is enduring Habakkuk cries to God, "How long must we suffer before the beginning of the final generation?"
In reply God describes the invasions the country will have to endure before that day is reached.
1. "The Kittim who are quick and valiant in war, causing many to perish...they shall march across the plain, smiting and plundering the cities of the earth".
These are the Chaldeans (597 BCE)
2. "The Kittim who inspire all the nations with fear and dread. All their evil plotting is done with intention and they deal with all the nations in cunning and guile."
These are the Persians (538 BCE)
3. "The Kittim who trample the earth with their horses and beasts, they come from afar, from the islands of the sea, to devour all the people and like an eagle which cannot be satisfied."
These are the Greeks (333 BCE)
4. "The commanders of the Kittim who despise the fortresses of the people and laugh at them in derision. To capture them and encircle them with a mighty host, and out of fear and terror they deliver themselves into their hands."
These are the Ptolemys (312 BCE)
5. "The commanders of the Kittim, who on the counsel of the House of Guilt, pass one in front of the other, their commanders come to lay waste the earth."
These are the Seleucids (200 BCE)
The "House of Guilt" refers to the House of Tobias "who fled to Antiochus and besought him to make use of them for his leaders to make and expedition into Judah."
6. "The Kittim shall gather in their riches, together with all their booty...they sacrifice to their standards and worship their weapons of war...they divide their yoke and their tribute over all the people year by year ravaging many lands."
These are the Romans (63 BCE)
7. "The Kittim who cause many to perish by the sword--youths, grown men, the aged, women and children--and who even take no pity on the fruit of the womb."
These are the Parthians (42 BCE)
The Parthians will be the last invaders and their expulsion will mark "the beginning of the final generation but He did not make known when time would come to an end" "When God would execute the judgment of the nations by the hands of His elect, and through their chastisement all the wicked of His people shall expiate their guilt."
So the faithful must prepare themselves for this final conflict against the wicked. Those who stand aside and do not actively help the faithful will be destroyed along with the wicked as God has shown in the fate of Absolem, the brother of Alexander Jannius and therefore uncle to Aristobolus, who preferred to live without meddling in public affairs and to quietly enjoy his estate." When the Romans captured Jerusalem, among the captives was Absolem and he suffered dicollation along with the most guilty.
This is a very inflammatory document. As the Romans seemed to be the obvious leaders of the forces of wickedness, it was no less than a call to the people to prepare to revolt.
The immediate results were the preparation of the "War Scroll" containing the battle plans for the impending conflict.
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