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Will not your creditors rise up suddenly
and those who make you tremble wake up?
Indeed, you will be their plunder. Bible

“creditors.” The Hebrew literally reads, “those who bite you,” referring to the fact that people who have come to collect from you “bite” you. We use the same terminology today. We might says, “Those taxes took a bite out of my paycheck.”

Some versions translate this as “creditors” (cp. CJB; HCSB; NASB; NET; NIV2011; NRSV); while other versions understand this as the “debtors,” that is, those who have been taken advantage of who now rise up and attack the powerbrokers (cp. ESV; NAB; NIV84; NLT; RSV). However, historically, it was the Persians, not the other people who Babylon had conquered, who rose up and conquered the Babylonians. So while the text is not specific as to who it is who “bites” the Babylonians, it seems like the text is implying that the evil ways of the Babylonians was piling up a debt that the creditors, the Persians, came to collect and the Babylonians became their plunder.


Commentary for: Habakkuk 2:7