“The LORD is in His holy temple, let all the earth keep silence before Him” – Habakkuk 2.20
This passage is often used as a call to worship. It urges reverent silence before God as He dwells in His holy temple.
However, the context shows that the silence which all the earth is to observe is because of God’s righteous judgment and not merely the reverent silence of a worship service. He had just pronounced five “woes” against Babylon, indictments for which He will hold them accountable.
The only appropriate response to this warning is fearful silence “O LORD, I have heard the report of Thee, and I am afraid” (Habakkuk 3.2). Mighty Babylon is about to be judged, and there is nothing for the rest of the world to say or do. The holy God is in His holy temple and all the earth is silent before Him!