Bible Commentaries

Nahum 3

Verses 1-19

The last part of the prophecy is devoted wholly to the vindication of Jehovah's action against Nineveh, and is a fitting defense of the introductory declarations concerning His character.

In the first movement the prophet describes Nineveh as a "bloody city," evil and cruel. A graphic description of vengeance, consisting of seven illustrations, follows.

In the second movement he more particularly describes both the vice and the vengeance. The national method was whoredom, that is, idolatrous practices; and witchcraft, that is, deceptive methods. The national influence had been in selling nations and families. Jehovah's vengeance was then described, and also its unquestioned righteousness in the inquiry, "Who will bemoan her? Whence shall I seek comforters for thee?'

In the third movement vice and vengeance are dealt with in yet greater detail. Addressing himself to Nineveh, Nahum inquired, "Art thou better than No-aman?” The argument was that No-amon, or Thebes, which was not so corrupt as Nineveh, had been destroyed, notwithstanding her strength. How much more certain then, in view of her greater corruption, was the destruction of Nineveh! In the case of Thebes strength had been of no avail. In the case of Nineveh her corruption had canceled her strength. The vengeance of Jehovah was then set forth.

The last section is a weird description of the destruction of Assyria. The shepherds, the nobles, and the people are dealt with in judgment. The universal verdict agrees as to the righteousness of the judgment. There is to be no healing, and because of the universal oppression exercised by Assyria there will be great rejoicing over her downfall.