The Structure of the Book as a Whole.



For the Canonical order and place of the Prophets

For the Chronological order of the Prophets

For the Formula of Prophetic utterance

For the Inter-relation of the Prophetic Books

For the Relation of Nahum to the 12 Minor [or Shorter] Prophets

For the References to the Pentateuch

Nahum concludes the 7 pre-captivity. Prophets, being the last of the 2nd group of 3; and corresponding with Jonah, which also has Nineveh for its subject.

Some 87 years before, Jonah had proclaimed Yahaveh's favor to Nineveh, which had prolonged its existence till now, when Nahum's prophecy of coming judgment was fulfilled without further delay.

Nahum is undated; but, if 1:11 refers primarily to the Rab-shakeh [as we believe it does] of 2 Kings 18:26-28, then we have a clue of great importance, for that speaks of the 14th year of Hezekiah, and gives us the date as 603 B.C.

The Rab-shakeh = the chief of the captains, was apparently a renegade Jew, and a "counselor" high in favor with the Assyrian king [Sennacherib]. He was apparently, as to office, similsr to our "Political officer" in the Indian Frontier campaigns. He insisted on talking to the common People on the wall in the Jews' language; indicating a freedom in the use of Hebrew that would scarcely be possessed by an Assyrian ambassador.

The Rab-shakeh's words certainly show a deadly animosity towards Yahaveh; which is born out by Nah. 1:11, and Pss. 120:2; 123:3. 2 Kings 20:9.

If this is correct, then we may date Nahum as living and prophesying in 603 B.C.

(The Assyrian is a type for antichrist = Satan. This Book lets you know how it will be in the end.) 603 B.C.

Nahum 1)

1 The burden (cp. Isa. 13:2-27:13. see Habakkuk = A prophetic oracle: or, the prophetic doom of Nineveh, written about ninety [603-514 B.C.] years before Nineveh's doom; and while the Assyrian Empire was at its height. The doom of Nineveh therefore came 176 years after Jonah's mission. The prophecy was addressed to Nahum's own People, but as a menace to Nineveh.) of Nineveh (symbolizes the home of a false god = Satan. This heading is not "undoubtedly by a later hand", as alleged. The words "the place thereof" [v.8] would be unidentifiable without it. Nineveh is not mentioned again until 2:8; and is only hinted at elsewhere [3:11,18]. The Structure below is the best commentary.). The book of the vision (like Isaiah, always one whole. Not written before or separately from its deliverance) of Nahum (= compassionate, or consoler; taken from Capernum. The name refers back to Yehovah's compassion connected with Jonah's mission 87 years before. Nothing is known of Nahum beyond this Book) the Elkoshite. (= God is my bow. A village of this name exists today, 24 miles north of Nineveh [now Konyunjik])


A1  A  2. Vengeance.
     B  3-. Long-suffering.
      C  -3-5. Power. Unequaled.
      C  6. Power. Irresistible.
     B  7. Goodness.
    A  8. Vengeance.

2 God (El) is jealous (ref. Ex. 20:5-7. Deut. 4:24), and the LORD (Yahaveh) avenges; the LORD revenges, and is a possessor of wrath; the LORD will be an Avenger to His adversaries, and He reserves wrath against His enemies. (Not you who He loves.)

3 The LORD is long-suffering (see Ex. 34:6,7. The opposite of Prov. 14:17. Cp.onah 4:2), and great in power (cp. Job 9:4), and will not at all hold guiltless the wicked: (See Ex. 34:7. Num. 14:18.)

the LORD has His way in the whirlwind (see Ezek. 1) and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of His feet. (He accomplishes what He chooses. God controls nature.)
4 He rebukes the sea (see Ex. 14. Ps. 106:119), and makes it dry, and dries up all the rivers (Cp. Josh. 4:23. Ps. 74:15. Uses it to work His will): Bashan languishes, and Carmel, and the flower of Lebanon wilts.
5 The mountains implode at Him, and the hills melt, and the earth is upheaved at His presence, yes, the world (as inhabited), and all that dwell therein.

6 Who can stand before His indignation? and who can stand up (cp. Jer. 10:10. Mic. 3:2) in the fierceness of His anger? (you can, IF not His enemy) His fury is poured out like fire, and the rocks are thrown down by Him.

7 The LORD is good (cp. 1 Chron. 16:34. Ps. 100:5. Jer. 33:11. Lam. 3:25Mal. 3:2), a strong hold in the day of trouble; and He knows them that trust in Him. (Answer to v.6.)

8 But (note the transition in v.8) with an overrunning flood He will make an utter end of the place thereof (i.e. Nineveh), and darkness (hour of the prince of darkness = Satan) shall pursue His enemies.

A2  D  1:9-12-. Destruction of Ninevah.
     E  1:-12-15. Deliverance of Judah.
    D  2:1-3:15. Destruction of Ninevah.

9 What do you devise (cp. Ps. 2:1) against the LORD? he will make an utter end: distress (or trouble. I.e. the trouble that now threatens Nineveh) shall not rise up the second time. (Referring to the rising up after Jonah's proclamation. One time will do it.)
10 For while they be entangled together as thorns (the emblem of hostile armies [Isa. 10:17; 27:4), and while they are drunken as drunkards, they shall be devoured as stubble fully dry. (Cp. Mic. 7:4.)
11 There is one come out of you (i.e. Nineveh), that imagines evil against the LORD, a counselor of Beliel. (The counselor probably = Rabshakeh; and Beliel = Sennacherib. Types for antichist - spurious Messiah.)
12 Thus says the LORD; "Though they be secure, and likewise many (wicked counselors teaching the "rapture". See Ezek. 13:18-22), yet thus shall they be cut down [like dry stubble], when he shall pass through (see Ex. 12:12. Cp. Isa. 8:8. Dan. 11:10). And now [oh Judah], I have afflicted you, I will afflict you (i.e. Judah) no more.
13 For now will I break his yoke from off you (see Gen. 27:40), and will burst your bonds in sunder.
14 And the LORD has given a commandment concerning you, that no more of your name be sown (i.e. the dynasty of Nineveh should end): out of the house of your gods will I cut off the graven image and the molten image: I will make [it] (i.e. "the house of your gods". See Ezek. 28:18,19) your grave; for you art despicable. (Cp. Isa. 37:37,38.)

15 Behold (emphasizing and calling attention to the ref. to Isa. 52:7, the hypothetical 2nsd Isaiah, 100 years before he is supposed by modern critics to have lived) upon the mountains the feet of him that brings good tidings, that publishes peace! O Judah, keep your solemn feasts (great emphasis, see Deut. 16:16, &c., 23:21, &c.), perform your vows: for the wicked (see v.11) shall no more pass through you; he is utterly cut off.

Next page