While the book of Jonah records Nineveh’s reprieve, the book of Nahum predicts its destruction.
Jonah’s was a message of Mercy; Nahum’s, a message of Doom.
Two key dates help us in determining when the book of Nahum was written.
1) The fall of Thebes in 663-664 BC
2) The destruction of Nineveh in 612 BC.
A generation is all it takes to change a nation for the good or bad, just one generation.
Their war crimes were things like: Skinning people alive, cutting off of body parts, beheading people and putting heads on display, among other even more horrid things.
They had taken the Northern Kingdom captive in 722 BC and attempted to take Jerusalem in 701 BC (2 KI 18:13-16) without success.
2KI 19:34-35, “For I will defend this city to save it for My own sake and for My servant David’s sake.”
Then it happened that night that the angel of the LORD went out and struck 185,000 in the camp of the Assyrians; and when men rose early in the morning, behold, all of them were dead.
Nahum predicted the fall of the city of Nineveh with an overflowing flood and that came to pass when the Tigris River overflowed damaging the walls of the city and allowing the Babylonians in to conquer it (612 B.C.)
Knowing GOD’s power should make us trust in HIS help (because HE is able to help) and to fear HIS judgment (knowing that HE judges with power).
Those who love and trust GOD see the goodness of GOD and in that they find comfort and protection.
This was what Nahum saw happening to Nineveh, interestingly according to historians, during the final siege of
Nineveh by a rebel army of Persians, Medes, Arabians, and Babylonians, unusually heavy rains caused the rivers to flood and to collapse the city’s walls so that the invaders could enter the city.
The dry leftover stalks of grass were ready to be devoured by the smallest flame. This was how ripe Nineveh was for judgment, and how complete the fire of judgment would be when it comes.
The city of Nineveh was once recognized as the great power city of the world. GOD promised to bring this wicked city so low that they would lose their legacy and name among the nations.
Nahum could see it all in his vision. The battle for Nineveh was fierce and bloody, and though the defense in Nineveh is prepared they would be conquered and beaten.
An impressive confirmation of this prophecy is that nothing of all this gold and silver has been discovered in the ruins of Nineveh by archaeologists.
And there must have been a lot as they conquered much of the known world.
Nineveh was indeed stripped bare.
If GOD is for us who can be against us?
If GOD is against you, then who can be for you?
The Hebrew word for vile (nabel) is that something is made weak and foolish. Nineveh walked high in their pride, but would certainly be brought down.
No Amon is the Hebrew name for the Egyptian city of Thebes. Thebes was another wealthy, mighty city that was destroyed completely. The Assyrians in Nineveh knew this well because it was their armies that destroyed Thebes.
As easily as ripe fruit falls from a shaken tree, so would the strongholds of Nineveh fall before the judgment of GOD.
Nahum ended his prophecy with a view of the righteous and their triumph over the unrighteous. This is something that the people of God need to be often reminded of, because it often goes against present appearances.
PSA 73-17-19, Until I went into the sanctuary of God; then I understood their end. Surely You set them in slippery places; You cast them down to destruction. Oh, how they are brought to desolation, as in a moment! They are utterly consumed with terrors.
ROM 12:19, Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written (Deu 32): “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.
If you ever find your will to do what’s right weakening as you become discouraged, the prophet Nahum reminds us of GOD’s active hand, working even in the darkest of times to bring justice and hope.
ISA 9:6-7, For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace, On the throne of David and over his kingdom, To establish it and to uphold it with justice and righteousness
GOD will not allow rampant and unrestrained wickedness to prosper and increase indefinitely. HE will act against those who reject HIM and refuse to respond to HIM.