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Monday, February 18 2013
Nahum: Woe To The Bloody City
Nahum, from the Hebrew name pronounced nawk-hoom, meaning comfort (the name in Hebrew is the "naum" part of Capernaum, the home city of the Messiah after He left Nazareth; see The Ships Of Galilee), was a second prophet sent primarily to Assyria (see Ancient Empires - Assyria). The first was Jonah, over a century before Nahum, but the timing itself was not the major difference between the purpose of the two prophets. Jonah (see Jonah: Three Days And Three Nights) was sent to warn the Assyrians to repent, which they did, while Nahum was sent to the Assyrians after they had slid back down into their festering arrogance i.e. "Woe to the bloody city! it is all full of lies and robbery."
Naham saw what Jonah wanted to see - the destruction of the Assyrian Empire and their capital city Nineveh. If the Assyrians had been merely arrogant, which is actually just a state of self-inflicted dementia ("mental deterioration of organic or functional origin") to be pitied (arrogant people are very similar to those who cause themselves brain damage from alcoholism or drugs; all involve people getting "high" on a substance or themselves; see also Seed-Bearing Plants: For Food Or For Folly?), the LORD would have just left them to inevitably destroy themselves from within, as He does to all such nations who are only endangering themselves. But when the hubris of the Assyrians became a wanton threat to other nations, particularly to those who were not doing evil in the LORD's sight, the LORD delivered the end to their malignant empire that was spreading into other nations (see also When Freedom Crosses The Line).
"1:1 The burden of Nineveh. The book of the vision of Nahum the Elkoshite." (Nahum 1:1 KJV)
Assyria was given to conquer the kingdom of Israel (see Israel In History and Prophecy: The Lost Ten Tribes) as a matter of the LORD's wrath upon the wickedness of those northern ten tribes. But even in doing so, Assyria had been warned of their own wicked behavior, by the prophet Jonah, from which they repented. Notice how anyone is subject to the LORD's mercy, if they repent, and how anyone is subject to the LORD's wrath, if they become evil. That's why prophets of the LORD, such as Jonah and Nahum, were sent to the "enemies" of Israel and Judah. Abraham's native land had been that very same Assyria/Babylon (see the links to the study series about Abraham below).
As time went on however, the Assyrians returned to their aggression against other nations. Their fatal mistake was attacking Judah (see Israel In History and Prophecy: Kingdom Of Judah), without the LORD's permission (because Judah was overall still obedient to the LORD), after the Assyrians had been allowed to conquer the northern kingdom of Israel because of Israel's disobedience to the LORD. The Assyrians were thereby inviting the LORD to crush them - which He did, by having the Babylonians conquer them - after the LORD Himself delivered the Assyrians a defeat when they tried to take Jerusalem:
"37:36 Then the angel of the LORD went forth, and smote in the camp of the Assyrians a hundred and fourscore and five thousand: and when they arose early in the morning, behold, they were all dead corpses. 37:37 So Sennacherib king of Assyria departed, and went and returned, and dwelt at Nineveh" (Isaiah 37:36-37 KJV).
Assyria's time as an empire was over, for no other reason than that they refused to repent.
"3:1 Woe to the bloody city! it is all full of lies and robbery; the prey departeth not; 3:2 The noise of a whip, and the noise of the rattling of the wheels, and of the prancing horses, and of the jumping chariots. 3:3 The horseman lifteth up both the bright sword and the glittering spear: and there is a multitude of slain, and a great number of carcases; and there is none end of their corpses; they stumble upon their corpses: 3:4 Because of the multitude of the whoredoms of the wellfavoured harlot, the mistress of witchcrafts, that selleth nations through her whoredoms, and families through her witchcrafts.
Studies For The Book Of Nahum
Fact Finder: Why did "Babylon," which means confusion, become a generic term for the history of humanity as a whole? Why will "Babylon" attempt to fight the Messiah when He returns?
This Day In History, February 18
1229: During the Sixth Crusade (see Constantine's Crusades In History And Prophecy and A History Of Jerusalem: Constantine and Muhammad), Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II signed a truce with al-Kamil, thereby regaining Jerusalem.
1248: Imperial forces under Frederick II were defeated at Parma in Italy.
1478: George, the Duke of Clarence, was convicted of treason against his brother Edward IV, and then killed in the Tower of London by being drowned in a wine barrel.
1503: Henry Tudor (later Henry VIII) was made Prince of Wales.
1516: Mary I, Queen of England, was born. The daughter of Henry VIII and his first wife Catherine of Aragon, she became known as "Bloody Mary" after her campaign against Protestants in England.
1546: Martin Luther, a monk who became a leader of the Protestant reformation, died at age 62.
1564: Michelangelo Buonarotti (popularly known simply as "Michelangelo"), Italian painter, sculptor and architect, died. He is most known for his work on the Vatican's Sistine Chapel.
1574: Zeeland fell to Dutch rebels.
1678: John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress was first published, in Britain.
1688: Quakers in Germantown, Pennsylvania, adopted the first formal antislavery resolution in North America.
1861: In Italy, the first parliament met and proclaimed Victor Emmanuel as the first king of Italy.
1900: The Battle of Paardeberg began in the second Boer War. The Boers under Piet Cronje eventually surrendered on February 27 under British artillery.
1915: Germany began a submarine blockade of England.
1930: Clyde Tombaugh, working with photographic plates at the Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Arizona, discovered "Pluto," the 9th and smallest planet in the solar system.
1967: Robert Oppenheimer died. He was a prominent member of the team of physicists that produced the U.S. atomic bombs that incinerated the civilian population of the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945.
1979: Snow fell in the Sahara Desert in southern Algeria, the only time in recorded history.
1994: Representatives from 135 countries announced at a United Nations environmental conference that greenhouse gas emissions must be reduced to stop "global warming."