Friday, March 17, 2017
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Like Micah, Nahum predicts that God will deliver justice to those who treat others unjustly. But unlike Micah, Nahum is not directing his prophecies toward Israelites. Rather, Nahum is predicting the fall of Ninevah and the Assyrians who had conquered and oppressed the northern tribes of Israel. Nahum predicts God’s wrath and destruction of Israel’s arch enemy. Nahum predicted that Ninevah would be wiped from the face of the Earth, and it was. The city was destroyed, and all evidence of the existence of the city disappeared until 1850 when archaeologists discovered the site.
We know very little about the minor prophet, Nahum. In his writings, we know that he is from the city Elkosh. But we don’t know where Elkosh is, as the city is not mentioned anywhere else in the Bible. It’s possible that Elkosh and Capernaum are one in the same. Capernaum in Hebrew means city of Nahum. Some Bible scholars speculate that it is possible that the city Elkosh was renamed in honor of the prophet Nahum.
Here’s what we DO know about Nahum. Nahum ministered around 650 BC. While not the shortest book of the Bible, the book of Nahum is a mere 47 verses. Compared to the other prophets, Nahum is often left out in modern worship. When is the last time you listened to a reading from the book of Nahum in church? Probably never.
Nahum delivered a simple message condemning those who disobeyed God’s law and consoling those who trusted and obeyed God’s law. In our world filled with countries at war, terrorism, political and physical oppression, poverty, hunger and other disasters and tragedies, it is important that we maintain hope that we may have a place in the future kingdom of God. Nahum reminds us that the “Lord is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him.” Nahum 1:7.