Nahum nixes Nineveh next Verse by verse through Nahum
By Craig C. White
The book of Nahum is all about the destruction of the ancient city of Nineveh. God destroyed Nineveh with a flood and also with three plundering armies. The modern day city of Mosul is built alongside of the ruins of ancient Nineveh. As a matter of fact Nineveh lays within the city limits of Mosul! The prophet Nahum said that God will judge the place where Nineveh was built. Both cities were built in the same place. By all practical standards Mosul is Nineveh. Therefore the book of Nahum describes the destruction of ancient Nineveh and it also very probably describes the present day destruction of Mosul in northern Iraq! We all know that the Al-Qaeda terrorist group called ISIS has taken control of the city of Mosul. They are killing hundreds of thousands of its residents.
When Hebrew prophets talk about the burden of a city or nation they are describing the portion of God’s judgment that it must endure. Nahum is describing Nineveh’s plight. I think he is also describing the plight of ISIS in Mosul today!
Nahum 1:1 The burden of Nineveh. The book of the vision of Nahum the Elkoshite.
The name Nahum means comfort. He didn’t comfort the city of Nineveh but he did comfort the nation of Israel by telling them that one of their enemies would be vanquished by God. Nahum was one of the Israeli captives that were taken away by the Assyrian Empire around 740 BC. So during the time that Nahum wrote his book he lived in Assyria or what we call northern Iraq today. Nahum lived in a town called Elkosh. Today the small town of Elkosh is known asAlqosh. Alqosh is located about twenty miles to the north of the city of Mosul. As a matter of fact it overlooks the Mosul dam. If the Mosul dam was ever to burst, Alqosh is as close as you could get to the dam without drowning. What does the name Elkosh mean? Elkosh means God the ensnarer.
To ensnare means to catch something in a trap. God set a trap for Nineveh. God ensnared the city of Nineveh by planting it by the Tigris River. In 612 BC God sent a torrential rain which overflowed the banks of the Tigris River flooding the city. The city of Mosul is sitting in an even worse trap. In 1985 construction of the Mosul dam was completed. Ever since the dam was put into service there have been concerns about its stability and safety. It seems that the ground it was built on is dissolving! The dam requires constant upkeep to prevent it from failing. The Mosul dam is located just north of the city. If the dam burst it would send a sixty foot high wave of water over the city of Mosul. So Nahum the comforter represents God the ensnarer.
I am not going to comment on every verse in Nahum. But I will say something about Nahum’s introduction. Nahum says that God will not allow wicked people to go unpunished. The ancient Ninevites were a lot like ISIS is today. They were blood thirsty murderers. God doesn’t like that. God punished Nineveh and he will likewise also punish ISIS in Mosul.
Nahum 1:3 The LORD is slow to anger, and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked: the LORD hath his way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet.
Before he starts, Nahum gives God credit for vanquishing Israel’s enemies. Verses 3-7 describe the fierce display of Jesus Christ’s wrath as he returns to earth at his second coming. Jesus will return with tornadoes and rock melting fury. Nahum’s description of Christ’s return is a lot like the description that King David gave in his song of deliverance recorded in 2 Samuel 22. For a more robust description of Jesus’ return please read my commentary titled “The sign of Jesus’ coming” in my eBook “Israel’s Beacon of Hope”.
Here is something to take notice of. God has given the duty of Judgment to his son Jesus Christ (John 5:22). It was Jesus who flooded Nineveh. It will be Jesus again who will also flood Mosul.
Here it is. Nahum comes right out and tells us that God will destroy the place where Nineveh sits with a flood. Remember that Mosul sits in the same place! Nineveh was flattened. Mosul will also be flattened. ISIS in Mosul will be overflowed by a flood of water. Their bodies will be dragged down to the darkness of the deep water and their souls will be dragged down to the even darker depths of the earth.
Nahum 1:8 But with an overrunning flood he will make an utter end of the place thereof, and darkness shall pursue his enemies.
In verse 9 below Nahum declares that God’s judgment will be final. In other words, we won’t have any more trouble from ISIS.
Nahum 1:9 What do ye imagine against the LORD? he will make an utter end: affliction shall not rise up the second time.
In verse 10 below Nahum describes the members of ISIS gathered together in a thick crowd. They are drunk celebrating their immoral rapes and murders. God will gather ISIS together in Mosul like one would gather brush to burn. ISIS will be quickly and completely destroyed.
Nahum 1:10 For while they be folden together as thorns, and while they are drunken as drunkards, they shall be devoured as stubble fully dry.
Next Nahum identifies one particular person among the inhabitants of Nineveh who is an enemy of the God of Israel. Nahum may be identifying Assyrian King Sinsharishkun who was in power during the fall of Nineveh. Nahum may also be identifying the ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Al-Baghdadi has declared himself as the ruler of a new Islamic Empire. Of course the goal of Islam is the annihilation of Israel so Al-Baghdadi is also the enemy of the God of Israel. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi now lives in Mosul.
Nahum 1:11 There is one come out of thee, that imagineth evil against the LORD, a wicked counsellor.
The next three verses are interesting. We know that many nations will come against Israel during the Great Tribulation. Jesus will personally wipe them out at his second coming. It seems that ISIS will be dealt with beforehand. Assyria or northern Iraq is not listed in the Gog and Magog wars of Ezekiel 38 and 39 or in the battle of Armageddon (same as Ezekiel 39). Northern Iraq will assist Jordan during the Psalm 83 war but they will not enter into the land of Israel. The Psalm 83 war in Jordan happens just a day or so before the battle of Armageddon. For more about Ezekiel 38 and 39, and Psalm 83 please read my eBooks “Halfway to Armageddon” and also “Israel’s Beacon of Hope”.
Nahum 1:12 Thus saith the LORD; Though they be quiet, and likewise many, yet thus shall they be cut down, when he shall pass through. Though I have afflicted thee, I will afflict thee no more.
In verse 13 below Nahum is comforting Israel. Back in 612 BC the Assyrians in Nineveh enslaved the Israelites. God destroyed Nineveh with a flood. God will also destroy Mosul with a flood. God will not allow ISIS in Mosul to bother Israel anymore.
Nahum 1:13 For now will I break his yoke from off thee, and will burst thy bonds in sunder.
All you hear about today is ISIS. After God gets through with them nobody will be talking about them.
Nahum 1:14 And the LORD hath given a commandment concerning thee, that no more of thy name be sown: out of the house of thy gods will I cut off the graven image and the molten image: I will make thy grave; for thou art vile.
Jesus Christ is the person and authority behind the flooding of Mosul. God will destroy ISIS as they are gathered together in Mosul. The same city that was their home will become their grave. God will catch Mosul in its own trap.
Nineveh was flooded long ago. Mosul will fall in like fashion. The city of Mosul has a population of 1.5 million. I heard one report lately that about 500,000 people are in immediate danger if the Mosul dam breaks.
In the verse below the palace refers to a building large enough to accommodate a gathering of many people. I think that Nahum is being very accurate here. ISIS in Mosul will be gathered together in a large auditorium when the flood hits!
Nahum 2:6 The gates of the rivers shall be opened, and the palace shall be dissolved.
The verse below literally says that Nineveh will be like a water reservoir for many days. ISIS leaders will command the people to stand and fight but nobody will listen. Anybody left alive will flee.
Nahum 2:8 But Nineveh is of old like a pool of water: yet they shall flee away. Stand, stand, shall they cry; but none shall look back.
I haven’t mentioned this yet but God first destroyed Nineveh with a flood and then three armies ransacked the city for two months! In 612 BC the Babylonians, Persians, and Medes attacked Nineveh when they saw it was in peril. Today those same three nations are fighting against ISIS in Mosul. They are the Iraqis, Iranians, and Kurds.
The Iraqi army along with the Iranian Guard and the Peshmerga Kurds will rifle through the city stealing everything of value. Just a note: the Bible often refers to soldiers as lions. The ISIS soldiers will be wiped out.
Nahum 2:9-13 Take ye the spoil of silver, take the spoil of gold: for there is none end of the store and glory out of all the pleasant furniture. 10 She is empty, and void, and waste: and the heart melteth, and the knees smite together, and much pain is in all loins, and the faces of them all gather blackness. 11 Where is the dwelling of the lions, and the feedingplace of the young lions, where the lion, even the old lion, walked, and the lion’s whelp, and none made them afraid? 12 The lion did tear in pieces enough for his whelps, and strangled for his lionesses, and filled his holes with prey, and his dens with ravin. 13 Behold, I am against thee, saith the LORD of hosts, and I will burn her chariots in the smoke, and the sword shall devour thy young lions: and I will cut off thy prey from the earth, and the voice of thy messengers shall no more be heard.
ISIS has lusted after blood. They have filled Mosul with the blood of their fellow countrymen. God will not endure their evil deeds for long.
Nahum 3:1 Woe to the bloody city! it is all full of lies and robbery; the prey departeth not;
The next few verses may not reflect upon the present day destruction of Mosul. I wanted to cast a little light on them because they sound strange the first time you read them. The Assyrian King named Assur-banipal had conquered the city of No-Amon (or Thebes) in Upper Egypt in 663 B.C. God is telling the ancient Assyrians that even though Thebes was a great city it fell. God was just as able to destroy Nineveh.
Nahum 3:8-9 Art thou better than populous No, that was situate among the rivers, that had the waters round about it, whose rampart was the sea, and her wall was from the sea? 9 Ethiopia and Egypt were her strength, and it was infinite; Put and Lubim were thy helpers.
Like Nineveh, Mosul will be under siege after the flood. Its defenses will crumble. The three invading armies will pour into the city.
Nahum 3:11-13 Thou also shalt be drunken: thou shalt be hid, thou also shalt seek strength because of the enemy. 12 All thy strong holds shall be like fig trees with the firstripe figs: if they be shaken, they shall even fall into the mouth of the eater. 13 Behold, thy people in the midst of thee are women: the gates of thy land shall be set wide open unto thine enemies: the fire shall devour thy bars.
In verse 18 below, a shepherd is a ruler. The rulers of Nineveh are dead. The people of the city have taken refuge in the mountains. Nobody helps them. In verse 19 the word bruit simply means report. Everybody who hears the report about the destruction of ISIS in Mosul will clap their hands with approval.
Nahum 3:18-19 Thy shepherds slumber, O king of Assyria: thy nobles shall dwell in the dust: thy people is scattered upon the mountains, and no man gathereth them. 19 There is no healing of thy bruise; thy wound is grievous: all that hear the bruit of thee shall clap the hands over thee: for upon whom hath not thy wickedness passed continually?
Remember that the prophecies of Nahum are primarily about the ancient city of Nineveh. Everything written about its destruction has already happened. But in end time Bible prophecy history often repeats itself. The modern day city of Mosul is built surrounding the place where Nineveh once was. ISIS in Mosul is acting a lot like the ancient Assyrians of Nineveh. The Mosul dam is feeble. Mosul has set a trap for itself. God has ensnared them.