The Bible – Old Testament
Oracle about Nineveh. The book of the vision of Nahum of Elkosh.
1 2 A jealous and avenging God is the LORD, an avenger is the LORD, and angry; The LORD brings vengeance on his adversaries, and lays up wrath for his enemies;
The LORD is slow to anger, yet great in power, and the LORD never leaves the guilty unpunished. In hurricane and tempest is his path, and clouds are the dust at his feet;
3 He rebukes the sea and leaves it dry, and all the rivers he dries up. Withered are Bashan and Carmel, and the bloom of Lebanon fades;
The mountains quake before him, and the hills dissolve; The earth is laid waste before him, the world and all who dwell in it.
4 Before his wrath, who can stand firm, and who can face his blazing anger? His fury is poured out like fire, and the rocks are rent asunder before him.
The LORD is good, a refuge on the day of distress; He takes care of those who have recourse to him,
when the flood rages; He makes an end of his opponents, and his enemies he pursues with darkness.
5 What are you imputing to the LORD? It is he who will make an end! The enemy shall not rise a second time;
As when a tangle of thornbushes is set aflame, like dry stubble, they shall be utterly consumed.
7 From you he came who devised evil against the LORD, the scoundrel planner.
6 For, says the LORD, be they ever so many and so vigorous, still they shall be mown down and disappear. Though I have humbled you, I will humble you no more.
Now will I break his yoke from off you, and burst asunder your bonds.
8 The LORD has commanded regarding you: no descendant shall come to bear your name; From your temple I will abolish the carved and the molten image; I will make your grave a mockery.
1 [2-8] A poem written in the style of the alphabetic psalms; cf Psalm 9A;25;111;119. Here, however, most of the verses beginning with the letters of the second half of the alphabet are not preserved.
2  A jealous . . .God: see note on ⇒ Exodus 20:5.
3  Bashan, Carmel and Lebanon were famous for their forests.
4 [6-7] The coming of God in judgment has two aspects: to those who oppose him it will be unbearable; to those who have recourse to him it will bring strength and consolation.
5  What are you imputing to the LORD?: the people of Judah are asked what they think God has in mind.
6  (12,13)They: the enemies of Judah. You: Judah. His yoke: the dominion of the Assyrian king over Judah.
7  (11)From you . . . the scoundrel planner: addressed to Nineveh, the capital city of Sennacherib, king of Assyria, who besieged Jerusalem c. 700 B.C.
8  You: the king of Assyria.