The Book of Naḥum



Background of Naḥum
Time:  Between 663BCE (destruction of Egyptian capital; 3:8) and 612BCE (Nineveh falling to Babylonia)
Place: Southern Kingdom
Kings: Unnamed



Political Backdrop:

·       Northern Kingdom has been decimated and exiled by Assyria (722BCE)

·       Soon-to-come: Assyria will be beaten by Babylon and friends



Primary Themes of Naḥum:

·       Oppressive political structures will be destroyed

·       God is vengeful against the wicked; Nineveh will be destroyed due to Nineveh’s sin

·       Is Nineveh a reality or a symbol?


Structure of Naḥum


Content
Verses
Section I: The Character of God
Chapter 1
Intro
1
God is jealous + language from Ex. 34
2-3
Theophanic language
3-6
God is good!
7
God destroys God’s enemies
8-14



Section II: The Fall of Nineveh
Chapter 2
Judah will be restored
1-3
Nineveh will be destroyed
4-10






Section III: Nineveh’s Sin
Chapter 3
Nineveh is violent and warful
1-3
Compared to ‘evil women’ (harlot and sorceress)
4-5
God will deal with Nineveh
5-6
Nineveh is not better than the places Nineveh attacked
7-10
Nineveh will be devoured
11-18
And everyone else will be happy about it
19





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