1 The [a]oracle of Nineveh. The book of the vision of Nahum the Elkoshite.
2 A jealous and avenging God is the Lord; The Lord is avenging and [b]wrathful. The Lord takes vengeance on His adversaries, And He reserves wrath for His enemies. 3 The Lord is slow to anger and great in power, And the Lord will by no means leave the guilty unpunished. In whirlwind and storm is His way, And clouds are the dust beneath His feet. 4 He rebukes the sea and makes it dry; He dries up all the rivers. Bashan and Carmel wither; The blossoms of Lebanon wither. 5 Mountains quake because of Him And the hills dissolve; Indeed the earth is upheaved by His presence, The world and all the inhabitants in it. 6 Who can stand before His indignation? Who can endure the burning of His anger? His wrath is poured out like fire And the rocks are broken up by Him. 7 The Lord is good, A stronghold in the day of trouble, And He knows those who take refuge in Him. 8 But with an overflowing flood He will make a complete end of [c]its site, And will pursue His enemies into darkness.
9 Whatever you devise against the Lord, He will make a complete end of it. Distress will not rise up twice. 10 Like tangled thorns, And like those who are drunken with their drink, They are consumed As stubble completely withered. 11 From you has gone forth One who plotted evil against the Lord, A [d]wicked counselor.
12 Thus says the Lord,
“Though they are at full strength and likewise many, Even so, they will be cut off and pass away. Though I have afflicted you, I will afflict you no longer. 13 “So now, I will break his yoke bar from upon you, And I will tear off your shackles.”
14 The Lord has issued a command concerning [e]you: “[f]Your name will no longer be perpetuated. I will cut off [g]idol and [h]image From the house of your gods. I will prepare your grave, For you are contemptible.”
15 [i]Behold, on the mountains the feet of him who brings good news, Who announces peace! Celebrate your feasts, O Judah; Pay your vows. For never again will the [j]wicked one pass through you; He is cut off completely.
The Overthrow of Nineveh
2 [k]The one who scatters has come up against [l]you. Man the fortress, watch the road; [m]Strengthen your back, [n]summon all your strength. 2 For the Lord will restore the splendor of Jacob Like the splendor of Israel, Even though devastators have devastated them And destroyed their vine branches.
3 The shields of [o]his mighty men are colored red, The warriors are dressed in scarlet, The chariots are enveloped in [p]flashing steel [q]When he is prepared to march, And the cypress spears are brandished. 4 The chariots race madly in the streets, They rush wildly in the [r]squares, Their appearance is like torches, They dash to and fro like lightning flashes. 5 He remembers his nobles; They stumble in their march, They hurry to her wall, And the [s]mantelet is set up. 6 The gates of the rivers are opened And the palace is dissolved. 7 It is fixed: She is stripped, she is carried away, And her handmaids are moaning like the sound of doves, Beating on their [t]breasts.
8 Though Nineveh was like a pool of water throughout her days, Now they are fleeing; “Stop, stop,” But no one turns back. 9 Plunder the silver! Plunder the gold! For there is no limit to the treasure— Wealth from every kind of desirable object. 10 She is emptied! Yes, she is desolate and waste! Hearts are melting and knees knocking! Also anguish is in [u]the whole body And all their faces are grown pale! 11 Where is the den of the lions And the feeding place of the young lions, Where the lion, lioness and lion’s cub prowled, With nothing to disturb them? 12 The lion tore enough for his cubs, [v]Killed enough for his lionesses, And filled his lairs with prey And his dens with torn flesh.
13 “Behold, I am against you,” declares the Lord of hosts. “I will burn up her chariots in smoke, a sword will devour your young lions; I will cut off your prey from the land, and no longer will the voice of your messengers be heard.”
Nineveh’s Complete Ruin
3 Woe to the bloody city, completely full of lies and pillage; Her prey never departs. 2 The noise of the whip, The noise of the rattling of the wheel, Galloping horses And [w]bounding chariots! 3 Horsemen charging, Swords flashing, spears gleaming, Many slain, a mass of corpses, And [x]countless dead bodies— They stumble over [y]the dead bodies! 4 All because of the many harlotries of the harlot, The charming one, the mistress of sorceries, Who sells nations by her harlotries And families by her sorceries. 5 “Behold, I am against you,” declares the Lord of hosts; “And I will [z]lift up your skirts over your face, And show to the nations your nakedness And to the kingdoms your disgrace. 6 “I will throw [aa]filth on you And make you vile, And set you up as a spectacle. 7 “And it will come about that all who see you Will [ab]shrink from you and say, ‘Nineveh is devastated! Who will grieve for her?’ Where will I seek comforters for you?”
8 Are you better than [ac]No-amon, Which was situated by the waters of the Nile, With water surrounding her, Whose rampart was[ad]the sea, Whose wall consisted of [ae]the sea? 9 Ethiopia was her might, And Egypt too, without limits. Put and Lubim were among [af]her helpers. 10 Yet she became an exile, She went into captivity; Also her small children were dashed to pieces At the head of every street; They cast lots for her honorable men, And all her great men were bound with fetters. 11 You too will become drunk, You will be hidden. You too will search for a refuge from the enemy. 12 All your fortifications are fig trees with [ag]ripe fruit— When shaken, they fall into the eater’s mouth. 13 Behold, your people are women in your midst! The gates of your land are opened wide to your enemies; Fire consumes your gate bars. 14 Draw for yourself water for the siege! Strengthen your fortifications! Go into the clay and tread the mortar! Take hold of the brick mold! 15 There fire will consume you, The sword will cut you down; It will consume you as the locust does. Multiply yourself like the creeping locust, Multiply yourself like the swarming locust. 16 You have increased your traders more than the stars of heaven— The creeping locust [ah]strips and flies away. 17 Your [ai]guardsmen are like the swarming locust. Your marshals are like hordes of grasshoppers Settling in the stone walls on a cold day. The sun rises and they flee, And the place where they are is not known. 18 Your shepherds are sleeping, O king of Assyria; Your nobles are lying down. Your people are scattered on the mountains And there is no one to regather them. 19 There is no relief for your breakdown, Your wound is incurable. All who hear [aj]about you Will clap their hands over you, For on whom has not your evil passed continually?
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