Nineveh to Fall

[a]An attacker(A) advances against you, Nineveh.
    Guard the fortress,
    watch the road,
    brace yourselves,
    marshal all your strength!

The Lord will restore(B) the splendor(C) of Jacob
    like the splendor of Israel,
though destroyers have laid them waste
    and have ruined their vines.

The shields of the soldiers are red;
    the warriors are clad in scarlet.(D)
The metal on the chariots flashes
    on the day they are made ready;
    the spears of juniper are brandished.[b]
The chariots(E) storm through the streets,
    rushing back and forth through the squares.
They look like flaming torches;
    they dart about like lightning.

Nineveh summons her picked troops,
    yet they stumble(F) on their way.
They dash to the city wall;
    the protective shield is put in place.
The river gates(G) are thrown open
    and the palace collapses.
It is decreed[c] that Nineveh
    be exiled and carried away.
Her female slaves moan(H) like doves
    and beat on their breasts.(I)
Nineveh is like a pool
    whose water is draining away.
“Stop! Stop!” they cry,
    but no one turns back.
Plunder the silver!
    Plunder the gold!
The supply is endless,
    the wealth from all its treasures!
10 She is pillaged, plundered, stripped!
    Hearts melt,(J) knees give way,
    bodies tremble, every face grows pale.(K)

11 Where now is the lions’ den,(L)
    the place where they fed their young,
where the lion and lioness went,
    and the cubs, with nothing to fear?
12 The lion killed(M) enough for his cubs
    and strangled the prey for his mate,
filling his lairs(N) with the kill
    and his dens with the prey.(O)

13 “I am against(P) you,”
    declares the Lord Almighty.
“I will burn up your chariots in smoke,(Q)
    and the sword(R) will devour your young lions.
    I will leave you no prey on the earth.
The voices of your messengers
    will no longer be heard.”(S)

Footnotes

  1. Nahum 2:1 In Hebrew texts 2:1-13 is numbered 2:2-14.
  2. Nahum 2:3 Hebrew; Septuagint and Syriac ready; / the horsemen rush to and fro.
  3. Nahum 2:7 The meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain.

He that dasheth in pieces is come up before thy face: keep the munition, watch the way, make thy loins strong, fortify thy power mightily.

For the Lord hath turned away the excellency of Jacob, as the excellency of Israel: for the emptiers have emptied them out, and marred their vine branches.

The shield of his mighty men is made red, the valiant men are in scarlet: the chariots shall be with flaming torches in the day of his preparation, and the fir trees shall be terribly shaken.

The chariots shall rage in the streets, they shall justle one against another in the broad ways: they shall seem like torches, they shall run like the lightnings.

He shall recount his worthies: they shall stumble in their walk; they shall make haste to the wall thereof, and the defence shall be prepared.

The gates of the rivers shall be opened, and the palace shall be dissolved.

And Huzzab shall be led away captive, she shall be brought up, and her maids shall lead her as with the voice of doves, tabering upon their breasts.

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.

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.

The Destruction of Nineveh

He[a] who scatters has come up before your face.
Man the fort!
Watch the road!
Strengthen your flanks!
Fortify your power mightily.

For the Lord will restore the excellence of Jacob
Like the excellence of Israel,
For the emptiers have emptied them out
And ruined their vine branches.

The shields of his mighty men are made red,
The valiant men are in scarlet.
The chariots come with flaming torches
In the day of his preparation,
And [b]the spears are brandished.
The chariots rage in the streets,
They jostle one another in the broad roads;
They seem like torches,
They run like lightning.

He remembers his nobles;
They stumble in their walk;
They make haste to her walls,
And the defense is prepared.
The gates of the rivers are opened,
And the palace is dissolved.
[c]It is decreed:
She shall be led away captive,
She shall be brought up;
And her maidservants shall lead her as with the voice of doves,
Beating their breasts.

Though Nineveh of old was like a pool of water,
Now they flee away.
[d]“Halt! Halt!” they cry;
But no one turns back.
[e]Take spoil of silver!
Take spoil of (A)gold!
There is no end of treasure,
Or wealth of every desirable prize.
10 She is empty, desolate, and waste!
The heart melts, and the knees shake;
Much pain is in every side,
And all their faces [f]are drained of color.

11 Where is the dwelling of the (B)lions,
And the feeding place of the young lions,
Where the lion walked, the lioness and lion’s cub,
And no one made them afraid?
12 The lion tore in pieces enough for his cubs,
[g]Killed for his lionesses,
(C)Filled his caves with prey,
And his dens with [h]flesh.

13 “Behold, (D)I am against you,” says the Lord of hosts, “I will burn [i]your chariots in smoke, and the sword shall devour your young lions; I will cut off your prey from the earth, and the voice of your (E)messengers shall be heard no more.”

Footnotes

  1. Nahum 2:1 Vg. He who destroys
  2. Nahum 2:3 Lit. the cypresses are shaken; LXX, Syr. the horses rush about; Vg. the drivers are stupefied
  3. Nahum 2:7 Heb. Huzzab
  4. Nahum 2:8 Lit. Stand
  5. Nahum 2:9 Plunder
  6. Nahum 2:10 LXX, Tg., Vg. gather blackness; Joel 2:6
  7. Nahum 2:12 Lit. Strangled
  8. Nahum 2:12 Torn flesh
  9. Nahum 2:13 Lit. her

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