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Nineveh’s Punishment for Sin

How horrible it will be for that city of bloody violence!
    It is completely full of lies and stolen goods—never without victims.
The sound of the whip!
    The sound of rattling wheels!
    Horses gallop!
    Chariots bounce along!
Horses charge!
    Swords flash!
        Spears glitter!
    Many are killed!
    Dead bodies pile up!
        There is no end to the corpses!
    People trip over corpses
because of Nineveh’s constant prostitution,
    this very charming mistress of evil magic.
    She used to sell
    nations her prostitution
        and people her evil magic.
“I am against you, Nineveh,” declares Yahweh Tsebaoth.
    “I will lift up your dress over your face.
    I will show nations your naked body and kingdoms your disgrace.
I will throw filth on you.
    I will make you look like a fool.
    I will make you a sight to be seen.
Everyone who sees you will run from you, saying,
    ‘Nineveh has been violently destroyed!
        Who will feel sorry for her?’
    Where can I find anyone to comfort you?”

Nineveh Will Not Escape Punishment

Are you better than No-amon,[a] which sits by the streams of the Nile
    with water surrounding her?
        The sea was her defense.
        The water was her wall.
        Sudan and Egypt were her endless strength.
        Put and the Lybians were her help.
10 Even she went into captivity and was exiled.
    Even her little children were smashed to death at every street corner.
    Soldiers tossed dice for her important men,
        and all her best men were bound in chains.
11 Even you, Nineveh, will stagger like a drunk.
    You will disappear.
    Even you will look for a fortress to escape from the enemy.
12 All your defenses will be like fig trees with the earliest figs.
    When shaken, the figs fall into the mouth of the eater.
13 Look at your soldiers; they’re women!
    The gates of your country are wide open to your enemies.
    Fire has destroyed the bars of your gates.

Nineveh’s Strength Will Not Save Her

14 Store water for the siege!
    Strengthen your defenses!
        Step into the claypits and trample the clay!
            Grab the brick mold!
15 Fire will consume you there.
    A sword will cut you down.
    It will consume you like locusts.
    Multiply like locusts!
    Multiply like hungry locusts!
16 You have produced more businessmen than there are stars in the sky.
    They are like locusts that attack and then fly away.
17 Your officers are like locusts,
    and your scribes are like swarms of locusts
        that settle on the fences when it is cold.
            The sun rises, and they scatter in every direction.
                No one knows where they’ve gone.
18 Your shepherds, king of Assyria, have fallen into a deep sleep.
    Your best fighting men are at rest.
    Your people are scattered on the mountains,
    and there is no one to gather them.
19 There is no relief for your collapse.
    Your wound is fatal.
    All who hear the news about you will clap their hands.
        Who hasn’t suffered from your endless evil?


  1. Nahum 3:8 The city No-amon, also called Thebes, was the capital of southern Egypt.