Nahum 2:1-10

The Destruction of Nineveh

1 1The scatterer has come up against you. 2Man the ramparts; watch the road; dress for battle;[a] collect all your strength.
2 For 3the LORD is restoring the majesty of Jacob as the majesty of Israel, for plunderers have plundered them and 4ruined their branches.
3 The shield of his mighty men is red; 5his soldiers are clothed in scarlet. The chariots come with flashing metal on the day he musters them; the cypress spears are brandished.
4 6The chariots race madly through the streets; they rush to and fro through the squares; they gleam like torches; they dart like lightning.
5 He remembers 7his officers; 8they stumble as they go, they hasten to the wall; the siege tower[b] is set up.
6 9The river gates are opened; the palace 10melts away;
7 its mistress[c] is 11stripped;[d] she is carried off, her slave girls 12lamenting, moaning like doves and beating their breasts.
8 13Nineveh is like a pool whose waters run away.[e] "Halt! Halt!" they cry, but 14none turns back.
9 Plunder the silver, plunder the gold! There is no end of the treasure or of the wealth of all precious things.
10 15Desolate! Desolation and ruin! 16Hearts melt and 17knees tremble; 18anguish is in all loins; 19all faces grow pale!

Nahum 2:1-10 Meaning and Commentary

INTRODUCTION TO NAHUM 2

This chapter gives an account of the destruction of the city of Nineveh; describes the instruments of it as very terrible and powerful, and not to be resisted, Na 2:1-4. The manner of taking it, the flight of its inhabitants, and the spoil of its riches and treasures, Na 2:5-10 and the king and the princes thereof, compared to a lion, and a lion's whelp, are insulted as being without a den or dwelling place, because of their cruelty and ravening, for which the Lord was against them, and threatened them with utter ruin, which he brought upon them, Na 2:11-13.

Nahum 2:1-10 In-Context

1 The scatterer has come up against you. Man the ramparts; watch the road; dress for battle; collect all your strength.
2 For the LORD is restoring the majesty of Jacob as the majesty of Israel, for plunderers have plundered them and ruined their branches.
3 The shield of his mighty men is red; his soldiers are clothed in scarlet. The chariots come with flashing metal on the day he musters them; the cypress spears are brandished.
4 The chariots race madly through the streets; they rush to and fro through the squares; they gleam like torches; they dart like lightning.
5 He remembers his officers; they stumble as they go, they hasten to the wall; the siege tower is set up.
6 The river gates are opened; the palace melts away;
7 its mistress is stripped; she is carried off, her slave girls lamenting, moaning like doves and beating their breasts.
8 Nineveh is like a pool whose waters run away. "Halt! Halt!" they cry, but none turns back.
9 Plunder the silver, plunder the gold! There is no end of the treasure or of the wealth of all precious things.
10 Desolate! Desolation and ruin! Hearts melt and knees tremble; anguish is in all loins; all faces grow pale!
11 Where is the lions' den, the feeding place of the young lions, where the lion and lioness went, where his cubs were, with none to disturb?
12 The lion tore enough for his cubs and strangled prey for his lionesses; he filled his caves with prey and his dens with torn flesh.
13 Behold, I am against you, declares the LORD of hosts, and I will burn 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 messengers shall no longer be heard.

Cross References 19

Footnotes 5

  • [a]. Hebrew gird your loins
  • [b]. Or the mantelet
  • [c]. The meaning of the Hebrew word rendered its mistress is uncertain
  • [d]. Or exiled
  • [e]. Compare Septuagint; the meaning of the Hebrew is uncertain
The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.