The Good News of Nahum

Scripture Focus: Nahum 1:15
15 Look, there on the mountains,
     the feet of one who brings good news,
     who proclaims peace!

Reflection: The Good News of Nahum
By Erin Newton

Nahum prophesied judgment against Nineveh, the Assyrian capital—the same town Jonah avoided. After the little incident with the big fish, Jonah prophesied destruction, which resulted in repentance and spared the city.

The oppression by the Assyrians never ceased and judgment is now heralded by Nahum. This judgment against Israel’s enemy is called “good news” in the final verse. Nahum calls for the people to look up into the mountains (the cosmic divine abode) and see the good news leaping down the mountain to rescue them.

“The feet of one who brings good news, who proclaims peace!”

We are familiar with the good news of the New Testament—the gospel. What is the good news of Nahum? Just as our God is unchanging and eternal, the good news of the prophets is much the same as we find in the gospels.

Blessed are those who are the object of God’s jealousy. Verse 2 proclaims that the Lord is a jealous God. Not an evil, corrupted concept of jealousy—for that would be envy. Jealousy is the longing and the love that covets that which belongs to you. We belong to God, and he is jealous for us.

Blessed are those avenged by God. Evil is not allowed to prevail at the end of the day. The good news of Nahum means trusting that wrongs will be made right.

Blessed are the ones with whom God’s anger moves slowly. Judgment and wrath are not hastily dished out. The good news of Nahum means that God’s patience works faster than his wrath.

Blessed are those who take refuge in him. We are safe within the arms of God. When the floods and torments of life threaten to overtake us, he is our refuge.

Blessed are those freed from the yoke of slavery. The good news of Nahum is freedom—freedom from oppression, subjugation, humiliation, and every form of persecution.

Blessed are those whose feet bring good news of peace. This message of peace is intertwined with the prophecy of judgment. It is not human conflict or self-determinism. God judges evil and brings the peace of safety and freedom.

The good news of Nahum is the dim shadow of the good news of Jesus that came over four hundred years later. He longs for us. He conquers evil. We place ourselves in his care. He frees us. We have peace.

Divine Hours Prayer: The Call to Prayer
Taste and see that the Lord is good; happy are they who trust in him! — Psalm 34.8

– From The Divine Hours: Prayers for Summertime by Phyllis Tickle.

​Today’s Readings
Nahum 1 (Listen 2:24)
Psalm 89 (Listen 5:29)

Read more about The Limits of Ministry
We must have beautiful feet that carry the gospel. We must take actions that put God’s word into practice.

Apply or tell a student!
Spots are filling up. Apply for #StudentWritersMonth!
Get published and a scholarship/stipend, along with #FreeCoaching and seminars by special guests.

Invading Darkness — Hope of Advent

Scripture Focus: Nahum 1.7-8, 15
7 The Lord is good, 
a refuge in times of trouble. 
He cares for those who trust in him, 
8 but with an overwhelming flood 
he will make an end of Nineveh; 
he will pursue his foes into the realm of darkness. 

15 Look, there on the mountains, 
the feet of one who brings good news, 
who proclaims peace! 
Celebrate your festivals, Judah, 
and fulfill your vows. 
No more will the wicked invade you; 
they will be completely destroyed. 

Reflection: Invading Darkness — Hope of Advent
By John Tillman 

Nahum is a contemporary of Jeremiah and Zephaniah. Nahum wrote approximately 150 years after Jonah’s message to Nineveh. 

The repentance of the Assyrian capital of Nineveh after Jonah’s preaching may not have lasted long, but Jonah’s own country of Israel, never repented at all. As a result of Israel’s refusal to repent, 30 years after the repentance of Nineveh, God used the Assyians to conquer Israel in judgment.

After pouring over Israel like a boiling pot, leaving only scattered remnants, the Assyrians remained a terrifying force which darkened the horizons of Judah. Judah had lived under their threats and attacks for many decades.

But Nahum’s message is to Judah and unlike many of the smaller books of prophecy in the Old Testament, Nahum has mostly good news. His message is one of hope and relief from suffering. The Assyrians were a terrifying force which darkened the horizons, threatening Judah. 

Nahum writes to call Judah to rejoice that their great oppressor will soon be overthrown and punished for the excessive violence of the campaign against Israel.

We too, face a dark oppressive world dominated by sin and under the sway of evil spiritual powers. Like Paul, we fight and contend with sin within ourselves and with dark powers of the spiritual realm. With Paul we say, “Who will deliver us from this body of death?” (Romans 7.20-26) And, also, “Our battle is not against flesh and blood but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (Ephesians 6.12-13)

There is hope for us on the horizon. Light will break the darkness. 

In Advent we anticipate and celebrate Christ’s triumph over the spiritual darkness in the world around us. We also celebrate the triumph of Christ over the spiritual darkness of sins within us that still seek to master us.

Let us pray with the words of Nahum:
The Lord is good.
In trouble he is our refuge.
He will come to overwhelm our oppressors and our accuser, Satan.
He will invade with light the darkness of the world and of our hearts.
Help us to run on the mountains, proclaiming your good news.
May we carry with us the peace he offers freely.

Divine Hours Prayer: The Request for Presence
For God alone my soul in silence waits; truly, my hope is in him. — Psalm 62.6

– Divine Hours prayers from The Divine Hours: Prayers for Autumn and Wintertime by Phyllis Tickle
Today’s Readings
Nahum 1 (Listen – 2:24)
Luke 17 (Listen – 4:22)

Read more about Expectation Affects Anticipation :: Hope of Advent
The gifts we anticipate have already been purchased at great cost, and contain more than we can ever hope for.

Read more about End of Year Giving and Supporting our work
We produce over 100,000 words a year to:
Support Christian disciples in practicing spiritual disciplines