Nahum 3:1-4 – Whoredom and Witchcraft

Nahum chapter 3 highlights the justice of God against Nineveh (Assyrians). The verdict on Nineveh is that it was a bloody city, full of lies and robbery, always victimizing (preying on) other nations and afflicting the people of God (Nahum 3:1). It was known for its whoredom and its witchcraft (Nahum 3:4); whoredom of enticing nations to put their trust in her, instead of on the true God (2 Kings 18:28-36) and witchcraft by incanting messages that lured the nations to a false hope of security (2 Kings 18:31), but in the end leading to their death (2 Kings 19:11, Nahum 3:4). So God assured his people that he was raising the Medo-Babylonian armies who will come charging on their battle horses with whips, bright swords and glittering spears, who will destroy the Assyrians, so much so that there will be no end of their corpses (Nahum 3:2-3).

Points to ponder:
The world today is a sinful, a generation engaging in whoredom (adultery/harlotry) (Mark 8:38). It attempts to draw us away from Christ Jesus (1 John 2:15-17) by its incantations of false hope and woe is anyone who gets enticed by such witchcraft. Let us be in the world but not of the world (John 17:14-15; John 15:19; Romans 12:2) and let us not be enticed and lured into putting our trust in anyone or anything else, except in Jesus Christ. Let us love not the world but Love God with all of ours.

Nahum 3:1-7 (KJV)
1 Woe to the bloody city! it is all full of lies and robbery; the prey departeth not;
2 The noise of a whip, and the noise of the rattling of the wheels, and of the pransing horses, and of the jumping chariots.
3 The horseman lifteth up both the bright sword and the glittering spear: and there is a multitude of slain, and a great number of carcases; and there is none end of their corpses; they stumble upon their corpses:
4 Because of the multitude of the whoredoms of the wellfavoured harlot, the mistress of witchcrafts, that selleth nations through her whoredoms, and families through her witchcrafts.

1 John 2:15-17 (KJV)
15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
17 And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.

Nahum 3:1 – Woe to the bloody city!

While the first chapter of Nahum showcases God as a jealous God and the second chapter showcases God as a judging God, the third chapter of Nahum establishes the fact, that God is not only jealous and judging, but that he is a Just God and his justice shall always prevail.

Nahum chapter 3 highlights the justice of God on the enemies of his people (Judah), particularly Nineveh (Assyrians) in this case. The verdict on Nineveh is that it was a bloody city, full of lies and robbery, always victimizing (preying on) other nations and afflicting the people of God (Nahum 3:1; Nahum 3:19). It begins with the words, “Woe to the bloody city!”, the city here referring to Nineveh, the capital city of Assyria. Nineveh was known for its bloodshed. The Assyrians did not spare any nation that they conquered (2 Kings 19:11) and the extent of their vile cruel wickedness stretched to all the nations they invaded (Nahum 3:19). Rightfully so, the Assyrian kings and princesses were referred to as lions (Nahum 2:11-12), for lions do not spare the cubs of the pride that they take over. The Assyrians were guilty of bloodshed and murder, directly contradicting the “Thou shalt not kill” commandment of God (Exodus 20:13; Deuteronomy 5:17; Matthew 5:21; Romans 13:9).

Points to ponder:
The Bible states that in the blood is life (Genesis 9:4) and woe to anyone who sheds blood. By shedding blood, the Assyrians were snatching the life that was in the people, who are fashioned in God’s image.  According to God’s word, this warranted equitable justice – blood for blood, for it is written “Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.” (Genesis 9:6). The blood of the Assyrians will soon be spilled by the Medo-Babylonian army of men, that God was raising to conquer Nineveh.

God is a just God, but he is also a loving God. In God’s just nature, he avenges with a “blood for blood” motif, but in his loving nature, he is willing to forgive even the vilest of murderers (like Barabbas (Mark 15:7), king David (2 Samuel 11:14-17), the Apostle Paul when he was Saul (Acts 9:1)). Jesus demonstrated the love of God, by crying out, “Father, forgive them (those who shed his blood by crucifying him to the Cross) for they did not know, how the Justice and Love of God should meet on the Cross, for the remission of sins and redemption of mankind.” Yes, it is  woe to all who shed blood, according to the law, but the law is purged by blood (Hebrews 9:22) for if we repent, God is faithful and just to forgive us of all our sins (1 John 1:9).

Nahum 3:1-7 (KJV)
Woe to the bloody city! it is all full of lies and robbery; the prey departeth not;

Hebrews 9:22 (KJV)
22 And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission. 

Nahum 2:13 – No more blasphemy

The latter part of Nahum 2 :13 reads, “and the voice of thy messengers shall no more be heard.” The messengers here refer to the messengers (Tartan, Rabsaris and Rabshakeh) that the vile king of Assyria, Sennacherib, sent to mock the people of God and reproach God’s name (2 Kings 18:17; 2 Kings 19:4) blaspheming God (2 Kings 19:6; 2 Kings 19:22). God assures through his prophet Nahum, that such blasphemy shall no longer be heard for the messengers who bring such blasphemy shall be no more.

Points to ponder:
Jesus said that the only unpardonable sin is the sin of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit of God (Mark 3:28; Mark 3:29; Luke 12:10). The Holy Spirit’s function is to convict the world of its sin (of unbelief in Jesus), convince the world of the righteousness (found in no One else but Jesus Christ) and command the world to surrender (to Jesus the Judge of the world) lest it be judged with eternal damnation (John 16:8-12). The Holy Spirit will guide all into The Truth and glorify Jesus, the personification of truth (John 16:13-14; John 14:6). So the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit of God is a wilfull rejection of The Truth – a rejection of Jesus Christ, which guarantees eternal damnation, for there is no other way to Salvation except by believing in Jesus Christ. In other words, a wilfull rejection of the conviction of the Holy Spirit, that Jesus is Lord, has no forgiveness, for there is no other name under heaven or earth, by which one can be saved (Acts 4:12; Hebrews 10: 26-27). Now people may think that they are getting away with blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, but there will come a time when there shall be no more blasphemy, for every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord (Philippians 2:11).

If you have not believed in the Lord Jesus yet, after knowing of his Salvation, why not do it now? Why wait? Why continue to blaspheme against the Holy Spirit of God? A day will come when there shall be no more blasphemy!

Nahum 2:13 (KJV)
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.

Philippians 2:10-11 (KJV)
10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;
11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Nahum 2:11-13 – Where is the lion?

Prophet Nahum brings the questions of the Lord in Nahum 2:11. God questions “Where is the dwelling of the lions?”, “Where is the devouring (feeding) place of the young lions?”, “Where is the lion, the old lion and the lion’s whelp (young)?” Nahum 2:12 states that lions  tore their prey for their young and choked the life out of (strangled) their prey for their lionesses, filling their holes and dens with prey. The lions here refer to the Assyrian kings (rulers) (Jeremiah 50:17) and their whelps refers to the princes, who oppressed and afflicted many nations (prey) before their queens (lionesses) and their young ones (whelps), filling their own homes (holes) and palaces (dens) with their conquests. The identity of the lion (the old lion) is not explicitly stated, but some scholars think that it is a reference to the Babylonian king, Nebuchadnezzar who is likened to a lion (Jeremiah 50:17), but a more plausible reference, as some other scholars feel, is that the reference to the lion (old lion) is to Nimrod (which means – the rebel), the great hunter of ancient (old) times, who built the city of Nineveh (Genesis 10:8-12). When the Assyrian rulers (Tiglathpileser (2Kings 15:29), Shalmaneser (2 Kings 18:9), Sargon (Isaiah 20:1), Sennacherib (2 Kings 18:13) , Esarhaddon (Ezra 4:2)) were in power, as the king of their pride, there was no one to make them afraid (Nahum 2:11). But it was decreed (Huzzab) that Nineveh will be like a pool that is being drained and the dwelling and feeding place of these lions (rulers) and their young (princes) will being laid waste, bare and desolate (Nahum 2:7-8; Nahum 2:11), for the Lord God was against them (Nahum 2:13). The devouring lions shall be devoured themselves by the sword of the Spirit of the Lord (Nahum 2:13), which is His Word, his Decree (Ephesians 6:17).

Points to ponder:
The devil is the ancient (old) Assyrian who rebelled against the Lord (Isaiah 14:25; Revelation 12:9). As God’s adversary and rebel, the devil is like a roaring lion, roaming about, seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8). The devil was vanquished and defeated by Jesus Christ (1 John 3:8), the Lion of the tribe of Judah (Revelation 5:5), on the Cross, once and for all. The devil’s dwelling and devouring place, which is this world (2 Corinthians 4:4), wherein he has dominion presently, shall one day be replaced by the new heaven and new earth (Revelation 21:1), in which only the Lion of the tribe of Judah shall reign forever. God shall then ask – Where is the lion?

What are the lions in your life that intimidate and afflict you? Trust in the Lion of the Tribe of Judah and believe in him to become adopted into his pride, for He can vanquish and completely destroy all the lions in your life. Do you belong to the pride of the One True Lion – Jesus Christ?

Nahum 2:11-13 (KJV)
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.

Nahum 2:6-10 – It is decreed (Huzzab)

The gates of the rivers shall be opened and the palace shall be dissolved (Nahum 2:6) referred prophetically to how the city of Nineveh will be overrun by a flood. This prophecy came true as the Medo-Babylonian army invaders against Nineveh dammed the river Khoser and the opened its gates to flood the city of Nineveh. This was decreed (Huzzab) of the Lord and so it happened, just as the Lord had promised comfort for his people (Judah) through his prophet Nahum (Nahum 2:7). The Medo-Babylonian invaders were merely acting out God’s decree. The people of Nineveh were made captive and led out of their bloody city, cooing like doves, beating upon their breasts like one would strike a tambourine (Nahum 2:7). The leading of the Nineveh captives out of their own land is likened to the fleeing of water from a pool and while they wished for the exodus to stop by crying, “Stand, stand”, none could look back to stay in the city for no one could come to their rescue and refuge  (Nahum 2:8) . The captives would be brought up (Jeremiah 21:2) to the land of their invaders (Babylon) as it was decreed of the Lord. Not only will the people and their worthies (princes – Nahum 2:5) be taken captive as prisoners, but all of their wealth (silver, gold, and glorious furnishings such as pleasant furniture) shall be plundered (Nahum 2:9) and the land shall be made empty, laid void and as waste. The hearts of the inhabitants would melt in fear, their knees shall smite against each other in trepidation. In their loins, which is symbolic of the place of strength (Job 40:7; 2 Samuel 20:8), shall they ache and their faces will grow pale (gather blackness) with fear (Nahum 2:10). Why, because, it is decreed by the Lord.

Points to ponder:
The enemies of God and his people can be assured of being overrun by the Lord as a flood overruns a city and they shall be brought up to justice. No one can come to their rescue and refuge.  All their trust in the worthies and wealth shall be laid bare and their hearts shall melt in fear, their knees shall strike each other, their loins shall ache and their faces shall grow pale. Why? Because it is decreed, It is Huzzab. The question that remains then to be answered is, “Are you and I enemies of God?” To answer this question, we must answer, “Are we friends of this world?” for the Bible states that friendship of this world is enmity with God (James 4:4).

Nahum 2:6-10 (KJV)
6 The gates of the rivers shall be opened, and the palace shall be dissolved.
7 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.
8 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.
9 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.

Black Belt Christianity

Reuben and Mano with Grandmaster Sin Kwang TheOur beloved 7 year old son, Reuben, and I were honored to receive the Shaolin Do Kung Fu Black Belt, after testing in front of the Grandmaster Sin Kwang Thé at the North Austin Shaolin Do Kung Fu school on August 22, 2013. This makes Reuben to be the youngest person (till date) to receive the Black Belt in not just Austin, but in all of the United States of America and my beloved wife, Sangeetha, his brother Ittai and I could not be any less proud.

Reuben started training since he was three and a half years old and it has been nearly four years since we began this journey together. Once in his school, when Reuben was asked, What is your dream? Reuben wrote, “I have a dream. My dream is to be a red belt in Kung Fu (like the Grandmaster). I can help my dream come true by: praying and hard work.” To become a red belt would take atleast a little over forty years; pretty much his lifetime. Reuben - Red Belt Dream

At the end of the Black Belt test, the Grandmaster encouraged the newly granted Black Belts by saying that “Don’t think of the Black Belt as an end point but consider it to be only the beginning of a journey.” and he is absolutely right. While we are so honored at this blessing and honor that God has made possible for Reuben and I, we realize that it is only the beginning.

This not only applies to us in our physical art form, but also in our spiritual art form. Becoming a Christian is only the beginning; continuing to being a Christian takes a lifetime; actually until we see Jesus face to face (1 Corinthians 13:12) and are like him (1 John 3:2). We must grow daily in the grace and knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (2 Peter 3:18), after the knowledge of Salvation (Hebrews 10:26), always prepared with weapons of warfare (Ephesians 6:10-18), so that at the end of life’s journey, we could be given the highest accolade, one could receive, which is”Well done my good and faithful servant – You have fought a good fight and kept the faith (like a Black Belt would). (Matthew 25:21; 2 Timothy 4:7)”. This would be given by Jesus, who wore a Red Belt of his own blood, as a crown of thorns was placed to pierce him on his head (John 19:2).

Points to ponder:
How are you in your journey to be a Black Belt Christian?

2 Peter 3:12-18 (KJV)
12 Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?
13 Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.
14 Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.
15 And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you;
16 As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.
17 Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness.
18 But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.

1 John 3:2 (KJV)
1 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.
2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.

Nahum 2:5 – Counting on your worthies or the Worthy One

Nahum 2:5 reads “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.

This verse specifically speaks of how the king of Assyria (Sennacherib) would call for (recount) his noble and gallant men (worthies) and send them to walls of Nineveh to defend the city against the invading armies of the Medo-Babylonians that the Lord was sending to punish the Assyrians. The vile king of Assyria, who blasphemed against the Lord (Nahum 1:11; 2 Kings 19:22), shall trust in the military strength of his nobles, only to find out that they would stumble in their walk, implying that their knees will not be able to hold them straight up, against the Lord’s chosen army (in this case the Medo-Babylonian army). The nobles (worthies) shall dwell in the dust i.e., lie dead and to dust they shall return and the people scattered in the mountains (Nahum 3:18).

Points to ponder:
In the presence of the Lord of lords and the King of kings (Revelation 19:16), even the knees of kings shake as was the case of king Belshazzar (Daniel 5:6). Who can stand against the Lord God Almighty? No one, absolutely no one. (Nahum 1:6; Isaiah 14:27; Isaiah 59:19; Hebrews 13:6) Those who trust in their own strength, counting on what they think is worthy shall realize that counting is futile. King David counted his fighting men, instead of relying on the Lord God and this displeased the Lord (2 Samuel 24). Let us not be like King David who foolishly counted his fighting men (2 Samuel 24:10), or like the blasphemous and vile king of Assyria who futilely counted his fighting men (Nahum 2:5), but let us rely on the Lord God for successes and victories in the wars of life. Jesus is the only Worthy One whom we can count on (Revelation 5:12). It is not a matter of whom you are counting, but Who do you count on?

Nahum 2:5 (KJV)
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.

Revelation 5:12-13 (KJV)
12 Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.
13 And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.