Nahum is three chapters and forty-eight verses long, making it one of the shortest books of the Old Testament. The prophet Nahum was from Judah, but the heart of his ministry was directed against the people of Nineveh—holding the polar opposite attitude towards Nineveh compared to Jonah. Nineveh is judged by God for its oppression and idolatry, which gives Judah and everyone who hears of it cause for celebration.

Nahum refers to the fall of Thebes, which happened in 663 BC, and he prophesies the fall of Nineveh, which occurred in 612 BC. Nahum’s ministry took place near the fall of Nineveh, though the book itself was certainly compiled later.

Nahum 1:15 is cited by Paul in Romans 10:15: “Look, there on the mountains, the feet of one who brings good news, who proclaims peace.” Paul applies this to the preaching of the gospel, but in Nahum it refers to the “good news” of Nineveh’s impending destruction.

-Peter Enns