Nahum 3:8-13 – False Sense of Security

man working in the dark on a computer with the word Security above him

Read Nahum 3:8-13

The city of Thebes was the center of the Egyptian Empire for nearly 1400 years! They fell at the hands of the Assyrians in 663 B.C. Yet Nahum boldly asks Nineveh, “Are you any better than the city of Thebes, situated on the Nile River, surrounded by water?” Of course, arrogant Nineveh would answer, “Yes! We defeated them, didn’t we?” Yet Nahum taunts them just the same using yet another metaphor.

Nahum’s provocation is not meant to compare the relative strengths of the two empires, but to announce that human might is nothing compared to God’s power. This oracle is directed at Nineveh’s false sense of security. They apparently thought they were immune to the wrath of God. We probably know plenty of people even today that have that same false sense of security.

Are you walking through life relying on your own power? Do you think you can save yourself from destruction? We tend to learn from our own blunders or those of others. Nineveh relied on her moats and the strength of her walls. Nineveh was a mighty empire and recalls many victories. Their history of success together with the natural barriers Nineveh had erected, would not be enough to protect them from the coming wrath of God.

Nahum’s oracle debunks their false sense of security. “Your troops will be as weak and helpless as women. The gates of your land will be opened wide to the enemy and set on fire and burned.” I read how archaeological evidence found in the ruins of Nineveh suggests fire was present. I love when Biblical truths are uncovered like that!

There is no escaping God’s wrath when you’re disobedient and become God’s enemy. How do we become an enemy of God? James 4:4 reads, “Don’t you realize that friendship with the world makes you an enemy of God?” We don’t want to be in denial like the people of Nineveh. We may say, “I’m safe because I believe in God.” Remember, even the demons believe in God. The words of James 2:19 tell us, “You say you have faith, for you believe that there is one God. Good for you! Even the demons believe this, and they tremble in terror.”

Is there any hope then? We can’t hide from the cup of God’s wrath if we’re enemies of God unless God himself changes the contents of the cup to the new wine of the gospel. I think of how Jesus changed water into wine in John 2.

Psalm 14:2-3 takes on a new significance in light of Nahum’s oracle and our own sinfulness. “The Lord looks down from heaven on the entire human race; he looks to see if anyone is truly wise, if anyone seeks God. But no, all have turned away; all have become corrupt. No one does good, not a single one!” Paul even quotes this in Romans 3 in his discussion about God’s faithfulness.

Our true sense of security is just that. God’s faithfulness. Without it and a relationship with God, we can be sure to be lost to the world. I certainly don’t want to wake up one day and realize I am an enemy of God because I let the lies of this world infiltrate my whole being.

Don’t be like Nineveh. Don’t rely on your own power when God’s power is so mighty!

colorful animation of prayer hands and hearts and flowers

Let’s pray … Lord, I feel convicted once again to take an inventory of my attitude and outlook on life. There are so many messages in the world that trouble me. Thank you for giving me a discerning spirit. I do need help in relying on your power rather than forging through life thinking I have it figured out. Forgive me if I don’t come to you first. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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