Who was the author? The prophet Nahum apparently was who the Holy Spirit inspired to write the book that bears his name.
What is the book? The book of Nahum includes prophecies addressed to the city of Nineveh but meant for listeners in Judah.
Where was it written? In all likelihood the book was written in Judah.
When was it written? At least one of Nahum's prophecies had to be given after 663 B.C., and another had to be before 612 B.C., so those dates help us place Nahum's work.
Why? Although the Nineveh-based Assyrians destroyed the northern kingdom of Israel and would inflict heavy losses on the southern kingdom, Nahum prophesies how they themselves would be destroyed, which prophecy of Jerusalem's deliverance brings comfort to Jerusalem and what remains of Judah.
How? The book of Nahum is one of the most literary stylistic of the Old Testament books. The prophecy of judgment is appropriately given by well-suited descriptions and words, with intense moods, sights, and sounds. Poetic language makes use of various figures of speech, word pictures, repetition and many short phrases. And, rhetorical questions help stress God's indignation toward injustice.
For further reading on the book of Nahum:
- Keil, C.F. and F. Delitzsch. Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament, Volume X: Minor Prophets , translated by James Martin and published as two volumes in one. Grand Rapids, Michigan: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, reprinted March 1986. (There are some 48 pages on Nahum.)
- Kretzmann, Paul E. Popular Commentary of the Bible: The Old Testament, Volume II, The Poetical and the Prophetical Books. St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1924. (This volume, one that is in our Grace library, has 4 pages on Nahum.)