Nahum Chapter 1: Burden of Nineveh (Christendom, Papacy, Gog and Magog)

Nov 6th, 2009 | By | Category: Nahum, Psalm 83 and Gog & Magog, Verse by Verse --Studies led by Br. Frank Shallieu (Click on Book name)

Nahum Chapter 1: Burden of Nineveh (Christendom, Papacy, Gog and Magog)

(1980 and 1992)

Nahum 1:1 The burden of Nineveh. The book of the vision of Nahum the Elkoshite.

The name Nahum means “comfort” or “consolation.” With a change of vowels, the same consonants signify “vengeance,” which is a rather strange combination, but “consolation” is given the greater priority because of its importance.

Two conflicting birth sites are associated with Nahum: Israel and Assyria. Evidence that Israel was his birth site is the town of Capernaum. Caper means “town” or “village,” and naum is an abbreviation for Nahum. The prophet was an Elkoshite, and according to Young’s Analytical Concordance, Elkosh was in the Galilee area. Present ruins there traditionally bore the name of the little village of Elkosh. In addition, a site on the Tigris River near Nineveh in Assyria is reputed to be identified with Nahum. We conjecture that Nahum was born in Israel and died in Assyria, for there is some evidence along that line.

The term “the burden of Nineveh” indicates that the Book of Nahum focuses on Nineveh, the capital of Assyria. Nineveh is a symbol of Christendom. The burden of Obadiah’s message was  against Edom, which, in the spiritual sense, also represents Christendom. Incidentally, Obadiah prophesied before the destruction of Jerusalem in 606 BC, and some of the things he described very shortly thereafter indicate he must have been an eyewitness of the destruction. As a Jew, he was taken captive to Babylon. Although there is no information about him, he would have been spared so that he could record the events for posterity.

Nahum 1:2 God is jealous, and the LORD revengeth; the LORD revengeth, and is furious; the LORD will take vengeance on his adversaries, and he reserveth wrath for his enemies.

In just this one verse, Nahum stated that God is jealous, He revenges (said twice), He is furious, He will take vengeance on His adversaries, and He reserves wrath for His enemies. Thus this verse gives the vengeful aspect of Jehovah. Since the burden of Nahum’s prophecy is directed against Nineveh, verse 2 is associated with verse 1.

It is interesting that both Babylon and Nineveh had two rises and two falls. The Book of Nahum is addressed nominally to the same Nineveh that Jonah visited earlier. A heathen power, Nineveh was an enemy of the Jew. Although the city was spared in Jonah’s day, it eventually received judgment and was destroyed, so that only the ruins remain today. At the time of Jonah, the king of Nineveh was very influential in bringing the inhabitants to repentance, but when he passed off the scene, the people returned to their wicked ways.

Therefore, judgment came on the city in Nahum’s day.

Why was God seeking vengeance against Nineveh—and also against the nominal Church systems, or Christendom, in the antitype? Judgment was merited because of wickedness and the accumulation of guilt in abusing and persecuting the Lord’s true followers. Also, Nineveh was the capital of Assyria, and several Assyrian kings were responsible for taking the ten tribes into captivity. Like a wolf, Assyria stole sheep (the ten tribes) from the flock, and the Lord keeps in memory acts that are committed against His own. While retribution may not be instant, and while it may seem that no punishment is forthcoming, the guilt is stored up.

Comment: Both literal and spiritual Nineveh sinned against light, for Jonah had preached a judgment message, telling the people to repent. God is patient, but He will not abide wickedness forever, especially when it is against light.

The time setting of the Book of Nahum seems to suggest that Nahum was a contemporary of Isaiah, who had a long ministry. Several parts of Nahum are similar to Isaiah’s writings. For example, the last verse of chapter 1 is similar to Isaiah 52:7, “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!”

Nahum 1:3 The LORD is slow to anger, and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked: the LORD hath his way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet.

God is “slow to anger” but “great in power.” Normally, if a mosquito or a fly bothers us, we immediately squash it, but God waits despite His tremendous POWER. This irritant, Assyria, committed a sin in taking God’s people captive, even though the ten tribes were worthy of the punishment. God allowed the experience to take place because suffering the burden of captivity had some instructional value for the Israelites. However, Jehovah by no means acquits the enemy, the wicked, for there has to be retribution for sinning against light. Such sins do not receive carte blanche forgiveness. For example, even though the Apostle Paul was a great saint, he himself had to be stoned as retribution for being party to the stoning of Stephen, a sin against light. For the consecrated to receive a spiritual reward, their retribution must take place on this side of the veil. Of course Adamic sin is another matter—that can be freely forgiven by the Lord. Both communal and individual sins against light must be requited.

God has a long time held His peace, and He will continue to do so until the selection of the Little Flock is complete and until iniquity has come to the full (Isa. 42:14; James 5:7; Gen. 15:16).

Here Nahum was explaining why God did not visit judgment earlier. Jehovah deliberately exercises patience until the right time.

Q: Does the fact that God refrained from destroying Nineveh in Jonah’s day, and then later brought judgment, have a parallel with mystic Babylon?

A: Yes. In Jeremiah 51:9, God said, “We would have healed Babylon, but she is not healed.”

Because she is not healed, God will finally execute His vengeance upon her.

The attitude of mankind is, “Why doesn’t God do something?” The fact that iniquity abounds seems to be an evidence of His impotence. However, God certainly has the power, and that power will be exercised when it behooves Him to do so. In the meantime, He is slow to anger and has much patience—until the time is right for judgment.

“The LORD hath his way in the whirlwind and in the storm.” Demonstrations in nature show how powerful Jehovah is, and He manifested this power in different ways in the Old Testament, the Flood of Noah’s day being an example. In the antitype, the “whirlwind” refers to the Lord’s “great army,” which will be His instrument of vengeance, or justice, upon Christendom (Joel 2:11).

“And the clouds are the dust of his [God’s] feet.” In other words, as awesomely powerful as God is, He can tread lightly on clouds as a carpet. He can walk on them as He sees fit. His omnipotent power can be exercised in many different directions.

Even the natural man can see the power of God in the creation and the appointing of the heavens. In referring to earth’s atmosphere, God said that the clouds are like the dust of His feet; that is, they are as nothing. The clouds are insignificant when one considers that God created the entire universe. In fact, Holy Writ tells us that the nations, or the earth itself, are as the small dust of a balance scale (Isa. 40:15). If the earth is so insignificant, the clouds are even more insignificant.

Nahum 1:4 He rebuketh the sea, and maketh it dry, and drieth up all the rivers: Bashan languisheth, and Carmel, and the flower of Lebanon languisheth.

God rebuked the Red Sea to part it by storm and tempest for the Exodus of the Israelites. He dried up the river Jordan for Elijah and Elisha to cross dry-shod so that their feet did not even get damp (2 Kings 2:8). Moreover, when Joshua and the Israelites entered the Promised Land, God dried up the Jordan River by cutting off the water supply upstream (Josh. 3:16,17).

“Bashan languisheth, and Carmel, and the flower of Lebanon languisheth.” Bashan, Carmel, and Lebanon—all symbols of Christendom—had fruitful, lush vegetation. These fertile areas were known for rich and productive alluvial soil and for cattle and the planting of crops, yet God could cause the fertility to dry up and famine to prevail. He could produce a drought to make them wither away. In antitype, the notable or high places of Christendom will be brought low.

As a territory related to Bethel, Bashan was the headquarters of the rival worship Jeroboam instituted in the ten-tribe kingdom. He set up a new center of religious worship that involved two golden calves, picturing Catholicism and Protestantism, which, like the golden calves, will be brought to naught in the final analysis. Just as the Israelites erected a golden calf in the Wilderness of Sinai, wanting to go back to the kind of worship in Egypt, so Jeroboam set up two golden calves. In fact, Jeroboam resided in Egypt for a while and returned to Israel to lead a rebellion when Solomon died. That rebellion eventuated in the ten-tribe kingdom and a new and false worship in contradistinction to the true worship at Jerusalem, the capital of the two tribe kingdom.

Comment: Bashan was renowned for its oak trees and Lebanon for its cedars. Since trees are a symbol of people, the implication in the antitype is that the pillars of Christendom, the leaders, will be removed in the Time of Trouble.

Comment: Mount Carmel is where the contest took place between Elijah and the 450 prophets of Baal, with the latter being destroyed (1 Kings 18:17-40).

Q: How will God rebuke the “sea” in the antitype?

A: God will rebuke the anarchistic masses. Just as He manifested His authority and judgment along natural lines on various occasions in Old Testament times, so He will manifest judgments along a spiritual or figurative line with His professed people of the Gospel Age.

Q: How will the rivers be dried up in the antitype?

A: To capture Babylon, Cyrus diverted the waters of the Euphrates River, cutting off the water supply. The antitype has a similar significance in that the people who support mystic Babylon will one day become thoroughly disenchanted and cease to give moral, financial, and physical support to the system. The result of the drying up of the sources of revenue for mystic Babylon will be the destruction of the system (Rev. 16:12). Just as the literal city of Babylon became commercially rich and powerful because of its unique position astride the Euphrates River, so the support of the people has made the nominal Church rich and powerful.

Verse 2 tells that God’s vengeance will come, and verses 3-6 show that it will come in His way and in His time, for Jehovah has full control. But verses 3-6 have an even stronger natural application, for God has great power and great ability, and what He has already done at the Red Sea, the Jordan River, etc., manifests this power.

The fact that Nahum’s prophecy was directed to Nineveh shows that it was intended not for natural Israel but for false (or nominal) spiritual Israel (verse 1). The lesson was emphasized that God is slow to anger, but when He does become angry, He will manifest great strength and power—just as He did in a few isolated cases in the past.

When natural Israel saw the judgment come on Nineveh, laying it utterly waste, their faith in the Lord’s Word was increased, but the literal judgment was only the letter of the Word. We are especially interested in the spiritual application yet future.

Nahum 1:5 The mountains quake at him, and the hills melt, and the earth is burned at his presence, yea, the world, and all that dwell therein.

Not only do literal “mountains quake” at God’s presence but also governments and kingdoms in antitype. For example, Mount Sinai quaked at the establishment of the Law Covenant (Exod. 19:18). Thus there is a dual application between natural mountains and professed Christendom.

The “hills” melted in connection with Sodom and Gomorrah in the type. Nineveh, Babylon, Sodom, and Gomorrah all represent Christendom. In antitype, civil and religious institutions will be figuratively melted down to bring the world to their knees so that they look to God for help. Religious bastions of power, wealth, and influence will be humiliated and destroyed.

“The earth is burned at his presence, yea, the world, and all that dwell therein.” Isaiah 40:4 similarly applies to that juncture of time, when God will establish His Kingdom through Jesus. “Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain.” Present society will be leveled, and a new structure, or order, set up.

Comment: The wording is similar in Psalm 97:5, “The hills melted like wax at the presence of the LORD, at the presence of the Lord of the whole earth.”

For those who think the earth will be literally burned up, the almost standard citation to moderate this prophecy in Nahum is Zephaniah 3:8,9, which shows there will be survivors.

“Therefore wait ye upon me, saith the LORD, until the day that I rise up to the prey: for my determination is to gather the nations, that I may assemble the kingdoms, to pour upon them mine indignation, even all my fierce anger: for all the earth shall be devoured with the fire of my jealousy. For then will I turn to the people a pure language, that they may all call upon the name of the LORD, to serve him with one consent.”

Natural Israel, which was puny by comparison with Assyria, was fearful of Nineveh as a power, so Nahum’s prophecy was encouraging. The Book of Jonah brings out the mercy of God, and the lesson to the Jew was not to be high-minded or too hasty in judgment. However, Nahum’s prophecy is different, for it predicted the destruction of not only Nineveh but also Christendom. God is a jealous God, and He was jealous for Israel (Exod. 20:5; 34:14; Deut. 4:24).

Therefore, Israel’s enemies have to be punished sooner or later.

Nahum 1:6 Who can stand before his indignation? and who can abide in the fierceness of his anger? his fury is poured out like fire, and the rocks are thrown down by him.

Any living today who dishonor, discredit, or oppose God, who has held this potential power in patience and in abeyance, will have to reckon with His anger in the great Time of Trouble in the near future. If the people had any sanity, they would certainly try to make straight paths for their feet to avoid unnecessary retribution.

This wording of the manifestation of God’s power reminds us of how He spoke to Job, starting in chapter 38. There God began to catalog the things He has done, thus embarrassing Job to such an extent that he became speechless and was ready to listen to instruction. Subsequently God blessed Job greatly.

Incidentally, the symbolism used in chapters 1 and 10 of Ezekiel, where God gives a symbolic description of Himself, should excite attention and interest on the part of the Christian.

Likewise, the statement at the beginning of the Book of Revelation should be of interest: “The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him” (Rev. 1:1). For one to be so dull of perception as to not give some serious consideration to this subject would make us question the depth of the individual’s consecration. As Christians, we can certainly study subjects we do not understand, and their very thrust and importance should excite us to ponder the meaning every now and then throughout our life.

Nahum 1:7 The LORD is good, a strong hold in the day of trouble; and he knoweth them that trust in him.

Verse 7, an abrupt change, is a consolation text for the faithful. Verses 1-6 were directed to Nineveh. Verse 7 is directed to Israel—and secondarily to the Christian, to whom God is “a strong hold in the day of trouble.” God “is good, [and] a strong hold” to those who trust in Him. In spite of the power and vengeance that He has held in abeyance for the enemy, this verse strengthens those whose hope and trust are in Him and in His mercy. God knows those who “trust in him.” In Jacob’s Trouble, He will be a real stronghold to all right-hearted Jews.

The Holy Remnant will be brought through the trouble, and in a general sense, even the Gentiles can find comfort if they “seek righteousness, seek meekness: [for] it may be ye shall be hid in the day of the LORD’S anger” (Zeph. 2:3).

Comment: Verse 7 is the answer to the questions in verse 6.

Reply: Yes. When we read about all these judgments that are coming “in the day of trouble,”  we begin to ask, “Lord, am I faithful?”

Comment: All will be deceived except the very elect (Matt. 24:24). Thus even the Great Company will be deceived—at least temporarily.

Reply: In addition to testings that come on Christians during their walk, there will be dispensational trouble on (1) the true Church, (2) the nominal Church, (3) the Great Company, (4) Israel, and (5) the world. In these different periods of time, God will be aware of those who call upon Him in sincerity and truth with the desire to please and obey Him.

Nahum 1:8 But with an overrunning flood he will make an utter end of the place thereof, and darkness shall pursue his enemies.

Verse 8 is an allusion to the Flood in Noah’s day. Assyria’s coming down against the ten tribes was a “flood” of the enemy coming in on the land. The Israelites were overwhelmed and taken into captivity. However, just as the Assyrians overwhelmed Israel in numbers, so they, in turn, would eventually be overrun with a “flood” in retribution. God would “make an utter end of the place [His enemies].”

Two Isaiah texts are related. “And he shall pass through Judah; he shall overflow and go over, he shall reach even to the neck; and the stretching out of his wings shall fill the breadth of thy land, O Immanuel” (Isa. 8:8). “For the Lord GOD of hosts shall make a consumption, even determined, in the midst of all the land” (Isa. 10:23).

Q: Do these two Isaiah Scriptures pertain to Jacob’s Trouble in the antitype, whereas verse 8 applies to Christendom?

A: Yes, for there will be a purging with regard to Jacob’s Trouble. The Holy Remnant, the element that trusts in God, will be delivered, but most Jews will lose their lives in the trouble.

Judgment is like a two-edged sword that cuts both the enemy and God’s people.

“And darkness shall pursue his enemies.” This highly figurative and poetic language shows the enemies running and a dark cloud pursuing them. “Darkness” will overtake the enemies in the sense that they will go into darkness, that is, into the tomb. Death, cessation, is the thought. In the type, Assyria would be defeated and go into destruction. In antitype, Christendom (Papacy and Protestantism) goes into utter destruction, the lake of fire, never to rise again (Rev. 19:20).

Nahum 1:9 What do ye imagine against the LORD? he will make an utter end: affliction shall not rise up the second time.

“Affliction shall not rise up the second time.” Verse 9 is centered on the opposing unrighteous system, as pictured by Nineveh. What Nineveh inflicted upon Israel would be terminated once and for all. Similarly, the beast will go into everlasting oblivion. When Jehovah makes an utter end of that false system, it will never again be resurrected. Stated another way, iniquity will not rise the second time. The “flood” (verse 8) will bring that order to a complete end.

“What do ye imagine against the LORD?” The religious leaders of Christendom will imagine that they can take counsel against Jehovah and His anointed (Psa. 2:1,2). However, the destruction will be so complete that God will have to afflict Christendom only once.

Q: Wasn’t Assyria especially noted for extreme cruelty and violence? Jonah 3:8 indicates that part of Nineveh’s repentance would be for the people to turn away from their “evil way, and from the violence that is in their hands.”

A: Yes, and in the antitype, unbelievable horrors and physical tortures were committed during the Inquisition.

Our study of prophecy usually begins with the Babylonian Empire, but the Assyrian Empire existed before Babylon. The Assyrian power, with Nineveh as its capital, was overcome and replaced by the Babylonian power. Babylon was established on the ashes of that defeat, and in depicting world powers, the Lord started with that kingdom in later history.

Nahum, a contemporary of King Hezekiah, was familiar with King Sennacherib of Assyria, who came down intending to wipe out Judah, but God said in effect, “This is my battle. You do not have to lift a finger.” The next morning 185,000 Assyrians were dead, and Sennacherib fled to his homeland (2 Kings 19:35,36).

Nahum 1:10 For while they be folden together as thorns, and while they are drunken as drunkards, they shall be devoured as stubble fully dry.

“They [will] be folden together as thorns.” The Pastor coupled this verse with Isaiah 34:4 in regard to the heavens being rolled together as two ends of a scroll—a reference to the union of Papacy and Protestantism in the end of the Gospel Age. The two systems are pictured as being “drunken as drunkards,” yet “they shall be devoured as stubble fully dry.” This coming together in the ecumenical spirit will be a very tight union. The confederacy will be formed out of the fear of things coming. The Lord’s true people are instructed to oppose this confederacy and to not be afraid, for God will be their “dread” (Isa. 8:12,13). Fear of the common enemy will pressure the two ends of the scroll, the two opposing parts of Christendom, Papacy and Protestantism, to unite in an hour of power against what they deem to be the common enemy, yet they will be a thorn in each other’s side (Rev. 17:12). Anarchy will follow the hour of power.

“They [Papacy and Protestantism] are drunken as drunkards” in the sense that they will not know what they are doing in forming this confederacy. If they could see what really is happening, the tendency would be toward conversion and sobriety. When a serious situation arises, the true Christian goes to the throne of grace to pray for help, but tares get confused like pack rats. Papacy and Protestantism will be intoxicated with the spirit of the world, and it is impossible to reason with those who are drunk. As a result, judgment will come on the tares.

In the coming forced union of the hour of power, the participants will be drunk with the wine of false doctrine. We are reminded of Belshazzar’s feast and of Salome’s dancing at Herod’s birthday party. At the time of Belshazzar’s feast, the city of Babylon was under siege. The king was present with a thousand of his lords. Those lords may not have been too happy with the king as a ruler, but they were all in the situation together. And that will be the basis of the coming unity—the people and the systems will fear falling if alone and will temporarily feel secure by uniting.

“They [Papacy and Protestantism] shall be devoured as stubble fully dry.” The destruction will be sudden and complete, for stubble burns furiously. The literal heat, fury, and sound of a fire that devours stubble is awesome. The burning of the tares will be a short process.

A thoroughly dry bush that is burned is thoroughly consumed, leaving no residue. Not only is it ripe for sudden and complete destruction, but when the harvest has fully ended, the leftover stubble is worthless residue.

In referring to the Great Company class, the Apostle Paul said that those who build a character of wood, hay, or stubble will be saved by fire, but their works will be burned (1 Cor. 3:11-15).

The Great Company have a good foundation and their souls will be rescued, but because they improperly build upon the foundation of Christ, they will have an excruciating experience at the end of the age to destroy the wood, hay, and stubble. The same principle holds true for the nominal system. The destruction will be thorough.

Nineveh was a very large city for its time slot in history. In Jonah’s day, the city thoroughly repented because of the king’s influence. A king can be a powerful force for either good or evil and hence is accountable for his leadership. That same principle applies to elders in the true Church.

Comment: Since Nahum was dealing with a later generation of people in Nineveh who were under a different king, the memories of the inhabitants in Jonah’s day had faded by this time.

Nahum 1:11 There is one come out of thee, that imagineth evil against the LORD, a wicked counsellor.

Nahum 1:12 Thus saith the LORD; Though they be quiet, and likewise many, yet thus shall they be cut down, when he shall pass through. Though I have afflicted thee, I will afflict thee no more.

Nahum 1:13 For now will I break his yoke from off thee, and will burst thy bonds in sunder.

Verse 11, which speaks of “a wicked counsellor,” is a curious verse. When we also read verses 12 and 13 and the Book of Nahum as a whole, we see that there is first a natural and then a spiritual application. In review, Nahum’s prophecy was directed against Nineveh, the capital of Assyria, which had already taken the ten-tribe kingdom into captivity. At the writing of this prophecy, Judah and Benjamin had not yet gone into captivity. The time setting, which was about 125 years before the destruction of Jerusalem, was during the days of Hezekiah and Isaiah, or about 731 BC.

With the punishment of Nineveh being yet future from the events in Nahum’s day, the prophet may have died just about the time of King Sennacherib’s invasion of Jerusalem. Bible scholars who have written on the prophetic or historic aspect of the Book of Nahum generally concur that the coming down of the Assyrian king’s army is related to this prophecy of verses 11-13. And when this prophecy was fulfilled, Nineveh was destroyed.

“For now will I break his yoke from off thee, and will burst thy bonds in sunder.” Sennacherib came down with his army, but he was preoccupied with the siege of two other cities, Lachish and Libnah, which were south of Jerusalem (2 Kings 19:8). However, a contingent went up to Jerusalem with Rab-shakeh, as recorded in the books of 2 Kings and Isaiah. Therefore, from the standpoint of the historical fulfillment, the “wicked counsellor” was Rab-shakeh, who told King Hezekiah in Hebrew in the presence of the people to give up, submit peaceably, and obey the demands of Sennacherib. If these concessions were made, the Jews would be taken to another land where they would supposedly have as much as at present. But God intervened on behalf of Judah and slew 185,000 individuals of the Assyrian army in one night (see Isaiah 36 and 37).

In other words, Rab-shakeh falsely counseled Israel what to do, saying in effect, “What good is your God? Is He any better than the gods of other nations whom Sennacherib destroyed? You should not rely on your God but should submit, for there is no way out.” Eventually the Lord intervened and helped Israel, destroying the host of Sennacherib’s army without Judah’s having to lift a finger, and the king went back to his homeland.

From the natural standpoint, it seems unmistakable that Sennacherib is involved in Nahum’s prophecy, for certain verses in later chapters contain details that refer to his death. However, from a spiritual standpoint, as has been stated, Nineveh is a type of Christendom, and we will consider verse 11 in more detail from that perspective.

“There is one come out of thee [Assyria in type, Christendom in antitype], that imagineth evil against the LORD, a wicked counsellor [a counsellor of Belial].” A great deception along the lines of some individual will occur in the future, that is, before the end of the Gospel Age. Several clues in Scripture seem to hint that a certain personality, or leader, will have a baleful, malevolent influence on the world at the very end of the age. This individual will somehow be related to Christendom.

In addition to Papacy’s being the great Antichrist system, there can also appear an Antichrist individual to further deceive the fundamentalists, who expect such a one prior to Christ’s return. Hence we must be so well grounded in Scripture that the emergence of a great personality as the “man of sin” would not deceive us.

From present truth, we know that the man of sin is not an individual but Papacy, with the pope as the male head of the false Church. Just as Elijah, a male, represents the true Christ, Head and body, so the man of sin is Papacy with the pope as its male head. The “man of God” is The Christ (2 Tim. 3:17)—“That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” The context in 2 Timothy applies to the true Church, the 144,000—to all of the saints.

Scripture is given to build up the Church class into its Head. Thus the composite man of God is The Christ.

Nineveh and Babylon are both types of Christendom, yet from another perspective, Babylon will be the instrument of God’s judgment. Jeremiah 25:26 reads, “And all the kings of the north, far and near, one with another, and all the kingdoms of the world, which are upon the face of the earth: and the king of Sheshach [a title of Babylon] shall drink after them.” The same is true of Nineveh. In one sense, Nineveh is a type of Christendom, and in another sense, Assyria pictures an ungodly host that will invade Israel at the time of Jacob’s Trouble. In other words, the Assyrian army is one thing, and its capital, Nineveh, is another.

The wicked counsellor will come out of that which is to be “folden [united] together as thorns” (see verse 10). The two ends of the scroll will roll together yet be as thorns. The thorn and stubble picture fits the besieging and destruction of literal Nineveh, the natural or historical fulfillment, but the Pastor gave the clue for a spiritual fulfillment as well in regard to the ecumenical spirit that will prevail at the end of the Gospel Age when the two ends of the scroll come together in unison. Christendom will be united. The analogy is that as one is clearing a field, the debris and thorns are heaped together. Being dry, the thorns burn furiously as stubble when a match is lit. Papacy and Protestantism will be folden together, and when united, they will fall and burn like stubble—a reminder of the burning of the tares. Thus there is the thought of both a confederacy and a sudden devouring by fire, just as stubble burns quickly. Verse 10 also states that Papacy and Protestantism will be “drunken as drunkards.” In Belshazzar’s feast, the gold and silver vessels of the Lord were profaned. In antitype, Daniel represents the Lord’s people, and the truths of the Lord, pictured by the gold and silver vessels, will be desecrated. Thus Christendom at the end of the age is pictured in various ways: (1) folded together as thorns, (2) burned as tares, and (3) drunk with false doctrine and the spirit of the world.

The wicked counsellor, then, will come out of Christendom. Some movement or individual related to Christendom will give advice against the Lord. For instance, Rab-shakeh denigrated Jehovah with his advice: “Do not put trust in your God, but be expedient. Notice what is happening and submit.” The wicked counsellor seems to be separate from the nominal systems, yet he will “come out” of Christendom. The word “wicked” is related to “Belial” in the Hebrew and can also be translated “worthless.” Belial is associated with the Adversary, with having a Satanic origin.

Comment: The NIV translates verse 11 as follows: “From you, O Nineveh, has one come forth who plots evil against the LORD and counsels wickedness.”

Reply: Yes, this counsellor denigrates and demeans God both back in the type and in the future antitype.

Q: What is the thought of “come out”? Will this evil individual be someone who promotes the ecumenical movement or someone who arises out of the fall of Christendom?

A: To “come out” seems to mean to “originate.” In other words, there is one who will originate from Christendom. Perhaps the term could be understood either way, but our thought is that the wicked counsellor will be involved in supporting Christendom.

Q: If the wicked counsellor is an individual, could he possibly be Satan himself materializing as a great deception? Other Scriptures seem to suggest that Satan may actually appear, and the people will assume, at least for a time, that he is Jesus returning at the Second Advent.

A: The Apostle Paul said, “But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel … than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed” (Gal. 1:8). The word “wicked” is related to Bel, or Baal, behind which is demonic power or spirit. We do feel there will be lying supernatural signs and wonders in the future that will momentarily support the claims of Papacy. “Belial” indicates something very unusual that can be a sign or a wonder. Whether the wicked counsellor is the Adversary himself who materializes or one who is specially his medium we will have to wait and see.

Q: What is the thought of Revelation 13:14, “And [the two-horned beast] deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live”?

A: The two-horned beast will give advice to Protestant groups that they should get together in unison in order to have the success that Papacy enjoyed in the past. Advice will be given to make an “image to the beast.” Later the two-horned beast and the image of the beast will unite into one symbol called the “false prophet.” The very term “false prophet” indicates an instrument of deception.

Q: Is there any indication that the “false prophet” might be Jewish?

A: Evangelical churches are inclined to think along this line—that one would arise somewhere in the Middle East as a literal man of sin. However, the man of sin is the Papacy (2 Thess. 2:3).

Nevertheless, the fact that the man of sin is the false papal system does not preclude, forbid, or negate the possibility of another false prophet or deception arising. The “false prophet” of the Book of Revelation is the union of Protestant churches with the Church of England. Together, they will cooperate with Papacy in the not-too-distant future in connection with the persecuting dragon, or civil power.

With indications of coming lying miracles, deceptions, wonders, and signs (plural), some individual or means, in conjunction with the hour of power, could be instrumental in greatly promoting the church-state power that is in opposition to God—just as Rab-shakeh was trying to promote his king, Sennacherib. In this particular type in Nahum, Judah represents the people of God, and the Assyrians picture those who are opposed to the Lord. We know that when Gog and Magog come down at the time of Jacob’s Trouble, Israel will be permanently rescued once and for all.

If this wicked counsellor were to come on the scene after Papacy’s rise, the deception would be instrumental in promoting the evil thought in the mind of Gog and Magog to go down to the Promised Land. We should not be too dogmatic but must keep an open mind and be alert to the possibilities that can occur suddenly. We must watch and be prepared so that sudden and surprising developments do not shake us. However, we are inclined to think that the wicked counsellor will appear before Papacy’s rise.

The word “quiet” in verse 12 means “confident.” “Thus saith the LORD; Though they [the Assyrians] be quiet [confident], and likewise many, yet thus shall they be cut down, when he shall pass through. Though I have afflicted thee, I will afflict thee no more.” This verse is based on the original picture in the type. When the Assyrians came down, 185,000 (“many”) of the enemy were outside Jerusalem. In addition, Sennacherib had other forces in the south. Thus the advice of Rab-shakeh to use common sense and submit seemed sensible. Rab-shakeh was an individual, but the army surrounding Jerusalem was numerous. Hence the instrument of deception in the near future—the wicked counseller, whatever or whoever it may be—will be backed up by “many” and look very foreboding to the Lord’s people.

Verse 12 can be considered from another standpoint. “Thus saith the LORD; Though they [Papacy and Protestantism] be quiet [confident], and likewise many, yet thus shall they be cut down, when he shall pass through. Though I have afflicted thee, I will afflict thee no more.” We are reminded of the text “For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail [the birth pang—see Diaglott] upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape” (1 Thess. 5:3). Papacy and Protestantism will be confident of victory and at rest. In their boldness, they will have a false sense of security and quietness, which will merely be the calm before the storm.

Comment: Verses 12 and 13 use the singular pronouns “he” and “his.” Thus the account seems to be contrasting a singular personality, a leader, who will be involved with the many.

Reply: We can see a second, or double, fulfillment with Gog being the Assyrian. Both Gog and Christendom will be utterly defeated. In the third chapter of Nahum, Nineveh is likened to a woman, and the wording sounds very much like the harlot of Revelation 17 and 18. From this standpoint, Nineveh pictures the professed religious element of Christendom, yet it is very much like Babylon in that it can picture both (1) the false Church and (2) the instrument God will use to manifest His glory and to visit judgment on others.

Q: Would the wicked counsellor give the advice that leads the people, the heathen, to “imagine a vain thing” and the rulers to “take counsel together” against Jehovah and His anointed (Psa. 2:1,2)? Nahum 1:9 has similar wording: “What do ye imagine against the LORD?” Would the evil counsellor’s words be the motivating force, the doctrines of demons, for forming the conspiracy against the feet members (Rev. 16:14)?

A: In the Second Psalm, the evil imagining against Jehovah and His anointed is determination against the feet members. The wicked counsellor of Nahum 1:11 is also against the Lord, but he is either a supporter of Christendom against the feet members or a promoter of the “Assyrian,” an anti-Christian power, against Israel.

Verse 12 says, “Yet thus shall they [the Assyrians] be cut down, when he shall pass through.

Though I have afflicted thee [Judah], I will afflict thee no more [by the Assyrian power].” When Nineveh was destroyed in the historical past, the Assyrian power ceased to exist, and Judah was no more afflicted by that power. In the prophetic antitype, when Israel is delivered and Gog is defeated at the end of the age, the nation will have everlasting peace.

Verse 13 adds, “For now will I break his yoke from off thee, and will burst thy bonds in sunder.” Two “yokes” will be broken at the end of the Gospel Age: (1) The yoke of Christendom will be broken off true Christians. (2) The yoke of Gog will be broken off natural Israel. In other words, there are three “Israels”: (1) natural Israel, (2) nominal spiritual Israel (Christendom), and (3) the true spiritual Israel of God. United Christendom will profess to be of the Lord, but it will actually be defaming Him with doctrines of demons. Both Christendom and the Adversary have had a yoke on mankind. False religion has been an opiate, a detriment, of the people.

When Sennacherib came down against Judah, God defeated him without a battle. In Jacob’s Trouble, God will bring the victory to the Holy Remnant in a similar manner. With Christendom, however, there will be utter destruction.

God “will burst thy [Israel’s] bonds in sunder.” In Jacob’s Trouble, Gog will be allowed to capture Jerusalem for a while so that it will appear as if the Lord’s cause has been defeated (Zech. 14:2). Only after all other powers and Israel seem utterly helpless to stop the destruction will God fight for Israel. Jehovah will reap this victory alone—that is the bursting of the bonds.

With regard to the bonds of Christendom, Psalm 2:3 says, “Let us break their bands [the ecumenical union with the governments trying to hold the status quo] asunder, and cast away their cords from us.” This union, or confederacy, will momentarily seem victorious, but it is doomed to failure. By uniting and establishing a simple creed, the orthodox religions will be trying to suppress the unorthodox through a strong communal orthodox spirit.

The same thing was done to Jesus. A trial was held, and two false witnesses accused him of being a revolutionary because he said the Temple would be destroyed. Labeled a fanatic and a troublemaker, he was accused of being against Caesar and of having an unsound mind in saying he would rebuild the Temple in three days. The religious leaders decided it was expedient for the nation that Jesus be put to death.

And so ecumenists will say that if “cultists” are allowed liberty to disseminate their views, the fabric of society will be undermined. They will claim that if not checked, this libertine element will bring down the entire order. Accordingly, they will decide to make an example of the feet members and put them to death. All of these factors are related to the bands being put on, Satan’s motive being to destroy the true Church (Rev. 12:17).

When the nominal Church comes back into power, the world will wonder how it happened. “And [all] they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life … when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is” (Rev. 17:8). For a while, there will be calm as a result of the church-state union, with all liberty-loving individuals of strong character being suppressed and curtailed in their thinking and speaking. But then will come a social explosion. After the Church and the Great Company are gone, Satan will act like a madman and go after natural Israel in one last attempt to eliminate all Jews. At that point, he will be dealt with and bound.

Notes on Nahum 1:10,11 from Discourse in December 2005

Nahum 1:10,11 reads, “For while they be folden together as thorns, and while they are drunken as drunkards, they shall be devoured as stubble fully dry. There is one come out of thee, that imagineth evil against the LORD, a wicked counsellor.” We cannot explain who the wicked counsellor is, but we feel that a test upon the brotherhood will be along the following lines. The nominal systems think the “man of sin” is a literal personage—a very evil man who will come on the scene at the end of this age and deceive everyone. They do not see that the real “man of sin” is the Papacy, which has been in existence for a long time and has done a lot of mischief down through the Gospel Age.

This false concept will be troubling in the near future for the Spirit-begotten in the nominal systems because they have been speaking about seven years of tribulation at the end of the age, and some believe the seven years have just started. We also see the very end of the age occurring not too many years ahead. The point is that some puzzling events will happen at the same time. We should not forget that Satan will be behind the deceptions and the false doctrines. The nominal systems believe that this wicked person will deceive the whole world and that a false peace will occur before the Lord Jesus comes to deliver his people. The adherents of this erroneous doctrine believe they will be translated in the in-between period and thus escape the tribulation to follow when the literal man of sin is destroyed along with those in sympathy with him. The Bible teaches that the last members of the body of Christ, the Little Flock, will be “accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass [that is, the great Time of Trouble], and to stand before the Son of man” (Luke 21:36). However, the tribulation saints, the Spirit-begotten ones who are not found worthy to be of the Little Flock, will have to go a ways into the Time of Trouble and undergo experiences to make them wash their robes in the blood of the Lamb (Rev. 7:14).

Nahum 1:14 And the LORD hath given a commandment concerning thee, that no more of thy name be sown: out of the house of thy gods will I cut off the graven image and the molten image: I will make thy grave; for thou art vile.

Verse 14 was addressed to the Assyrian power, to Nineveh. Since Nineveh has never arisen again after its destruction, we know that Christendom will also be destroyed forever. God commanded “that no more of thy name be sown.” Literal Babylon was also destroyed permanently.

“Out of the house of thy gods will I cut off the graven image and the molten image: I will make thy grave; for thou art vile.” The Assyrian Empire was destroyed by Nabopolassar, the father of Nebuchadnezzar. When Nineveh was besieged, the king shut himself up in his palace with his concubines and servants and set the building on fire and perished, thus committing suicide. Herodotus tells of a prophecy back there to the effect that when the river became an enemy of Assyria, it would portend doom. The same was true of Babylon, for the river Euphrates was instrumental in the destruction of the city. The river was diverted from its course to make a dry bed on which the invading army under Cyrus, the Persian general, could enter and take the city. With Nineveh, the river overflowed its banks and flooded the city, eroding the wall and making a breach through which the enemy could enter and capture the city. The Assyrian king was destroyed in his own palace, and the images were despoiled. Thus his palace, or temple, was his sepulcher in the final analysis. Incidentally, this king was not Sennacherib but a king shortly thereafter.

Nahum 1:15 Behold upon the mountains the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace! O Judah, keep thy solemn feasts, perform thy vows: for the wicked shall no more pass through thee; he is utterly cut off.

Verse 15 is a consoling message, a happy note. A class will be privileged to give this encouraging message to Judah. At that time, “the wicked shall no more pass through thee”; hence this message will be given after Jacob’s Trouble and when the Kingdom is established. By then the wicked besiegers will have been “utterly cut off.”

In this setting, the term “the feet of him” refers to Jehovah’s feet, that is, to The Christ.

Zechariah 14:4 reads, “And his [God’s] feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives.”

Spiritually speaking, God’s authority will be manifest in the earth when He takes control and the Kingdom is established. Elsewhere in Scripture, the earth is called God’s footstool, the place of His rest (Isa. 66:1). The earth will be for the soles of His feet when He takes control.

From another standpoint, when Jehovah intervenes for Israel, He will demonstrate His divine wrath, and it will be apparent there is a connection between the literal miraculous earthquake of Zechariah 14:4,5 and His great power. “The mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south…. the valley [opened up by the earthquake] … shall reach unto Azal…. and the LORD my God shall come.” Jehovah’s “feet” will be instrumental not only in the destruction of Gog but also in the deliverance of the Holy Remnant and in the giving of a soothing and encouraging message to Israel. Romans 11:26 reads, “There shall come out of Zion the Deliverer [The Christ], and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob.” Matthew 24:22 states that by means of the elect, “those days shall be shortened.” (“Through” or “by means of” the elect is the correct thought, not “for the elect’s sake.”) Obadiah 21 says, “And saviours [The Christ] shall come up on mount Zion to judge the mount of Esau; and the kingdom shall be the LORD’S.”

“O Judah, keep thy solemn feasts, perform thy vows.” In the past, Israel’s feasts were only partially observed. Not only will Jehovah’s “feet” bring good tidings, but they will publish “peace.” Since Jacob’s Trouble will be the worst Israel has ever experienced, this promise of peace must follow that holocaust. Jeremiah 30:7 reads, “Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacob’s trouble; but he shall be saved out of it.” Nahum was saying, “At that time, the enemy will be destroyed forever, so that never again will there be violence in Israel. Therefore, keep your vows and your feasts, for this is the promised Kingdom, the time of peace and rest.” In publishing peace, The Christ will put forth the message with vigor. The message will be effectively disseminated throughout the entire land by every means possible.

Review of Type and Antitype in Nahum Chapter 1

A. Historic Past, Type of Nineveh, Assyrian Destruction

Verse 8: “But with an overrunning flood he [God] will make an utter end of the place thereof [Nineveh], and darkness shall pursue his enemies [the Assyrian power came to naught].”

Nineveh was destroyed by an “overrunning flood” in the sense that a flood eroded and knocked down one of the main fortifications, allowing a breach in the city wall so that Assyria’s army could enter.

Verse 9: “What do ye [Rab-shakeh] imagine against the LORD? he [God] will make an utter end [of Nineveh]: affliction [the Assyrian power] shall not rise up the second time.” The Assyrian power would be destroyed and “not rise up the second time.” (See verse 12.)

Verse 10: “For while they be folden together as thorns, and while they are drunken as drunkards, they shall be devoured as stubble fully dry.” Despite the preparations, Nineveh was unsuccessful in avoiding destruction, and the city was brought to naught.

Verse 11: “There is one [Rab-shakeh] come out of thee [Assyria], that imagineth evil against the LORD, a wicked counsellor.”

Verse 12: “Thus saith the LORD; Though they [Nineveh, Assyria] be quiet [confident], and likewise many [in number], yet thus shall they be cut down [defeated], when he [the evil counsellor] shall pass through. Though I have afflicted thee [Judah], I will afflict thee no more [by the Assyrian power].”

Verse 13: “For now will I break his [Nineveh’s] yoke from off thee [Judah, Jerusalem], and will burst thy bonds in sunder.” The Nineveh power besieged Jerusalem, but it came to naught when the Assyrian army was slain and the king fled to his home country.

Verse 14: “And the LORD hath given a commandment concerning thee, that no more of thy name be sown: out of the house of thy gods will I cut off the graven image and the molten image: I will make thy grave; for thou art vile.” The Assyrian power was eventually replaced by Babylon, the first universal empire in the Book of Daniel. The Assyrian king was destroyed in Nineveh in the temple and house of his god, his images were desecrated, and the gold and silver of the images were taken as a spoil.

Verse 15: “Behold upon the mountains the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace! O Judah, keep thy solemn feasts, perform thy vows: for the wicked [Assyrian power] shall no more pass through thee; he is utterly cut off.” The good news was that the Assyrian power, which had interfered with Judah’s keeping the three major feasts, had been eliminated.

B. Christendom, Antitype of Nineveh Picture

Verse 8: “But with an overrunning flood he [God] will make an utter end of the place thereof [Christendom, the nominal religious systems], and darkness shall pursue his enemies.”

Verse 9: “What do ye imagine against the LORD? he [God] will make an utter end [of Christendom]: affliction shall not rise up the second time.” Though Christendom imagines evil against God, He will utterly destroy the religious systems.

Verse 10: “For while they [Papacy and Protestantism] be folden together as thorns [in the ecumenical movement of the church-state hour of power], and while they are drunken as drunkards, they shall be devoured [destroyed by fire] as stubble fully dry.”

Verses 11-13: “There is one come out of thee [Christendom], that imagineth evil against the LORD, a wicked counsellor. Thus saith the LORD; Though they be quiet [confident], and likewise [backed up by the] many [of Christendom], yet thus shall they be cut down [defeated], when he [the evil counsellor] shall pass through. Though I have afflicted thee, I will afflict thee no more. For now will I break his [Christendom’s] yoke from off thee, and will burst thy bonds in sunder.” A wicked counsellor of some sort will come out of Christendom, promoting the church-state union. Christendom’s yoke still exists on those of the Lord’s people who remain in mystic Babylon. Sincere Christians are under bondage until they leave the system. When Christendom is destroyed, when mystic Babylon falls, the bulk of the Great Company class, who are truly consecrated—the foolish virgin class—will be released and will become instrumental in certain activities. Christendom is to be destroyed forever, so that bondage will never come back again as a religious institution purporting to be of the Lord.

Verse 14: “And the LORD hath given a commandment concerning thee, that no more of thy name be sown: out of the house of thy gods will I cut off the graven image and the molten image: I will make thy grave; for thou art vile.” There will be no more tare element, no more false Christians, when Babylon falls. Papacy and Catholicism as a religion will cease to exist forever. The nominal system has been vile in misrepresenting the Lord down through the Gospel Age.

Verse 15: “Behold upon the mountains the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace! O Judah, keep thy solemn feasts, perform thy vows: for the wicked shall no more pass through thee; he is utterly cut off.” Verse 15 is based upon the prophecy of Isaiah 52:7, “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto [natural] Zion, Thy God reigneth!” The time setting is the inauguration of the Kingdom, the announcement being that peace is secure and permanent. The account continues: “Break forth into joy, sing together, ye waste places of Jerusalem: for the LORD hath comforted his people, he hath redeemed Jerusalem” (Isa. 52:9).

C. Future Destruction of the Assyrian (Gog) in Jacob’s Trouble

Verse 11: “There is one come out of thee, that imagineth evil against the LORD, a wicked counsellor.” It is possible that a wicked counsellor will come out of Gog.

Verse 12: “Thus saith the LORD; Though they be quiet [confident], and likewise many, yet thus shall they be cut down, when he [the wicked counsellor] shall pass through. Though I have afflicted thee, I will afflict thee no more.” This verse can apply to Gog in Jacob’s Trouble, for Gog will be an innumerable host that comes down and passes through the northern part, or upper half, of Israel to besiege Jerusalem. Natural Israel will no longer be afflicted once God disposes of Gog, the alien power.

Verse 13: “For now [during Gog’s attack] will I [God] break his [Gog’s, Russia’s] yoke from off thee [Israel, specifically the Holy Remnant], and will burst thy bonds in sunder,” effecting a miraculous deliverance. When Gog besieges Jerusalem, another prophecy likens the siege to a cord around the neck (Isa. 8:8; 10:27). Gog will come up to the “neck” of Israel, that is, up to Jerusalem, the head, which, as the Lord’s citadel, epitomizes His cause. Gog will want to cut off the head, but God will intervene. The great and threatening power over Israel will be broken off.

Verse 14: “And the LORD hath given a commandment concerning thee, that no more of thy name be sown: out of the house of thy gods will I cut off the graven image and the molten image: I will make thy grave; for thou art vile.” This verse is a little harder to explain with regard to Gog, for the term “Gog and Magog” will be used at the end of the Kingdom Age, when Israel will again be invaded (Rev. 20:8,9). A second invasion of Israel, a spiritual invasion, will take place at the end of the Millennial Age. Hence verse 14 cannot be completely applied to Gog in the Jacob’s Trouble setting. Moreover, Gog does not have graven images. “Gog” is an ungodly power that will think only of its own survival and success.

Verse 15: “Behold upon the mountains the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace! O Judah, keep thy solemn feasts, perform thy vows: for the wicked shall no more pass through thee; he is utterly cut off.” Verse 15 shows the inauguration and establishment of Christ’s Kingdom with the announcement of “peace” as an accomplished fact. During the Kingdom Age, the Third Temple will be built and its services established, judges will be restored as at the first, and various princes (Ancient Worthies) will be governing. The Temple services will be rather limited with perhaps three feasts annually.

In summary, Nahum 1:8-15 is primarily the natural type and Christendom in the antitype, but parts of these verses also fit the Gog and Magog picture.

Additional Thoughts and Details Given in 1980

The “wicked counsellor,” the individual who will come out of Christendom and take evil counsel against Jehovah, is Satan. Prior to the fall of Babylon, he will materialize as a glorious spirit being, masquerading as an angel of light. Although he will not claim to be Jesus because of his deep hatred for the Master, the people will briefly assume he is the returned Lord at his Second Advent and thus be deceived. Satan will take advantage of their false assumption in order to provoke the death of the feet members. Revelation 18 shows that when the beast and the false prophet fall, the civil governments will emerge. Hence Satan will “come out” after the fall of mystic Babylon (Nahum 1:11). At that time, he will not have to pose as an angel of light but can manifest his true evil character. The Great Company will no longer be deceived but, with weeping and gnashing of teeth, will know the Church is complete. Then they will each have to take an individual stand for the Lord in order to get even a secondary spiritual reward.

Remaining materialized, Satan will be instrumental in inciting Gog’s invasion of Israel. He will not be bound until shortly before Gog begins to come down from the north to attack Israel. At the time of his binding, “the enemy shall come in like a flood” (Isa. 59:19); that is, fallen angels  will materialize en masse. The term “Gog” is a figurative personification of evil that includes Russia but also refers to Satan, a personality.

Comment: It seems appropriate that Satan might be the wicked counsellor, for Jesus is the wonderful counsellor (Isa. 9:6).

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