|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
1:1-8 About a hundred years before, at Jonah's preaching, the Ninevites repented, and were spared, yet, soon after, they became worse than ever. Nineveh knows not that God who contends with her, but is told what a God he is. It is good for all to mix faith with what is here said concerning Him, which speaks great terror to the wicked, and comfort to believers. Let each take his portion from it: let sinners read it and tremble; and let saints read it and triumph. The anger of the Lord is contrasted with his goodness to his people. Perhaps they are obscure and little regarded in the world, but the Lord knows them. The Scripture character of Jehovah agrees not with the views of proud reasoners. The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ is slow to wrath and ready to forgive, but he will by no means acquit the wicked; and there is tribulation and anguish for every soul that doeth evil: but who duly regards the power of his wrath?
Verses 7-11. - § 3. The prophet prepares the way for proclaiming the punishment of Nineveh lay deriding that the wrath of God falls not on those who trust in him, but is reserved for his enemies. Verse 7. - The Lord is good. The Targum adds unnecessarily, "for Israel" (Psalm 25:8). He is "good," in that he is a stronghold in the day of trouble, as in the perilous time when the Assyrians attacked Judaea (comp. Psalm 27:1; Jeremiah 16:19). He knoweth; loves and cares for (Psalm 1:6; Psalm 37:18; temp. 2 Timothy 2:19; and see note on Amos 3:2).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
The Lord is good,.... To Israel, as the Targum adds; to Hezekiah and his, people, that betook themselves to him, and put their trust in him; whom he defended and preserved from the king of Assyria, to whom he was dreadful and terrible, destroying his army in one night by an angel; and so delivered the king of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem from that terror that had seized them, and that danger they were exposed unto; and so the Lord is good in himself, in the perfections of his nature, in the works of his hands, in all his persons to his people, that fear him, trust in him, and seek him, and wait for him, and on him:
a strong hold in the day of trouble; or, he is "good for a strong hold" (w), &c. it was a day of trouble, rebuke, and blasphemy, with Hezekiah and his people, when they were besieged by the army of Sennacherib king of Assyria, and had received from Rabshakeh by his orders a railing and reproaching letter; and then the Lord was a strong hold to them, to whom they betook themselves, and he protected and defended them. The whole time of this life is a time of trouble to the saints, though it is but a day, a short time; in which they meet with much from their own corrupt hearts, and the sin that dwells in them; from Satan and his temptations; from carnal professors, their principles and practices; and from a profane and persecuting world; and from the Lord himself, who sometimes lays his afflicting hand upon them, and hides his face from them; and yet he is their rock and their refuge, their strong tower and place of defence; where they find safety and plenty in all their times of distress and want:
and he knoweth them that trust in him; in his word, as the Targum; and they are such that know him, and are sensible of the vanity of all other objects of trust; who betake themselves to him for shelter and protection; lean and stay themselves upon him, and commit all unto him, and expect all from him: these he knows, loves, and has the strongest affection for; he approves of them, and commends their faith and confidence; he takes notice of them, visits them, and makes himself known unto them, even in their adversity; he owns and acknowledges them as his own, claims his right in them now, and will confess them hereafter; and he takes care of them that they perish not, whoever else do; see Psalm 1:6; he knows the necessities of those that trust in him, as Jarchi; he knows them for their good, takes care of them, provides for, them, and watches over them, as Kimchi. The ancients formerly had their and "notores" (x), such as knew them, and were their patrons and defenders; as when a Roman citizen was condemned to be whipped or crucified in a province where he was not known, and claimed the Roman privileges, such persons were his witnesses and advocates; and thus the Lord is represented as one that knows his people, and is their patron and advocate. The goodness of God expressed in this text is set off with a foil by the terribleness of his wrath and vengeance against his enemies.
(w) "bonus Dominus ad robur", Burkius; "bonus est Jehovah in arcem", Cocceius. (x) Dannhaver, apud Burkium in loc. Vid. Turnebi Adversar. l. 29. c. 36.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
7. Here Nahum enters on his special subject, for which the previous verses have prepared the way, namely, to assure his people of safety in Jehovah under the impending attack of Sennacherib (Na 1:7), and to announce the doom of Nineveh, the capital of the Assyrian foe (Na 1:8). The contrast of Na 1:7, 8 heightens the force.
he knoweth—recognizes as His own (Ho 13:5; Am 3:2); and so, cares for and guards (Ps 1:6; 2Ti 2:19).
Nahum 1:7 Parallel Commentaries
Nahum 1:7 NIV
Nahum 1:7 NLT
Nahum 1:7 ESV
Nahum 1:7 NASB
Nahum 1:7 KJV
Bible Hub: Online Parallel Bible