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Nineveh Destroyed

Nineveh was the ancient capital of the Assyrian empire. It was destroyed around 612 BC which is when this event appears on the Old Testament Timeline. This city was used by Assyrian kings as their primary location to rule their territories. Around 631 B.C., the Assyrians dominated many kingdoms that were located in the Middle Eastern region of the world. They had defeated these people and then transported many of them to different lands within their borders. This policy was used against Israel and Judah. As a matter of fact, God used the Assyrians to punish the Israelites for their sins. He allowed them to force the northern tribes into exile. Various Assyrian rulers continued this practice for many years.

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Plan of ancient Nineveh

Over time, God wanted to remove the Assyrian’s from power because of their many sins. He decided to use the Babylonians to accomplish this task. He wanted the Babylonians to become powerful so that they could be used against the idolatrous Judeans.
The Babylonians were a conquered people living under the dominion of the Assyrians and about 625 B.C. they rose to power and launched an assault against the Assyrian empire. The Babylonians pushed toward Nineveh, which was the seat of Assyrian power. While the Assyrians were preoccupied with the Babylonians, a tribal group known as the Medes assaulted Nineveh and destroyed the city.

There were quite a few prophets who prophesied against Nineveh. They included Jonah, who was upset with the Lord for saving these people from judgment and Nahum who denounced the cruel acts that the Assyrians did to his people when they held them captive. The book of Nahum explains in vivid detail why God had decided to destroy Nineveh.

The prophet Nahum explained in great detail why the Lord decided to remove Nineveh as a power. When God allowed the Assyrians to conquer Israel and harass Judah, they did so with great cruelty. They built up their city by shedding blood, enslaving people, performing cruel acts of torture and by having a disregard for human life. They engaged in sorcery and witchcraft and the Assyrian people of Nineveh treated so many groups of conquered people with extreme contempt. God also punished the Assyrians because of their pagan worship of false gods. Even though he used this kingdom to punish Israel for the sin of idolatry, he then decided to judge them for doing the very same thing.

One of the reasons why Jonah didn’t think that God should have spared the people of Nineveh is because of all of their evil deeds. When the prophet of Jonah was sent to these people, many of them turned their hearts toward God in repentance. However, a lot of Assyrian people didn’t turn from their sins nor were they sorry for the evil that they had committed. When Nineveh fell, the Assyrian power base went into decline and even though the Medes are credited with destroying the city, it was the Babylonians who would rule over the land. Assyria never rose to power again after they were defeated by the Babylonians.

Biblical References:

  • The whole entire book of Nahum outlines Gods judgment against the Assyrians.
  • The book of Jonah deals with the theme of God showing mercy on Assyrians regardless of their cruelty.
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20 thoughts on “Nineveh Destroyed

  1. What happen to the remenant Assyrian peoples after the conquering of ninevah. They went into captivity, where? I’m looking for varifiable evidence. Any help would be greatly appriciated. Thanx

    1. Hello Uriah.
      Sorry I found this article and your question over two years later. I do not have references in front of me now, but I can tell you this. Assyria at the time of the fall of Nineveh included today’s Iraq, North-Western Iran (Lake Urmia), South-Eastern Anatolia (Turkey) and North-Eastern Syria (Aram). Assyrians remained there and became subjects of those governments, their culture and language was mixed with that of others. In the early 1800’s a Christian people were discovered in the same area I mentioned above were given many names, including Chaldeans, Syrians and later Nestorians and most recently Assyrians. I am a descendant of those Assyrians. Assyrians were the first nationless people to adopt Christianity during the 3rd century AD at the hands of St. Peter, and Mar. Addai. Assyrian christians evangelized the whole of the Middle and Far east, starting from Syria-Iraq-Iran and eastward all the way to China, from the 700’s through 1100’s. Google “Nestorians In China”, By Foot To china, Church On Fire, or Just google “Nestorians” , Kerala Christians, etc. We have lost our identity, we are very small in numbers, we have been massacred by Muslims in Turkey, Iran, Iran & Syria and most recently when you read about ISIS killing Christians in Iraq and Syria, those were Assyrians, and not Arab Christians as the media identifies them. There is a substantial presence of Assyrians in Chicago, Detroit, Indiana, NY, PA, California, especially in Turlock and San Jose, Arizona and Texas to name a few. England, Sydney Australia, Germany, Sweden and the Netherlands. I hope I’ve given you enough information to do your own search about Assyrians in the 21st Century.

      Sincere, Regards

      1. Thanks for the update on the Assyrians. I’m reading Nahum in the Bible now and helps me to see it a little clearer

      2. Well said

    2. Hello, what lesson do we learn from Jonah’s anger after God decided to give people of Nineveh a second chance, which Jonah was against

      1. God’s timing of setting up kings and removing kings is guided by the amount of sins people commit in that kingdom .I Thess ch1-v15 -ch2says when their sin was come to a full judgement fell on the Jews to the uttermost

  2. Am really helped and wish to thank your whole crue for the good job done. May the good Lord continue inspiring more illuminations in you. Hope you will send me other staff to increase my knowledge spiritually. May God bless you always.

  3. Margaret,
    2nd paragraph up from the bottom in the last line you wrote ‘ he (God) did the decided to judge them’.
    Did you mean ‘he (God) _then decided to judge them’ ?

    Otherwise, a good article.

    1. Thank you for letting us know so we could fix it

  4. We are living in the same thing today like the city of nineveh going against WORD worshipping other gods

  5. Ye do realise, I hope, that the old testament books which deal with the fate of Nineveh were all written after the destruction of the Assyrian empire (by the Iranian groups which later composed the Medeian and Persian empires, not yhwh)?

    That in fact, the biblical prophesy ye crow about was a post hoc prophesy, just like all the muslims going around today proclaiming that the qu’ran predicted quantum physics (from a few very vague verses), after physicists spent nigh on one hundred years developing that body of science.

    1. Brian, your concept of God or YHWH is small-minded and narrow. The Lord used the Medes and Babylonians to overthrow the Assyrians just as He had used the Assyrians to judge His people. Nahum’s prophecies regarding Nineveh and the Assyrians were given 75 to 100 years before the fall of Nineveh, not after.

  6. I was inspired that our good Lord used to take good care for us, and yet, forgive our enemies who cruelly treated us.
    Continued to inspired us with your insight from God.
    Regards with Blessings

  7. I keep hearing about how the people of Nineveh escaped judgement, but not the fact that later on many fell into sin and were judged by God. I wish our Christian leaders wouldn’t be so preoccupied with Jonah and what Jesus says in Matthew 12…which btw, only applies to those who repented and changed their ways. God hates sin and he will judge those who won’t repent and that’s what happens to the rest of Nineveh later on. Does God like to judge? No, but He will not change if any kingdom refuses to repent from their sins. Thank you and God bless!

    1. I agree. I have only just discovered that Nineveh was destroyed. Very confused at first, but it’s getting clearer.

  8. Why did God still judge some people of Nineveh if they repented and the Assyrians didn’t repent?

  9. Hello, I am very grateful for you article. It helped me a lot in understanding the Book of Nahum. May I ask, was the fall of Nineveh the prophesy concerning Jonah’s warnings or Nahum’s or both? Just a little confused.

    My understanding is, after the Nineveh repented, many still continued to sin, so God used Nahum to prophesy against them.

    1. There was approximately 150 years between Jonah and Nahum. When Jonah preached the Ninevites repented (at that time). Then over the period between Jonah and Nahum, they fell back into their old ways and God had to punish them for the evil they had done during that time. Jeremiah 18 dies a good job using the example of the potter and the clay to show why His mind changes for repentance or for evil. Nahum is the one who prophesied of their fall. Jonah’s prophecy was that Nineveh would fall in forty days, but they repented and the catastrophe was averted for that time. It did not fall for 150 years.

  10. God’s love is unconstitutional. His prophecies are conditional. Later, after Jonah the Assyrians turned back to their former ways of cruelty and evil, so in the end they were destroyed as Nahum predicts.

  11. God does not lie, or does his words ever change. To do so is more example’s of false prophecy’s. I kept being told to go to the old way’s. Now I know why. The 1st part of my post I discovered, lent me down the path of the 2nd part. It took awhile, but nonetheless true! This is just as prevalent today as it was in the old way’s/days

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