Many Old Testament figures are numbered among the saints by the Catholic Church. You can find them listed in the Martyrologium Romanum.
1. Commemoratio sancti Nahum, prophetae, qui Deum praedicavit cursum temporum regentem et populos in iustitia iudicantem.
Yes, folks, once again today is the feast of St. Nahum, whose book is betwixt Micah and Habakkuk.
We don’t know much about this figure, historically. He was from the town Alqosh close to the end of the Assyrian reign. Like Johan, Nahum warns Ninevah of its destruction (612 BC).
Whenever I hear about Assyrians I think of a poem by Byron called the Destruction of Sennacherib which, though occuring earlier than Nahum, nevertheless concerns a biblical event recounted in 2 Kings. Read it aloud for some real fun!
|THE ASSYRIAN came down like the wolf on the fold,|
|And his cohorts were gleaming in purple and gold;|
|And the sheen of their spears was like stars on the sea,|
|When the blue wave rolls nightly on deep Galilee.|
|Like the leaves of the forest when Summer is green,||5|
|That host with their banners at sunset were seen:|
|Like the leaves of the forest when Autumn hath blown,|
|That host on the morrow lay withered and strown.|
|For the Angel of Death spread his wings on the blast,|
|And breathed in the face of the foe as he passed;||10|
|And the eyes of the sleepers waxed deadly and chill,|
|And their hearts but once heaved, and for ever grew still!|
|And there lay the steed with his nostril all wide,|
|But through it there rolled not the breath of his pride;|
|And the foam of his gasping lay white on the turf,||15|
|And cold as the spray of the rock-beating surf.|
|And there lay the rider distorted and pale,|
|With the dew on his brow, and the rust on his mail:|
|And the tents were all silent, the banners alone,|
|The lances unlifted, the trumpet unblown.||20|
|And the widows of Ashur are loud in their wail,|
|And the idols are broke in the temple of Baal;|
|And the might of the Gentile, unsmote by the sword,|
|Hath melted like snow in the glance of the Lord!|
And some people think our guardian angels are like those girly men in the cute pictures.
2 Kings 19:35-36: And that night the angel of the LORD went forth, and slew a hundred and eighty-five thousand in the camp of the Assyrians; and when men arose early in the morning, behold, these were all dead bodies. Then Sennach’erib king of Assyria departed, and went home, and dwelt at Nin’eveh.
In any event, you might sit down with Nahum today and read for a while.
Remember, there is an indulgence available for reading Sacred Scripture!
A reading from the Prophet Nahum:
1: An oracle concerning Nin’eveh. The book of the vision of Nahum of Elkosh.
2: The LORD is a jealous God and avenging, the LORD is avenging and wrathful; the LORD takes vengeance on his adversaries and keeps wrath for his enemies.
3: The LORD is slow to anger and of great might, and the LORD will by no means clear the guilty. His way is in whirlwind and storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet.
4: He rebukes the sea and makes it dry, he dries up all the rivers; Bashan and Carmel wither, the bloom of Lebanon fades.
5: The mountains quake before him, the hills melt; the earth is laid waste before him, the world and all that dwell therein.
6: Who can stand before his indignation? Who can endure the heat of his anger? His wrath is poured out like fire, and the rocks are broken asunder by him.
7: The LORD is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; he knows those who take refuge in him.
8: But with an overflowing flood he will make a full end of his adversaries, and will pursue his enemies into darkness.
9: What do you plot against the LORD? He will make a full end; he will not take vengeance twice on his foes.
10: Like entangled thorns they are consumed, like dry stubble.
11: Did one not come out from you, who plotted evil against the LORD, and counseled villainy?
12: Thus says the LORD, "Though they be strong and many, they will be cut off and pass away. Though I have afflicted you, I will afflict you no more.
13: And now I will break his yoke from off you and will burst your bonds asunder."
14: The LORD has given commandment about you: "No more shall your name be perpetuated; from the house of your gods I will cut off the graven image and the molten image. I will make your grave, for you are vile."
15: Behold, on the mountains the feet of him who brings good tidings, who proclaims peace! Keep your feasts, O Judah, fulfil your vows, for never again shall the wicked come against you, he is utterly cut off.
Even so, we hear the prophecy of the Savior.