There is a warning given to Nineveh by God over one hundred years after the city repented at Jonah’s prophetic warning of judgment. It is found in Nahum, and reads as follows,
“The Disperser/Desolator is come up before thy face: keep the fortified city/bulwarks, watch the way, make thy loins strong, fortify thy power mightily.” [Nah 2:1]
Nahum prophecies of the impending judgment upon Nineveh, warning them that the disperser or desolator has come before them, and he is ready to strike. The LORD tells Nineveh to prepare for this, giving them four things to do:
- Keep the fortified city/bulwarks
- Watch the way
- Make thy loins strong
- Fortify thy power mightily
These are also instructive for us as Christians, to prepare against any spiritually evil forces which could cause dispersion or desolation. We are to guard ourselves carefully, guard our cities as it were. The Bible says,
“We know that whosoever is born of God does not continue in sin; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not.” [1 Jn 5:18] “Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the fountains of life.” [Prov 4:23]
And we are to carefully watch our way, the path we are taking.
“I have refrained my feet from every evil way, that I might keep Thy word.” [Psa 119:101] “Let thine eyes look right on, and let thine eyelids look straight before thee. Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established. Turn not to the right hand nor to the left: remove thy foot from evil.” [Prov 4:23-27]
Regarding our loins, Peter gives us some instruction.
Peter says that since those prophets of old, “who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you,” were speaking of this future generation, where the glory which would follow the sufferings of Christ would be revealed, then,
“…having girded up the loins of your mind, being sober, fully set your hope in the grace which is being brought unto you in revelation of Jesus Christ.” [1 Pe 1:13]
And Peter goes on, telling us in what manner we should hope in this grace, saying,
“As obedient children, not conforming/fashioning/molding yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: but as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; because it is written, you will be holy; for I am holy.” [1 Pe 1:14-16]
The loins of our mind, as it were, must be girded up that we may “run with endurance the race that is being set before us” just as Elijah “girded up his loins, and ran before Ahab.” In that state of readiness, we must have sober minds which have that eternal goal steadfastly in view. Those things true, we ought to place our hope in new revelations of Jesus Christ’s glory and character as found in the scriptures. These revelations provide us with grace, which when bestowed upon us, we are to then, “as obedient children,” and as “dear children,” conform ourselves to Jesus’ image, who is holy, and not to the past lusts which we once pursued ignorantly. As Paul says,
“But we all, with open face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” [2 Cor 3:18]
Let us who seek to follow Jesus and obey His voice remain sober and alert, waiting for His return; let us zealously guard our hearts and lives, keeping them pure for our Lord. Let us not become apathetic or lazy, but continue on steadfastly in the faith so that we do not stumble or become victim to the desolator.