O Assyrian, the rod of mine anger, and the staff in their hand is mine indignation. I will send him against an hypocritical nation, and against the people of my wrath will I give him a charge, to take the spoil, and to take the prey, and to tread them down like the mire of the streets. Howbeit he meaneth not so, neither doth his heart think so; but it is in his heart to destroy and cut off nations not a few. For he saith, Are not my princes altogether kings? Is not Calno as Carchemish? is not Hamath as Arpad? is not Samaria as Damascus? As my hand hath found the kingdoms of the idols, and whose graven images did excel them of Jerusalem and of Samaria; Shall I not, as I have done unto Samaria and her idols, so do to Jerusalem and her idols?
God will use Assyria to punish Judah. But the Assyrian has bigger plans than that, as their aim is to build a world empire through conquest. They boast that their princes or commanders are all kings, that the cities in their pathway are no greater than those they have conquered, and that the idols of Israel and Judah are not comparable to those of the kingdoms they have captured.