The Oracle Concerning Egypt

19: 1-25

    Now Isaiah goes north of Ethiopia to Egypt. Chapter 19 focuses on Egypt; Chapter 20 concerns both Egypt and Cush. As in the other oracles, the historical situation, the impending Assyrian advance throughout the whole region, serves as a backdrop for the prophecies.

    As seen in Chapters 30 and 31, the leaders of Judah were tempted to rely more and more upon Egypt as the eighth century drew to a close and the threat of Assyrian invasion became greater and greater. However, Isaiah’s message remained the same: Anything that we trust instead of ADONAI will eventually turn on us and destroy us. He asks, “Why, trust Egypt when she has nothing to offer you that you do not already have (Chapter 19)? Why trust Egypt when recent history shows she will betray you (Chapter 20)? Why not trust the LORD who holds pagan Egypt in the palm of His hand and to whom she must ultimately one day turn?”


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