in Bible prophecy
Bible prophecy inspired
When reference is made to Old Testament
prophecy about nations which have now disappeared, rejecters of
Biblical prophecy often try to explain its accuracy by insisting
that the words were written after the event occurred. In some instances,
the accuracy of detail in the prophecy has been cited as evidence
that it must have been written centuries after the time claimed
in the book itself!! (This is a tacit acknowledgement that the establishment
of the authenticity of prophecy would be evidence of inspiration
by God). For what conceivable purpose could such frauds have been
perpetrated? Any prophets appeal would be to contemporary readers.
These would be in a position to test the accuracy of part of the
prophecy only a few years after it was written. The false prophet
would soon have been discredited and his work not included by the
Jews in the canon of inspired scripture. For instance, the prophecies
concerning Egypt cover the whole period from the invasion by Nebuchadnezzar,
king of Babylon, down to the present time. The Jews who preserved
the book of Ezekiel lived through the siege of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar.
This siege had been prophesied by
Ezekiel. The evidence of their own eyes therefore confirmed the
reliability of the prophet. If he had prophesied falsely then they
would not have preserved his writings. He had told them accurately
what would happen in the short term, but he also spoke of the long
term. We can view these inspired writings over many centuries and
are impelled to the same conclusion as his fellow Jews. His words
were God's words and are true.
Ezekiel's prophecy against Egypt
It was declared by Ezekiel in his
29th chapter that the king of Babylon (Nebuchadnezzar) should devastate
the land of Egypt and scatter the people among the surrounding nations
for a period lasting 40 years. after this period the Egyptians were
to return to their land and "...they shall be there a base
kingdom. It shall be the basest of the kingdoms; neither shall it
exalt itself any more above the nations" (Ezekiel 29:12-15).
This prophecy is clear and is not in ambiguous terms like human
forecasts. It could very easily have been falsified if all the terms
had not been fulfilled to the letter - and yet it speaks of the
position Egypt will occupy with regard to its neighbours for all
The witness of history
It is a challenge to eternity! Egypt,
favoured by nature, rose early to a position of eminence - why should
it not do so again? Every century that has passed has been a menace
to this forecast. At any time events could have favoured an uprise
of Egyptian power, so falsifying Jewish prophecy that the land of
the Pharaohs should never again exalt itself over the nations; but
this prophecy has stood the test of over 2000 years. Any reader
who is interested may read the history of Egypt in any good encyclopaedia
where he will find Ezekiel's words amply justified. When the Medes
and Persians succeeded Babylon as conquerors of the then civilised
world, they took possession of Egypt and became "cruel overseers"
(see Isaiah 19:4) and when the Greeks took over the land they were
welcomed as deliverers. For three centuries the Grecian rule was
maintained by the Ptolomies, a family descended from one of the
four Greek generals who divided the empire on the death of Alexander
the Great. In BC 217, Rome entered the arena and it formed part
of Roman policy to keep Egypt weak. The very word "debased"
is used by Encyclopaedia Britannica - remember that Ezekiel said
"it shall be a base kingdom".
In 639 AD, Egypt was invaded by the Muslims and from that time until
today, Turks and Arabs have ruled Egypt, apart from a short term
of British rule in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
They finally drove out the Turks in 1917 and became the sole rulers
of Egypt until after the second world war when Arab power again
asserted itself with the uprise of Islam.
The finger of God
It was more than 2000 years ago
that Ezekiel said that Egyptians should return after 40 years captivity
to their own land, there to remain a base kingdom unable to expand
their territory into a mighty empire as in the past. It is interesting
to recall that in the 1950's when Nassar seized the government of
Egypt by a military coup, he strove to build up an empire again
by forming the so-called "United Arab Republic". He formed
an alliance with Syria and Libya and endeavoured by military means
to take over the Yemen. All he did was in vain - everything went
wrong and the Arabs ended up fighting among themselves instead of
uniting to form a mighty nation with Egypt at its head - as was
Nassar's dream. The finger of God was in these events and in spite
of Russian aid to Nassar, and later American aid to Sadat and Mubarak,
Egypt remains a "base kingdom" whose common people (the
fellahin) have the lowest standard of living in the Middle East.
There are more prophecies concerning
Egypt in God's word impossible of inclusion in a leaflet this size.
They would also impress a thoughtful mind with a desire to investigate
the book more thoroughly. The more one investigates, the more impressive
becomes the evidence that these prophecies do indeed prove the inspiration
of the Bible by God.