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Egypt 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 time!

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.


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