Woe to the Children of Israel

Isaiah 30 begins with a woe to “the rebellious children.”  These “children” were making plans that were not the Lord’s and developing alliances that were not a result of the leading of the Spirit of God.  Instead of repenting of their sins, they sought refuge from the pharaoh in Egypt.

Surely this is a reference to the Israelites of 2 Kings 17 and 18.  When Hoshea was the king of Israel in Samaria, he became a vassal of Shalmaneser, the king of Assyria and paid him tribute.  Several years later, Hoshea send messengers to So, the king of Egypt and stopped paying tribute to the king of Assyria.  This made the king of Assyria angry so he put Hoshea in prison.  In the ninth year of Hoshea’s reign, the king of Assyria finally took Samaria and carried away Israel to Assyria because they abandoned the commandments of the Lord their god; committed idolatry, witchcraft, soothsaying; and did other evil in the sight of the Lord.  Samaria was taken in the sixth year of Hezekiah’s reign in Judah.

These people were disappointed because the Egyptians left them disgraced.  The prophecy found in Isaiah 30, describes Egypt as “Arrogance Doing Nothing.”  The children of the Lord are described as lying children who refused to hear the Torah of the Lord.  They did not want to hear about the visions of the seers.  They desired to trust in extortion and rely on deceit as a way of life.  They refused to return and rest in the Lord who could save them.  If they had, He would have given them calmness and confidence which could have made them strong.  Surely, they thought they could flee from their enemies.

Hezekiah, the king of Judah was not completely like Hoshea, the king of Israel.  Hezekiah gave us a different example to follow.  In the 14th year of Hezekiah’s reign, Sennacherib, the king of Assyria came against the cities of Judah.  This resulted in Hezekiah paying the king of Assyria silver and gold.  The king of Assyria sent an army against Jerusalem and accused them of having plans of war and said they were trusting Pharaoh, the king of Egypt for Egypt’s chariots and horsemen. 

The Assyrians errantly believed that the Lord could not protect the Judeans because Hezekiah had removed the high places.  They mistakenly believed that the high places belonged to the Lord when in reality, they really didn’t.  These Assyrians intended to conquer Judah and receive tribute from Hezekiah.  They threatened the Jews with exile if they did not comply.  Sennacherib mocked the Lord’s ability to protect the Jews.  First Kings 19 says that when Hezekiah heard about this, he demonstrated a heart of repentance, went into the house of the Lord, and prayed for deliverance.  The Lord answered Hezekiah’s prayer by sending the angel of the Lord to kill those in the camp of the Assyrians.

Hezekiah experienced the truth of Isaiah 30:18-19:  “Therefore the Lord will wait, that He may be gracious to you; And therefore He will be exalted, that He may have mercy on you. For the Lord is a God of justice; Blessed are all those who wait for Him. 19 For the people shall dwell in Zion at Jerusalem; You shall weep no more. He will be very gracious to you at the sound of your cry; When He hears it, He will answer you.”

This is the word for Israel today!  The Lord wants to reveal Himself to His people.  He wants them to hear the word of the Lord and walk in the ancient path.  Israel needs to cast aside their idols no matter what form they take.  Once they do so, He will send literal rain in its season so that nutritious food will grow abundantly.  The water will flow in streams and brooks instead of their being dry, empty stream-beds.

At this point in Scripture, the prophecy of Isaiah begins shifting to a time in the future—the day of the Lord, the day of great slaughter. 

Matthew 24:29-31 describes it like this:   “Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.  30 Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.  31 And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.”

The coming of the glory of the Lord will cause the sun and moon to change.  The moon will be as bright as the light of the sun and the light of the sun will be seven times stronger.  Once he gathers His chosen ones together, He will heal them and bind up their wounds.

The vision seen of the Lord in Isaiah is one of the Lord coming to the earth.  Note the physical description here:

  • Anger, burning in thick rising smoke;
  • Lips, full with fury;
  • Tongue, a consuming fire;
  • Breath like a racing torrent that rises up to the neck.

It is clear He has come to selectively destroy the wicked of the nations and lead them away.

Revelation 9:11-16 describes Jesus whose name is “Faithful and True”:

  • Riding on a white horse;
  • Passing judgment and going into battle in righteousness;
  • Eyes like a fiery flame;
  • Royal crowns on His head;
  • A name written  which no one knew but himself;
  • Wearing a blood soaked robe;
  • The name by which He is called, “The Word of God;”
  • Accompanied by the armies of heaven on white horses;
  • Sword coming out of His mouth with which to strike down the nations.”
  • Ruling with a staff of iron;
  • Treading the winepress from which flows the wine of the furious rage of the Lord, God of heaven’s armies.
  • “King of kings and Lord of lords” written on his robe and thigh.

Isaiah 30:29 says the people will sing a song like that which is happily sung on a night when a holy feast is kept.  Revelation 15:3-4 says this song is the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb:  “Great and marvelous are Your works, Lord God Almighty! Just and true are Your ways, O King of the saints! 4 Who shall not fear You, O Lord, and glorify Your name? For You alone are holy. For all nations shall come and worship before You, For Your judgments have been manifested.”

The Lord will come in furious anger, in a flaming firestorm, with cloudbursts, tempests, and hailstones.  He will terrify the Assyrians as He strikes them down with His scepter.  Who are the Assyrians?  Are they only those the angel of the Lord killed in Hezekiah’s time?  No, this is also referring to the nations who will come against Israel in the last day. 

Isaiah 30:33 says the Tofet fire pit has long been ready for the king of Assyria.  It has been set on fire by the breath of the Lord.  The Tofet fire is a place of cremation.  It is the everlasting fire repeatedly referred to in the New Testament.  This is also the fire the Beast and False Prophet of Revelation will be thrown into.  This fire is also known as the second death into which those from the second resurrection will be thrown into after they are judged according to what they had done during their lives.

What about present-day Israel? 

They can no longer trust in Egypt or America.  Israel must repent, realize the Yeshua is HaMashiyach, and rest in Him.  They must remember that the angel of the Lord killed the Egyptians on the night of the first Passover and the angel of the Lord killed the Assyrians who came against Hezekiah.  Since that is the case, “Faithful and True” will come to kill those who come against Israel on the day of the Lord. 

Long ago, the Assyrians did not believe the Lord would rescue Jerusalem because Hezekiah had removed the high places of other gods.  Today, Israel’s enemies do not believe in the power of the Lord God of Israel.  They mock the King of kings and Lord of lords by saying their god is greater than all other gods.  This will lead to their destruction. 

All believers must know these prophecies, believe them, and count on them!

Remember, anyone who comes claiming he is Messiah before that day is not the Messiah so don’t be deceived or led astray!!

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The Prophecy Against Egypt

Isaiah 19 is a prophecy against Egypt.  It begins, “The burden against Egypt.  Behold, the Lord rides on a swift cloud, And will come into Egypt; The idols of Egypt will totter at His presence, And the heart of Egypt will melt in its midst.”

This is vaguely reminiscent of the Lord coming into Egypt on the night of Passover.  Exodus 12 says the Lord Himself promised to pass through the land of Egypt and to strike the firstborn man and beast, and all the gods of Egypt. The Bible says this took place at midnight.  When the mixed multitude left Egypt, the Lord went before them in a pillar of cloud to lead them during the day and in a pillar of fire during the night.

Isaiah 19:2 continues, “I will set Egyptians against Egyptians; Everyone will fight against his brother, And everyone against his neighbor, City against city, kingdom against kingdom.”

As I consider what happened long ago in Egypt during the time of Moses, I wonder if the Egyptians were fighting one another as the plagues fell upon them.  Even the magicians realized this was the finger of God.  Surely they wanted Pharaoh to give in to Moses and Aaron before more damage was done.  If they felt this way, surely many of the other Egyptians felt the same way.  The question remains as to whether or not they were willing to fight one another over it.

We have to wonder if this Scripture has been fulfilled in our midst today.  Back in February 2011, during the Arab Spring, former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak’s regime fought against the popular uprising in Tahrir Square.  What was quite curious at the time was the viral video of a ghostly rider on his horse.  Could this have been the equivalent of the Lord coming on a cloud into Egypt or was this one of the horsemen of Revelation?

If this is not the actual fulfillment of Isaiah, then it will come in the future.

Isaiah 19:3-4 goes on to say, “The spirit of Egypt will fail in its midst; I will destroy their counsel, And they will consult the idols and the charmers, The mediums and the sorcerers. 4 And the Egyptians I will give Into the hand of a cruel master, And a fierce king will rule over them,” Says the Lord, the Lord of hosts.”

Today the most predominant religion in Egypt is Islam (mostly Sunni) although there are some Jews and Christian denominations there and people of other beliefs. [i] By the end of June 2012, Mohamed Morsi, a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, won the presidency of Egypt.  So far, all of this activity in the country has decreased tourism in Egypt and unemployment is rising.[ii]  Time will tell exactly how cruel Mr. Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood will be as president of Egypt.

Isaiah 19 prophesies that at some point, the waters of Egypt will also be affected by drying up and turning foul.  This will cause the plant life to wither.  The fishing and textile industry will be negatively affected in addition to the daily wages suffering due to lack of available work.

As we consider this passage, we must also consider the information found in Ezekiel 29.  The Lord will be against the Pharaoh of Egypt.  He’s referred to as a great monster that dwells in the river of Egypt.  The Lord says he will put hooks in his jaws and draw him out with all the fish in his rivers sticking to him.  I other words, the Lord will draw the Egyptians into battle.  This is a reference to the president of Egypt and his army.  All of them will be left in an open field to be eaten by the beasts of the field and birds of the air.  This portion of Scripture has obvious connections with the feast for birds mentioned in Revelation 19:17-21. 

I wonder what the Egyptians thought when they realized their Pharaoh and his army was drowned in the sea.  As I consider the future, I’m confident Ezekiel was correct when he said that only after the flesh of the Pharaoh and his army are eaten will the Egyptians know the Lord.

Prior to that, there will be no wise men in Egypt; the counselors will give foolish counsel.  A perverse spirit will cause Egypt to error in all its work.

Will the Egyptians realize that what is happening to them is caused by the hand of the Lord?  Since the Egyptians in Moses’ time did, I think it will only be a matter of time before the Egyptians will fear the Lord and Israel.

At some point, there will be an altar to the Lord in Egypt and a pillar at its border.  This will be a sign and a witness for the Lord.  Just like the Hebrews called out to the Lord for deliverance because of their oppressors, many Egyptians will do the same thing in the future.  The Lord will send Jesus to deliver them!  Even though the Lord will strike Egypt, He will heal it afterwards.  The people will return to the Lord and He will heal them. 

As hard as it is for us to imagine, there will be a highway from Egypt to Assyria when Jesus returns. The Assyrians and Egyptians will travel back and forth on this road.  Both the Assyrians and Egyptians will serve the Lord with the people of Israel.  This is very different from the Egyptians being led away from their homeland by the Assyrians unclothed and ashamed as described in Isaiah 20.

 

Proclamation Against Ethiopia

For Isaiah 18, most Bibles have a descriptive header that says something like “Proclamation Against Ethiopia.”  Personally, I don’t think this passage is necessarily a proclamation against Ethiopia although according to Ezekiel, Ethiopia is expected to come against Israel in the last days during the Battle of Gog. 

Isaiah 18:1-2 begins: “Woe to the land shadowed with buzzing wings, Which is beyond the rivers of Ethiopia, 2 Which sends ambassadors [tsiyriym] by sea, Even in vessels of reed on the waters, saying, “Go, swift messengers  [malakiym], to a nation tall [mashak] and smooth of skin [morat], To a people terrible from their beginning onward, A nation powerful and treading down, Whose land the rivers divide [bazu].”

Isaiah 18:7 concludes, “In that time a present will be brought to the Lord of hosts From a people tall [mashak] and smooth of skin [morat], And from a people terrible from their beginning onward, A nation powerful and treading down, Whose land the rivers divide [bazu]— To the place of the name of the Lord of hosts, To Mount Zion.

First, note that the land of woe is somewhere beyond the rivers of Ethiopia.  We don’t know how far away the land of woe is beyond the rivers of Ethiopia.  Sudan was once part of Ethiopia and the land referred to in verse two could be Egypt since the Blue Nile River from present day Ethiopia and the White Nile River from present day Sudan combine in Sudan and flow north into Egypt.  The land “shadowing with buzzing wings” or “whirring with wings” could be a reference to Egypt’s insects but we can’t say for sure.  

Tsiyriym can be translated as either ambassadors or messengers.  Normally, malakiym can be translated as ambassadors, angels, kings, or messengers.  Bazu, a grammatical form of baza, can mean to spoil or divide.  Some people may be tempted to say that tsiyriym and malakiym are simply synonyms but I believe the verse should be: “that sends messengers by the sea…saying, kings [of the nations], ‘Go to Israel, whose land has been polluted by its rivers.’”  This is a call for the nations to send armies that will destroy God’s people and seize the land.

The Jordan River divides Israel while the rest of Israel’s rivers provide water in various areas of the country.  It’s quite possible that in the last days, the rivers of Israel could become polluted by the third trumpet.  At that time, a great star will fall from heaven.  It will fall on a third of the rivers and on the springs of water.  Many will die from the water because it will be made bitter.  Fortunately, Ezekiel 47:8 says the waters be healed.

Mashak is translated as “tall” in various English versions but it can also be translated as extended, stretched out, or scattered.  Morat is often translated as “peeled” or “smooth of skin” in various English versions but it can also be translated as obstinate.  Since verse seven indicates the land the people were being sent to was Mount Zion, it becomes obvious that mashak should be translated as scattered since the Jews are scattered throughout the earth and morat should be translated as obstinate because of the rebellion demonstrated by the idolatry of God’s people.  Both words well describe God’s people in the Old Testament Scriptures.

In verse 2, the prophet was basically saying, “Woe to the land who sends messengers to the kings of the nations to tell them to go to the people of Israel.”  The Bible speaks primarily of the countries of North Africa and the Middle East so it’s highly probable that the land of woe is from this area; however, some people have suggested this is a reference to America.  Again, although the prophet said the land is beyond the rivers of Ethiopia, we don’t know in which direction or how far away this land is.  Usually, things are written from the perspective of the writer.

Anyway, suddenly Isaiah 18 shifts.  Isaiah 18:3 says, “All inhabitants of the world and dwellers on the earth: When he lifts up a banner on the mountains, you see it; And when he blows a trumpet, you hear it.”  Who is “he”?  Isaiah 5:26 refers to the Lord as the one who will lift up a banner to the nations from afar.  In Isaiah 11:10, Jesus is the banner that will be lifted up.  The trumpet will announce His coming.  Before that time comes, Jesus is waiting and watching until the time is right to come with His armies to destroy Israel’s enemies.

Isaiah 18:5 says, “For before the harvest, when the bud is perfect And the sour grape is ripening in the flower, He will both cut off the sprigs with pruning hooks And take away and cut down the branches.” The timing of this is in the fall, most likely just as a year of Jubilee is about to begin.  This is a reference to Revelation 14:18-20 which describes it like this:  “And another angel came out from the altar, who had power over fire, and he cried with a loud cry to him who had the sharp sickle, saying, “Thrust in your sharp sickle and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth, for her grapes are fully ripe.” 19 So the angel thrust his sickle into the earth and gathered the vine of the earth, and threw it into the great winepress of the wrath of God. 20 And the winepress was trampled outside the city, and blood came out of the winepress, up to the horses’ bridles, for one thousand six hundred furlongs.”

Isaiah 18:6 then says, “They will be left together for the mountain birds of prey And for the beasts of the earth; The birds of prey will summer on them, And all the beasts of the earth will winter on them.”   This is a description of the feast for birds which follows the Battle of Armageddon.  Revelation 19:21 tells us, “And the rest were killed with the sword which proceeded from the mouth of Him who sat on the horse. And all the birds were filled with their flesh.”

After that, a present will be brought unto the Lord of hosts of Israel…

Zephaniah 3:10-12 explains, “From beyond the rivers of Ethiopia My worshipers, The daughter of My dispersed ones, Shall bring My offering. 11 In that day you shall not be shamed for any of your deeds In which you transgress against Me; For then I will take away from your midst Those who rejoice in your pride, And you shall no longer be haughty In My holy mountain. 12 I will leave in your midst A meek and humble people, And they shall trust in the name of the Lord.”

Revelation Follows The Pattern of the Exodus

The Bible is full of many patterns that show us what will happen in the future.  When I first began to learn to study the Bible through thematic connections, I heard that Exodus is the pattern for Revelation.  I thought that was an interesting idea.  Since I couldn’t find the information published anywhere, I took up the challenge to figure out the details for myself.  As we’ll soon see, the pattern extends well beyond Exodus.

I thought you might like to know what I learned so we’ll do some comparing to see if what prophecy experts teach is in line with what happened during Jesus’ first advent and with what will happen when Jesus returns in the future.  Due to the overall length of this post, I will be as concise as possible.

Here we go:

Moses lived a life of royalty in Egypt and was not a slave.  Jesus left a life of royalty in heaven and was never a slave to sin during His first advent.

Moses left Egypt and lived in Midian with Zipporah’s father.  Jesus left earth to live in heaven with His Father.

God made Himself and His plan known to Moses at the burning bush.  The Father and Jesus had a similar relationship and the Father always made His plan known to Jesus so He could carry out that plan.

Moses showed the Hebrews 2 miraculous signs.

  1. Moses’ rod was turned into a snake.  This revealed that God would overpower the Egyptian gods.
  2. The other miracle was the leprous hand.  Leprosy [tzara’at = is not true leprosy / Hansen’s disease] was considered to be a result of an inward spiritual condition.  God’s people were unclean (the living, walking dead) and He would make them clean.

Jesus demonstrated His divinity through miraculous signs and taught that people need to be born again and how to be holy.  His final 3 part miracle involved:

  1. Becoming our Passover Lamb on Nissan 14th.
  2. Being 3 days and nights in the earth during the first part of the Feast of Unleavened Bread.
  3. Rising from the dead to present Himself to the Father on the Feast of Firstfruits.

Pharaoh came against Moses and the Hebrews by taking away their straw and making them continue to fulfill their quotas.  In the future, the beast will come against the saints, persecute them and eventually kill many of them.

Pharaoh’s necromancers competed against the wonders being performed by Moses and Aaron.  Satan imitates the miracles of God.  The beast of the earth (false prophet) will perform miracles to imitate Jesus.

The first 3 plagues fell on everyone in Egypt and Goshen.  The seals and trumpets of Revelation will fall on everyone.  The last 7 plagues fell only on the Egyptians.  The bowl judgments (plagues) of Revelation will fall only on the wicked.

The sealing of Israel took place on Passover.  The sealing of the 144,000 will take place sometime in the future.

The firstborn Egyptians males were killed by the LORD during the 10th plague.  The last plague is a massive earthquake and 70 – pound hailstones falling on people yet the wicked will not repent.

The Israelites lived through the plagues and were no longer slaves when they left Egypt.  In the future the “dry bones” will live.  This is the first resurrection (Ezekiel 37, 1 Thess. 4:16).

The mixed multitude in Egypt was gathered to go to the Promised Land.  Ezekiel 37 indicates a mixed multitude will be gathered from 4 corners of the earth to return to Jerusalem.

The Hebrews plundered the Egyptians before leaving Egypt.  Israel’s enemies will be plundered in the future (Zephaniah 2:9, Zechariah 2:9, 14:1).

The redeemed that came out of Egypt were followed by a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night.  They eventually camped beside the Red Sea.  Psalm 27:5-6 and Isaiah 26:20-21 indicate Jesus will hide His saints in the day of trouble until His wrath is past.  In Revelation 15:2, the saints of Revelation were seen standing beside sea of glass mingled with fire.

After several days the mixed multitude of Hebrews and foreigners were pursued by Pharaoh’s army.   Moses stretched out his hand over the sea (possibly with the rod in his hand) and the Red Sea opened for the redeemed to cross over.  Pharaoh’s army was killed as they pursued the mixed multitude across the Red Sea.

Jesus, Son of Joseph also delivered us by stretching out his hands over a piece of wood when He died on the cross.  Jesus, Son of David will come on a white horse with many crowns on His head, flaming eyes, and a sharp sword coming out of His mouth to strike the nations with (Rev. 19:11-16).   Jesus, Son of David will stand on the Mount of Olives and it will open creating a valley for the Jews to escape through (Zech. 14:4).  Ten kings of the world and their armies will be killed by the Son of David (Conquering King) but some will escape the Battle of Armageddon (Is. 66:19).  In addition, Zechariah 14:12-15 describes a terrible plague that will come on those who fight against Jerusalem.  Their flesh, eyes, and tongues will dissolve while they stand on their feet.

The Song of Moses and the Song of Praise (Miriam’s Song) was sung.  The Song of Victory and the Song of the Lamb will be sung.

The mixed multitude wandered in the wilderness for 40 years.  Some were destroyed while others were prepared to enter the Promised Land.  Satan will be in the abyss for 1000 years (Rev. 20:3, 6, 7; Ezek 39, 45-48) while believers will be preparing to enter the final Promised Land (New Heaven and Earth).

The Tabernacle was built in the wilderness and offerings were made.  According to Ezekiel 40-44, the third temple described will be built sometime in the future and offerings will be brought to the Lord during Christ’s millennial reign.

The mixed multitude learned to obey Torah in the wilderness.  Ezekiel 43-46 says we will learn to obey Torah during Christ’s millennial reign.

The second generation who did not join themselves to Baal of Peor finally entered the Promised Land under Joshua’s leadership after wandering in the wilderness for 40 years (Numbers 25).  The Commander of the Lord’s army instructed Joshua concerning the battle plan for Jericho so that the walls would fall down after walking around the city seven times (Joshua 5:13-6:5).  At the end of the millennial reign of Christ, God will destroy Gog and his armies with fire when they come and surround the city of Jerusalem (Rev. 21-22).

Achan trespassed concerning the devoted things at Jericho.  The people were brought according to their tribes, families, household, and finally by individuals.  Achan was found guilty of transgressing the covenant.  Achan and his family and possessions were stoned and burned with fire.  After the Battle of Gog and Magog, the Great White Throne Judgment will take place.  Everyone whose name is not found in the book of life will be thrown in the lake of fire.

So, what do you think of the similarities between the Exodus and Revelation?