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Isaiah 19Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

An Oracle against Egypt

19 An oracle against Egypt:

Look, the Lord rides on a swift cloud
and is coming to Egypt.
Egypt’s idols will tremble before Him,
and Egypt’s heart will melt within it.
I will provoke Egypt against Egypt;
each will fight against his brother
and each against his friend,
city against city, kingdom against kingdom.
Egypt’s spirit will be disturbed within it,
and I will frustrate its plans.
Then they will seek idols, ghosts,
spirits of the dead, and spiritists.
I will deliver Egypt into the hands of harsh masters,
and a strong king will rule it.
This is the declaration of the Lord God of Hosts.

The waters of the sea will dry up,
and the river will be parched and dry.
The channels will stink;
they will dwindle, and Egypt’s canals will be parched.
Reed and rush will die.[a]
The reeds by the Nile, by the mouth of the river,
and all the cultivated areas of the Nile
will wither, blow away, and vanish.
Then the fishermen will mourn.
All those who cast hooks into the Nile will lament,
and those who spread nets on the water will shrivel up.
Those who work with flax will be dismayed;
the combers and weavers will turn pale.[b]
10 Egypt’s weavers[c] will be dejected;
all her wage earners will be demoralized.

11 The princes of Zoan are complete fools;
Pharaoh’s wisest advisers give stupid advice!
How can you say to Pharaoh,
“I am one[d] of the wise,
a student of eastern[e] kings”?
12 Where then are your wise men?
Let them tell you and reveal
what the Lord of Hosts has planned against Egypt.
13 The princes of Zoan have been fools;
the princes of Memphis are deceived.
Her tribal chieftains have led Egypt astray.
14 The Lord has mixed within her a spirit of confusion.
The leaders have made Egypt stagger in all she does,
as a drunkard staggers in his vomit.
15 No head or tail, palm or reed,
will be able to do anything for Egypt.

Egypt Will Know the Lord

16 On that day Egypt will be like women. She will tremble with fear because of the threatening hand of the Lord of Hosts when He raises it against her. 17 The land of Judah will terrify Egypt; whenever Judah is mentioned, Egypt will tremble because of what the Lord of Hosts has planned against it.

18 On that day five cities in the land of Egypt will speak the language of Canaan and swear loyalty to the Lord of Hosts. One of the cities will be called the City of the Sun.[f][g]

19 On that day there will be an altar to the Lord in the center of the land of Egypt and a pillar to the Lord near her border. 20 It will be a sign and witness to the Lord of Hosts in the land of Egypt. When they cry out to the Lord because of their oppressors, He will send them a savior and leader, and he will rescue them. 21 The Lord will make Himself known to Egypt, and Egypt will know the Lord on that day. They will offer sacrifices and offerings; they will make vows to the Lord and fulfill them. 22 The Lord will strike Egypt, striking and healing. Then they will return to the Lord and He will hear their prayers and heal them.

23 On that day there will be a highway from Egypt to Assyria. Assyria will go to Egypt, Egypt to Assyria, and Egypt will worship with Assyria.

24 On that day Israel will form a triple alliance with Egypt and Assyria—a blessing within the land. 25 The Lord of Hosts will bless them, saying, “Egypt My people, Assyria My handiwork, and Israel My inheritance are blessed.”

Footnotes:

  1. Isaiah 19:6 Or wilt, or become black
  2. Isaiah 19:9 DSS, Tg; MT reads weavers of white cloth
  3. Isaiah 19:10 Or foundations
  4. Isaiah 19:11 Lit a son
  5. Isaiah 19:11 Lit a son of ancient
  6. Isaiah 19:18 Some Hb mss, DSS, Sym, Tg, Vg, Arabic; other Hb mss read of Destruction; LXX reads of Righteousness
  7. Isaiah 19:18 = the ancient Egyptian city Heliopolis
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