Eze 30:1-26. Continuation of the Prophecies against Egypt.
Two distinct messages: (1) At Eze 30:1-19, a repetition of Eze 29:1-16, with fuller details of lifelike distinctness. The date is probably not long after that mentioned in Eze 29:17, on the eve of Nebuchadnezzar's march against Egypt after subjugating Tyre. (2) A vision relating directly to Pharaoh and the overthrow of his kingdom; communicated at an earlier date, the seventh of the first month of the eleventh year. Not a year after the date in Eze 29:1, and three months before the taking of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar.
2. Woe worth the day! -- that is, Alas for the day!
3. the time of the heathen -- namely, for taking vengeance on them. The judgment on Egypt is the beginning of a world-wide judgment on all the heathen enemies of God (Joe 1:15; 2:1, 2; 3:1-21; Ob 15).
4. pain -- literally, |pangs with trembling as of a woman in childbirth.|
5. the mingled people -- the mercenary troops of Egypt from various lands, mostly from the interior of Africa (compare Eze 27:10; Jer 25:20, 24; 46:9, 21).
Chub -- the people named Kufa on the monuments [Havernick], a people considerably north of Palestine [Wilkinson]; Coba or Chobat, a city of Mauritania [Maurer].
men of the land that is in league -- too definite an expression to mean merely, |men in league| with Egypt; rather, |sons of the land of the covenant,| that is, the Jews who migrated to Egypt and carried Jeremiah with them (Jer 42:1-44:30). Even they shall not escape (Jer 42:22; 44:14).
6. from the tower of Syene -- (see on Eze 29:10).
7. in the midst of ... countries ... desolate -- Egypt shall fare no better than they (Eze 29:10).
9. messengers ... in ships to ... Ethiopians -- (Isa 18:1, 2). The cataracts interposing between them and Egypt should not save them. Egyptians |fleeing from before Me| in My execution of judgment, as |messengers| in |skiffs| (|vessels of bulrushes,| Isa 18:2) shall go up the Nile as far as navigable, to announce the advance of the Chaldeans.
as in the day of Egypt -- The day of Ethiopia's |pain| shall come shortly, as Egypt's day came.
10. the multitude -- the large population.
12. rivers -- the artificial canals made from the Nile for irrigation. The drying up of these would cause scarcity of grain, and so prepare the way for the invaders (Isa 19:5-10).
13. Noph -- Memphis, the capital of Middle Egypt, and the stronghold of |idols.| Though no record exists of Nebuchadnezzar's |destroying| these, we know from Herodotus and others, that Cambyses took Pelusium, the key of Egypt, by placing before his army dogs, cats, &c., all held sacred in Egypt, so that no Egyptian would use any weapon against them. He slew Apis, the sacred ox, and burnt other idols of Egypt.
no more a prince -- referring to the anarchy that prevailed in the civil wars between Apries and Amasis at the time of Nebuchadnezzar's invasion. There shall no more be a prince of the land of Egypt, ruling the whole country; or, no independent prince.
14. Pathros -- Upper Egypt, with |No| or Thebes its capital (famed for its stupendous buildings, of which grand ruins remain), in antithesis to Zoan or Tanis, a chief city in Lower Egypt, within the Delta.
15. Sin -- that is, Pelusium, the frontier fortress on the northeast, therefore called |the strength (that is, the key) of Egypt.| It stands in antithesis to No or Thebes at the opposite end of Egypt; that is, I will afflict Egypt from one end to the other.
16. distresses daily -- Maurer translates, |enemies during the day,| that is, open enemies who do not wait for the covert of night to make their attacks (compare Jer 6:4; 15:8). However, the Hebrew, though rarely, is sometimes rendered (see Ps 13:2) as in English Version.
17. Aven -- meaning |vanity| or |iniquity|: applied, by a slight change of the Hebrew name, to On or Heliopolis, in allusion to its idolatry. Here stood the temple of the sun, whence it was called in Hebrew, Beth-shemesh (Jer 43:13). The Egyptian hieroglyphics call it, Re Athom, the sun, the father of the gods, being impersonate in Athom or Adam, the father of mankind.
Pi-beseth -- that is, Bubastis, in Lower Egypt, near the Pelusiac branch of the Nile: notorious for the worship of the goddess of the same name (Coptic, Pasht), the granite stones of whose temple still attest its former magnificence.
these cities -- rather, as the Septuagint, |the women,| namely, of Aven and Pi-beseth, in antithesis to |the young men.| So in Eze 30:18, |daughters shall go into captivity| [Maurer].
18. Tehaphnehes -- called from the queen of Egypt mentioned in 1Ki 11:19. The same as Daphne, near Pelusium, a royal residence of the Pharaohs (Jer 43:7, 9). Called Hanes (Isa 30:4).
break ... the yokes of Egypt -- that is, the tyrannical supremacy which she exercised over other nations. Compare |bands of their yoke| (Eze 34:7).
a cloud -- namely, of calamity.
20. Here begins the earlier vision, not long after that in the twenty-ninth chapter, about three months before the taking of Jerusalem, as to Pharaoh and his kingdom.
21. broken ... arm of Pharaoh -- (Ps 37:17; Jer 48:25). Referring to the defeat which Pharaoh-hophra sustained from the Chaldeans, when trying to raise the siege of Jerusalem (Jer 37:5, 7); and previous to the deprivation of Pharaoh-necho of all his conquests from the river of Egypt to the Euphrates (2Ki 24:7; Jer 46:2); also to the Egyptian disaster in Cyrene.
22. arms -- Not only the |one arm| broken already (Eze 30:21) was not to be healed, but the other two should be broken. Not a corporal wound, but a breaking of the power of Pharaoh is intended.
cause ... sword to fall out of ... hand -- deprive him of the resources of making war.