Yechezkel Twenty-Nine: Egypt

Ezekiel’s focus shifts to Egypt. “Speak and you shall say; So says the Lord God: Behold I am upon you, O Pharaoh, king of Egypt, the great crocodile that lies down in the midst of its rivers, who said, ‘My river is my own, and I made myself (Ezekiel 29:3).'” God will make Himself known to the Egyptians, which seems like an interesting emphasis to have to make. Being that it was the Egyptians who felt God’s wrath during the 10 plagues, I can only imagine that the God of Israel must have achieved some kind of mythic status amongst their people throughout the generations. If one looks at the Pesach story from an Egyptian perspective, it’s terrifying to say the least, so I can’t imagine that the Egyptians forgot the power of God. Yet for some reason, Egypt needs to be punished again, and the land is cursed to become desolate and ruined. Only after 40 years will the Egyptians be gathered from their own exile, and return together. They’ll have to build up a new nation once again. Why is Egypt’s punishment so well-defined, while Israel is condemned to suffer indefinitely? I guess it’s always easier to be harsh on your own, and to give strict punishments within, rather than without. Still, it seems that being ‘chosen’ is a tough burden to bear for the Israelites, and provides high expectations to live up to.

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