Here, the focus is on THE DAY OF THE LORD and judgment on “the nations that are located south of Jerusalem. This predicts the GENERAL defeat of these nations, but more specific details are provided in Daniel 11:42-43.
This was probably received in the same year as the “word” of chapter 29:1-16, which was 588 BCE (3537 AH). This chapter predicts great judgment on Egypt through Nebuchadnezzar (verse 19).
Chapter 30:20-26 returns to prose and introduces a new “word”, that is given to Ezekiel a year later, in the first month of 588 BCE (3538 AH), but it continues with the same prophetic message.
Then chapters 31-32 continue with predicted judgment on Egypt.
Chapter 31 was given in the third month of 587 BCE, and chapter 32 was given in the 12th month of 586 BCE (3539 AH).
This shows that chapter 30 is a continuation of chapter 29:1-16, and that 29:17-21 was given much later and simply placed here when written.
It shows the fulfillment of Ezekiel’s prophecies of judgment that were given about 17 years earlier. It also places the judgment on Egypt in about 572-71 BCE shortly after Neb’s 13 year siege of Tyre.
The Pharaoh in view is Hophra (known by the Greeks as Apries) who reigned from 588 to 569 BCE, at which time he was dethroned and strangled by his son, Amasis II. Nebuchadnezzar invaded Egypt a few years before that in about 772 BCE after failing to acquire material provisions from his invasion on Tyre (Ezek. 29:17-20). At that time Egypt’s influence over the nations ended and it became subservient to Babylon and never recovered. Even though it regained some of its freedom under Persia (about 40 years later (Ezek 29:10-14), it still continued to decline throughout the years, and never regained its once high and powerful position among the nations of the world, “and it will be a lowly kingdom” (V. 29:14).
THE DAY OF THE LORD
2b-4 are written in poetry to give the details of the prophecy.
6-8 return to poetry to give more details.
As most commentators rightly observe, the term, “day of the LORD,” should be kept in an end-times context whenever it occurs.
mention of "clouds" is used to symbolize great trouble. It does not mean that
there will literally be DARKNESS from the clouds.
The darkness mentioned here does not refer to the initial spectacular signs in the sun, moon and stars, but to the general NATURE of the day of the Lord, as at Joel 2:1-2. Once again, it seems to be more symbolic than a reference to actual physical darkness.
Likewise the prophet Amos described the day of the Lord in this manner.
As the people of the land listened to the prophets message (Joel to the Southern kingdom, and Amos to the Northern kingdom), they were warned of severe national discipline. But along with that warning was the promise of deliverance and blessing. The national discipline would come at the hands of Assyria first, and later by Babylon. But the term THE DAY OF THE LORD had specific application to the “end times,” with only a very passive application to the contemporary judgments that would come upon the land. And as the people listened to the promise of blessing, they applied it to themselves “across the board” without recognizing the error of their ways or the displeasure of Yahweh that was expressed toward them. Accordingly, they thought that the arrival of the DAY OF THE LORD would be a time of great light and blessing for all of them. Amos rebukes that attitude and calls the people to accountability for their consistent failure. He thus exhorts them to “seek Me that you may live (Amos 5:4), and to “seek good and not evil, that you may live” (Amos 5:14). And “perhaps Yahweh God of the armies might be gracious to the remnant of Joseph” (verse 15).
But they fail to respond and Amos must alert them to the truth that in their condition of spiritual rebellion, the DAY OF THE LORD will NOT be a day of blessing, but of darkness and gloom.
Similarly in Joel
mention of darkness COULD refer to the initial brief and spectacular signs in
the sun, moon and stars, as will be mentioned by Joel at verses 30-31.
Topic: DAY OF THE LORD - summary
It seems that the power of the King of the west will be challenged by these other nations. This will happen when the West’s ability to control and distribute PROMISED material resources is hampered by the day-of-the-Lord judgments that will begin with the trumpets of Revelation 8-9.
king of the West is allowed to use its superior weaponry and military might to
achieve the victory over this Southern alliance.
that day messengers will go forth from Me in ships to frighten secure
Ethiopia; and anguish will be on them as on the day of Egypt; for, behold, it
Verses 10-19 revert to prophecy of judgment on Egypt in Ezekiel’s time.
And then verses 20-26 return to prose and introduce a new “word”, that is given to Ezekiel one year later in 587 BCE (3538 AH).
From here, Ezekiel does not return to any “end-times” issues until chapter 34:11ff when he speaks about the re-gathering of the scattered sheep of Israel that will eventually lead to the fulfillment of God’s kingdom promises given to Israel.
©Ron Wallace, http://www.biblefragrances.com.
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