This chapter really surprised me. It begins with a familiar pattern of prophecy indicating the eventual fall of Egypt, cursing her for her Idolatry and witchcraft. Her greatness, plenty, culture, and leadership will all become as naught. Certainly, we have seen this prophecy come to pass. The ancient kingdom and culture of the once mighty Egypt is extinct. The Egypt of today has certainly been “terrorized” by Israel, their powerful, nuclear-capable neighbor to the Northeast who defeated them soundly in the six-day war.
But then, in verse 19, there is a very interesting turn in this revelation. Here is a summary of the final verses:
19 – There will be an “altar to the Lord in the midst of [Egypt]” - I would assume this to be a temple.
20-21 – The lord shall be known and worshipped in Egypt. They will be delivered by a savior.
22 – Egypt will be healed after enduring the Lord’s wrath
23-25 Egypt and Assyria (modern day Turkey) will be in a three-way alliance with Israel. They will all be blessed together.
Spiritually, I think this shows that the Lord does not forget his people, wherever they are (as long as they turn to Him). Temporally, I think this is a clue for us to look for interesting happenings in that part of the world, especially where the church is allowed to teach and perform its work.